The Foreign Relations of the United States series presents the official documentary historical record of major foreign policy decisions and significant diplomatic activity of the United States Government. The series documents the facts and events that contributed to the formulation of policies and includes evidence of supporting and alternative views to the policy positions ultimately adopted.
The Historian of the Department of State is charged with the responsibility for the preparation of the Foreign Relations series. The staff of the Office of the Historian, Bureau of Public Affairs, plans, researches, compiles, and edits the volumes in the series. This documentary editing proceeds in full accord with the generally accepted standards of historical scholarship. Official regulations codifying specific standards for the selection and editing of documents for the series were first promulgated by Secretary of State Frank B. Kellogg on March 26, 1925. These regulations, with minor modifications, guided the series through 1991.
A new statutory charter for the preparation of the series was established by Public Law 102–138, the Foreign Relations Authorization Act, Fiscal Years 1992 and 1993, which was signed by President George Bush on October 28, 1991. Section 198 of P.L. 102–138 added a new Title IV to the Department of State’s Basic Authorities Act of 1956 (22 USC 4351, et seq.).
The statute requires that the Foreign Relations series be a thorough, accurate, and reliable record of major United States foreign policy decisions and significant United States diplomatic activity. The volumes of the series should include all records needed to provide comprehensive documentation of major foreign policy decisions and actions of the United States Government, including facts that contributed to the formulation of policies and records that provided supporting and alternative views to the policy positions ultimately adopted.
The statute confirms the editing principles established by Secretary Kellogg: the Foreign Relations series is guided by the principles of historical objectivity and accuracy; records should not be altered or deletions made without indicating in the published text that a deletion has been made; the published record should omit no facts that were of major importance in reaching a decision; and nothing should be omitted for the purposes of concealing a defect in policy. The statute also requires that the Foreign Relations series be published not more than 30 years after the events recorded.
The editors of this volume are convinced that it meets all regulatory, statutory, and scholarly standards of selection and editing. Although [Page IV] this volume records policies and events of more than 30 years ago, the Foreign Relations statute, allows the Department until 1996 to reach the 30-year line in the publication of the series.
Structure and Scope of the Foreign Relations Series
This volume is part of a subseries of the Foreign Relations series for the years 1961–1963. The subseries presents in 25 print volumes and 5 microfiche supplements a documentary record of major foreign policy decisions and actions of the administration of President John F. Kennedy. The record of U.S. policy toward the nations of the Near East during 1961–1963 has been compiled in two print volumes and one microfiche supplement.
This volume presents the documentary record with respect to the nations of the Near East, including the Arab-Israeli dispute, for the period January 1, 1961, through June 30, 1962. Specific countries covered include Iran, Iraq, Israel, Jordan, Kuwait, Lebanon, Syria, and the United Arab Republic. The next volume in the series, volume XVIII, will extend the record through December 31, 1963. A separate microfiche supplement will comprise additional documentation, regarded by the editors as significant but of somewhat lesser importance, on these countries, Yemen, the British Crown Colony and Protectorates of Aden, the Arab-Israeli dispute, and the Near East region for the entire 1961–1963 triennium.
For the purposes of this subseries, documentation on the countries of North Africa (Libya, Morocco, Algeria, and Tunisia) is included in volume XXI, Africa.
The documents in the print volumes XVII and XVIII are arranged in one chronological sequence; a Topical List of Documents is printed on pages XLIII–LIX.
The Foreign Relations statute requires that the published record in the Foreign Relations series include all records needed to provide comprehensive documentation on major foreign policy decisions and actions of the U.S. Government. It further requires that government agencies, departments, and other entities of the U.S. Government cooperate with the Department of State Historian by providing full and complete access to records pertinent to foreign policy decisions and actions and by providing copies of selected records. The editor believes that in terms of access this volume was prepared in accordance with the standards and mandates of the statute, although access to some records was restricted, as noted below.
Sources for the Foreign Relations Series
The editors have had complete access to all the retired records and papers in the Department of State: the central files of the Department; the [Page V] decentralized (“lot files”) of the Department at the bureau, office, and division levels; the files of the Department’s Executive Secretariat, which contain the records of international conferences and high-level official visits, correspondence with foreign leaders by the President and Secretary of State, and memoranda of conversations between the President and Secretary of State and foreign officials; and the files of overseas diplomatic posts. Certain intelligence-related files maintained in the Bureau of Intelligence and Research were unknown to the Department historians at the time this volume was compiled. Arrangements have been made for Department historians to have access to these records for future volumes.
The editors of the Foreign Relations series also have access to the papers of President Kennedy and other White House foreign policy records. Presidential papers maintained and preserved at the Presidential libraries include some of the most significant foreign affairs-related documentation from other federal agencies including the National Security Council, the Central Intelligence Agency, the Department of Defense, and the Joint Chiefs of Staff. All of this documentation has been made available for use in the Foreign Relations series thanks to the consent of these agencies and the cooperation and support of the National Archives and Records Administration.
