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11. Memorandum From the Assistant Secretary of State for Near Eastern and South Asian Affairs (Jones) to Secretary of State Rusk0

SUBJECT

  • Call by the Iranian Ambassador and the Shah’s Informal Special Emissary on the President to Deliver a Letter from the Shah

Discussion:

Our Embassy [less than 1 line of source text not declassified] in Tehran have emphasized in recent reports the Shah’s anxiety lest the new Administration change United States policy of support for Iran and for the Shah. We have also been informed of an upsurge in the Shah’s concern over the level of United States’ military assistance to Iran.

Despite our Ambassador’s best efforts to dissuade him, the Shah has sent the chief of Iran’s Security and Intelligence Organization, General Teimur Bakhtiar, to the United States with instructions to call on the principal officials of the United States Government and on other prominent Americans to discover what changes, if any, in United States policy may be forthcoming under the new Administration. The Shah has also addressed a letter to the President which he desires to be presented personally to the President by the Shah’s representative. I am presently arranging [Page 26]for calls by General Bakhtiar on various officials of the Departments of State and Defense. The Iranian Ambassador, Ardeshir Zahedi, has asked the Department to request the President to receive him and General Bakhtiar in order to present the Shah’s letter.

It can be expected that General Bakhtiar and the Iranian Ambassador will attempt to obtain from the President assurances of United States’ sympathy and continued support for Iran and the Shah.

Recommendation:

That you sign the attached Memorandum for the President recommending a meeting with the Iranian Ambassador and General Bakhtiar.1

  1. Source: Department of State, Central Files, 788.11/2–1561. Secret. Drafted by Bowling (NEA/GTI) on February 14.
  2. The memorandum, signed by Secretary Rusk, was sent to the White House on February 16.