U.S. Relations with India and Pakistan, 1972


199. Telegram 22 From the Consulate General in Karachi to the Department of State, January 3, 1972, 1014Z

Ambassador Farland met with Pakistani President Bhutto who was planning to announce that day that Sheikh Mujibur Rahman would be released from prison.

Source: National Archives, RG 59, Central Files 1970–73, POL 29 PAK. Secret; Immediate; Exdis. Repeated to Islamabad.


200. Telegram 26 From the Consulate General in Karachi to the Department of State, January 3, 1972, 1154Z

In response to Pakistani President Bhutto’s request to President Nixon for economic assistance to help Pakistan recover from the effects of the war with India, Ambassador Farland said that he was authorized by Nixon to begin negotiations for a new PL–480 agreement.

Source: National Archives, RG 59, Central Files 1970–73, POL 15–1 PAK. Confidential; Priority. Repeated to Islamabad, New Delhi, Dacca, and Lahore. The text of Bhutto’s letter to Nixon on December 21, 1971, transmitted to Islamabad on December 30 in telegram 233015, is in Foreign Relations, 1969–1976, vol. XI, South Asia Crisis, 1971, Document 330


201. Telegram 300 From the Embassy in India to the Department of State, January 9, 1972, 0427Z

Ambassador Keating argued in the Embassy’s policy assessment for 1971 for efforts to improve U.S. relations with the predominant power on the subcontinent.

Source: National Archives, RG 59, Central Files 1970–73, POL 1 INDIA–US. Confidential; Limdis. Repeated to Bombay, Calcutta, and Madras with a request that the Department repeat as desired. On January 13 Sisco responded to Keating’s overview of U.S. relations with India with a personal telegram to Keating in which he said that Keating’s analysis was of great value but added: "Many of the policy issues you raise involve a complex series of decisions and it is unlikely that we shall be able to give you a comprehensive reply.” (Telegram 6586 to New Delhi; ibid.)


202. Telegram 364 From the Embassy in Pakistan to the Department of State, January 12, 1972, 1130Z

Ambassador Farland reported that Pakistani President Bhutto had reacted skeptically to Mujibur Rahman’s statement that there would be no ties between Bangladesh and West Pakistan.

Source: National Archives, RG 59, Central Files 1970–73, POL PAK–US. Secret;Nodis.


203. Backchannel Message from the Ambassador to Pakistan (Farland) to the President’s Assistant for National Security Affairs (Kissinger), Islamabad, January 13, 1972, 0949Z

Farland assessed the situation in Pakistan and concluded that Pakistani President Bhutto faced serious difficulties in virtually every area of national activity.

Source: National Archives, Nixon Presidential Materials, NSC Files, Box 138, Kissinger Office Files, Country Files, Middle East, Farland, Amb. (Pakistan). Secret. Kissinger’s and Nixon’s initials were written on the message in what appears to be Haig’s handwriting, suggesting it was forwarded to both of them. Farland was responding to a request from Nixon, sent to him backchannel on January 2, for an assessment of the situation in Pakistan. (Backchannel message WH 20010 from Kissinger to Farland; ibid., Box 426, Backchannel Files, Backchannel Messages 1972, Amb. Farland, Pakistan)


204. Transcript of Telephone Conversation Between President Nixon and his Assistant for National Security Affairs (Kissinger), Washington, January 16, 1972, 1 p.m.

Nixon and Kissinger looked toward improved relations with India, but not until mid-year.

Source: Library of Congress, Manuscript Division, Kissinger Papers, Box 397, Telephone Conversations, Home File, Jan-Apr 1972. No classification marking. The omission is in the original transcription.


205. Telegram 642 From the Embassy in India to the Department of State, January 16, 1972, 0711Z

Ambassador Keating reported that Foreign Secretary Kaul told him that his Government felt the time had come to improve relations between India and the United States.

