24. Memorandum From Marshall Wright of the National Security Council Staff to the President’s Assistant for National Security Affairs (Kissinger)1
- Status Report on the Security Problem at the UN
State’s Bill Macomber had a conference last Friday with Mayor Lindsay and most of the commissioners and top police brass of the City of New York. It was a rough meeting, and by no means resolved the problem. Lindsay did, however, say that New York City would meet its obligations to deal with threats which the New York City police evaluated as serious. Lindsay expressed surprise at being told that there was a “crisis of confidence” in the UN about police protection being extended to the threatened missions, and undertook to meet that problem. He was adamant, however, that the Federal Government is not meeting its share of the responsibility, that he will not compromise on “static guard posts”, and that the New York City police will, themselves, make the assessment whether the threats are serious and how they should best be met.
As of now, the prospect is that the city will probably do at least somewhat better in meeting the immediate problem of the 13 threatened missions. How much better we will know in a day or so.
On the long range problem, no progress was made at all. John Dean is now at work on a memo to the President setting forth the problem and the options. He will send us a copy which I will send to you forthwith. Dean, like OMB, still feels strongly about the theology of this matter and I am not at all certain that his memo will adequately reflect what I believe to be the ultimate responsibility of the Federal Government for the protection of diplomatic missions at the UN.2 In other words, I think that you may find it necessary to inject yourself in this matter before it is all over. For the moment, however, the immediate problem seems to have been eased and the wisest course for us now is probably to wait for Dean’s memo before we decide what to do next.