57. Memorandum of Conversation1


  • Bilateral US-Soviet Issues; UN Issues Part II of II


  • US
  • The Secretary
  • Marshall D. Shulman, S/MS
  • USSR
  • Amb. Anatoliy Dobrynin

Ambassador Dobrynin came in on the afternoon of October 31 for a meeting which lasted an hour and 10 minutes, at which the following items were discussed:

1. Warvariv Case.2 Although the United States had already formally protested the matter, the Secretary said, he wanted to express his strong disapproval of the fact that representatives of the Soviet Union had first tried to recruit Warvariv and, having failed, then publicly sought to discredit him, forcing us to respond. He added that this activity would not help to advance the improvement of relations between our countries.

Dobrynin said he had no information beyond a TASS despatch; he offered, however, to supply documents that would demonstrate completely that Warvariv had been a Nazi collaborator. The Secretary repeated his point that these charges in no way excused the Soviet effort to recruit Warvariv by blackmailing him.

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2. Patolichev Visit. Dobrynin asked about arrangements for the Patolichev visit. The Secretary said he would meet with the President, but the time of the meeting was not yet definite. Dobrynin asked if the day of the meeting was known, since it would help to plan Patolichev’s flight to this country. He was told that it was understood that November 10 was under consideration.

Dobrynin then asked who would be present at the opening of the Soviet exhibition in Los Angeles. The Secretary said it was not definite, but he was considering Warren Christopher or Philip Habib, together with John Reinhardt. Dobrynin said this would be very good. It was agreed to firm matters up in a few days.

Dobrynin inquired who would be meeting Patolichev at the airport. The Secretary said that it would be someone of cabinet rank—either Secretary Blumenthal or Secretary Kreps. Dobrynin indicated his satisfaction, and added that the Soviet Union had invited Secretary Kreps to visit Moscow—originally after her Warsaw trip—but now for some later time, preferably in the spring, or whenever convenient to her.

5. Soviet UNGA Detente Resolution.3 Dobrynin asked again, as he had done during his previous visit, about the possibility of US support for this resolution. The Secretary pointed out that Ambassadors Leonard and Troyanovsky4 had discussed this in New York. Dobrynin replied that Troyanovsky was told it was up to the State Department to authorize the exploration of a possible mutual text. The Secretary answered that our Delegation has all the authority it needs to continue the discussions.

6. Sixtieth Anniversary Greetings. Dobrynin inquired whether the US would be sending greetings to Brezhnev on the occasion of the Sixtieth Anniversary celebration. He said the celebration would start on November 2 with a speech by Brezhnev (at which he would have “something positive” to say), but that greetings could be received anytime up to the 7th.

7. Glagolev Letter. Dobrynin then handed a Shulman an oral “non-note,”5 transmitting a letter received by the Consular Division of the Soviet Embassy from Igor S. Glagolev, a Soviet citizen now resident in the United States, threatening to publish a book in which will appear previously secret information detrimental to the Soviet Union, but inviting the Soviet Embassy to be in touch with him through the State Department. The Soviet note expresses the belief that Glagolev is acting in [Page 218] behalf of “American special services,” and asks the United States to prevent the publication of the book. Shulman agreed to look into the matter.

8. Shcharansky. The Secretary observed that accusations of Shcharansky’s alleged contacts with the United States government had again appeared in the Soviet press that morning, and recalled the President’s categorical denial to Foreign Minister Gromyko that there had been any connections between the CIA and Shcharansky. He reminded Dobrynin of the serious effect a trial of Shcharansky would have on relations between the two countries. Dobrynin inquired whether the President had examined the evidence lately. The Secretary said that the President had checked with the Director of the CIA. Dobrynin said that the Soviet officials in charge of the judicial process say there were such connections, and that he had the impression the trial would go forward, although he did not know when it would be. He added that the campaign against the trial by Jewish groups and others made the matter more difficult; that resentment at high levels—including the Central Committee—had been building up over what they saw as a challenging demand not to touch a dissident because he was Jewish, and that this resentment “by people who are not directly involved in Soviet-American relations” had led to a determination not to yield to this dictation from abroad. Dobrynin ventured the personal opinion that the President’s statement may have delayed the trial, but now pressure had been building up as a result of the clearly organized campaign of letters from Jewish communities all over the United States, and the matter had become a domestic issue within the government and the party, and the investigation and preparations for the court were still continuing.

9. UN Hijacking Resolution.6 The Secretary expressed the hope that the Soviet Union and its colleagues would support this measure actively. Dobrynin inquired whether there had been any trouble about this with the Soviet delegation. The Secretary said that some of the East European countries had been dragging their feet. Dobrynin suggested that the matter be discussed with the Soviet delegation in New York, which the Secretary said would be done.

10. South African Issue in Security Council. The Secretary reviewed the action anticipated later that day on the several resolutions on the subject and indicated how the United States would vote on them. Referring to the anticipated United States vetoes, Dobrynin observed that Ambassador Young had said he was obliged to follow instructions, to [Page 219] which the Secretary replied that the positions were in accordance with the Ambassador’s own judgment of the situation.

  1. Source: Department of State, Office of the Secretariat Staff, Special Adviser to the Secretary (S/MS) on Soviet Affairs Marshall Shulman—Jan 21, 77–Jan 19, 81, Lot 81D109, Box 3, CV–Dobrynin, 10/31/77. Secret. The meeting took place at the Department of State. Part I is Document 56.
  2. Constantine Warvariv, an American diplomat, was accused by a KGB agent of having collaborated with the Nazis. The agent then tried to blackmail Warvariv into working for Soviet intelligence. (David K. Shipler, “U.S. Accuses Soviet of Plot to Blackmail State Dept. Official,” The New York Times, October 30, 1977, p. 1) Telegram 252327 to Moscow, October 21, contains a formal protest. (National Archives, RG 59, Central Foreign Policy File, D770386–0919)
  3. See footnote 6, Document 55.
  4. James Leonard, U.S. Deputy Representative to the United Nations, and Oleg Troyanovsky, Soviet Ambassador to the United Nations.
  5. Not found attached.
  6. U.N. Resolution 32/8 condemned hijacking and encouraged countries to strengthen security measures in an effort to prevent hijacking. For the text of the resolution, see Yearbook of the United Nations, 1977, pp. 374–375.