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U.S.-Soviet Relations and the
Turn Toward Confrontation, 1977-1980–
New Russian & East German Documents

Editor's Note: U.S.-Soviet relations following the inauguration of U.S. President Jimmy Carter in January 1977 misfired by March, when Secretary of State Vance carried the new president's arms control initiative to Moscow, only to receive a harsh public lashing from the Soviet leadership. (For translations of Russian archival documents on this early period, including correspondence between Carter and Soviet leader L. I. Brezhnev, see CWIHP Bulletin 5 (Spring 1995), pp. 140-154, 160.) But ties seemed to be mending by the late summer of that yearas reflected by progress on talks toward signing a SALT II arms treaty, quiet cooperation in heading off a South African nuclear test, and (on 1 October 1977) the issuance of an unprecedented joint statement calling on Israel and its Arab enemies to return to the Geneva Conference co-chaired by Washington and Moscow to seek a comprehensive peace" in the Middle East.

Yet, the fall of 1977 and the first half of 1978 witnessed another downturn in relations, caused by, among other disputes, the negation of the October 1 joint communique on the Middle East as Egyptian President Anwar Sadat startled the world by visiting Jerusalem in November 1977 and pursuing a separate peace with Israel; a massive Soviet-Cuban military airlift to Ethiopia that fall turned the tide of the Somali-Ethiopia conflict and irked Washington, which the following spring retaliated by accelerating ties with Beijing; talks on SALT II slowed to a crawl; Soviet human rights abuses (including the highly-publicized arrests and trials of well-known dissidents such as Anatoly Shcharansky and Yuri Orlov) fanned public anger in the United States; and within the Carter Administration, the faction (led by National Security Adviser Zbigniew Brzezinski) favoring a tougher line toward Moscow (including "linkage" of arms talks with other issues, such as Soviet behavior in Third World) began to get the upper hand in its incessant competition with those (such as Secretary of State Cyrus R. Vance) adhering to a more conciliatory approach.

By mid-1978, it seemed evident that U.S.-USSR relations had reached a new crisis point, dimming the hopes that had existed at the outset of the Carter Administration. Over the next year, the two sides managed to patch things up somewhat, agree on final terms for a SALT II treaty, and hold the long-delayed Carter-Brezhnev Summit in Vienna to sign it in June 1979. But valuable time had been lost, and a store of mutual mistrust had accumulated. Even that interlude of relative concord in Vienna turned out to be short-lived, for in the fall of 1979, at a time when Carter had hoped to be triumphantly signing a SALT II treaty after winning Senate ratification, U.S.-Soviet relations again went sourand in December 1979 came an event that shelved the treaty indefinitely (and permanently, it turned out) and also officially rang the death knell of detente: the Soviet invasion of Afghanistan (see next section).

To illuminate the evolution in ties between Washington and Moscow during this stretch, the Bulletin presents a selection of ten documents (or excerpts) from the Russian and East German archives, including:

*the transcript of a contentious yet cautiously optimistic 30 September 1977 Oval Office meeting between Carter and visiting Soviet Foreign Minister Andrei A. Gromyko, returning Vance's ill-starred trip to Moscow (translated records of Gromyko's discussions with Vance during this trip are also available, but not printed due to space limitations);

an extract from the minutes of a 27 April 1978 session of the Communist Party of the Soviet Union Central Committee (CPSU CC) Politburo in which Brezhnev recounts his handling of a meeting with Vance, specifically his upbraiding of Carter's inconsistent foreign policy line" and his "strong rebuff" of U.S. criticism of Soviet actions in Africa;

* a testy encounter between Vance and Gromyko in New York on 31 May 1978, in which the Soviet Foreign Minister accused the Carter Administration of an anti-Soviet propaganda campaign that was on the verge of destroying detente and bringing us back to the period of cold war,'" and the two exchanged espionage accusations;

* three excerpts from June 1978 CPSU CC Politburo sessions, including a general foreign policy survey by Brezhnev concluding that a serious deterioration and exacerbationof the international scene had taken place due to the Carter Administration's growing aggression,and discussions of controversial dissidents (Andrei Sakharov and Anatoly Shcharansky);

* a lengthy July 1978 "political letter" from Soviet Ambassador to the Washington Anatoly F. Dobrynin assessing the evolution of US-USSR relations in the first year-and-a-half of the Carter Administration, and recommending "expedient" policies for the future;

two excerpts from East German archival records of conversations between Brezhnev and German Democratic Republic leader Erich Honecker, one in July 1978 and another a year later, in which they analyzed the international situation and U.S.-Soviet relations;

* and finally, little more than a month after the invasion of Afghanistan, a February 1980 Politburo-approved telegram to the USSR Ambassador to West Germany (in preparation for a meeting with former Chancellor and head of the Socialist International Willy Brandt) defending Moscow's action and reviewing the downward spiral in U.S.-Soviet relations.

