22. Letter From President Kennedy to President Nasser0

Dear Mr. President: I have wanted to reply to your most welcome letter of June 21 and I look forward to doing so in the next few weeks. You may also rest assured that I too attach real significance to Dr. Kaissouni’s visit to Washington last April.1

As the relations between our two countries have been placed on a fruitful basis of cooperation and understanding, I think we have come to agree that problems between us can always be discussed fully and frankly, quietly and in confidence. I agree with you that “causes of differences will always remain between us through the circumstances of each of us or under pressure of other forces”, but “mutual understanding will keep those differences within limits not to be exceeded.”

It is in this spirit and in this understanding, Mr. President, that I have asked Ambassador Badeau to discuss with you certain matters of importance to us both. I am confident that in your reflections you will find these matters, difficult as they are, to be within the limits not to be exceeded. I can assure you that there is involved no change in United States policy toward the United Arab Republic or the Near East in general; nor is there intended any alteration in the basis of our cordial and expanding relationship.

I understand that Dr. Kaissouni plans to visit here again in September. He will be most welcome. The Secretary of State will be delighted to receive him and will be happy to try to facilitate his work here. I have observed with admiration his skilled piloting under your statesmanlike guidance, of the recent conference in Cairo to a sound and forward-looking conclusion.

I look forward to being in touch with you soon. At that time I shall want to review certain events and movements on the world scene and also to deal with the development of the relationships between our two countries in the same frank and cordial way as has characterized our recent exchanges. Meanwhile, I wish you continued success in your great efforts to promote the political, economic and social well-being of your people.


John F. Kennedy
  1. Source: Department of State, Presidential Correspondence: Lot 66 D 294, Pres. Kennedy-Johnson/UAR Correspondence: 1961–1965, Vol. I. No classification marking.
  2. UAR Finance Minister Kaissouni was in Washington April 19-26, 1962. For documentation, see vol. XVII, pp. 637646.