Department of State historians also have full access to records of the Department of Defense, particularly the records of the Joint Chiefs of Staff and the Secretary of Defense and his major assistants.
As noted above, the Foreign Relations statute requires that the editors have full and complete access to all records pertinent to foreign policy decisions and actions. Since early 1991, the Central Intelligence Agency, in cooperation with the Department of State, has provided expanded access to Department historians to high-level intelligence documents from those records still in the custody of that Agency. Department historians’ expanded access was arranged by the History Staff of the Center for the Study of Intelligence, Central Intelligence Agency. This access arrangement coincided with the research of volumes for the 1961–1963 triennium. As Department of State and CIA historians have continued to work out the procedural and scholarly aspects of this access, the variety of documentation made available and selected for publication in the volumes expanded. For this volume, the CIA historians made relevant intelligence files available to the editor. The specific CIA files are named in the List of Sources (pp. XV–XXV).
Principles of Document Selection for the Foreign Relations Series
In preparing each volume of the Foreign Relations series, the editors are guided by some general principles for the selection of documents. Each editor, in consultation with the General Editor and other senior editors, determines the particular issues and topics to be documented either [Page VI] in detail, in brief, or in summary. Some general decisions are also made regarding issues that cannot be documented in the volume but will be addressed in a microfiche supplement or in bibliographical notes.
The following general selection criteria are used in preparing volumes in the Foreign Relations series. Individual compiler-editors vary these criteria in accordance with the particular issues and the available documentation. The compiler-editors also tend to apply these selection criteria in accordance with their own interpretation of the generally accepted standards of scholarship. In selecting documentation for publication, the editors give priority to unpublished classified records, rather than previously published records (which are accounted for in appropriate bibliographical notes).
Selection Criteria (in general order of priority):
- Major foreign affairs commitments made on behalf of the United States to other governments, including those that define or identify the principal foreign affairs interests of the United States;
- Major foreign affairs issues, commitments, negotiations, and activities, whether or not major decisions were made, and including dissenting or alternative opinions to the process ultimately adopted;
- The decisions, discussions, actions, and considerations of the President, as the official constitutionally responsible for the direction of foreign policy;
- The discussions and actions of the National Security Council, the Cabinet, and special Presidential policy groups, including the policy options brought before these bodies or their individual members;
- The policy options adopted by or considered by the Secretary of State and the most important actions taken to implement Presidential decisions or policies;
- Diplomatic negotiations and conferences, official correspondence, and other exchanges between U.S. representatives and those of other governments that demonstrate the main lines of policy implementation on major issues;
- Important elements of information that attended Presidential decisions and policy recommendations of the Secretary of State;
- Major foreign affairs decisions, negotiations, and commitments undertaken on behalf of the United States by government officials and representatives in other agencies in the foreign affairs community or other branches of government made without the involvement (or even knowledge) of the White House or the Department of State;
- The role of the Congress in the preparation and execution of particular foreign policies or foreign affairs actions;
- Economic aspects of foreign policy;
- The main policy lines of U.S. military and economic assistance as well as other types of assistance;
- The political-military recommendations, decisions, and activities of the military establishment and major regional military commands as they bear upon the formulation or execution of major U.S. foreign policies;
- The main policy lines of intelligence activities if they constituted major aspects of U.S. foreign policy toward a nation or region or if they provided key information in the formulation of major U.S. policies;
- Documentation that illuminates special decision-making processes that accomplished the policies recorded in particular volumes;
- Diplomatic appointments that reflect major policies or affect policy changes.
Scope and Focus of Documents Researched and Selected for Foreign Relations, 1961–1963, Volume XVII
The editor of this volume, the research and editing of which was completed in 1992, has defined a “major issue” as one that received high-level attention within the U.S. Government, from the President, key White House aides, or Cabinet-level officials; and/or had long-range repercussions for U.S. foreign policy and interests in the region. While it was impossible to include the details of U.S. policy on every issue, documentation has been included, either in the print volume or the microfiche supplement, that delineates basic U.S. policies toward the countries in question.
The primary focus of the documents in this volume is on the foreign policymaking process of the U.S. Government, including documentation illuminating policy formulation and major aspects and repercussions of its execution. Emphasis is placed on official memoranda that reveal policy positions, show differences within the U.S. Government over policy formulation, summarize developments and positions regarding an issue, contain intelligence or military assessments, and describe decisions or actions taken at the National Security Council. Some key instructions sent to diplomatic posts in the region are included when they demonstrate the details of the execution of foreign policy. Memoranda of conversations with foreign leaders both abroad and in Washington were selected to provide additional information on the origins and impact of foreign policy decisions.
