259. Minutes of Meeting of the 303 Committee1
Washington, March 8, 1967.
[Here follows discussion of unrelated topics.]
4. Covert Political Action re May 1967 Greek National Elections.
- Mr. Rostow and Ambassador Kohler indicated they had definite reservations but were anxious to hear the arguments. Mr. Vance had earlier registered reservations.
- [1 line of source text not declassified] the major arguments for a U.S. role in the elections were contained in Ambassador Talbot’s cable (Athens 3805) dated 11 February 1967.2
- [1–1/2 lines of source text not declassified] whereas the U.S. participation could not guarantee the winner it certainly would have an impact. [less than 1 line of source text not declassified] Andreas Papandreou had been observed for a sufficient period to realistically place him in a camp definitely hostile to U.S. interests. Andreas Papandreou was driving very hard while other candidates were, at best, lethargic.
- Mr. Rostow wondered if we weren’t approaching this type of 1967 election on a momentum started in the fifties. We had assets, techniques and money, and we could perform almost by rote. Was the threat that great? Ambassador Kohler felt that the papers had not made the election issues entirely clear. Was it not possible that we were attributing more potential to Andreas than he deserved?
- At this point, Mr. Rostow was called to a meeting with the Secretaries of State and Defense, and it was agreed to resume discussion of the proposal on Monday, 13 March 1967, at 1600.3