Sources for the Foreign Relations Series
The Foreign Relations statute requires that the published record in the Foreign Relations series include all records needed to provide comprehensive documentation on major U.S. foreign policy decisions and significant U.S. diplomatic activity. It further requires that government agencies, departments, and other entities of the U.S. Government engaged in foreign policy formulation, execution, or support cooperate with the Department of State Historian by providing full and complete access to records pertinent to foreign policy decisions and actions and by providing copies of selected records.
The editors of the Foreign Relations series have complete access to all the retired records and papers of the Department of State: the central files of the Department; the special decentralized files (“lot files”) of the Department at the bureau, office, and division levels; the files of the Department’s Executive Secretariat, which contain the records of international conferences and high-level official visits, correspondence with foreign leaders by the President and Secretary of State, and memoranda of conversations between the President and Secretary of State and foreign officials; and the files of overseas diplomatic posts. All the Department’s indexed central files have been permanently transferred to the National Archives and Records Administration at College Park, Maryland (Archives II). Many of the Department’s decentralized office (or lot) files covering the 1969–1976 period, which the National Archives deems worthy of permanent retention, have been transferred or are in the process of being transferred from the Department’s custody to Archives II.
The editors of the Foreign Relations series also have full access to the papers of President Nixon and other White House foreign policy records, including tape recordings of conversations with key U.S. and foreign officials. Presidential papers maintained and preserved at the Presidential libraries and the Nixon Presidential Materials Project at Archives II include some of the most significant foreign affairs-related documentation from the Department of State and other Federal agencies including the National Security Council, the Central Intelligence Agency, the Department of Defense, and the Joint Chiefs of Staff. Dr. Henry Kissinger has approved access to his papers at the Library of Congress. The papers are a key source for the Nixon-Ford subseries of Foreign Relations.
Access to the Nixon White House tape recordings is governed by the terms of the Presidential Recordings and Materials Preservation Act [Page XII] (PL 93–526; 88 Stat. 1695) and an access agreement with the Office of Presidential Libraries of the National Archives and Records Administration and the Nixon Estate. In February 1971, President Nixon initiated a voice activated taping system in the Oval Office of the White House and, subsequently, in the President’s “hideaway” in the Executive Office Building, Camp David, the Cabinet Room, and White House and Camp David telephones. The audiotapes include conversations of President Nixon with his Assistant for National Security Affairs Henry Kissinger, other White House aides, Secretary of State Rogers, other Cabinet officers, members of Congress, and key foreign officials. The clarity of the voices on the tape recordings is often very poor, but the editors made every effort to try to verify the accuracy of the conversations. Readers are urged to become listeners, i.e., to consult the recordings for a full appreciation of those aspects of the discussion that cannot be fully captured in a transcription, such as the speakers’ inflections and emphases that may convey nuances of meaning, as well as the larger context of the discussion.
Most of the sources consulted in the preparation of this volume have been declassified and are available for review at the National Archives and Records Administration. Research for this volume in still classified material was completed through special access to restricted documents at the Nixon Presidential Materials Project, the Library of Congress, and other agencies. While all the material printed in this volume has been declassified, some of it is extracted from still-classified documents. The Nixon Presidential Materials staff is processing and declassifying many of the documents used in this volume, but they may not be available in their entirety at the time of publication.
Sources for Foreign Relations, 1969–1976, Volume XIV
The editors made considerable use of materials already compiled for other volumes in the Foreign Relations series, including those on South Asia, China, and Germany and Berlin; they also collected material subsequently compiled for volumes on Vietnam, SALT, and the Middle East. Readers interested in these subjects should consult the relevant volumes for further information on the specific sources used in research.
In preparing this volume, the editors thoroughly mined the Presidential papers and other White House records from the Nixon Presidential Materials Project at the National Archives; this collection proved the most valuable source of documentation on the Nixon administration’s conduct of relations with the Soviet Union. Many of the most important records for this volume were found in the Project’s National Security Council Files, in particular, the Country Files, Soviet Union. A collection of sensitive documents on the Soviet Union is also in the Kissinger Office Files, in particular, records of his secret trip to Moscow [Page XIII] in April 1972 and of his periodic meetings with Soviet Foreign Minister Andrei Gromyko. Most of the documentation on the Moscow Summit itself is in the President’s Trip Files, including briefing materials and memoranda of meetings between Nixon and Brezhnev. The President’s Trip File, moreover, was the source of another important collection for this volume: the records relating to the “confidential channel” between Kissinger and Soviet Ambassador Anatoly Dobrynin. The so-called “D” File includes memoranda of their conversations and correspondence exchanged, thus documenting dialogue at a high level between the United States and Soviet Union on a wide range of global and bilateral issues. The National Security Council Institutional Files (H-Files) were an essential source for recording formal decision-making processes on foreign policy and crisis management; the records of the Washington Special Actions Group, for instance, were particularly valuable in covering the response to the North Vietnamese offensive in April and May 1972. Under President Nixon, decision-making on issues related to the Soviet Union, however, was largely informal, i.e., formulated and implemented outside normal bureaucratic channels. Rather than rely on formal decision papers, Nixon and Kissinger made many of these decisions in person through a series of meetings and telephone conversations. The editors, therefore, made extensive use of two crucial sources: Nixon White House Tape Recordings and the Kissinger Telephone Conversation Transcripts. The latter source includes a key collection of telephone conversations with Dobrynin. The Haig Telephone Conversations (Haig Chronological File) and the Haldeman Diaries—including the book, the CD-ROM, and handwritten notes (Staff Member and Office Files)—were also useful in revealing the President’s thinking not only during the summit but also during Kissinger’s secret trip to Moscow. Nixon occasionally revealed his thoughts in writing, either in memoranda or in marginalia, for key members of his staff and cabinet. Many of these documents were found in the President’s Personal Files, in particular, the President’s Speech File, which contains a wide range of materials used in preparation for important public statements.
