203. Memorandum of Conversation1
- President Ford
- Dr. Henry A. Kissinger, Secretary of State and Assistant to the President for National Security Affairs
- Lt. General Brent Scowcroft, Deputy Assistant to the President for National Security Affairs
[Omitted here is discussion of the President’s upcoming trip to China.]
[Kissinger:] On the grain deal—it has not been brilliantly handled. We could have him [Robinson]2 initial and sign the letter of intent, in which case we’d probably never get a price deal. Or we could have Robinson go to the prepcon, and then return to Moscow Thursday3 and initial and sign the letter of intent. If you don’t have to have it, it might be marginally better to go back Thursday.[Page 821]
President: We are under a lot of pressure.
Kissinger: Butz thinks he can manage with announcing the Polish deal.
Scowcroft: The longer it drags out the more it will look like a fight in which we caved.
President: Let’s have Robinson initial and sign the letter of intent by Sunday.
Kissinger: Okay. I will check once more before the final decision.
[Omitted here is discussion of Portugal and Norway.]
- Source: Ford Library, National Security Adviser, Memoranda of Conversations, 1973–1977, Box 16. Secret; Nodis. The meeting was held in the Oval Office.↩
- Brackets in the original.↩
- October 16. Kissinger is probably referring to Robinson’s attendance at the Preparatory Technical Maritime Conference in Geneva, which opened on October 13.↩