184. Memorandum of Conversation1


  • The President
  • Valery Giscard d’Estaing, President of the French Republic
  • Jean Sauvagnargues, Minister of Foreign Affairs
  • Claude Pierre-Brossolette, Secretary General of the Presidency of the Republic
  • Dr. Henry A. Kissinger, Secretary of State and Assistant to the President for National Security Affairs
  • Lt. General Brent Scowcroft, Deputy Assistant to the President for National Security Affairs


  • Economic Policy/Cyprus; French Nuclear Programs; Energy

[Omitted here is discussion unrelated to Cyprus.]

Giscard: I had breakfast with Karamanlis today. We are open to any suggestion for a European move which would help with the embargo. If there is no change I think it will be impossible to start any negotiation. The Greeks fear having the embargo lifted without any movement from the Turks.

President: Let me bring you up to date.

[Described the Congressional action to lift the embargo.]2

The Senate passed it again yesterday, but it is difficult to get it through the House because of the rules. We can’t get anything until September. So we are in limbo.

Kissinger: No House move is possible until September 9. If the European appeal comes too soon, it will be dissipated. It would be the end of any appeal to both parties and to the U.S. to lift the embargo. Turkey might be able to respond to an appeal from you that they wouldn’t to us. We have a list of concessions.

Giscard: Are they significant?

Kissinger: Not now. The airport opening, some refugee return, etc. They could be made to look so if Greece cooperates. Greece will accept a bizonal arrangement and 25 percent of the territory to the Turks. Turkey has said they need 32 percent. So the difference comes down to

Giscard: They are Greek. It will be 27.8 percent or nothing.

[Page 618]

Kissinger: I think we shouldn’t talk percentage, but what specific areas they want. The Greek portion of Famagusta, Morphou, etc.

Sauvagnargues: Yes. It is a question of what kind of territory.

Giscard: Yes. Like Morphou with an outlet to the sea.

Kissinger: If Ecevit were in, it would be settled quickly. He wants to use it now to break up the coalition.

Giscard: If DEMIREL is clever enough he can show it as a success.

Kissinger: But he can’t look weak.

The President: He can move more easily in response to a European appeal, rather than an American one.

Sauvagnargues: But how are we to make the position of the Nine more precise, to carry the weight with the Congress? It will be seen as implying the kind of settlement which would appeal to the parties. It is difficult.

Giscard: We would have to say it is a settlement according to certain principles, with vague wording. Then we could say we will help the parties to cooperate and call on the U.S. to lift the embargo as its contribution.

Sauvagnargues: Giscard said to Karamanlis that lifting the embargo would not necessarily resume arms deliveries.

Kissinger: But it would.

The President: [Describes the embargo and the types of aid. Also discusses the waiver authority.]3

Giscard: If we were Metternich we could use another tactic. Turkey wants us to sell large amounts of arms. We said no, because we wouldn’t want to interfere vis-à-vis the Greeks, etc.

Kissinger: It would help with the Congress, if there were at least rumors.

The President: If the stories come from Europe it would help with the Congress—for aircraft, tank areas, etc.

Sauvagnargues: It would be delicate to manage, but it might be done.

Giscard: We will see what we can do. [Omitted here is discussion unrelated to Cyprus.]

  1. Source: Ford Library, National Security Adviser, Memoranda of Conversations, Box 14. Secret; Nodis. The luncheon meeting was held at the U.S. Embassy Residence.
  2. Brackets are in the original.
  3. Brackets are in the original.