During the Nixon administration, the White House generally excluded the Department of State from important decision-making on the Soviet Union. This exclusion is well reflected in the records of the Department. Several Department of State sources, however, proved useful in the compilation of this volume. The Department’s Central Files contain day-to-day communications, including telegrams, memoranda, and correspondence, on relations between the United States and Soviet Union. The lot files of Winston Lord—Kissinger’s Special Assistant at the time and later his Director of Planning and Coordination Staff at the Department of State—helped to clarify some of the President’s preparations for the summit.[Page XIV]
The Kissinger Papers at the Library of Congress largely replicate documentation found in other collections. Since this volume was compiled, copies of the most important source—the Kissinger Telephone Conversation Transcripts—have been deposited at the Nixon Project at the National Archives. Although the citations in this volume refer to Kissinger Papers, copies of the transcripts as organized in the original collection are available to the public at the National Archives.
The editors also had access to the files of Nixon Intelligence Files at the National Security Council, the Central Intelligence Agency, and the Department of Defense. The files of the Central Intelligence Agency, particularly the NIC Registry of NIE and SNIE files, were essential for intelligence reports and assessments on which the Nixon administration based its policy decisions.
The following list identifies the particular files and collections used in the preparation of this volume. The declassification and transfer to the National Archives of the Department of State records is in process, and many of these records are already available for public review at the National Archives.
- Department of State
- Central Files. See National Archives and Records Administration below.
- Lot Files. For lot files already transferred to the National Archives and Records Administration at College Park, Maryland, Record Group 59, see National Archives and Records Administration below.
- National Archives and Records Administration, College Park, Maryland
- Record Group 59, Records of the Department of State
- DEF 6-2 USSR, Soviet naval forces
- DEF 18-3 AUS (VI), arms control and disarmament, organizations and conferences relating to Vienna, Austria [Strategic Arms Limitation Talks (SALT I) in Vienna]
- DEF 18-3 FIN (HE), arms control and disarmament, organizations and conferences relating to Helsinki, Finland [Strategic Arms Limitation Talks (SALT I) in Helsinki]
- DEF 18-4 US–USSR, arms control and disarmament, agreements and treaties between the United States and Soviet Union
- DEF 19-8 US–USSR, military assistance, equipment and supplies between the United States and the Soviet Union
- POL 7 US/BUTZ, visits and meetings, Secretary of Agriculture Butz
- POL 7 US/NIXON, visits and meetings, President Nixon
- POL 7 US/STANS, visits and meetings, Secretary of Commerce Stans
- POL US–USSR, general US-Soviet relations
- POL 33–6 US–USSR, US-Soviet issues on the high seas
- POL 1 USSR, general policy and background, Soviet Union
- POL 27 VIET S, military operations in Vietnam
- Lot Files
- PA Files:
- Records of the Office of News and Its Predecessor, Records Relating to Press Conferences, Transcripts of Daily News Conferences of the Department of State, 1946-1980.
- Policy Planning Files, Director’s Files (Winston Lord), E–5027, formerly Lot 77 D 112
- Records of Winston Lord, 1969–1976, as member of the National Security Council Staff and then as Director of the Policy Planning Staff at the Department of State.