Source: National Archives, RG 59, Central Files 1970–73, POL INDIA–US. Confidential; Limdis. Repeated to Islamabad, Moscow, London, Madras, Calcutta, Bombay, and Bangkok for NELSON GROSS, the Secretary’s Coordinator for International Narcotics Affairs.


206. Memorandum From Secretary of State Rogers to President Nixon, Washington, January 17, 1972

Rogers submitted to Nixon a paper prepared in the Department of State outlining policy objectives in South Asia with the suggestion that it be circulated to the members of the NSC as a basis for discussion.

Source: National Archives, Nixon Presidential Materials, NSC Files, NSC Institutional Files (H-Files), Box H–062, SRG Meeting, South Asia, 1/19/72. Secret; Nodis. The attached paper was Secret; Exdis. Rogers’ memorandum and the attached paper, drafted on January 15, were circulated on January 17 by NSC Staff Secretary Jeanne Davis to the Under Secretary of State, the Deputy Secretary of Defense, the Chairman of the JCS, and the Director of the CIA. (Ibid., NSC Files, Box 642, Middle East, South Asia, Vol. IV (1972)) An earlier draft of the paper, submitted on January 7 by Sisco to Rogers, indicates it was drafted in NEA/INC by Quainton with the concurrence of Schneider and VAN HOLLEN. (Ibid., RG 59, Central Files 1970–73, DEF1–1 ASIA SE)


207. Analytical Summary Prepared by Members of the National Security Council Staff for the President’s Assistant for National Security Affairs (Kissinger), Washington, January 17, 1972

The summary analyzed the papers dealing with postwar issues in South Asia which were prepared for the Senior Review Group in anticipation of its meeting on January 19.

Source: National Archives, Nixon Presidential Materials, NSC Files, NSC Institutional Files (H-Files), Box H–062, SRG Meeting, South Asia, 1/19/72. Secret; Nodis. Saunders and Kennedy transmitted the summary to Kissinger in a January 17 memorandum. (Ibid.) The reference in the summary to a Department of State options paper is to Document 206. The remainder of the papers cited in the study can be found in the National Archives, Nixon Presidential Materials, NSC Files, NSC Institutional Files (H-Files), Box H–062, SRG Meeting, South Asia, 1/19/72, and ibid., NSC Files, Box 642, Middle East, South Asia, Vol. IV (1972). The paper dealing with Bangladesh and the letters from Prime Ministers Heath and McMahon are included in the Bangladesh compilation in this volume. See documents 376, 386, and 387.


208. Letter From the Pakistani Ambassador (Raza) to President Nixon, Washington, January 18, 1972

Raza conveyed a letter from Pakistani President Bhutto to Nixon in which Bhutto expressed appreciation for the support the U.S. gave to Pakistan during the conflict with India, and asked for continuing U.S. support as Pakistan attempted to negotiate a peace settlement and recover from the impact of the conflict.

Source: National Archives, Nixon Presidential Materials, NSC Files, Box 760, Presidential Correspondence File, Pakistan, President Bhutto. No classification marking. The text of Bhutto’s letter was transmitted to Islamabad on January 28 in telegram 16271. (Ibid., RG 59, Central Files 1970–73, POL 15–1 US/NIxON)


209. Telegram 774 From the Embassy in India to the Department of State, January 19, 1972, 1110Z

Ambassador Keating asked for authorization to reciprocate the interest in improved relations expressed by Indian Foreign Secretary Kaul on January 15. Keating recognized that a policy review was in process in Washington but felt that neither country should delay the process of improving bilateral relations.

Source: National Archives, RG 59, Central Files 1970–73, POL INDIA–US. Confidential; Priority; Limdis. Repeated to Bombay, Calcutta, Dacca, Islamabad, Madras, and priority to Saigon for NELSON GROSS. Telegram 300 and 642 are Documents 201 and 205.


210. Minutes of Senior Review Group Meeting, Washington, January 19, 1972, 3:04–4:25 p.m.

The Senior Review Group reviewed South Asia policy and decided to recommend that recognition of Bangladesh be postponed, the restoration of improved relations with India take place slowly, and restrictions on trade with Pakistan be removed.