Most of these translated documents were obtained by the Carter-Brezhnev Projectundertaken by the Center for Foreign Policy Development at Brown University in cooperation with the National Security Archive, the Cold War International History Project, and other scholarly and archival partners. To explore the reasons behind the collapse of superpower detente in the mid-1970s, the Project assembled veterans of the Carter and Brezhnev leaderships for a series of oral history conferences and promoted the declassification,

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release, and translation of important new documents from the Russian archives, in particular from the Russian Foreign Ministry archives (known officially as the Archive of Foreign Policy of the Russian Federation, or AVPRF), and the former CPSU CC archives (the Center for the Study of Contemporary Documentation, or TsKhSD); additional East-bloc sources were obtained from the East German archives by Christian Ostermann of the National Security Archive. In addition, the Project and the National Security Archive sought the declassification of U.S. documents through the Freedom of Information Act.

All documents obtained by the Carter-Brezhnev Project and the CWIHP are available for research at the National Security Archive, which together with CWIHP has created (and houses) a Russian and East-bloc Archival Documents Database (READD) which is planned eventually to produce an internet-accessible listing of documents; in addition, beyond what is published in the Bulletin, CWIHP hopes to make additional translated materials available to scholars through the internet via the National Security Archive's home page on the World Wide Web (http://www.seas.gwu.edu/nsarchive). For information, contact the National Security Archive, Gelman Library, 7th fl., 2130 H St. NW 20037, tel.: (202) 994-7000; fax: (202) 994-7005; and nsarchiv@gwis2.circ.gwu.edu (e-mail). - James G. Hershberg

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Document 1: Record of Conversation tably be competition between our countries. Soviet Union with the problem of the Jewbetween Soviet Foreign Minister

I do not think, however, that this is an ish emigration from the USSR. I would like Gromyko and President Carter, 23 unhealthy situation and I believe that we can with your assistance to achieve some September 1977

conduct this competition to our mutual ben- progress in overcoming of limitations estab

efit in the spirit of respect for each other. lished by the Congress in order to amelioRECORD OF THE MAIN CONTENT

Like the Soviet Union, our country will rate this source of tension and misunder-
OF A.A. GROMYKO'S

support its own defenses on the high level standing
CONVERSATION

necessary to guarantee the preservation of Next month the question of human WITH USA PRESIDENT J. CARTER peace. I am sure that this will not prevent rights among others will be discussed at the

us from developing our mutual relations. Conference (on Security and Cooperation 23 September 1977, Washington

The USA has a highly developed tech- in Europe) in Belgrade. We approach this

nology. We have powerful economic poten- Conference in a constructive way and we J. CARTER. I am very happy to greet tial, produce many food items, conduct large will maintain constant consultations in you here in the White House. It is an honor scale trade with other countries.

Belgrade with the Soviet representative. We to meet you.

The Soviet Union has its own strong already consulted on the questions related A.A. GROMYKO. I am very happy to qualities and it too has an ability to offer to the Conference with our allies and we do meet you, Mr. President, and to discuss the many benefits to the international commu- not want this Conference to be an obstacle questions which are of interest to both sides. nity.

in our relations with the Soviet Union. But I want to use this opportunity to tell you that Both of our countries still do not use it is also true that it will be necessary to disL.I. Brezhnev and the Soviet leadership send in full the potential for the development of cuss all aspects of the Helsinki Agreement their greetings and best wishes to you. mutual trade, although we have some trade in Belgrade in order to verify how they are

J. CARTER. Thank you and upon your links. We successfully cooperate in a num- being observed. In other words, my apreturn home please give my warmest and ber of science-technical areas such as en- proach to the Belgrade Conference is conmost sincere regards and best wishes to L.I. ergy industry. These links and cooperation structive and I do not want it to be conducted Brezhnev. should be developed further.

