Brazil


116. Memorandum From the Senior Department of Defense Attaché in France (Walters) to the President’s Assistant for National Security Affairs (Kissinger), Paris, undated.

Defense Attaché Walters summarized recent Brazilian foreign policy and political history. He stressed that the U.S. Government should firmly support the Brazilian Government.

Source: National Archives, Nixon Presidential Materials, NSC Files, Kissinger Office Files, Box 1, HAK Administrative and Staff Files, Transition, November 1968–January 1969, Brazil. No classification marking. Although the document is undated, similar memoranda from Walters offering advice on Eastern Europe and France were dated December 31, 1968. (Ibid., Eastern Europe and France) The memorandum is unsigned. Vernon Walters had a long connection with Brazil, serving as U.S. Army Liaison Officer to the Brazilian Expeditionary Force in Italy in World War II and Defense Attaché in Brazil from 1962 to 1967. Walters used the last sentence of this memorandum in his memoir, Silent Missions (New York: Doubleday and Company, 1978, p. 386), in recounting the events of the Brazilian Revolution of 1964.


117. Information Memorandum From the Acting Assistant Secretary of State for Inter-American Affairs (Vaky) to Secretary of State Rogers, Washington, January 24, 1969.

Acting Assistant Secretary Vaky discussed political repression and the potential for future anti-Americanism in Brazil.

Source: National Archives, Office of Brazilian Affairs Files: Lot 75 D 277, Originals, Memos & Memcons, 1969. Confidential. Drafted on January 23 by Kubisch and Lippincott. Copies sent to Richardson and U. Alexis Johnson. A note in an unknown hand after the subject line reads: “For your 12 appointment with Ambassador Tuthill.” A record of the Rogers-Tuthill conversation has not been found.


118. Memorandum From Arnold Nachmanoff of the National Security Council Staff to the Senior Military Advisor, National Security Council Staff (Haig), Washington, February 27, 1969.

National Security Council staff member Nachmanoff related the decision of the NSC Inter-Agency Group (NSC–IG) for Latin America to consider aid to Brazil, and raised questions about the ramifications of delaying arms sales.

Source: National Archives, Nixon Presidential Materials, NSC Files, NSC Institutional (H-Files), Box H–249, Under-Secretaries Memorandum Files, Under-Secretaries Study Memoranda, U/SM 1–9. Secret. On February 27, the Under Secretaries Committee, chaired by Richardson agreed to the $75 million tranche, and went ahead with negotiations (“stretched out as much as possible”) on the nine outstanding U.S. AID project loans, totaling $113 million. Action on the DEs and A–4 aircraft was deferred. (ibid., NSC Undersecretaries Files: Lot 83 D 276, NSC–U/DM 3)


119. Memorandum From the Assistant for National Security Affairs (Kissinger) to President Nixon, Washington, March 18, 1969.

President’s Assistant for National Security Affairs Kissinger recommended that the U.S. Government proceed with previous aid commitments to Brazil, but hold in abeyance a decision to build two destroyer escorts.

Source: National Archives, Nixon Presidential Materials, NSC Files, Box 771, Country Files, Latin America, Brazil through August 1970. Confidential. Sent for action. A handwritten note on the first page reads: “Note: President saw this, but did not indicate approval or disapproval.—A.” A handwritten notation by Haig on the second page of the memorandum reads: “No Action. —We assumed approval. AH.” Attached but not published is a March 17 memorandum from Richardson to the President, entitled “Brazil: Economic and Military Assistance.”


120. National Security Study Memorandum 67, Washington, July 12, 1969.

President Nixon directed a broad-ranging review of U.S. policy toward Brazil that included a thorough presentation of “interests, objectives, and policy options.”

Source: National Archives, Nixon Presidential Materials, NSC Files, Box 365, Subject Files, National Security Study Memoranda, Nos. 43–103. Secret. A copy was sent to the Chairman of the JCS, the Director of the USIA, the Director of the Peace Corps, and the Secretaries of Commerce and Agriculture. The introduction to the November 1 study is Document 125.