The editor selected only the most important reports from diplomatic posts containing descriptions and assessments of the political and economic situation, social conditions, and technological and scientific concerns, and the records of the most significant conversations held with foreign leaders and their diplomatic representatives. Details of specific military and economic assistance programs or their implementation are [Page VIII] not included. The volumes and microfiche supplement contain finished U.S. intelligence assessments but do not deal with intelligence sources and methods.
Documentation selected by the editor for inclusion in the microfiche supplement provides additional details on the major issues covered in both volume XVII (presented here) and volume XVIII (scheduled for publication in 1995). Also included in the supplement are selected documents on certain bilateral relations not included in the printed volumes. The annotation to printed documents contains references to some, but not all, documents included in the microfiche supplement. The supplement also includes several lengthy attachments to printed documents and the discussion sections of National Intelligence Estimates and Special National Intelligence Estimates, the summary portions of which appear in the print volumes. In these cases, the printed document contains editorial references to the appropriate microfiche document. The volumes may be used without the supplement, but the microfiche should be used in conjunction with the printed volumes.
The major topics and issues covered in volume XVII are as follows:
Interagency review of U.S. policy toward Iran and the U.S. decision to support a program of reform in that country. This topic received the greatest amount of coverage in the volume because of the extensive attention given to it by the highest levels of the U.S. Government and because the decision to support a program of economic and social, but not political, reform and to throw complete U.S. support behind Iranian Prime Minister Ali Amini had important ramifications for subsequent U.S.-Iranian relations. Records of discussions with the Shah, especially during his June 1964 visit to the United States, are included.
Additional documentation dealing with the interagency review and containing additional details relating to U.S. economic and military assistance programs in Iran is included in the compilation on Iran in the microfiche supplement.
Policies toward and efforts to resolve the Arab-Israeli dispute. Documentation is included describing U.S. policies and positions toward the numerous issues of the Arab-Israeli dispute. The most extensive coverage is given to U.S. support for and involvement in an initiative to resolve the Palestinian refugee question conducted by Joseph Johnson, who was a special representative of the U.N. Palestine Conciliation Commission.
Other issues include incidents of violence and violations of the 1949 Armistice Agreements, the Jerusalem question, Arab-Israeli differences over distribution of the waters of the Jordan River, matters relating to refugees and to Palestinian political organization, the Arab boycott of Israel, the question of direct negotiations between Israel and the Arab states, Arab treatment of non-Israeli Jews, location of foreign Embassies in Israel, and Israeli border questions. Documentation concerning U.N. [Page IX] General Assembly and Security Council consideration of Arab-Israeli issues and on interactions between U.S. domestic politics and U.S. Arab-Israeli policies is also included.
- U.S. efforts to improve U.S. relations with President Nasser of the United Arab Republic. An important focus of the volume is the policy discussion and debate within the U.S. Government concerning the possibility of improving U.S. relations with Nasser. This policy review addressed questions of U.S. economic assistance to the United Arab Republic and whether to invite Nasser on a State visit to Washington. U.S. policy concerning economic assistance to the United Arab Republic is a major subject, but specific economic assistance programs are not covered in detail. The volume includes reports of conversations between U.S. officials and Nasser, important intelligence assessments concerning Nasser and his country, records of the most important correspondence between Presidents Kennedy and Nasser, and material showing the interest of key White House aides in improving relations with Nasser and President Kennedy’s views on this subject, as well as some reporting on political developments within the country and on Nasser’s relations with other Arab countries and Iran.
- Israeli security issues. Among the most important issues covered in the volume is the background to the U.S. decision in August 1962 to supply Israel with the Hawk missile, the first major weapon system provided to Israel by the United States. Another issue documented in the volume is U.S. concern over Israel’s nuclear reactor at Dimona. Little coverage is given in this volume to U.S. economic assistance to Israel or to political developments within Israel, although some additional documentation on these topics is included in the microfiche supplement.
- The withdrawal of Syria from the United Arab Republic. U.S. officials were concerned that Syria’s withdrawal from its union with Egypt in September 1961 might lead to a general Near East war with disastrous ramifications for U.S. interests. The editor has selected substantial documentation on the U.S. response to this event, primarily handled through diplomatic channels, including the available White House documentation. Special attention was also given to the formulation of U.S. policy toward the new Syrian Government.
- The Kuwait crisis of 1961. The editor has included documentation on the reaction of the United States during the brief crisis that developed when Iraq reasserted claims to Kuwait at the time of Kuwait’s independence from the United Kingdom.
The documents are presented chronologically according to Washington time or, in the case of conferences, in the order of individual meetings. Incoming telegrams from U.S. Missions are placed according to [Page X] time of receipt in the Department of State or other receiving agency, rather than the time of transmission; memoranda of conversation are placed according to the time and date of the conversation, rather than the date the memorandum was drafted.