in the spirit of controversy. At this meeting I would like to set forth We have different approaches to the The USA is actively involved in variin a general form my personal views on the question of human rights. And I know that ous international problems which we would questions of mutual relations between the some of our statements on this question pro- like to solve in the conditions of cooperaUSA and the Soviet Union. Then, you, if voked L.I. Brezhnev’s displeasure. How- tion with the Soviet Union. We, in particuyou like, could respond to my general state- ever, adhering to our position on this ques- lar, are trying to resolve the South African ments, and after that we could discuss some tion, we do not want to interfere in the do- problems. We, like you, are very concerned concrete questions in more detail.

mestic affairs of any state or to put you in about the situation that has developed there. A.A. GROMYKO. I agree with such a an awkward position. It is necessary, ap- We are worrying not only about the maniprocedure of our conversation.

parently, to recognize that we see differently festation of racism in this part of the globe, J. CARTER. I would like to say right these problems and that the human rights but, like you, about the intention of the South away that as President I attach special sig- problem deeply troubles our people. Above African Republic to create its own nuclear nificance to good relations with the Soviet all, the human rights problem in our hemi- weapon. Union. I believe that friendly relations and sphere concerns us. But some facts in the We would like to resolve the problems close cooperation between the USA and the Soviet Union also give rise to our concern, of Namibia and Zimbabwe. Together with Soviet Union are of utmost importance and such as the imprisonment of some Soviet Great Britain we put forth a concrete plan I will do everything necessary in order to Jews, for instance (dissident Anatoly) of solving the problem of Rhodesia. I am guarantee the steady development of good Shcharansky.

glad that in the UN the Soviet Union takes mutual relations between our two countries. You know, that our Congress, even a constructive position on this question. I

Certainly, because of the differences before my coming to the White House, hope that in case of disagreement with our between our social systems there will inevi- linked the development of trade with the approach to the problems of the South of

wan.

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Africa we could privately discuss these cise the required restraint in order to preproblems via our ambassadors in Moscow vent unnecessary aggravation in this region. or Washington so that we could have a com- A few words about relations between mon approach in the public arena. We do the USA and China. We are striving to nornot have any specific interest in that a spe- malize our relations with China not for the cific government would come to power in purpose of creating a kind of alliance with this region. This question should be decided it against the Soviet Union but for strengthby the people themselves. And we do not ening peace, developing trade and other rewant to sell weapons to the countries of this lations with that country. We hope that the region.

problem of mutual relations between the Angola, with the presence of several PRC [People's Republic of China) and Taithousand Cuban troops there, creates a prob- wan will be resolved by peaceful means. lem for us. I think it would have been use- But we do not want to abrogate our obligaful if you, or we together, had convinced

tion to guarantee the peaceful life of TaiCubans to withdraw their troops from Angola, although I understand that we have In the past few years we witnessed the a difference of opinions on this question. improvement of the Soviet Union's relations

We also are interested in achieving a with some Western European countries settlement in the Middle East. Vance re- which are our allies. We too would like to ported to me that judging from his conver- improve our relations with the Warsaw Pact sation with you, the Soviet position on this nations. Our alliance with our friends in question is close to ours. In the past the Western Europe is solid, like your alliance Soviet Union was close to the Arab states with your friends. And we hope that this and the USA was close, mainly, to Israel. situation will last. But even today we are interested in the pres- We conduct the negotiations with you ervation of peace in the Middle East, in guar- on a number of questions of arms limitaanteeing the independence of Israel by . tion. We would like to reach an agreement peaceful methods. Over the last several on demilitarization of the Indian ocean in years we won the respect and trust of a num- the future. We also are counting on an agreeber of Arab countries. We are trying to con- ment on a ban on chemical weapons. We duct a just and evenhanded policy in this would like to reach an agreement on advance region and we hope that together with you notification of missile launch tests in order we will be able to further a peaceful settle- to avoid unnecessary misunderstandings. ment. Sometimes the Soviet Union's ap- We hope that these and other negotiations proach to the problems of the Middle East, which we conduct with you will be successin our view, was not constructive enough. I

ful. only state the fact, however. I am not com- We hope to achieve an agreement on plaining.

banning hostile actions against artificial satWe intend to keep you informed on the

ellites. We know about the Soviet program development of the situation in the Middle of the creation of the means intended for East, on the position of those countries with fighting the satellites of other countries. We whom we have regular contact. And I hope also could develop such a program, but we that you too will keep us informed, in par- would like to ban such actions. Both of us ticular about the PLO (Palestine Liberation take similar positions on the question of nonOrganization) position.