Source: National Archives, Nixon Presidential Materials, NSC Files, NSC Institutional Files (H-Files), Box H–113, SRG Minutes, Originals, 1972–1973. Secret; Nodis. The January 19 attachment is Top Secret; Sensitive. No drafting information appears on the minutes. The meeting was held in the White House Situation Room. For the Departments of State and Defense documents cited by Kissinger see Documents 206 and 207.


211. Airgram A–20 From the Embassy in India to the Department of State, January 21, 1972

The Embassy offered an assessment of India’s nuclear intentions.

Source: National Archives, RG 59, Central Files 1970–73, DEF 18–8 INDIA. Secret; Exdis; Noforn; dissem/controlled, dissem/no dissem abroad. For background use only. Repeated to Bombay, Calcutta, and Madras. Drafted on January 17 by political officer Harmon Kirby and approved by DCM Galen Stone.


212. Telegram 11838 From the Department of State to the Embassy in India, January 21, 1972, 1406Z

Ambassador Jha met with Under Secretary of State Irwin to reiterate India’s interest in improved relations with the United States.

Source: National Archives, RG 59, Central Files 1970–73, POL INDIA–US. Secret; Limdis. Drafted on January 20 by Quainton, cleared by VAN HOLLEN, and approved by Irwin. Repeated to Kathmandu, Dacca, Islamabad, Saigon, and Moscow.


213. Memorandum From the Assistant Secretary of Defense for International Security Affairs (Nutter) to the President’s Assistant for National Security Affairs (Kissinger), Washington, January 22, 1972

The Department of Defense recommended renewal of military supplies to Pakistan, conditioned upon the political climate in the U.S. and the impact of such supplies on prospects for a settlement between Pakistan and India.

Source: National Archives, Nixon Presidential Materials, NSC Files, NSC Institutional Files (H-Files), Box H–062, SRG Meeting, South Asia, 1/19/72. Secret; Sensitive.


214. Letter From the Pakistani Ambassador (Raza) to Secretary of State Rogers, Washington, January 24, 19721

Raza transmitted a letter to Nixon from Pakistani President Bhutto in which Bhutto asked the United States to underwrite the sale of rice by Pakistan to what he continued to refer to as East Pakistan.

Source: National Archives, Nixon Presidential Materials, NSC Files, Box 760, Presidential Correspondence File, Pakistan, President Bhutto. Most Immediate. The attached letter is undated and bears an unsigned typed signature. Kissinger’s handwritten notation on Raza’s letter reads: ”Al–Make sure this receives urgent attention.” Haig, in turn, wrote on the letter: ”Saunders Rush.” The text of Bhutto’s letter was transmitted to Islamabad on January 29 in telegram 16993. (Ibid., RG 59, Central Files 1970–73, INCO–RICE 17 BANGLA DESH–US)


215. Memorandum From the Executive Secretary of the Department of State (Eliot) to the President’s Assistant for National Security Affairs (Kissinger), Washington, January 25, 1972

The memorandum transmitted the joint State-AID recommendations for economic policy for Pakistan and India, put forward in response to a tasking from the Senior Review Group, which included PL–480 agreements with both countries and debt deferral for Pakistan. From the perspective of State and AID, the resumption of economic assistance to India should depend upon "Indian intentions.”

Source: National Archives, RG 59, Central Files 1970–73, AID (US) INDIA. Secret. Drafted by Tiger and Francis H. Thomas (NEA/PAF); revised by Irwin; cleared by Laingen, Schneider, VAN HOLLEN, and Sisco, and by Rees and Williams. Deputy Executive Secretary Robert T. Curran signed for Eliot.


216. Memorandum From the Executive Secretary of the Department of State (Eliot) to the President’s Assistant for National Security Affairs (Kissinger), Washington, January 26, 1972

The Department recommended continued suspension of the sale or delivery of lethal military equipment and spare parts to India and Pakistan "until the situation is further clarified.”

