294. Telegram From the Presidentʼs Assistant for National Security Affairs (Kissinger) to the Presidentʼs Deputy Assistant for National Security Affairs (Haig)1
Lajes Air Field, Azores Islands, December 13, 1971, 1650Z.
AWH 10038. My present view on India–Pakistan is as follows:
- We are positioned well but we must be as careful not to be maneuvered into the position of the last hold-out as we must be to avoid being the first to cave.
- I therefore suggest that if Security Council is still deadlocked tomorrow morning or the Soviets have vetoed we should consider backing a resolution for cease-fire and later withdrawal—even if Soviet answer is not yet received. Can we position Bhutto to get some of his friends to surface such a resolution? We should trigger stage 2 even if we have not heard from Soviets tomorrow. Can I see what such a resolution would look like. Let us discuss that.
- As for fleet, I am weighing advantage of moving it against risk of being called off prematurely by public pressure. Can we put it into Singapore for a day? In any event, fleet should go into Indian Ocean, [Page 801] not Bay of Bengal. Let us discuss it. Let us discuss it on plane2 before final go-ahead.
[Omitted here are instructions from Kissinger on Strategic Arms Limitation Talks.]
- Source: National Archives, Nixon Presidential Materials, NSC Files, Box 643, Country Files, Middle East, India/Pakistan. Top Secret, Flash, Sensitive, Exclusively Eyes Only. Received at 1732Z.↩
- Apparent reference to a proposed discussion among Nixon, Kissinger, Rogers, and Connally on the plane scheduled to return the party to Washington on December 14.↩