123. Transcript of Telephone Conversation Between Secretary of State Kissinger and the Soviet Ambassador (Dobrynin)1
D: Hello, Henry. I just received an oral message—a very short one, but I think it is fairly urgent. An oral message from Brezhnev to the President and he asked me to tell you personally about it. The message is very short and I will just read it. “We have contacted the leaders of the Arab states on the question of ceasefire. We hope to get a reply shortly. We feel that we should act in cooperation with you, being guided by the broad interests of maintaining peace and developing the Soviet-American relations. We hope that President Nixon will act likewise.”
K: I can answer that for you right away because I have just come from the President.2 This reflects our spirit and we will also—we are eager to cooperate in bringing peace. I was going to call you. Just for your guidance—with reference to the discussions we have had, we were not going to put in a resolution at the Security Council this afternoon.
D: Not going to?[Page 365]
K: No, we are just going to have a general discussion. But we would appreciate it since we are doing that, that you don’t confront us with one without discussion.
D: I don’t know—I have a telegram from—which will be sent to our Ambassador to the delegation to the United Nations—with instructions—I don’t know yet.
K: Will you let me know what you are going to do.
D: But I will right now mention to them that you are not going to put any—you are not going to today, yes?
K: We have no intention to put one in today unless there is a drastic change.
D: Of the situation.
K: We thought that since you wouldn’t agree with us on our proposal and since we wouldn’t agree with you, it would be best to have a general discussion.
D: I think so. Maybe there will be some reply and then we will be in touch with you, of course. But as of now my personal feeling is that the best thing to do is a general discussion without . . .
K: Why don’t you inform Moscow of this?
D: I will do that right away.
K: Also, we will take a conciliatory—you know not a conciliatory but . . .
D: I understand—under the circumstances.
K: We will follow your line of not attacking you.
D: I understand.
K: And I will include finally some reference of the discussion of MFN in my speech tonight.3
D: I think, under the circumstances, it would be a good idea—from our side, too.
K: I will do that. Good.
D: What about the telephone? Couldn’t you extend this particular telephone. Your own people probably know.
K: I will get it done within the next few days.
D: Yeah. It’s just an extension of your telephone in your office to the department. There is nothing to be done on my side, really.
K: No, no, it will be done. You can be sure.
D: Because otherwise to call by . . .
K: No, no, I understand. You can count on it.[Page 366]
D: Bye. Bye.
- Source: National Archives, Nixon Presidential Materials, Kissinger Telephone Conversations, Transcripts (Telcons), Chronological File, Box 22. No classification marking.↩
- Nixon met with Kissinger from 9:20 to 9:42. Ziegler was present for part of that time. (Ibid., White House Central Files, President’s Daily Diary)↩
- Kissinger spoke in Washington before the foreign policy convocation “Pacem in Terris III,” sponsored by the Center for the Study of Democratic Institutions.↩