9. Telegram From the Department of State to the Embassy in the Federal Republic of Germany1

26157. For Ambassador only.

1. Please deliver following message from President Nixon to Chancellor Brandt early Sunday morning, February 11:

“Dear Mr. Chancellor: “I appreciate your constructive message on international monetary developments. Especially welcome is your recognition of the urgent necessity for progress toward international monetary reform.

“As you know, through market intervention by the Federal Reserve, we have collaborated in recent days in the effort to prevent the development of disruptive conditions in international markets. We have undertaken this intervention even though we had undertaken no commitment for such intervention at the Smithsonian.2

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“In these circumstances, I had come to the same conclusion as you on the importance of our authorized representatives working together immediately to find solutions. It was for this reason that I dispatched Paul Volcker on his trip to Tokyo and Europe on Wednesday. He is fully cognizant of my thinking on these matters, and I am sure he has explained to you the ideas which I have authorized him to put forth on my behalf.3

“Secretary Shultz has reported to me on Volcker’s conversations with Minister Schmidt.4 On the basis of that report, I am confident that—with the Federal Republic of Germany playing a leading role—the nations of the world can reach prompt agreement on a solution which will not only overcome present difficulties, but will clearly represent a decisive step toward the common objective of an open world economy.

“Sincerely, Richard Nixon

  1. Source: National Archives, Nixon Presidential Materials, NSC Files, Box 754, Presidential Correspondence 1969–1974, Germany Willy Brandt, 1972. Secret; Immediate; Nodis. Drafted by Bennett and Scowcroft and approved by Wright and Eliot (S/S). Drafts of this telegram that are substantively the same as the version that was sent (with the exception of the two instances noted below) were cleared by Shultz, Haldeman, Ehrlich-man, and Burns. (Ibid.) A March 2 note indicates that Brandt’s February 9 letter to Nixon “was sent out to HAK by wire on Feb. 9, and never went through the system. Shultz did the reply and it was transmitted by General Scowcroft (LDX to State) on Feb. 10.” (Ibid.) Brandt’s letter is in Document 6.
  2. The draft of the telegram cleared by Shultz, Haldeman, Ehrlichman, and Burns contains an additional sentence, which was struck out by hand: “Yesterday, in the light of your message, the Federal Reserve, in consultation with the Treasury, continued its efforts in the face of increasingly adverse conditions in the market.”
  3. The draft of the telegram cleared by Shultz, Haldeman, Ehrlichman, Burns, and State does not contain the phrase “on my behalf.”
  4. On February 10, Haldeman commented in his diary that the President “doesn’t want to get into the international monetary thing with Shultz. He keeps calling to report.” ( Haldeman Diaries: Multimedia Edition) The President, who was at the San Clemente Western White House, did not speak to Shultz on February 10. (National Archives, Nixon Presidential Materials, White House Central Files, President’s Daily Diary)