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326. Telegram From the Embassy in Israel to Secretary of State Kissinger in Riyadh1

9045. For Secretary from Sisco. Subject: Meeting with PriMin Meir.

1. In final wrap up meeting,2 most of which devoted to Israeli interpretation of Egyptian-Israeli agreement, PM conveyed her and Cabinet approval of document without any word changes.3 In order get her to accept, I agreed to informal US–Israeli Memorandum of Understanding regarding certain points.4

2. Near end of meeting much to surprise of everyone PM proposed that basic document be changed to reflect nuances of private informal US–Israeli understanding which I had previously worked out with Gen Yariv. We dug in our heels and I refused any change in document, and she finally came around on basis of a suggestion that she would wish to put her gloss and interpretation on document when she speaks before Knesset.

3. We talked about timing and scenario and I said that we would get a precise message to her on this from you now that Israeli Government approval had been given. She suggested that 8:30 p.m. local Friday5 would suit her very well since she would want to speak to Knesset at that time. She seemed flexible on timing but expressed above preference. If you have worked out a definite timing schedule, I would suggest you not wait my arrival in Riyadh but send your views promptly to PM.

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4. I would also suggest an immediate brief, oral message from you to PM saying that I have reported to you and that you appreciate the constructive spirit in which the Israeli Government has approached this matter.6

5. Saunders and I will be taking a C–141 to Riyadh as soon as we have filed a full report of the meeting to you. I am glad the Israeli approval has come in time for you to use it to the maximum in Riyadh.

  1. Source: National Archives, Nixon Presidential Materials, NSC Files, Kissinger Office Files, Box 41, Kissinger Trip Files, HAK Trip—Mideast, Islamabad, Peking, Tokyo, Seoul, TOHAK 1–69, Nov. 5–16, 1973. Secret; Cherokee; Nodis. The original is telegram Tohak 61/WH37285 from the White House to Secretary of State Kissinger, November 8, 1402Z, which copied telegram Tosec 233/220436 from the Department of State to the U.S. delegation in Riyadh and the White House, November 8, 1341Z. Tosec 233 quoted telegram 9045 from Tel Aviv, with a request to pass it to the Secretary in Riyadh.
  2. The meeting was reported in telegram 9034 from Tel Aviv, November 8. (Ibid., Box 139, Country Files, Middle East, Secretary Kissinger’s Trip to Middle East, November 5–10, 1973). A memorandum of conversation, November 8, 1:30 p.m., is in the Library of Congress, Manuscript Division, Kissinger Papers, Box CL 181, Geopolitical File, Middle East, Chronological File, 7–12 Nov. 73.
  3. See Document 324.
  4. The Memorandum of Understanding is in Document 327. In telegram 9046 from Tel Aviv, November 8, 1300Z, Sisco told Kissinger that at the end of the meeting the Prime Minister had asked him if he could make a very brief statement to the press expressing optimism. They had agreed that he would say: “We have had a useful and constructive meeting with the Prime Minister and her colleagues. I am flying to Riyadh to report to the Secretary of State. I am optimistic.” (National Archives, RG 59, Central Foreign Policy Files)
  5. November 9.
  6. This was done in a November 8 message from Kissinger to Meir. (National Archives, Nixon Presidential Materials, NSC Files, Kissinger Office Files, Box 136, Country Files, Middle East, Dinitz, November 1–30, 1973)