121. Telegram 7183 From the Embassy in Brazil to the Department of State, September 4, 1969, 2002Z.

The Embassy reported on the kidnapping of Ambassador Elbrick.

Source: National Archives, RG 59, Central Files 1967–69, POL 23–9 BRAZ. Secret; Flash. Repeated to Sao Paulo, Brasilia, and USCINCSO. In Rio de Janeiro 7181, received 1820Z, September 4, DCM Belton reported: “Ambassador Elbrick’s chauffeur has just phoned embassy to say Ambassador has been kidnapped from his limousine. We will furnish further information as soon as possible.” (Ibid.) Despite his abduction, all of the telegrams from Embassy Rio de Janeiro continued to bear his name during the period of the kidnapping.


122. Telegram 149761 From the Department of State to the Embassy in Brazil at Rio de Janeiro, Washington, September 4, 1969, 2256Z.

Under Secretary Richardson stated that the U.S. Government should comply with the demands of the kidnappers to secure Ambassador Elbrick’s release.

Source: National Archives, RG 59, Central Files 1967–69, POL 23–9 BRAZ. Secret; Exdis; Flash. Drafted by Dean; cleared by Meyer and Executive Secretary Eliot; and approved by Richardson.


124. Memorandum From the Assistant for National Security (Kissinger) to President Nixon, Washington, September 26, 1969.

President’s Assistant for National Security Affairs Kissinger summarized the impact of Ambassador Elbick’s abduction on Brazilian politics and United States-Brazilian relations.

Source: National Archives, Nixon Presidential Materials, NSC Files, Box 771, Country Files, Latin America, Brazil, through August 1970. Confidential. Sent for information. The memorandum bears the following handwritten note: “Back from Pres 10–1”. Attached but not published at Tab A is a September 20 memorandum from Eliot to Kissinger.


125. Brazil Program Analysis, Washington, November 1, 1969.

In this 7 page Analysis, the Under Secretaries Committee identified three key goals for U.S. policy in Brazil: a pro-United States Government, economic growth, and helping to promote a more modern social structure.

Source: National Archives, Nixon Presidential Materials, NSC Files, NSC Institutional Files (H-Files), Box H–49, Senior Review Group, Brazil Program Analysis, 12–1–70. Secret.


126. Airgram A–709 From the Embassy in Brazil to the Department of State, December 9, 1969.

The Médici Government stated it planned to focus on improving education, health, and agriculture. Thus, Chargé Belton concluded that since Médici’s goals were more in line with the priorities of the U.S. Government than was the case with the Costa e Silva Government, U.S.-Brazilian relations would be closer under the new regime.

Source: National Archives, RG 59, Central Files 1967–69, POL 15 BRAZ. Confidential. Drafted on December 4 by Johnson; cleared in draft by Elbrick and the Country Team; and approved by Belton. Médici was nominated for president by the Brazilian military on October 6. (Telegram 8348 from Rio de Janeiro, October 7, ibid.; POL 15–1 BRAZ) He was elected by the Brazilian Congress on October 25, and inaugurated on October 30. (Memorandum from Eliot to Kissinger, October 27; ibid.)


127. Memorandum From the Assistant for National Security Affairs (Kissinger) to President Nixon, Washington, April 15, 1970.

President’s Assistant for National Security Affairs Kissinger, for President Nixon, approved $112 million in sector, technical assistance, and PL 480 support for Brazil. In addition, $75 million in program loans was deferred, awaiting a NSC policy review.

Source: National Archives, Nixon Presidential Materials, NSC Files, Box 771, Country Files, Latin America, Brazil, Vol. 1, Through August 1970. Confidential. Sent for action. Kissinger approved for Nixon on May 2. Attached but not published are Tabs A and B. Tab A is a March 18 memorandum from Rogers to Nixon and Tab B is an April 3 memorandum from Schlesinger to Nixon. In a covering memorandum from Vaky to Kissinger, Vaky argued against the $75 million program loan at the present time, because “it would lock the President into an overall policy stance toward Brazil before he has had an opportunity to consider all of the policy issues and implications involved… We should at least consider the question of whether this kind of close identification with the Médici regime will alienate other sectors of Brazilian society which in the longer term may be more important to achievement of a constructive U.S.-Brazilian relationship.”


