115. Letter From Prime Minister Moro to President Johnson1

Dear Mr. President:

Ambassador Harriman has delivered to me your message of July 26th.2

I wish to thank you warmly for your thoughtfulness in briefing me on the South Vietnam situation through Mr. Harriman: I have much appreciated the fact that you have chosen to add your personal remarks to those of the Ambassador.

The conversation I had here has been very useful to me to improve my knowledge of the issue in the light of new elements. They confirm the reasons for the understanding we have repeatedly expressed for the motivations of the United States’s action in Viet Nam. Such action is all the more valuable in as much as it is coupled with offers for a peaceful and honorable solution, constantly and even recently reiterated, and with generous plans aimed at fostering, in the framework of a re-established peace, the welfare of the peoples of South East Asia through economic and social development.

I also share your viewpoint on the advisability of a solidarity, demonstrated also with facts, to an action which encourages the free world to believe in the keeping of one’s word and in the failure of violence exerted for the purpose of upsetting freely accepted juridical situations.

I have therefore confirmed to Ambassador Harriman the decision to renew the medical assistance, and I wish to inform you that I have given instructions to examine the possibility of increasing our humanitarian assistance.

Mr. Harriman was accompanied by Ambassador Reinhardt, whom I shall contact for any further consultation, as you kindly suggested.

Please believe me cordially yours

Aldo Moro 3
  1. Source: Johnson Library, National Security File, Special Head of State Correspondence, Italy. No classification marking. The letter is marked “Unofficial Translation.”
  2. Not printed. (Ibid.) Harriman visited Rome July 24-25, during a July 8-August 3 trip to Europe. The Embassy reported on his talk with Moro in telegram 229 from Rome, July 26. (Library of Congress, Manuscript Division, Harriman Papers, Special Public Service Files, Kennedy-Johnson, Trip and Mission Files, Europe and Soviet Union 1965)
  3. Printed from a copy that indicates Moro signed the original.