192. Memorandum of Conversation1

Conversation with Vorontsov—Map Room

I saw Vorontsov at his request. He had called in San Clemente to say that he wanted to have an appointment as soon as I got back. When I saw him, he was extremely cordial and read me the attached communication from the Soviet Government. I asked him on what this was based. He replied that there had been many news stories about the American determination to defend Guantanamo and many incorrect allegations about Soviet buildups in Cuba.

I asked in what way he thought we should confirm the understanding and what he thought the understanding was. He said an oral statement from me would be enough and he took the understanding to be that we would not invade Cuba by military force. I said I would have to discuss the matter with the President and let him know.

There was then some desultory conversation about Dobrynin. Vorontsov said he knew the Kremlin was taking my recent communications extremely seriously, and that he thought matters were now on a good turn. Vorontsov is, of course, without any authority to negotiate and therefore he sticks strictly to his instructions.


Tab A

Note From the Soviet Government

The increase lately in the United States of activity hostile towards Cuba could not but attract attention in Moscow. Certain anxiety has been caused, in particular, by attempts to unite various groups and organizations of Cuban counterrevolutionary emigration in the United States and by resuming of sabotage and subversive activity of these organizations against Cuba, directed from American territory among other places. There has been an increase in number of provocative [Page 589] appeals in the American press and of ambiguous statements on the part of certain officials of the United States.

We would like to stress that in the Cuban question we proceed as before from the understanding on this question reached in the past, and we expect that the American side will also strictly adhere to this understanding.

  1. Source: Library of Congress, Manuscript Division, Kissinger Papers, Geopolitical File, Box CL 215, Soviet Union, Chronological File, “D” File. No classification marking.