128. Memorandum From Viron P. Vaky of the National Security Council Staff to the President’s Assistant for National Security Affairs (Kissinger), Washington, May 19, 1970.

National Security Council staff member Vaky recommended that the Administration complete “pending cash sales” of U.S. armaments to Brazil, despite some Congressional opposition.

Source: National Archives, Nixon Presidential Materials, NSC Files, Box 771, Country Files, Latin America, Brazil, Vol. 1, Through August 1970. Secret. Sent for action. Osgood concurred. Attached but not published are Tabs A and B. Tab A is a May 23 memorandum from Kissinger informing Eliot of his approval of the recommendation and Tab B is a May 16 memorandum from Eliot to Kissinger.


129. Telegram 517 From the Embassy in Brazil to the Department of State, November 12, 1970, 1845Z.

Ambassador Rountree reported a conversation with Brazilian Foreign Minister Gibson on the 200-mile limit, soluble coffee issues, and allegations of excesses by the Brazilian police.

Source: National Archives, Nixon Presidential Materials, NSC Files, Box 768, Country Files, Latin America, Argentina, 1969–August 31, 1971. Confidential. Although the United States maintained an office in Brasilia since 1960, when the city was made the capital of Brazil, Rountree was the first United States Ambassador to maintain his embassy there rather than in Rio de Janeiro. This telegram was attached to Document 31.


130. Memorandum From Arnold Nachmanoff of the National Security Council Staff to the President’s Assistant for National Security Affairs (Kissinger), Washington, November 25, 1970.

National Security Council staff member Nachmanoff analyzed the NSSM 67 study and concluded it ignored a number of aspects of the complex United States–Brazilian relationship: coffee, U.S. import policy and arms policy, and the nature of Brazil’s military government.

Source: National Archives, Nixon Presidential Materials, NSC Files, NSC Institutional Files (H-Files), Box H–49, Senior Review Group-Brazil Program Analysis, 12/1/70. Secret. Sent for information. Copies were sent to Kennedy and Smith. NSSM 67 is Document 120. The NSSM 67 paper is Document 125.


131. Memorandum From K. Wayne Smith of the National Security Council Staff to the President’s Assistant for National Security Affairs (Kissinger), Washington, November 27, 1970.

National Security Council staff member Wayne Smith stated that the NSSM 67 study analyzed all of the important aspects of United States-Brazilian relations, and related them to the importance of Brazilian economic development. Smith noted that the study did not go into great detail regarding operational issues, because it was necessary to await approval from the President for his decision on the overall policy towards Brazil.

Source: National Archives, Nixon Presidential Materials, NSC Files, NSC Institutional Files (H-Files), Box H–49, Senior Review Group, Brazil Program Analysis, 12/1/70. Secret. Sent for information. Smith’s November 3 memorandum to Kissinger is ibid. The talking points prepared for the SRG are ibid. Nachmanoff’s memorandum to Kissinger is Document 130. The introduction to the Brazil study is Document 125.


132. Minutes of a Senior Review Group Meeting, Washington, December 1, 1970, 2:40–3:39 p.m.

The Senior Review Group (SRG) discussed the NSSM 67 study for the purpose of preparing a memorandum to the President Nixon on the matter.

Source: National Archives, Nixon Presidential Materials, NSC Files, NSC Institutional Files (H-Files), Box H–111, SRG Minutes, Originals, 1970. Secret; Nodis. The meeting took place in the White House Situation Room. An Analytical Summary of the IG paper, with Kissinger’s handwriting in the margins, dated November 3, is ibid. On December 8, Kissinger requested the IG complete a study of U.S. military groups in Latin America by December 23, 1970. (Ibid., Box H–49, Senior Review Group, Brazil Program Analysis 12/1/70) The report was completed on January 12, 1971. (Ibid.)


133. Memorandum From the President’s Assistant for National Security Affairs (Kissinger) to President Nixon, Washington, December 11, 1970.

