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Digital Archive International History Declassified

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  • June 20, 1967

    On Soviet Policy following the Israeli Aggression in the Middle East

    Polish document describing the speech given by Soviet Leader Leonid Brezhnev to the Plenum of the Central Committee of the Communist Party of the Soviet Union (CC CPSU) on the actions undertaken by the Soviet leadership before and during the 1967 Arab-Israeli war. Brezhnev tells the CC CPSU plenum that the Arab struggle in the Middle East has both a class struggle and a national liberation dimension. Brezhnev blames Israeli aggression for the start of the war and Arab blunders and low morale for the humiliating defeat of the UAR forces. Given the success of the Israeli Defense Forces, the Soviets were forced to consider diplomatic and political methods for saving the Arab leadership. When Israeli forces did not stop their aggression against Syria, threatening to overrun the Syrian capital of Damascus, Brezhnev claims tells the CC CPSU that Soviet leadership warned the Americans that the Soviet Army would have to intervene and, at the same time, threatened the Israeli that any further actions would result in Soviet involvement in the war. Brezhnev claims that, since the war ended just hours after the Soviets had made their threats, the imperialist powers acquiesced to Soviet demands. This documents is a translation of the version the Soviet leadership sent to the United Polish Workers’ Party for the information of the Polish leadership.

  • June 20, 1967

    On Soviet Policy following the Israeli Aggression in the Middle East

    East German Document describing the speech by Soviet Leader Leonid Brezhnev to the Plenum of the Central Committee of the Communist Party of the Soviet Union (CC CPSU) on the actions undertaken by the Soviet leadership before and during the 1967 Arab-Israeli war. Brezhnev tells the CC CPSU plenum that the Arab struggle in the Middle East has both a class struggle and a national liberation dimension. Brezhnev blames Israeli aggression for the start of the war and Arab blunders and low morale for the humiliating defeat of the UAR forces. Given the success of the Israeli Defense Forces, the Soviets were forced to consider diplomatic and political methods for saving the Arab leadership. When Israeli forces did not stop their aggression against Syria, threatening to overrun the Syrian capital of Damascus, Brezhnev claims tells the CC CPSU that Soviet leadership warned the Americans that the Soviet Army would have to intervene and, at the same time, threatened the Israeli that any further actions would result in Soviet involvement in the war. Brezhnev claims that, since the war ended just hours after the Soviets had made their threats, the imperialist powers acquiesced to Soviet demands. This German translation of Brezhnev's speech was circulated to the SED leadership.

  • July 11, 1967

    Polish Record of Meeting of Soviet-bloc leaders (and Tito) in Budapest (excerpts)

    Soviet-bloc leaders discuss fallout of the Six Day War on the Arab countries. The focus particularly on the critical need to support the "progressive" Nasser regime. There is some debate over whether more military aid to the Arabs is necessary or wasteful. The leaders make it clear that they support the existence of the State of Israel and want to avoid getting dragged into a wider Middle East War. The idea of UAR recognition of Israel in exchange for the right of return is floated. Kosygin also gives a summary of his meeting with Johnson in New York.

  • November 09, 1967

    Polish Record of Meeting of Soviet-bloc leaders (and Tito) in Moscow

    Soviet bloc leaders discuss current UN resolutions being devised to deal with the Middle East crisis and unmask U.S. imperialism at work. They talk about the US's desire to forces Nasser out. They also discuss internal Israeli politics, with dovish president Eshkol pitted against hawkish Defense Minister Dayan. They agree that this may be the best chance to make the Arabs realize that a political solution, not a military one, is necessary to solve the Middle East crisis. Tito pushes for a common resolution of all socialist countries, not just the USSR.

  • January 04, 1968

    Report by the Bulgarian Foreign Minister on the Ministerial Meeting in Warsaw on the Situation in the Middle East, 19-21 December 1967

    Ivan Bashev presents a report on the CPSU-organized meeting in Warsaw, where Eastern European government officials exchanged views on the situation in the Middle East. Among the discussed topics were the Arab-Israeli conflict, the Yemeni Civil War, and recent developments in Iraq.

  • 1969

    The Suspension of the Baghdad Pact and the Iraqi-Egyptian Rapprochement

    Report on the British Foreign Secretary's visit to the Middle East and the suspension of the Baghdad Pact.

