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Digital Archive International History Declassified

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  • October 25, 1962

    Cable from Dutch Embassy, Washington (Van Roijen), 25 October 1962

    Van Roijen relates in this cable the details of a meeting with the US State Department's Bureau of Western European Affairs. With regards to Cuba, the Soviets assured the United States that they would not supply Cuba with offensive military weapons and even detailed the ranges of the missiles shipped. The construction of the bases was done in such haste that no attempt to conceal them was made, indicating the construction was on a time limit. These along with several other factors (the 1961 Berlin crisis, internal pressure within the Soviet Union) had convinced the administration that the Soviets had the fixed determination to confront the US.

  • October 25, 1962

    Minutes of the Council of Ministers, The Hague, 25 October 1962

    A record of the meeting of the Dutch Council of Ministers at The Hague. The Prime Minister talks of the need to give a Dutch standpoint to the crisis, which has yet to be delivered. Minister of Home Affairs suggests that whatever action the United States adopts, the Dutch should comply for the sake of Western solidarity. The question of NATO is brought up, specifically if it should be included in an official Dutch position on Cuba.

  • October 26, 1962

    Cable from Dutch Foreign Minister Joseph Luns, The Hague, to Dutch Embassy, London, 26 October 1962

    This cable from Foreign Minister Luns refers to a personal letter received from British Foreign Minister Lord Home, regarding the stance of the United Kingdom in the Cuban Missile Crisis. The letter is one encouraging support to the United States at the UN Security Council, and that such a crisis would have repurcussions not only for the Caribbean but for Europe as well. Luns later sent a reply of thanks, indicating continuing solidarity with the Western World and promises to keep in closer touch with the British.

  • October 26, 1962

    Cable from Dutch Embassy, Washington (Van Roijen), 26 October 1962

    Van Roijen relates the current situation in Washington and the American view on the crisis. The removal of the missiles was a non-negotiable issue for the Americans, as Secretary of State Dean Rusk declared their removal was absolutely essential. In the mind of American statesmen, the missiles in Cuba was directly connected to the 1961 Berlin crisis, as it was a new Soviet technique. The hurried construction of the bases was reported to go on, meaning time is of the utmost essence. The Americans were not above considering force to resolve the crisis, although this was relegated to a worst-case scenario.

  • October 27, 1962

    Cable from Dutch Embassy, Washington (Van Roijen), 27 October 1962

    Van Roijen relates that the U.S. State Department has great interest in learning about the mood in Cuba, particularly Havana. Van Roijen asks the Minister of Foreign Affairs to forward all of Boissevain's correspondences including his personal letters to him.

  • October 27, 1962

    Cable from Dutch Embassy, Washington (Van Roijen), 27 October 1962

    Van Roijen writes again about the current situation in Washington just as the Cuban Missile Crisis is drawing to a close. The White House issued a statement regarding a proposal by Khrushchev. The statement's tough stance is attributed to Khrushchev's morning message which was completely different in content and tone to the personal message sent to Kennedy. The personal message amounted to admitting humiliating defeat by the Soviets with no mention of withdrawal of the U.S. missiles in Turkey. Van Roijen concludes that Kennedy made the right response to the previously offered Soviet deal, and kept the door open for consultation. The Cuban threat is almost "disappeared."

  • October 29, 1962

    Cable from Dutch Embassy, Havana (Boissevain), 29 October 1962

    Boissevain writes after the conclusion of the crisis the Cuban response to the Tripartite Agreement. Fidel Castro proclaimed that no guarantee would be sufficient until all of the following had ceased: the naval and economic blockade, American aid to anti government forces and espionage, piracy from the United States and Puerto Rico, American military flights over Cuba, and dismantling the U.S. naval base in Guantanamo Bay.

  • October 29, 1962

    Letter from Dutch Embassy, Havana (Boissevain), 29 October 1962

    Boissevain speaks on the domestic situation in Cuba immediately after the end of the Missile Crisis. There are many counterrevolutionary groups who worry that current UN supervision of dismantling of the Soviet missile sites will preclude a U.S.-led invasion of Cuba, and perhaps might be the prelude to a normalizing of relations between Cuba and the United States. Raul Castro gives a speech saying the dismantling of the Soviet missile sites is a run-up to new Cuban demands, especially toward the evacuation of the U.S. Naval Base in Guantanamo. Raul goes on to address his brother Fidel, with assurances unity from the people, and obedience to any orders he issues. This raises the fear of what future demands Fidel may raise in the aftermath of this crisis.

  • October 31, 1962

    Cable from Dutch Embassy, Havana (Boissevain), 31 October 1962

    Boissevain writes about a conversation between Cuban Foreign Minister Raul Roa and Brazilian Ambassador Luis Bastian Pinto. The conversation revolves around Castro's Five Points, and Roa claims they are not aimed at the United States but rather the Soviet Union whose concession to remove the missiles greatly disturbed Castro. The Brazilian Ambassador though the Cubans asked too much, while Roa said these points are negotiable.

