370. Memorandum for the Record0

MEETING WITH THE PRESIDENT ON PORTUGUESE AFRICA

PRESENT

  • Secretary Rusk, Under Secretary Ball, Deputy Under Secretary Johnson, Messrs. Harlan Cleveland, Wayne Fredericks, Abe Chayes, William Burdett, Department of State; Messrs. William Bundy, Frank Sloan, Department of Defense; Messrs. Bundy and Brubeck, The White House

Mr. Ball presented a New York text proposed by Ambassador Stevenson as of Monday night. He said Governor Stevenson believed that, even with revisions proposed by Secretary Rusk, the text was negotiable.

Mr. Ball then showed the President Lord Home’s personal letter to Secretary Rusk objecting to the Washington text worked out by the United States and others on July 26. The President asked what alternative the United Kingdom would propose. He noted that Home’s letter was very strong, deserving serious consideration, and that we should listen to any British initiative. He noted also the United States interest in British Guinea is vital, with reference to Lord Home’s comment on that country.

The President asked for comment on a proposal that we join with the British in abstaining and permitting a Chapter 6 permissive resolution to pass. If the alternative were to lobby for sufficient abstentions to defeat a resolution which would be preferable? Mr. Cleveland felt it would be better to abstain passively and permit such a resolution to pass.

At the request of the President, who then left the room, Mr. Ball called Lord Home and agreed to show Home a further revised version of the Rusk text of this day.

With Secretary Rusk participating it was agreed to recommend to the President abstention, permitting a resolution to pass if it were strictly Chapter 6 and permissive. It was agreed that the President and Secretary Rusk should phone Ambassador Stevenson.

[Page 578]

Following the meeting Secretary Rusk, the President, Messrs. Bundy and Cleveland talked privately and the President and Secretary Rusk talked to Ambassador Stevenson by phone.1

William H. Brubeck 2
  1. Source: Kennedy Library, National Security Files, Countries Series, Portugal, General. Secret. Drafted by Brubeck.
  2. On July 31, the U.N. Security Council adopted Resolution S/5380, “The Situation in the Territories Under Portuguese Administration Is Seriously Disturbing Peace and Security in Africa,” by a vote of 8 to 0, with 3 abstentions (including the United States). The resolution urgently called upon Portugal to recognize the right of the peoples of the Territories to self-determination and independence, and requested that “all States should refrain forthwith from offering the Portuguese Government any assistance which would enable it to continue its repression of the peoples of the Territories under its administration, and take all measures to prevent the sale and supply of arms and military equipment for this purpose to the Portuguese Government.” For text, see American Foreign Policy: Current Documents, 1963, pp. 156-158.
  3. Printed from a copy that bears this typed signature.