Source: National Archives, Nixon Presidential Materials, NSC Files, NSC Institutional Files (H-Files), Box H–061, SRG Meeting, South Asia, 2/1/72. Secret; Exdis. Curran signed for Eliot.


217. Memorandum From the Executive Secretary of the Department of State (Eliot) to the President’s Assistant for National Security Affairs (Kissinger), Washington, January 28, 1972

In a memorandum prepared for Kissinger and the Senior Review Group, the Department outlined alternate strategies for U.S. policy in South Asia. One strategy called for no major modifications of policy while the situation on the subcontinent was still in flux. The other envisioned taking advantage of the fluid situation to move toward more normal relations with India and to recognize and establish relations with Bangladesh.

Source: National Archives, Nixon Presidential Materials, NSC Files, NSC Institutional Files (H-Files), Box H–061, SRG Meeting, South Asia, 2/1/72. Secret; Exdis. Curran signed the memorandum for Eliot.


218. Letter From the Pakistani Ambassador (Raza) to the Assistant Secretary of State for Near Eastern and South Asian Affairs (Sisco), Washington, January 28, 1972

Raza informed Sisco that Pakistan intended to call upon the UN Security Council to post UN observers along the border between India and Pakistan to report on Indian violations of the cease-fire. Pakistan requested U.S. support for this initiative.

Source: National Archives, RG 59, Central Files 1970–73, POL 27–14 INDIA–PAK/UN. No classification marking.


219. Analytical Summary Prepared by Harold Saunders and Richard Kennedy of the National Security Council Staff for the President’s Assistant for National Security Affairs (Kissinger), Washington, January 28, 1972

In a summary prepared for Kissinger, Saunders and Kennedy analyzed issues concerning South Asia that the Senior Review Group was scheduled to discuss on February 1. Drawing on papers prepared by the Departments of State and Defense, AID, and the NSC staff, they summarized issues relating to strategy, humanitarian assistance, economic assistance, military supply, and cease-fire and withdrawal.

Source: National Archives, Nixon Presidential Materials, NSC Files, NSC Institutional Files (H-Files), Box H–061, SRG Meeting, 2/1/72. Secret. A January 28 memorandum from Saunders and Kennedy to Kissinger indicates that they drafted the summary. (Ibid.) Of the papers cited in the summary, the January 28 Department of State paper dealing with alternate strategies is Document 217 and the January 25 paper on economic assistance for India and Pakistan is Document 215. Two of the papers dealing with military supply, dated January 22 and January 26, are Documents 213 and 216. The third, "Commerce Licenses for India and Pakistan,” is in the National Archives, Nixon Presidential Materials, NSC Files, NSC Institutional Files (H-Files), Box H–061, SRG Meeting, South Asia, 2/1/72. On January 28 the NSC staff prepared an assessment of a Department of State paper dealing with the issues of ceasefire and withdrawal that was sent to the NSC on December 22. The paper and assessment can be found ibid. A January 26 paper dealing with humanitarian assistance is in the Bangladesh compilation in this volume as Document 389.

The discussion in the summary of the possibility of the U.S adopting a more independent position vis-à-vis the three major powers of the area, in the paragraph which outlines Strategy II, prompted Kissinger to ask a question in the margin: "When?"


220. Minutes of Senior Review Group Meeting, Washington, February 1, 1972, 2:35–3:57 p.m.

The Senior Review Group discussed several policy issues relating to South Asia that were pending decision. Much of the discussion dealt with humanitarian assistance to Bangladesh.

Source: National Archives, Nixon Presidential Materials, NSC Files, NSC Institutional Files (H-Files), Box H–061, SRG Meeting, 2/1/72. Secret; Sensitive. The meeting was held in the White House Situation Room. No drafting information appears on the minutes.


