16. Memorandum From the President’s Assistant for National Security Affairs (Kissinger) to President Nixon1


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[Omitted here is material unrelated to the Middle East.]

Israeli Attitudes: In a recent speech to the Jewish Agency Assembly, Mrs. Meir declared that she will be bringing no new ideas to Washington because the old ones are still good, since conditions in the area have not changed and because the Arabs persist in their old objectives.2 She stressed that it was only the strength of the Israeli armed forces which can hope to assure stability in the Middle East. Finally, Mrs. Meir asserted that Israel is not susceptible as it was in 1967 to pressure for full withdrawal and that, in fact, outside pressure had decreased as the world observed the actions of the Arabs.

Our Embassy comments that this speech was probably as much a reaction to incipient debate within the Israeli Labor Party and to the fact that she was speaking to a fund-raising audience as it was meant to be a signal to the U.S. On the other hand, the Embassy also feels that it was meant to disabuse anyone who may still hope that Israel is inclined to launch its own Middle East peace initiative. This begins to set the stage for Mrs. Meir’s talk with you.

  1. Source: National Archives, Nixon Presidential Materials, NSC Files, Box 49, President’s Daily Briefings, President’s Daily Briefs, Feb 1–Feb 15, 1973. Top Secret; Sensitive; Contains Codeword.
  2. Nixon underlined this sentence and wrote at the bottom of the page: “K—when you return—she must be informed in strong terms that this totally intransigent attitude will not wash here despite her election problems at home.”