27. Message From the President’s Assistant for National Security Affairs (Kissinger) to the Military Attaché at the Embassy in France (Walters), Washington, September 28, 19711 2

Instructions for General Walters

1. On September 29, General Walters should hand over the attached oral message to the Chinese.

With respect to the first paragraph of this message, he should make the following informal comment:

“The presence of advance personnel on this trip is important to enable technical planning to begin and to guarantee its responsiveness to political objectives.”

General Walters should then tell the Chinese that he has been informed that he will receive by October 1 information for the Chinese concerning Foreign Minister Gromyko’s conversation with the President on September 29. He will be prepared to pass this information to the Chinese on October 2.

General Walters should also inform the Chinese that he returned to Washington from September 24 to September 28 for consultations with Dr. Kissinger.

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2. On October 2, General Walters should give the Chinese the following information orally:

“The talks between the President and Foreign Minister Gromyko covered the following subjects: general US-Soviet relations, SALT, Berlin and other European issues, the Middle East, and South Asia. Foreign Minister Gromyko invited Dr. Kissinger to tea on September 30 during which some of the same ground was covered.

“Dr. Kissinger will be prepared to give Prime Minister Chou En-lai a full rundown of these discussions.

“The only item that requires immediate attention by the Chinese side is that Foreign Minister Gromyko conveyed a formal invitation from the Soviet leaders to President Nixon to visit the Soviet Union. The United States Government will keep the Government of the People’s Republic of China informed about its reaction to this invitation. As previously affirmed to the Chinese side, the United States will under no circumstances agree to a Presidential visit to the Soviet Union that would take place before the President’s visit to the People’s Republic of China.”

  1. Source: National Archives, Nixon Presidential Materials, NSC Files, Box 849, President’s File-China Trip, China Exchanges, July 1971-Oct 20, 1971. Top Secret; Sensitive; Exclusively Eyes Only. A handwritten note reads “HK Handed to Walters 9/28/71.” Not published is the oral message to the Chinese.
  2. Kissinger instructed Walters to inform the Chinese on September 29 concerning the technical aspects of President Nixon’s trip. He also noted that on October 2, Walters should inform the Chinese of the content of President Nixon’s September 29 conversation with Soviet Foreign Minister Gromyko. Kissinger also suggested that Walters inform the Chinese that Walters had been in Washington for consultation, September 24-28.