proliferation of nuclear weapons and we Another region that worries us is Ko- together live through disappointments when rea. We hope that the South and North Ko- we witness attempts to violate this principle. rea will live in peace with each other. The Both our countries speak in favor of stricter USA intends to withdraw its troops from the limitations in regard to proliferation of South Korea in a 4-5 year period. How- nuclear weapons. ever, we have to do something so that South We worry about sales of arms to other Korea will be able to provide for its own countries. In the past the USA, unfortudefence.

nately, have been selling too much arms, like The introduction by North Korea of the the Soviet Union, by the way. 50-mile zone of the sea borders concerns I hope that in the future we will not be us. We hope that the Soviet Union will be doing this. We still supply the arms to some able to persuade the North Korea to exer- countries in accordance with our past con

tracts, however, in the future we intend to exercise more restraint in this regard. We hope that the Western European countries and the Soviet Union will take the same position as well.

We would like to conclude a treaty on a comprehensive ban on nuclear tests. We would like to achieve a termination of all nuclear tests on the basis of signing, first, an agreement with the Soviet Union and England in the hope that it will impel France and China to join such an agreement. We think it is important to include in such a ban also so-called peaceful nuclear explosions, since it is difficult to make a distinction between an explosion for military purposes and for peaceful ones. In any case, the ability to conduct peaceful explosions gives the countries who conduct them the ability to use the nuclear energy also for military purposes.

Now a few words of a general character in regard to a conclusion of the new agreement on the limitation of strategic arms. I think we are very close of reaching an agreement. However, some new circumstances emerged which differ from the situation that existed during the meeting [between Brezhnev and U.S. President Gerald R. Ford in December 1974) in Vladivostok. For us, the measures taken by the Soviet Union regarding the equipping of heavy missiles with MIRV (Multiple, Independently-targeted Re-entry Vehicles--ed.) was unexpected and at the same time troubling. We did not expect that the Soviet heavy missiles SS-18 would be equipped with MIRV at such a quick pace. But this strengthens the ability of the Soviet Union to launch a first strike and it threatens the survivability of our missile silos. You, on the other hand, express concern in regard to American cruise missiles which were not mentioned in Vladivostok. However, the cruise missiles are not capable of a first strike because

a of their small velocity and also because they can be easily identified during their flight.

I talked with former President Ford and former Secretary of State (Henry A. Kissinger in detail and thoroughly studied the reports on the negotiations in Vladivostok and I am convinced that the representatives of the USA were talking there only about ballistic missiles, not the cruise ones.

I understand that L.I. Brezhnev does not agree with such an interpretation of the

Vladivostok negotiations. If so, one has to ness relations but precisely good friendly Brezhnev, that our policy is directed to mainrecognize the disagreements between us on ones. I think, you, yourself, made such a taining good and, even more than that, - as this question, the disagreements in interpre- conclusion from L.I. Brezhnev's speeches, we already mentioned - friendly relations tations.

in particular after your speech in Charles- with the USA. Secretary of State Vance told me about ton.

In your statement you touched upon your conversation with him on these mat- Incidentally, I would like to linger a bit some concrete problems. You pointed at the ters yesterday and I intend to give you an on some of your speeches, bearing in mind need to take into account the differences in account of our concrete proposals a little bit the importance of this question. You made social and economic systems of our counlater.

some statements where you touched upon tries. Actually, these differences exist, and So, I set forth my views on the ques- mutual relations with the Soviet Union. In they will exist. It is important, however, that tions of developing the relations with the some of these speeches you emphasized the despite the existing differences between us Soviet Union and I would like to empha- importance of mutual understanding and co- we should continue to develop our mutual size once again the great importance that I operation with the Soviet Union. In some relations. We again emphasize that it would

ach to our mutual relations with the So- others you just mentioned the Soviet Union be in the interests of bo our peoples and viet Union. I would like to assure you that without definite statements. And yet in some of the whole world. Precisely all that we personally as well as as President of the others you criticized the Soviet Union, in call the policy of peaceful co-existence, the USA that I will sincerely strive to overcome your own way, but I repeat, criticized it. policy of resolving controversial issues by all existing disagreements between us. I Sometimes you did it indirectly but it was peaceful means, regardless the differences hope that in the course of a few months we

