240. Memorandum From Secretary of State Vance to President Carter 1

[Omitted here is material unrelated to Yemen.]

Saudi Attitude Toward U.S.-South Yemen Relations. As you know, the Saudis had asked us to defer any initiative toward improving relations with South Yemen until the King had reviewed Saudi policy toward South Yemen. On Tuesday the Deputy Foreign Minister told our Charge in Jidda that Prince Fad now believes it would be useful for the United States to have an embassy in Aden.2 The Deputy Foreign Minister gave an optimistic appraisal of recent developments in South Yemen that is at variance with the views Faud had earlier provided to John West, and which John related at our meeting last month. Therefore I am asking John to confirm this recent information when he returns to Jidda, and to tell the Saudis how we intend to proceed.3

[Omitted here is material unrelated to Yemen.]

  1. Source: Carter Library, Plains File, Subject File, Box 38, State Department Evening Reports, 4/78. Secret. Carter wrote “Cy J” in the upper right-hand corner of the first page of the memorandum.
  2. Reference is to an April 4 conversation between the Chargé and Saudi Deputy Foreign Minister al-Mansouri during which al-Mansouri indicated that Fahd also supported the “idea of resumption of USPDRY relations.” (Telegram 2607 from Jidda, April 6; National Archives, RG 59, Central Foreign Policy File, D780148–0631)
  3. In the left-hand margin next to this paragraph, Carter wrote: “As you know, I think we should move toward S. Yemen.”