88. Transcript of Telephone Conversation Between Secretary of State Rogers and the President’s Assistant for National Security Affairs (Kissinger)1

R: This is not the subject of most importance at the moment. I read the memorandum of your meeting on the European Security Conference and Mutual and Balanced Force Reductions.2

K: Did I have one?

R: Yes, the SRG.

K: Oh yes, I thought you meant something else.

R: I hope the President doesn’t decide this in a new and specific way. I think up to now it’s been just right. I am well aware of the problems of the different departments and agencies, but I think the way we have played it in the past is just right. Suppose for instance the President said no linkage—we would be in an impossible position in NATO.

K: I’ll talk to you before we send the memo. He wants some linkage, but he’ll leave it loose how to do it.

R: The Russians [omission in original transcript] with the European Security Conference—they don’t want it.

K: I think Defense is wrong in this.

[Page 270]

R: I do too. So leave it loose.

K: Let me check. He may not want it completely loose, but not as rigid as Defense wants it.

R: Not to say that no direct linkage discussions will take place, but say that before any decisions are made it ought to come back to me.

K: Before he sends out a directive, why don’t I read it to you and see if you can live with it.

R: Fine.

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

  1. Source: National Archives, Nixon Presidential Materials, Henry A. Kissinger Telephone Transcripts (Telcons), Box 13, Chronological File. No classification marking.
  2. See Document 87.