64. Memorandum From Richard Pipes of the National Security Council Staff to the President’s Assistant for National Security Affairs (Allen)1


  • Comments on Soviet Note

The note2 handed to Walter Stoessel by the Soviet Embassy is couched in the most somber language of Soviet diplomacy. It is devoid of the vituperative elements present in many Soviet notes when they have an essentially propagandistic purpose. This is a serious warning and I would be inclined to take it very seriously. It would seem to me to call for a high-level meeting with Soviet representatives either here or in Moscow to clarify both U.S. policies in China and the implications of the Soviet response. In particular, one would want to know what is meant by the concluding phrase that the Soviet Government would “be free to take such measures as would be dictated by the emerging situation”. It would be dangerous, in my opinion, to handle this note in a routine manner, let alone ignore it. (S)

  1. Source: Reagan Library, Richard Pipes Files, CHRON 07/02/1981–07/07/1981. Secret. Sent for information.
  2. Attached but not printed is the Soviet non-paper transmitted in Document 63.