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2. Memorandum From Harold H. Saunders of the National Security Council Staff to the President’s Assistant for National Security Affairs (Kissinger) 1

SUBJECT

  • Military Assistance for Jordan

You will see from the attached memo 2 that a brief message from the President to King Hussein is recommended to reassure him that our military assistance program remains on the rails. 3 [1 line not declassified] The question for you is whether you would be interested in sending a private word of reassurance [less than 1 line not declassified] to supplement the President’s formal message.

Recommendation: That you authorize [less than 1 line not declassified] the following message to King Hussein [less than 1 line not declassified]:

“Your Majesty: The President has already responded to Your Majesty’s message of concern on the US military assistance program. I would simply like to add informally that our firm commitment to completion of Jordan’s military modernization program remains unchanged and that what is being discussed is only some relatively small adjustment in delivery schedules to meet problems created by our appropriations. I hope that any misunderstandings raised by this recent presentation on our ongoing program can be cleared up before your visit to Washington so that we may use that occasion to discuss impor[Page 4]tant future policies and programs. Of course, there will be ample opportunity to discuss with our experts any problems that remain, but I would hope that most of your basic concerns will have been allayed. I look forward to seeing you in early February and wish to convey to you my warmest regards. Henry A. Kissinger.” 4

  1. Source: National Archives, Nixon Presidential Materials, NSC Files, Box 757, Presidential Correspondence, 1969–1974, Jordan–King Hussein. Secret; Nodis. Sent for action.
  2. The attached January 11 memorandum from Saunders to Scowcroft and Kennedy urged immediate approval of a brief message from President Nixon to King Hussein. Telegram 7545 to Amman, January 12, transmitted the message which reads: “Your Majesty: I have your message on our military assistance program which was transmitted by Ambassador Brown on January 7. Let me assure you that there has been no change in our very firm intention to honor our commitments to assist Your Majesty’s Government. As I have said on previous occasions, Jordan’s continuing security remains a matter of important interest to us. I am very much looking forward, as always, to discussing all matters of concern to both of us when you and members of your party are here in February. Sincerely, Richard Nixon.” (Ibid.)
  3. Telegram 76 from Amman, January 7, transmitted a message from King Hussein to Nixon expressing the King’s concern over delayed delivery of U.S. military equipment promised to Jordan. Hussein complained that 8 months had elapsed since his government had concluded its negotiations with the U.S. Government on MAP and FMS for 1972/1973 and that most of the major and important items included in those programs, such as the M60 tanks and the F5E planes, had not yet come. He noted that Jordan’s plans for its armed forces were based on a meticulously studied and timed schedule starting July 1, 1972, which included the equipment specified in those programs. (Ibid., Box 617, Country Files, Middle East, Jordan)
  4. Kennedy initialed approval for Kissinger.