320. Memorandum From Secretary of State Rogers to President Nixon1

Evening Report

1. Dobrynin Call—I saw Soviet Ambassador Dobrynin this morning at his request.2 He said Gromyko planned to be in Washington September 29 and 30 and would arrive in New York earlier but wished to coordinate his presence there with mine. He also suggested that Gromyko sign the Nuclear Accidents Agreement while he is in Washington. [Page 964] I told him that we were agreed on the signing and would let him know the details later.3

I informed Dobrynin of your decision to open U.S. littoral ports to Soviet shipping on fourteen days notice and to enter into talks on other outstanding maritime matters and said that our Embassy in Moscow will be providing full details.

Regarding my talks with Gromyko, we agreed that we would discuss outstanding European issues4 and the Middle East situation. I told Dobrynin that we hope to achieve an interim Suez Canal agreement during theGeneral Assembly session and that we believe it is in the common interest of all the parties to work toward this goal. Dobrynin said that Gromyko would welcome a discussion of the Middle East.

I also brought up the Indo-Pakistan situation, stressing that we are counseling restraint. Dobrynin stated that it is also Soviet policy to cool passions in the area, that this had been the aim of the Indo-Soviet treaty, and that the treaty in fact seems to have had a quieting effect. Dobrynin also stressed that it is not Soviet policy to fragment Pakistan and that Moscow is not supporting Indian pressure for an independent East Pakistan. The only mention of China during our talk occurred when Dobrynin asked if there is a “Chinese element causing excitement” on the Subcontinent. I said I did not know, but that it seems that the passions result fundamentally from intense hostility between India and Pakistan.5

[Omitted here is discussion of Senator Edward Kennedy’s trip to India and Deputy AID Administrator Maury Williams’ trip to Pakistan.]

William P. Rogers
  1. Source: National Archives, RG 59, S/S Files: Lot 74 D 164, President’s Reading Reports, 1964–74, President–Evening Master File. Secret. The memorandum is based on several telegrams, drafted by Jack Matlock (EUR/SOV), on the issues discussed during the meeting; additional information from the telegrams is provided below.
  2. According to his Appointment Book, Rogers met Dobrynin and Matlock at 10:03 a.m. Rogers also called Dobrynin at 9:27 a.m. on August 27. (Personal Files of William P. Rogers)
  3. In telegram 156612 to Moscow, August 25, the Department reported: “Referring to SmithSemenov conversation, Dobrynin asked whether third parties would be invited to adhere to the agreement. Secretary thought this would not be advisable since we do not want to exaggerate importance of accidents agreement lest it appear that we have labored hard and come up with a mouse.” (National Archives, RG 59, Central Files 1970–73, POL USUSSR)
  4. In telegram 156614 to Moscow, August 25, the Department reported: “On Berlin Secretary said we pleased with the progress made by the Ambassadors and that draft seems to provide good ‘general framework’ for agreement. He added that we of course want to look over draft and if we have any suggested changes we will be back in touch with the other participants.” (Ibid.)
  5. In telegram 156613 to Moscow, August 25, the Department reported: “Secretary expressed concern regarding guerrilla action in East Pakistan. Dobrynin said that guerrilla action is ‘practically over,’ and that real problem was coping with seven million refugees. He volunteered that Soviet Government is giving no encouragement to separatist movement in East Pakistan, and said that Soviets had informed Indian Government that they will not support demands for separatist state. As for Soviet involvement with guerrillas, Dobrynin stated, ‘We do not like to be involved in such things.’” (Ibid.)
  6. Irwin initialed the memorandum above Rogers’s typed signature.