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not difficult to guess to whom you addressed in economic and social systems and the difwill be able to achieve such progress in our these criticisms, whom you had in mind. ferences in ideology. mutual relations, which would justify a And so we ponder which of these state- You correctly pointed out the impormeeting between myself and L.I. Brezhnev. ments reflect your true policy as the Presi- tance of trade-economic relations. It is also I would very much like him to visit the USA dent of the USA, the policy of the USA as a true that they are essential for the developwhere we would be able to discuss with him state. We would like to think that it is those ment of political relations. It would be very for two-three days here, in Washington, or, statements, in which the need of coopera- good if all the obstacles on the path of the even better, in Camp David, all the ques- tion was emphasized, the necessity of main- development trade-economic relations betions which interest both of us.

taining good relations with the Soviet Union tween our countries were removed. But it Before that, however, I would like us for the interests of both of our countries, for were not we who created these obstacles. together to have made such progress in solv- the interests of the whole world.

They have been created on this side of the ing the problems of particular importance But this is our desire too[:] however, Atlantic ocean. All this is well known. to us, that would demonstrate to the whole only you can interpret your own statements. We, certainly, have noted some optiworld our mutual aspiration consistently to And that is why we would like you to do it mistic signals that appeared in the statements improve our relations. I spoke about it pub- now. I would like to bring to Moscow a of some American politicians that the situalicly and I use this opportunity to express definite answer on the question of how you, tion can change for the better in the near my appreciation to L.I. Brezhnev for his yourself, imagine the prospects for devel- future. We would like for this to happen. public reaction to my speech in Charleston. opment of relations with the Soviet Union. We believe that it would be in the interests

The American people sincerely strives There is hardly a need for a lengthy of both countries to establish normal tradefor cooperation and friendship with the So- discussion about the significance of these economic links, to remove all the obstacles viet Union. I hope that I, as the political relations for the peoples of our countries as on this path, especially because from the leader of our country, and L.I. Brezhnev, as well as for the whole world. It is self-evi- very beginning they were artificial. But in the political leader of the Soviet Union, will dent that these relations have a great sig- general, such relations are for our mutual not create obstacles on the path which our nificance. If there are good relations and benefits. We are convinced that it is both peoples so sincerely strive to follow. And I mutual understanding between us or, even countries that will benefit from trade and hope that our meeting today will be useful better, friendly relations, then there will be the development of economic links between and constructive in this respect.

peace in the world, there won't be another them. A.A. GROMYKO. I attentively lis- world war. If, however, these relations will You touched upon the issue of “human tened to your statement in which a whole go awry, if somebody will ruin these rela- rights." We must say that when you or other specter of questions between our countries tions, then a world tragedy will occur. American politicians begin to talk about has been touched upon. On my part I would The basic thing in this matter is the "human rights," we, in the Soviet Union, in like to express my opinion on the questions question of what will be the policy of the the Soviet leadership, have a kind of autoyou have touched upon and maybe on some USA government toward the Soviet Union matic conditional reflex: we expect that others.

and, consequently, what will be the policy some shots will be made towards the Soviet First of all, I would like to emphasize of the Soviet Union toward the USA. For Union, of course without any grounds. Why that the entire Soviet leadership, L.I. ourselves, for the Soviet Union we have is it being done? We do not believe that one Brezhnev personally, and all our people sin- been giving and can give a clear answer right person in the world or even a group of cerely aspire to maintain good friendly re- now. I am authorized to declare on behalf people can claim the unique right to make lations with the USA, not just normal busi- of all our leadership, on behalf of L.I. judgments about “human rights." Each state

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same.

has to decide these questions independently. hopes that other participants will do the And so it is being done.

If we would like to make a list of all Now, about the situation in the South violations of human rights in the USA or, of Africa. Our policy for this region is say in England, Italy, the FRG, and in many simple. We do not have any military bases, other countries, it would be a long and im- and no military personnel in this region. If pressive list. We are not doing it, however, one feels the influence of our ideology there because we do not want to interfere in other then who in the world can build the barriers people's affairs. But we will never allow against the dissemination of any ideology? others to interfere in our affairs.