  • January 24, 1969

    Minutes of Todor Zhivkov – Indira Gandhi Meeting, Delhi

    The two leaders talk about Vietnam, the Arab-Israeli conflict, and the situation in Europe.

  • January 30, 1969

    NSC Interdepartmental Group for Near East and South Asia, 'Basic US Interests In the Middle East'

    The paper provides an overview of American policy in the Middle East, including main interests and their importance, the Soviet Union's influence in the Middle East, and threats to NATO.

  • February 03, 1969

    Memorandum for the President [Richard Nixon] from Henry A. Kissinger, 'The Middle East--Some Policy Considerations'

    Kissinger provides Nixon with an overview of achieving a general political settlement in the Arab-Israeli conflict, and different international frameworks for this goal.

  • March 08, 1969

    Memorandum for the President from Henry A. Kissinger, 'Next Steps on the Middle East'

    Kissinger details a plan to hold separate talks with the Soviet Union, France, and Great Britain with the aim of bringing them closer to the US position and press them to share responsibility for success.

  • March 17, 1969

    Memorandum of Converrsation between President Johnson and Israeli Foreign Minister Eban

    President Johnson and Israeli Foreign Minister Eban discuss US policy in the Middle East, specifically the possibility of peace between Israel and Arab countries, and the Soviet and French position on the matter. The United States and Israel plan to proceed in upcoming discussions in close cooperation.

  • March 21, 1969

    National Security Study Memorandum 33, 'Contingency Planning for the Middle East'

    Instructions to prepare a number of studies for various contingencies in the Middle East, including renewed Arab-Israeli conflict, crises related to Jordan, and US-Soviet confrontation.

  • April 25, 1969

    National Security Council Meeting, Friday April 25, 1969, 10:00-11:15 A.M.

    The National Security Council discusses US considerations of Middle East negotiations, including the Soviet role in the Middle East and their positions on negotiations, repatriation and settlement, and the possibility of negotiating small pieces of an agreement as opposed to direct negotiations.

  • July 21, 1969

    Report on Moscow Talks on Middle East, July 14-18, 1969

    Reflections on Sisco's meetings with Soviet officials. Siscco concludes that the Soviets want bilateral talks to continue and plan to slowly chip away at the US position, but see the current situation as manageable. Sisco also provides some recommendations for US strategy over the following months.

  • September 03, 1969

    Minutes of Conversation between the Shah and Nicolae Ceaușescu, Teheran

    The Shah Mohammad Reza Pahlavi spoke with Nicolae Ceaușescu regarding President Nixon's speech in which he talks about disengaging the US from issues that do not concern the US, but also not abandoning allies. The Shah recalled that he told President Nixon long ago to withdraw from Vietnam. The Arab-Israeli conflict was also discussed.

  • September 10, 1969

    The Next Step in the Middle East - NSC Meeting Thursday, September 11

    Kissinger analyzes major considerations in Middle East negotiations in advance of the NSC meeting, concluding that their only reasonable choice at the moment is to press Israel to accept the settlement terms the US develops.

  • October 10, 1969

    Next Steps on the Middle East

    Sisco references a memorandum outlining the overall strategy for US discussions with the Soviet Union on the Middle East. He intendeds that the deal they plan to offer will focus on the borders with the UAR and Jordan.

  • October 25, 1969

    Status of US-Soviet Talks

    Sisco discusses a working paper he is negotiating with the Soviet Union, making it clear that the US is not prepared to compromise on the first four points of the agreement. He plans to first inform the UAR of his work with the Soviets, then the Israelis.

  • October 27, 1969

    Memorandum for Dr. Kissinger: Go Ahead with Dobrynin Tomorrow?

    Saunders gives the pros and cons of Sisco proceeding with a meeting he plans to have with Dobrynin to discuss their working paper. Saunders believes that Moscow is unlikely to accept this move as a concession, and that a settlement is the American's main chance to turn the tide in favor of them in the Middle East.

  • December 04, 1969

    Sisco Telcon with Kissinger - Dec. 4, 1969

    A telcon from Joseph Siscco in which he discusses the opinions of top government officials in regards to Middle East negotiations.