67. Telegram From the Embassy in the United Arab Republic to the Department of State 1

8003. Ref: Amman’s 37752 and Cairo’s 7956.3

DCM, Parker and I impressed by cogency of King Hussein’s message to US reftel (Amman’s 3775).
We agree that our efforts should be directed toward dissociation from appearances of support for Israel versus Arabs and strictly toward UAR-Israel confrontation. We should remain neutral in this confrontation stepping in only if hostilities erupt and then as peacemaker.
Otherwise, we foresee heavy cost to US in terms political, economic and other relationships in Arab world, and in terms cold war balance of power. Equally, see little chance viable future for Israel save as armed beachhead, guaranteed by US (Cairo 7956).

Department pass Amman, Beirut, Damascus, Jidda, Tel Aviv.

  1. Source: National Archives and Records Administration, RG 59, Central Files 1967–69, POL ARAB–ISR. Secret; Priority; Exdis; Noforn. Received at 7:32 a.m. and passed to the White House at 7:50 a.m. A copy was sent to the President with a May 26 memorandum from Walt Rostow stating, “You may wish to get the flavor of the perspective of our Embassy in Cairo.” (Johnson Library, National Security File, Country File, Middle East Crisis, Vol. I)
  2. Telegram 3775 from Amman, May 26, transmitted an oral message from King Hussein to the highest U.S. authorities stating that the United States was risking the hostility of the entire Arab world and complete loss of influence in the area for the indefinite future by the appearance it was giving of identifying itself with Israel over the Tiran Strait and related issues. (National Archives and Records Administration, RG 59, Central Files 1967–69, POL ARAB–ISR)
  3. In telegram 7956 from Cairo, May 25, Nolte suggested a possible package deal in which Israel would give refugees a choice between peaceful repatriation or full compensation, international status for Jerusalem and the question of frontiers under the original partition arrangements would be subject to negotiation, Israel’s existence would “in effect” be recognized by the Arabs, and Israel would gain freedom of passage through the Gulf of Aqaba and an end to the Arab boycott. (Ibid.)