President’s Assistant for National Security Affairs Kissinger recommended that the Department of State step up its efforts to negotiate a settlement with Brazil on coffee imports.

Source: National Archives, Nixon Presidential Materials, NSC Files, Box 771, Country Files, Latin America, Brazil, Volume 2, September 1970–July 31, 1971. Confidential. Sent for action. A stamped notation on the memorandum indicates the President saw it. Nixon approved the recommendation. Davis informed Eliot in a December 29 memorandum transmitting the President’s decision to the Department of State, “If a settlement cannot be negotiated by March 15, 1971, the President is prepared to reconsider the question of imposing a fee on imports of Brazilian soluble coffee at that time.”


134. Memorandum of Meeting, Washington, December 14, 1970.

President Nixon stated that, regarding U.S. relations with Latin America, close relations with Brazil and Argentina were the most important. Nixon wanted to make it clear to the Brazilian Government that the United States would not be judgmental regarding Brazil’s form of government.

Source: National Archives, Nixon Presidential Materials, NSC Files, Box 771, Country Files, Brazil, Volume 2, September 1970–31 July 31 1971. Confidential; Nodis. The conversation took place in the Oval Office. On a December 3 briefing memorandum from Kissinger, Nixon wrote: “K—I want a stepped up effort for closer relations with Brazil’s government—order Meyer to carry out (from RN).” (Ibid., Box 29, President’s Daily Briefing, Chronological File, December 1–15, 1970)


135. Memorandum From C. Fred Bergsten and Arnold Nachmanoff of the National Security Council Staff to the President’s Assistant for National Security Affairs (Kissinger), Washington, March 24, 1971.

National Security Council staff members Bergsten and Nachmanoff reported the Department of State’s belief that there was an opportunity for Brazil and the United States to settle a dispute over Brazilian coffee exports. Resolving the dispute had larger ramifications for other coffee producing nations.

Source: National Archives, Nixon Presidential Materials, NSC Files, Box 771, Country Files, Latin America, Brazil, Vol. 2, September 1970–July 31, 1971. No classification marking. Sent for information. Kissinger initialed the memorandum. Brazil and the United States reached an agreement on soluble coffee on April 2. See U.S. Treaties and Other International Agreements, Vol. 22, Part 1 (1971), pp. 654–659.


136. Memorandum of Conversation, Washington, May 7, 1971, 9:30–10:10 p.m.

National Security Council staff member Nachmanoff asked Ambassador Araujo Castro and Minister Celso Diniz if Brazil could delay implementing new fishing regulations.

Source: National Archives, Nixon Presidential Materials, NSC Files, Box 771, Country Files, Latin America, Brazil, Volume 2, September 1970–July 31, 1971. Secret; Sensitive; Nodis. On May 7, Kissinger notified the Secretaries of State, Defense, and Commerce that the President had decided to send a mission to Brazil to induce “the Government of Brazil to delay implementation of its fishing regulations from June 1 until next fall.” (Ibid.)


138. Telegram 480 From the Embassy in Brazil to the Department of State, June 7, 1971, 1755Z.

Ambassador Rountree reported that he urged the Brazilians to avoid incidents with U.S. ships so as to not jeopardize negotiations over the 200-mile limit. President Médici responded that incident would occur if ships advised to leave Brazilian waters actually did, and that his government was committed to preventing incidents.

Source: National Archives, RG 59, Central Files 1970–73, POL 33–4 BRAZ–US. Secret; Exdis. Repeated immediate to Rio de Janeiro.


139. Conversation Among President Nixon, the President’s Assistant for National Security Affairs (Kissinger), and President’s Assistant (Haldeman), Washington, June 11, 1971.

President Nixon and President’s Assistant for National Security Affairs Kissinger lamented that the fisheries dispute and congressional refusal to ratify the International Coffee Agreement had soured relations with Brazil.

Source: National Archives, Nixon Presidential Materials, White House Tapes, Conversation No. 517–4, Oval Office. No classification marking. The editors transcribed the portions of the tape recording printed here specifically for this volume. The transcript is part of a larger conversation, 9:37–10:36 a.m. Nixon, Connally, and Kissinger also discussed Brazil in Document 42.


