228. Memorandum of Conversation1


  • Leonid I. Brezhnev, General Secretary of the Central Committee of the CPSU
  • Nikolai V. Podgorniy, Chairman of the Presidium of the Supreme Soviet of the USSR
  • Aleksei N. Kosygin, Chairman of the Council of Ministers of the USSR
  • Andrei A. Gromyko, Minister of Foreign Affairs of the USSR
  • Anatoliy F. Dobrynin, Soviet Ambassador to the USA
  • Andrei M. Aleksandrov, Assistant to the General Secretary
  • Georgiy M. Korniyenko, Member of the Collegium of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Chief of USA Division
  • Leonid M. Zamyatin, Director General of TASS
  • Viktor M. Sukhodrev, Ministry of Foreign Affairs (Interpreter)
  • Andrei Vavilov, Ministry of Foreign Affairs
  • President Nixon
  • Dr. Henry A. Kissinger, Secretary of State, Assistant to the President for National Security Affairs
  • Amb. Walter J. Stoessel, U.S. Ambassador to the USSR
  • Gen. Alexander M. Haig, Jr. USA (ret), Assistant to the President
  • Ronald L. Ziegler, Assistant to the President and Press Secretary
  • M. Gen. Brent Scowcroft, USAF, Deputy Assistant to the President for National Security Affairs
  • Helmut Sonnenfeldt, Counselor to the Department of State
  • Jan M. Lodal, NSC Senior Staff
  • Harold H. Saunders, NSC Senior Staff
  • Peter W. Rodman, NSC Staff
[Page 679]


  • Tour d’horizon (Middle East, SALT, CSCE, MBFR, Southeast Asia)

[Omitted here is discussion of matters other than the European security conference or MBFR.]

Brezhnev: [Omitted here are unrelated comments.] I also would like to mention we did briefly touch upon the question of the reduction of forces and armaments in Europe. But that, I say, was only briefly touched upon without any detailed discussion. In fact, it was only mentioned, without any elaboration.2

This morning we discussed how to exchange between us in terms of the general situation in Europe. We know in the talks in Vienna there are some who want to include the reduction of national forces, and others who are opposed to the reduction of national forces. We know you don’t want these talks to relate to air forces. There are various points of view. So proceeding from our general belief that one cannot do all things in just two years time—that is too small a period—maybe we could all agree that without renouncing our attempts, we continue our efforts but conclude that this question is not yet ripe for a solution.

[Omitted here is discussion of matters other than the European security conference or MBFR.]

Nixon: [Omitted here are unrelated comments.] On the question of troops in Europe, we touched upon it only briefly, the General Secretary and I. Here, of course, the proper forum is Vienna because the interests of European allies and the Warsaw Pact—both our allies—are involved. I would hope in the communiqué we could have a strong statement to the effect that we didn’t just push this aside lightly and that we are continuing to have intensive and balanced discussions. For example, the General Secretary’s suggestion—made only as a preliminary matter, which is not on the table for negotiation—of a 5% reduction on both sides, is one approach. And I would hope we could preserve our efforts to get a more forthcoming discussion on this issue. Because I think while the European Security Conference is not directly connected with MBFR the two questions will inevitably have to be considered together at some point.

[Omitted here is discussion of matters other than the European security conference or MBFR.]

Brezhnev: Just one more question, which we need not go into in any detail again. I mention it because we are here in our full delegations. We have agreed to act together and jointly in the European Security Conference so as to make relations between us irreversible, in that as other areas. So one confirmation of that will confirm our efforts.

[Page 680]

Nixon: I made a commitment to the General Secretary in Camp David, on the porch overlooking Shangri-la, on that subject.3 We did not reach the goal we set at the end of the year. But we have sincerely tried. And as we indicated in our meeting the other day, we will give renewed impetus as a result of our discussions here to what we agreed to so as to achieve the objectives we set at Camp David.

Brezhnev: Good.

[Omitted here is discussion of matters other than the European security conference or MBFR.]

Kissinger: [Omitted here are unrelated comments.] On the European Security Conference, we have completed discussions on the paragraph that explains our common objective,4 and our associates have worked out a means of working out Basket III.5

[Omitted here is discussion of matters other than the European security conference or MBFR.]

  1. Source: National Archives, Nixon Presidential Materials, NSC Files, Kissinger Office Files, Box 77, Country Files, Europe, USSR, Memcons, Moscow Summit, June 27–July 3, 1974. Secret; Nodis. Drafted by Rodman. The meeting took place in St. Catherine’s Hall of the Grand Kremlin Palace. The full text of the memorandum of conversation is scheduled for publication in Foreign Relations, 1969–1976, volume XV, Soviet Union, June 1972–August 1974.
  2. See Document 225.
  3. No record of this conversation has been found. Regarding the summit meeting at Camp David, see Documents 162 and 163.
  4. Kissinger is referring to the final joint communiqué; see Document 229.
  5. See Document 227.