  • November 01, 1962

    Cable from Dutch Embassy, Washington (Van Roijen), 1 November 1962

    Dutch Ambassador to the United States J. Herman van Roijen sends a cable on a conversation he had with a member of the U.S. State Department. Firstly, the State Department was pleased to know Indonesian President Sukarno had not pledged support to Cuba during the crisis. Secondly, they hoped to make the point to Sukarno how alliance with the Soviets could not be relied upon, as the Cuban crisis and the Soviet abandonment of India have demonstrated. Thirdly, the Indonesian Ambassador Zain was going to pay six week visit to Jakarta, in an effort to promote U.S. economic support to Indonesia.

  • November 02, 1962

    Cable from Dutch Embassy, Havana (Boissevain), 2 November 1962

    Boissevain writes a cable detailing a meeting between Fidel Castro and UN Secretary General U Thant. Cuba refused any inspection of missile silos, if the Americans did not uphold their pledge to not threaten Cuba with invasion. The Five Points were mentioned as preconditions for peace and Castro pledged Cuba was ready and willing to work towards peace. It appears Castro was aware of Soviet considerations for "global politics" as the reason behind the Soviet withdrawal of missiles.

  • November 02, 1962

    Cable from Dutch Embassy, Washington (Van Roijen), 2 November 1962

    The cable concerns a conversation between Dutch Ambassador to the United States van Roijen and Director Ward P. Allen of the State Department's Bureau of Inter-American Regional Political Affairs, regarding further actions of the Organization of American States (OAS) in the aftermath of the Cuban crisis. Allen made note that he had very little information regarding Cuba and how Cuba would fit into future dealings with the OAS.

  • November 07, 1962

    Cable from Dutch Embassy, Havana (Boissevain), 7 November 1962

    The cable focuses on a report from the German embassy that in several places in Cuba, Soviet weapons are hidden under cement. There is still no progress on the dialogue between Fidel Castro and Anastas Mikoyan.

  • February 08, 1963

    Meeting Minutes, Council of Ministers of the Netherlands, 'NATO Defense Policy'

    These Council of Ministers minutes report on the meeting between Prime Minister De Quay and several of his state secretaries with NATO Secretary-General Stikker, who gave an outline of what was still called a ‘NATO Nuclear Force’. The prime minister responded positively to the plan but indicated the incoming cabinet would have to take a final decision. In the discussion, Minister of Foreign Affairs Luns comments on the attitude of President De Gaulle and points out that NATO and EEC matters ought to be viewed separately.

  • March 15, 1963

    Meeting Minutes, Council of Ministers of the Netherlands, 'Atlantic Nuclear Weapons Plan'

    The Council discusses the danger of the German Federal Republic moving to acquire an independent nuclear force. Minister of Foreign Affairs Luns regrets the American focus on the Germans at the expense of the British. Resistance from the French regarding the plan is not expected.

  • June 05, 1963

    Research Memorandum REU-44 from Thomas L. Hughes to the Secretary, 'Evidence of Satisfaction or Dissatisfaction in European NATO Countries with the Lack of a Share in Ownership or Control of Nuclear Weapons'

    Ambassador Livingston Merchant, who was responsible for the U.S. diplomatic effort to win support for the MLF, asked INR to report on the degree to which non-nuclear European members of NATO were satisfied with their “lack of a share in ownership or control of nuclear weapons.” Based on the evidence, mainly various statements made by leading politicians, diplomats, and policymakers, INR experts concluded that most of the countries surveyed (Italy, Belgium, Netherlands, and Greece) were “relatively satisfied,” while only West Germany was “restive” to the extent that some of its officials were interested in a NATO or European nuclear force.

  • June 07, 1963

    Meeting Minutes, Council of Ministers of the Netherlands, 'NATO Council in Ottawa and Visit to President Kennedy'

    The Council of Ministers report on the NATO council meeting in Ottawa, which Minister of Foreign Affairs Luns and Minister of Defense Visser attended. Luns spoke privately with President Kennedy about the attitude of the French and the possibility of an independent German nuclear arsenal. Visser visited weapons centers in the United States and emphasizes the need to accept American leadership in the defense of Europe.

  • July 09, 1963

    Cable from Dutch Foreign Minister Joseph Luns, The Hague, to Dutch Embassy, Havana (Boissevain), 9 July 1963

    Dutch Foreign Minister Joseph Luns responds to Boissevain's two cables regarding Castro's proposal for an agreement with the United States. Luns is wary of Castro's request to use the Boissevain as the mediator, and urges caution and reserve. He asks Boissevain to keep him updated of any future developments, should Castro make a future proposal.

  • August 02, 1963

    Meeting Minutes, Council of Ministers of the Netherlands, 'Position Regarding NATO Multilateral Nuclear Force'

    Minister of Foreign Affairs Luns gives the new Marijnen cabinet a sketch of the multilateral NATO nuclear force situation so far. He is now of the opinion that the Netherlands should not join a multilateral NATO nuclear force. Minister of Defense De Jong says the Dutch government will need to take a position near the end of the year.

  • October 02, 1963

    Dutch Ministry of Foreign Affairs, 'Paper Regarding Dutch Participation in Talks Regarding a Multilateral Nuclear Force'

    Paper presented at 4 October 1963 meeting of the Dutch Council of Ministers. The paper lays out the reasons for declining to participate in the Multilateral Force so far, but argues that due to changes in the situation – principally a turn on the part of the British toward participation – the Netherlands now should move to participate in the talks. The paper lists the (political) advantages of such participation.