141. Memorandum for the President’s File, Washington, December 7, 1971, 11:30 a.m.

President Médici stated that his administration had successfully worked to change the anti-foreign investment stance of the pre-1964 Brazilian Governments, and President Nixon praised his leadership. In addition, both Nixon and Médici agreed that the United States should not change its policy toward Cuba.

Source: National Archives, Nixon Presidential Materials, NSC Files, Box 1025, Presidential/HAK Memcons, Memcons—The President and President Médici, Dec. 7–9, 1971. Top Secret; Eyes Only. The conversation took place in the President’s office. According to the President’s Daily Diary, Nixon, Walters, and Médici met from 11:13 a.m. to 12:38 p.m. (Ibid., White House Central Files, President’s Daily Diary). Médici visited Washington from December 6 through December 9. On December 5, Nixon discussed his upcoming meeting with Médici in a conversation with an unknown participant. There is a presidential recording of this conversation ibid., White House Tapes, Conversation No. 16–2, White House Telephone.


142. Memorandum of Meeting, Washington, December 8, 1971, 5:15 p.m.

President’s Assistant for National Security Affairs Kissinger and members of the NSC Staff met with Médici, Gibson, and Castro. Their conversation focused on global implications of China’s admission to the United Nations, and the nature of Brazil’s place in “the global foreign policy concept of the United States.”

Source: National Archives, Nixon Presidential Materials, NSC Files, Box 911, VIP Visits, Brazil. Secret; Nodis. The meeting was held at the Blair House. Kissinger initialed Nachmanoff’s December 10 covering memorandum that recommended the memorandum of conversation receive “no dissemination outside your office.”


143. Memorandum for the President’s File, Washington, December 9, 1971.

Presidents Nixon and Médici agreed that U.S. policy towards Cuba should remain the same. The two presidents also discussed the situations in Chile and Peru, and the construction of new highways in the interior of Brazil.

Source: National Archives, Nixon Presidential Materials, NSC Files, Box 1025, Presidential/HAK Memcons, President-President Médici. Top Secret; Eyes Only. The meeting took place in the President’s Office at 10 a.m. The proposed draft communiqué referred to in the penultimate paragraph is attached to a memorandum from Kissinger to the President, December 8. (Ibid., VIP Visits, Box 911, Brazil.) For text of final communiqué, see Department of State Bulletin, January 2, 1971, p. 14.


144. Memorandum From the Senior Department of Defense Attaché in France (Walters) to the President’s Assistant for National Security Affairs (Kissinger), Washington, undated.

Defense Attaché Walters discussed a range of topics that came up in the meetings between Presidents Nixon and Médici. Walters informed President’s Assistant for National Security Affairs Kissinger that the President “wished action taken” on these topics.

Source: National Archives, Nixon Presidential Materials, NSC Files, Box 1025, Presidential/HAK Memcons, President-President Médici. No classification marking. It was drafted and typed by Walters.


145. Memorandum From the Acting Director of Central Intelligence (Cushman) to the President’s Assistant for National Security Affairs (Kissinger), Washington, December 29, 1971.

According to CIA reporting, Presidents Nixon and Médici held a secret conversation in which they discussed support for “safeguarding the internal security and status quo in the hemisphere, including the governments of Bolivia and Uruguay.”

Source: Central Intelligence Agency, Executive Secretary Subject Files, Job 80–B01086A, Box 12, Brazil. Secret; Sensitive; Eyes Only. A copy was sent to the Secretary of State. The covering memorandum stated that, “The attached memorandum contains comments regarding commitments allegedly made to President Médici by President Nixon. They have not been included in the dissemination and are being forwarded for your information.” Attached but not published is Central Intelligence Agency Intelligence Information Cable TDCSDB 315/07838–71 of December 22, ”Reactions within Brazil to Visit of President Emílio Garrastazu Médici to the United States.” On December 20, in a conversation with British Prime Minister Edward Heath, Nixon stated, “The Brazilians helped rig the Uruguayan election.”