221. Memorandum for the President’s File, Washington, February 3, 1972

In a conversation with Ambassador Keating, President Nixon told him to tell the Indian Government that "India has a friend in the White House.” The President’s Assistant for National Security Affairs Kissinger added: "But we must move at a measured pace.”

Source: National Archives, Nixon Presidential Materials, White House Special Files, President’s Office Files, Box 87, Memoranda for the President, Beginning January 30, 1972. Top Secret; Sensitive; Exclusively Eyes Only. Prepared but not initialed by Kissinger.


222. Memorandum From the Assistant Secretary of Defense for International Security Affairs (Nutter) to Secretary of Defense Laird, Washington, February 4, 1972

In the light of reports indicating that India might test a nuclear weapon in the near future, Nutter pointed up the dangerous implications of such a development.

Source: Washington National Records Center, OSD Files, FRC 77–0094, India 471.61, 1972. Secret; Sensitive. A stamped notation on the memorandum indicates that Laird saw it on February 5. A handwritten note in an unknown hand, beneath Nutter’s signature, reads: "L & N–We might pressure USSR to control Indian nuclear ventures.”


223. Memorandum for the President’s File, Washington, February 8, 1972, 3:15–4:20 p.m.

President Nixon and World Bank President Robert McNamara discussed restoration of U.S. economic assistance to India. Nixon questioned the value of such assistance for the U.S.

Source: National Archives, Nixon Presidential Materials, White House Special Files, President’s Office Files, Box 87, Memoranda for the President, Beginning February 6, 1972. Top Secret; Sensitive; Exclusively Eyes Only. Prepared but not initialed by Kissinger. The meeting was held in the President’s office in the Old Executive Office Building. Connally also attended the meeting. The conversation was also tape-recorded. (Ibid., White House Tapes, Recording of conversation among Nixon, Connally, Kissinger, and McNamara, February 8, 1972, 3:15–4:20, Old Executive Office Building, Conversation No. 320–328)


224. Telegram 1770 From the Embassy in India to the Department of State, February 10, 1972, 1500Z

Ambassador Keating reported that he and Indian Foreign Secretary Kaul had discussed steps that could be taken to improve relations between the United States and India.

Source: National Archives, RG 59, Central Files 1970–73, POL INDIA–US. Secret; Immediate;Exdis. Sent by Keating with an instruction to deliver to Sisco at the opening of business on February 10.


225. Memorandum of Conversation, Washington, February 11, 1972, 1 p.m.

The President’s Assistant for National Security Affairs Kissinger and Indian Ambassador Jha discussed the possibility of establishing a "realistic" relationship between the United States and India. Kissinger reviewed the controversy over whether he had offered an assurance, during his trip to India in July 1971, that the U.S. would come to India’s assistance if India was attacked by China.

Source: Library of Congress, Manuscript Division, Kissinger Papers, Box TS 28, Geopolitical File, India, Chronological File, 4 Nov 1971–19 Sept 1973. Top Secret; Sensitive; Eyes Only. The meeting was held in Kissinger’s office.


226. Telegram 1581 From the Embassy in Pakistan to the Department of State, February 17, 1972, 1330Z

Chargé Sober reported on indications that Pakistan was interested in a closer security relationship with the U.S. and would welcome the lifting of the arms embargo.

Source: National Archives, RG 59, Central Files 1970–73, DEF 15 PAKUS. Secret; Nodis. Sent to the Department for the attention of VAN HOLLEN.


227. Telegram 1622 From the Embassy in Pakistan to the Department of State, February 18, 1972, 1800Z

The Embassy transmitted a message from Pakistani President Bhutto to President Nixon in which Bhutto reviewed Pakistan’s grievances and concerns regarding India in the hope that they would factor into Nixon’s discussions with Chinese leaders during Nixon’s impending visit to China.

Source: National Archives, Nixon Presidential Materials, NSC Files, Box 627, Country Files, Middle East, Pakistan, Vol. IX, Jan–31 Aug 72. Secret; Immediate;Exdis.