212. Transcript of Telephone Conversation Between Secretary of State Kissinger and the Israeli Ambassador (Dinitz)1

K. Mr. Ambassador, I am assuming that I can just announce myself to Israel if I think it is a useful way to get your views.

D. Sure. At any time. Would you let me know so I can go with you.

K. If I want to go from where I am going now I will do that and let Scowcroft know and you can get over there.

D. I have not told the Prime Minister, but I am sure it is all right.

K. I have no desire to do it. It is just a possible delaying move.

D. I will call her right now and give you an answer within ten minutes.

K. I have the President’s approval, which I didn’t have earlier, to begin with your proposal instead of his. I will begin to sell _________ our proposal. . . . That presumes that if they accept your proposal you will accept it immediately.

D. You mean by Sunday2 night?

K. I don’t give you a time because I don’t think they will, but I don’t know how desperate the problem will be.

D. Very. The last report we have taken a town 35 miles from Cairo, which is halfway between the Canal and Cairo. It is 70 miles between the Canal and Cairo and this is halfway.

[Page 620]

K. It took you a little longer. I just like to give you a tough time.

D. We have gone together with very tough times so we are allowed a little relaxation.

K. You understand my strategy as we have discussed it. To sell the other condition to (Veetre)3 and to refer it back to Washington. The discussions will not start before Sunday morning Moscow time and cannot conclude before Sunday afternoon Moscow time and depending on the outcome cannot be implemented before we have discussed it with you. This I tell you for your own planning. May I make one request? The importance of maintaining the President’s good will for diplomatic performances that must follow. Because the outcome you have achieved is the destruction of the Egyptian army . . . you lived six years with 242 and I didn’t . . .

D. We won’t go into this again.

K. I am not asking you to change the position of your government which you cannot do. If the matters reach that point, which they will reach and which I cannot avoid, please keep in mind that after ceasefire it is important for your sake that the President look good and is not accused of having sold anybody out. You will need him very much in the diplomacy that follows.

D. Sure, I understand. You mean while . . .

K. Supposing the worst happens from your point of view. That resolution that I gave you will not happen. Nevertheless praise him for his statesmanlike achievements.

D. You don’t even imagine that any of the linkage . . .

K. No phrase of section 24 will be incorporated.

D. What I understand you to say is that you want some linkage with 242 . . . negotiation in order to implement 242.

K. Exactly. I am not saying you can count on it being refused in all its parts. It is the sort of link I give you . . . should it turn out to be the best possible after long consultation you should . . . in your head to thank the President. You will need it. They may be so disp . . .3 that they are . . .

D. I will call the Prime Minister on your proposal. Your trip to Moscow is secret?

K. Until it is announced at 2:00 this morning here.

[Page 621]

D. I will try to give General Scowcroft the full situation in the field.5

  1. Source: National Archives, Nixon Presidential Materials, Kissinger Telephone Conversations, Transcripts (Telcons), Chronological File, Box 23. No classification marking. The blank underscore indicates an omission in the original.
  2. October 21.
  3. As on the original.
  4. Paragraph 2 of the Soviet draft resolution demanded immediate phased Israeli withdrawal based on Resolution 242; see Document 202.
  5. As on the original
  6. At 7:40 p.m., Dinitz telephoned Kissinger and said that the Prime Minister would welcome him with open arms if he decided to visit Israel. Kissinger asked what the Israeli position would be if the Soviets wanted to go back to a cease-fire at the October 6 lines with no linkage to anything. The Ambassador said he would have to ask the Prime Minister. Kissinger noted that the greater flexibility he had, the better the negotiations would go, and suggested that Dinitz ask about any other combination he could think of. He said that he would open with the Israeli position in any event. (National Archives, Nixon Presidential Materials, Kissinger Telephone Conversations, Transcripts (Telcons), Chronological File, Box 23)