341. Letter From President Nixon to British Prime Minister Heath 1

Dear Mr. Prime Minister:

Thank you for your letter of April 7, 1971,2 expressing your agreement to the use of Holy Loch by US Fleet Ballistic Missile Submarines (Poseidon-equipped) in the same way as their sisters Polaris and under the same arrangements as are set out in the 1964 Memorandum of Understanding on Holy Loch.

I am pleased to give you my assurances that the United States Government will regard the Memorandum of Understanding, last reaffirmed in my letter of December 14, 1970 (concerning consultation between our two Governments before certain forces equipped with United States nuclear weapons and operating from bases in the United Kingdom or [less than 1 line not declassified] would use these weapons),3 as applying with respect to Fleet Ballistic Missile Submarines (Poseidon-equipped) in the same manner and to the same extent as with respect to Polaris submarines.

I accordingly confirm that the amendments you propose to the Memorandum of Understanding concerning consultation are acceptable to me.4 I am enclosing the amended version of the Memorandum.5


Richard Nixon
  1. Source: National Archives, Nixon Presidential Materials, NSC Files, Kissinger Office Files, Box 63, Country Files—Europe, British-US Nuclear Matter. Top Secret.
  2. A copy is ibid.
  3. For text of the 1970 agreement, see Document 333.
  4. The amendments consisted of placing the words “and Poseidon” in the text of the 1970 memorandum of agreement immediately after the word “Polaris” wherever it occurred.
  5. Not printed.