28. Letter from Secretary of State Rogers to Secretary of Defense Laird1 2

Dear Mel:

I understand that you will be calling on the Shah of Iran at his request on October 22. I assume your staff has drawn to your attention a number of questions the Shah is likely to ask you about present and future U.S. military cooperation with Iran.

A number of the Shah’s questions will deal with matters somewhat in the future and clearly we will not be in a position to give him definitive replies at this time. Nevertheless I believe it is of great importance that we leave the Shah with the clear impression that we are making a determined effort to help him to continue to meet his defense needs. Specifically I think it would be of great help in creating this impression if you could tell him that:


We will continue to send U.S. Air Force F–4 technicians to Iran to train Iranians in the maintenance of F–4 aircraft for at least one more year.

We will make every effort to provide for Iranian pilot training in the United States at the present level (75) and consider providing for an additional number of training spaces in the 1973–75 period should they be required.
We will cooperate with him in developing an in-country capability overhaul armored vehicles and to explore with him other areas of defense related maintenance or production facilities in which U.S. collaboration might be feasible.

William P. Rogers
  1. Source: National Archives, RG 59, Central Files 1967–69, POL 7 IRAN. Secret. The letter is a true copy of the original in the Washington National Records Center, OSD Files, FRC 330–75–089, Box 74, Iran 1969, 091.112.
  2. Rogers impressed upon Laird the importance of indicating to the Shah a willingness to meet Iran’s defense needs.