118. Memorandum of Telephone Conversation Between Secretary of State Dulles and Vice President Nixon0

[Here follows discussion unrelated to Iraq.]

N hopes there is no hesitation on our part on the Jordan–Iraqi thing in the event similar circumstances could work it out for us to support the Br or do it ourselves. He thinks now that finding some proper cover is not too important now that we have made the initial step—the main thing is to make it work all over that area and he trusts we don’t vacillate. The Sec said it is a problem because we don’t want to get bogged down like the Br in Suez and have to pull out. We have assets in Lebanon we don’t have in other places. N said the point is Lebanon is not too important and the Sec agreed. The Sec said Jordan is unimportant. Iraq is the big thing. Maybe Lloyd will come over Thursday to talk re Iraq because that is the important thing. The military are reluctant—they did not want to do this. All they think about is dropping nuclear bombs and they don’t like it when we get off that. They say Lebanon exhausts their possibilities. N agreed and said we better build them up. When, the Sec said, you put them to the issue of limited warfare it is a shocking thing. The Br have gone into nuclear weapons. They have not much either. N said we are prepared for the war we probably will never fight and not for the one which will be lost.

N is all for what the Sec did.

  1. Source: Eisenhower Library, Dulles Papers, General Telephone Conversations. No classification marking. Transcribed by Phyllis D. Bernau.