181. Memorandum From Nathaniel Davis of the National Security Council Staff to the President's Special Assistant (Rostow)1


  • The Situation in New York, Tuesday, June 6 at 5:15 p.m.

Goldberg and Fedorenko met a few minutes ago. Goldberg pressed our understanding that our resolution would provide for free passage of the Straits of Tiran. Fedorenko demurred—particularly if this understanding were to be explicit. GoldbeRG then proposed a cease-fire and “steps toward withdrawal.” Fedorenko didn't like that.

Fedorenko then suggested returning to Tabor's original resolution. This called for an immediate cease-fire and cooperation with the UN to put the cease-fire into effect. Fedorenko objected to the UN machinery aspect.

Goldberg finally suggested a resolution which calls upon the governments concerned, as a first step, to take forthwith all measures for an immediate cease-fire and for a cessation of all military activities in the area.2 (This last reference to all military activities could apply to the Straits.)

Fedorenko and Goldberg agreed to a quick referral of this language to their governments.

Goldberg and Fedorenko are scheduled to meet again within the next fifteen minutes to confirm their agreement if possible.3

The Soviet attitude has shifted further in light of military action on the ground, and they are now pressing hard for UN action as soon as possible to stop the fighting.

If we and the Soviets can agree on language, Hans Tabor, the President of the Security Council, must then consult other members whose noses are somewhat out of joint because of the long delay and the focus of the discussions between the Big Two. The Security Council is scheduled to meet at 6:30 p.m. (It will probably convene at least half an hour late.)

  1. Source: Johnson Library, National Security File, Country File, Middle East Crisis, Vol. IV. Confidential.
  2. Transmitted in telegram 5638 from USUN, June 7. (National Archives and Records Administration, RG 59, Central Files 1967–69, POL 27 ARAB–ISR/UN)
  3. New York has just called, confirming agreement. [Footnote in the source text. Goldberg reported on his three June 6 meetings with Fedorenko in telegram 5644 from USUN, June 7. (lbid.)]