61. Transcript of Telephone Conversation Between the President’s Assistant for National Security Affairs (Kissinger) and Secretary of State Rogers1
R: Hi, Henry.
K: Bill, you called me last night?
R: Last night? No.
K: I got a message that you called last night and you might call again this morning.
R: No, I didn’t call you last night. But on this business about the Qs and As today on the Soviet Union trip, I am perfectly prepared to be reasonable about how we state it but I don’t want it to appear that we in the State Department are only doing routine things.
K: I agree completely. Bill, I don’t care how they state the damn thing. I don’t think it is good for either of us to be in charge of it in this way. Did they send you what I suggested they say?
R: No. Well, they sent me something that said the State Department will handle diplomatic matters which will be okayed at the White House.2
K: What do you think we should say?
R: Well, first this is a coordinated effort under the direction of the President; that the diplomatic and substantive matters will be handled the normal way by the State Department with full cooperation of Dr. Kissinger and his staff.
K: Well, let me see if we can phrase something like that and I will check it with Ted3 before we give guidance. I don’t think we should do anything that …
R: No, and I think it gives us more of a chance to say this is a cooperative effort. The reason China was different was because we didn’t have diplomatic relations with them.
K: Well, as far as I’m concerned … I want you to know anything I can do to make it appear to be a cooperative effort I will do.[Page 209]
R: I think this is important because there has been so much speculation.4
[Omitted here is discussion unrelated to the Moscow Summit.]
- Source: Library of Congress, Manuscript Division, Kissinger Papers, Box 371, Telephone Conversations, Chronological File. No classification marking.↩
- See Document 60.↩
- Theodore Eliot, Special Assistant to the Secretary of State and Executive Secretary of the Department of State.↩
- According to a transcript of a telephone conversation on March 18 at 11:58 a.m., Kissinger requested that Rogers visit Europe and consult with NATO allies prior to the summit. (Library of Congress, Manuscript Division, Kissinger Papers, Box 371, Telephone Conversations, Chronological File)↩