138. Editorial Note

At 4:40 p.m. on February 18, Secretary of State Rusk met with British Ambassador Lord Harlech. (Johnson Library, Rusk Appointment Book) No memorandum of this conversation has been found, but in telegram 5222 to London, February 18, Rusk reported as follows:

“I today called in Harlech to suggest that they approach Soviets to say that most useful action for Co-Chairmen at present time would be to call on other interested governments for expression their views on situation, so that Co-Chairmen could then consider what further action they might usefully take. I told Harlech that in response to such request USG would state its position fully in note to UK and USSR, also making this note public, and would further state that it would give consideration to any proposal Co-Chairmen might make to deal with essential problem of situation—which in our note would be fully spelled out as being cessation of DRV aggression in all respects.”

Rusk said that Harlech was reporting this immediately to the British Government and had expressed his personal view that the suggestion [Page 320]would be accepted. Rusk said further that U.S. officials hoped that the Soviet Government would also agree and that a request for U.S. views might be made soon enough for the draft reply note to be used immediately following the next air strike. (Department of State, Central Files, POL 27 VIET S)