Editorial treatment of the documents published in the Foreign Relations series follows Office style guidelines, supplemented by guidance from the General Editor and the chief technical editor. The source text is reproduced as exactly as possible, including marginalia or other notations, which are described in the footnotes. Texts are transcribed and printed according to accepted conventions for the publication of historical documents in the limitations of modern typography. A heading has been supplied by the editors for each document included in the volume. Spelling, capitalization, and punctuation are retained as found in the source text, except that obvious typographical errors are silently corrected. Other mistakes and omissions in the source text are corrected by bracketed insertions: a correction is set in italic type; an addition in roman type. Words or phrases underlined in the source text are printed in italics. Abbreviations and contractions are preserved as found in the source text, and a list of abbreviations is included in the front matter of each volume.
Bracketed insertions are also used to indicate omitted text that deals with an unrelated subject (in roman type) or that remains classified after declassification review (in italic type). The amount of material not declassified has been noted by indicating the number of lines or pages of source text that were omitted. Entire documents withheld for declassification purposes have been accounted for and are listed by headings, source notes, and number of pages not declassified in their chronological place. The amount of material omitted from this print volume and from the microfiche supplement because it was unrelated to the subject of the volume, however, has not been delineated. All brackets that appear in the source text are so identified by footnotes.
The unnumbered first footnote to each document indicates the document’s source, original classification, distribution, and drafting information. The source footnote also provides the background of important documents and policies and indicates if the President or his major policy advisers read the document. Every effort has been made to determine if a document has been previously published, and this information has been included in the source footnote.
Editorial notes and additional annotation summarize pertinent material not printed in the volume, indicate the location of additional documentary sources, provide references to important related documents printed in other volumes, describe key events, and provide summaries of and citations to public statements that supplement and elucidate the printed documents. Information derived from memoirs [Page XI] and other first-hand accounts has been used when appropriate to supplement or explicate the official record.
Advisory Committee on Historical Diplomatic Documentation
The Advisory Committee on Historical Diplomatic Documentation, established under the Foreign Relations statute, reviews records, advises, and makes recommendations concerning the Foreign Relations series. The Advisory Committee monitors the overall compilation and editorial process of the series and assists with any access and/or clearance problems that arise. Time constraints prevent the Advisory Committee from reviewing all volumes in the series.
This volume has not been reviewed by the Advisory Committee.
The declassification review of this volume between 1992 and 1994 resulted in the decision to withhold a little less than 2 percent of the documents originally selected. The remaining documents provide an account of the major foreign policy issues confronting, and the policies undertaken by, the U.S. Government concerning the Near East during this period.
The Division of Historical Documents Review of the Office of Freedom of Information, Privacy, and Classification Review, Bureau of Administration, Department of State, conducted the declassification review of the documents published in this volume. The review was conducted in accordance with the standards set forth in Executive Order 12356 on National Security Information and applicable laws.
Under Executive Order 12356, information that concerns one or more of the following categories, and the disclosure of which reasonably could be expected to cause damage to the national security, requires classification:
- military plans, weapons, or operations;
- the vulnerabilities or capabilities of systems, installations, projects, or plans relating to the national security;
- foreign government information;
- intelligence activities (including special activities), or intelligence sources or methods;
- foreign relations or foreign activities of the United States;
- scientific, technological, or economic matters relating to national security;
- U.S. Government programs for safeguarding nuclear materials or facilities;
- cryptology; or
- a confidential source.
The principle guiding declassification review is to release all information, subject only to the current requirements of national security [Page XII] and law. Declassification decisions entailed concurrence of the appropriate geographic and functional bureaus in the Department of State, other concerned agencies of the U.S. Government, and the appropriate foreign governments regarding specific documents of those governments.
The editors wish to acknowledge the assistance of officials at the John F. Kennedy Library, in particular Suzanne Forbes, who assisted in the collection of documents for this volume. Mary McAuliffe of the Central Intelligence Agency History Staff assisted in arranging access to that agency’s materials. Officials at the Department of Defense, especially Sandra Meagher, and officials at the National Defense University also deserve special thanks.
Nina J. Noring planned, compiled, and edited the material presented in this volume, under the supervision of General Editor Glenn W. LaFantasie. Gabrielle Mallon prepared the lists of sources, persons, and abbreviations. Michelle S. Bright, Scott F. Heil, Shelby H. Hunt, and Thomas B. Martin prepared the list of documents. Rita M. Baker and Vicki E. Futscher did the copy and technical editing and Barbara-Ann Bacon of the Publishing Services Division (Natalie H. Lee, Chief) oversaw the production of the volume. Juniee Oneida prepared the index.
Bureau of Public Affairs