The only thing we want there is that all the You mentioned someone called problems should be solved by the majority Shcharansky. Nobody knows him at all ex- of population, by the peoples themselves. cept, maybe, doctors and some representa- The majority of population there are Blacks, tives of authorities who oversee the order so the power belongs to them, not to the in our country. Such questions have an in- White racists. We are against any delays in finitesimal significance. Certainly, you, Mr. the transition of power. Such is, in short, our President, have a right to act as you believe position in regard to Namibia, Zimbabwe, is needed, but speaking impartially such South Africa. Incidentally, to the question position of yours on this question can only of the SAR I will come back in connection harm the climate of our relations. Besides, with the problem of non-proliferation of we think that the gain you get, acting in a

nuclear weapons. such a way, is enormously disproportionate Now about Angola. We hailed the birth to your political loss.

of this new independent African state. Not You touched upon the so-called Jew- so long ago we met A[gostinho). Neto in ish question. The Soviet Union during the Moscow, on the highest level, with the parwar saved millions of Jews. These are ticipation of L.I. Brezhnev. We did not find known facts. This is an open book. Right that Angola took a hostile position in regard after the war we together, or to be more pre

to the USA. As for the Cuban troops in cise, at the same time as the USA we intro- Angola, it is the business of Angola and duced in the UN the proposal on the cre- Cuba and I am not authorized to discuss this ation of an independent Jewish state. Since question. It would be right, however, to ask then we have always supported the right of in this regard: whose personnel supports the Israel to independent state existence. We anti-Angolan movement, the troops that are are trying to convince the Arabs, including based in Zaire and invade Angola? Whose the most extremist groups, to recognize Is- foreign troops acted in Angola even before rael as an independent state, i.e. to recog- the arrival there of the Cuban troops. The nize the reality. But at the same time we are answers to these questions are clear. blamed that we act wrongly in regard to Jew

Now about the Middle East. This is a ish question. In general, the question of large topic. I do not think we should spend emigration from the Soviet Union of any a lot of time at your place discussing it. nationality, whether the Russians, the Ukrai- More so since we already had an exchange nians, the Armenians, the Georgians, the of opinions on this question with the SecreJews or others, is our domestic problem, tary Vance. And we have found out that which is to be resolved in accordance with there are some identical elements in our pothe laws of our country. If you use the facts sitions. We also handed over some inforthen you probably know that dozens of thou- mation to the American side which was not sands of Jews have left the Soviet Union known to you. over the past several years.

We are strongly convinced that if IsWith satisfaction I have heard your rael had taken a more sober position and had words that you expect positive results from accepted the idea of a small state for the Palthe Belgrade Conference, the results the estinian Arabs, the PLO would have be spirit of the Helsinki agreement. It would ready to officially declare its recognition of be good if Belgrade would become a con- Israel as an independent sovereign state in structive forum instead of a place of mutual the Middle East. In other words, it would accusations, some kind of a box of com- have recognized the reality. But this is explaints. The Soviet Union is ready to play actly what Israel is striving for. Now it has in Belgrade its own constructive role and more chances than ever to achieve it. Of

course I am saying this not on behalf of Palestinians. They did not authorize us to make any statements. But we are saying this on the basis of knowing their position, and on the basis of our recent conversations with (PLO chairman Yasser] Arafat in Moscow.

So, is it really not possible to find a solution of the issue who must be the first to take a step forward, Israel or the Palestinians? This is exactly what the diplomacy is for: to solve such problems. It is possible, for example, to find a solution under which such a recognition of the Palestinian state by Israel and Israel by the Palestinians would be declared by both sides simultaneously

We share the opinion of Secretary Vance that peace in the Middle East should mean not only an armistice but also the establishment of normal relations between two sides.

So let us together strive for the convocation of the Geneva Conference on the Middle East already this year. An all Arab delegation could take part in this Conference, if the Arabs themselves would agree with that. But in any case the Palestinians, the PLO must be represented in Geneva. Let us try to do it. We are ready to make every effort possible in this direction.

Whether you want it or not, the lack of a settlement in the Middle East throws a shadow on our mutual relations. We think that removing this shadow would serve the interests of both of us.

Maybe you supply arms to the Middle East with happiness, we know to whom these arms go, and to many other countries. We do it without any particular joy. If a really stable peace would be established in the Middle East we would not supply the arms there, if, of course, the others would not do it. It would be the ideal situation for which one should strive.

A few words about Korea. You said that you would be ready to cut the American troops deployed in the South Korea. But as it is known the USA intends to keep its bases there at the same time. I think you, yourself, do not believe that we are going to applaud such a decision, although, certainly, such a step has some significance. All the same, this seat of tension would continue to exist among many others.

Now about China. From the point of view of the international situation and also of the broad interests of the USA and, of

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