- Nixon Presidential Materials Project
Henry Kissinger Telephone
Conversation Transcripts (Kissinger
- Chronological File
- Dobrynin File
- Home File
- National Security Council Files
- Agency Files: [Department of] Agriculture, Arms Control and Disarmament Agency, [Department of] Commerce, National Security Council, President’s Foreign Intelligence Advisory Board (PFIAB)
- Backchannel Files
- Backchannel Messages
- China Trip/Vietnam Negotiations
- Country Files: USSR, People’s Republic of China, Vietnam, United Arab Republic [Egypt]
- For the President’s Files—China/Vietnam Negotiations [Files for the President]
- For the President’s Files (Winston Lord) —China Trip/Vietnam [Files for the President—Lord]
- Haig Chronological Files: Haig Chron, Haig Telcons
- Haig Special Files
- Howe Chronological Files
- Indo-Pak War
- NSC Unfiled Material
- President’s Trip Files: Dobrynin/Kissinger [File], [Files] For the President’s Personal Briefcase, President’s Conversations in Salzburg, Moscow, Tehran, and Warsaw, President’s Moscow, Iran, Poland, Austria Trip, USSR Issues—Papers
- Presidential/HAK Memcons
- Strategic Arms Limitation Talks [Files]
- Subject Files: National Security Decision Memoranda
- Vietnam Country Files
- Vietnam Subject Files
- Kissinger Office Files: Country Files: Europe, USSR, Far East, Middle East; Kissinger Trip Files
- National Security Council Institutional Files (H-Files)
- Meeting Files: National Security Council Meetings, Senior Review Group Meetings, Verification Panel Meetings, Washington Special Actions Group Meetings
- Minutes of Meetings Files: National Security Council Minutes, Senior Review Group Minutes, Verification Panel Minutes, Washington Special Actions Group Minutes
- Study Memorandums: National Security Decision Memoranda Files
- Policy Papers: National Security Study Memoranda Files
- Staff Member and Office Files
- Haldeman Files: Haldeman Notes
- White House Central Files: President’s Daily Diary
- White House Special Files
- President’s Office Files: Memoranda for the President
- President’s Personal Files: Memoranda from the President, President’s Speech File
- White House Tapes
- Camp David
- Executive Office Building
- Oval Office
- White House Telephone
- National Security Council
Nixon Intelligence Files
- 40 Committee Files: Minutes
- Central Intelligence Agency
- NIC Registry of NIE and SNIE Files, Job 79–R01012A
- Library of Congress, Washington, D.C.
- Papers of Henry A. Kissinger
- Chronological File
- Geopolitical File: Soviet Union
- Memoranda to the President
- Miscellany: Record of Schedule
- Telephone Conversations: Dobrynin File, Chronological File
- Documentary Collections
- Current Digest of the Soviet Press, 1971–1972.
- Haines, Gerald K. and Robert E. Leggett, eds. CIA’s Analysis of the Soviet Union, 1947–1991: A Documentary Collection. Washington: Central Intelligence Agency, 2001.
- Haldeman, H. R. The Haldeman Diaries: Inside the Nixon White House. New York: G. P. Putnam’s Sons, 1994.
- Haldeman, H. R. The Haldeman Diaries: Inside the Nixon White House. Complete Multimedia Edition. Santa Monica, CA: Sony Electronic Publishing, 1994.
- U.S. Department of State. American Foreign Policy, 1950–1955: Basic Documents, Washington, D.C.: U.S. Government Printing Office, 1957.
- U.S. Department of State. American Foreign Policy: Current Documents, 1959. Washington: U.S. Government Printing Office, 1963
- U.S. Department of State. American Foreign Policy: Current Documents, 1967. Washington: U.S. Government Printing Office, 1969.
- U.S. Department of State Bulletin, 1969-1972.
- U.S. National Archives and Records Administration. Public Papers of the Presidents of the United States: Dwight D. Eisenhower , 1959. Washington, D.C.: U.S. Government Printing Office, 1960.
- U.S. National Archives and Records Administration. Public Papers of the Presidents of the United States: Lyndon B. Johnson, 1968. Washington, D.C.: U.S. Government Printing Office, 1969.
- U.S. National Archives and Records Administration. Public Papers of the Presidents of the United States: Richard Nixon, 1969, 1970, 1971, 1972. Washington, D.C.: U.S. Government Printing Office, 1970, 1971, 1972, 1973.
- Beam, Jacob D. Multiple Exposure: An American Ambassador’s Unique Perspective on East-West Issues. New York: W. W. Norton, 1978.
- Dobrynin, Anatoly F. In Confidence: Moscow’s Ambassador to America’s Six Cold War Presidents (1962–1986). New York: Times Books, 1995.
- Haig, Alexander M., Jr. with Charles McCarry. Inner Circles: How America Changed the World, A Memoir. New York: Warner Books, 1992.
- Khrushchev, Nikita S. Khrushchev Remembers, translated and edited by Strobe Talbot, (Boston: Little, Brown and Co., 1970.
- Kissinger, Henry A. White House Years. Boston: Little, Brown and Co., 1979.
- Nixon, Richard. RN: The Memoirs of Richard Nixon . New York: Grosset & Dunlap, 1978.
- Safire, William. Before the Fall: An Inside View of the Pre-Watergate White House. Garden City, NY: Doubleday and Co., 1975.
- Smith Gerard. Doubletalk: The Story of the First Strategic Arms Limitation Talks. Garden City, NY: Doubleday and Co., 1980.