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-We think it important that past agreements, whether alliances or other types of obligations, designed to safeguard peace and security should be enhanced by any additional agreement between ourselves relating specifically to the prevention of nuclear warfare;
-We regard the considerations of paragraph II of the U.S. draft important even though the wording can be modified to meet some of the objections raised by Ambassador Dobrynin.
3. Within this framework the President is prepared to continue the exchanges in the confidential channel with the objective of developing a mutually satisfactory text. Negotiations in this channel are always conducted with a view to reaching some agreement.
The President's Assistant for National Security Affairs Henry A. Kissinger traveled to Munich, Moscow, London, and Paris September 9-15, 1972. In Munich, Kissinger attended the Olympic games and met with German leaders on September 10 to discuss the Conference on Security and Cooperation in Europe and the upcoming German elections. The record of conversation is printed in Foreign Relations, 1969–1976, volume XL, Germany, 1969–1972, Document 372.
Kissinger then proceeded to Moscow, where he met with Soviet General Secretary Leonid I. Brezhnev, Minister of Foreign Affairs A.A. Gromyko, and Ambassador Anatoly Dobrynin. Planning for Kissinger's visit began even prior to the Moscow Summit. During his secret pre-Summit trip to Moscow in April 1972, Kissinger indicated that he might return again in September. On April 23, Kissinger suggested to Gromyko that "we then continue discussions during the summer. Conceivably, I could come back here in September, on which occasion we could reach agreement on an overall solution [in the Middle East)." (Ibid., volume XIV, Soviet Union, October 1971-May 1972, Document 150)
Dobrynin recalled from his July visit to San Clemente what President Nixon's goals were for Kissinger's September trip: "Work (on the next summit] could start, Nixon said, in September with a visit to Moscow by Kissinger, and this was Nixon's immediate agenda: Europe presented no major difficulties, and he agreed to an East-West conference on European security, which was sought by many European countries and supported by Moscow. Confident that the SALT treaty would be ratified, he suggested we start exchanging ideas through our private channel on the second stage. The United States was also sounding out its allies on limiting conventional weapons. The trade and economic discussions begun in Moscow should be continued because they showed promise, he said, but they might encounter difficulties in the Congress. He also wanted to consider further joint steps on the Middle East and Vietnam, the latter especially because of its paramount importance in view of the election campaign just starting." (Dobrynin, In Confidence, page 258) Kissinger, during his August 11 conversation with Dobrynin at the Soviet Embassy, indicated that a lend-lease agreement and economic issues would be a high priority during the September negotiations to the point that Under Secretary of Commerce James Lynn was prepared to join him in Moscow (see Document 25).
Kissinger noted in his memoirs that he arrived in London on September 14 in order to brief Prime Minister Edward Heath about his meetings with the Soviets. It was announced that Kissinger would then proceed to Paris where he would brief President Georges Pompidou. “But habits of secrecy are hard to break. In order to gain the six hours needed for meeting Le Duc Tho I flew to Paris by a small plane from a British military airport early in the morning of September 15. To mask my movements, Do Not Disturb signs were left on the doors of our suites at Claridge's Hotel, and the Presidential plane remained at Heathrow until it flew off to Paris later in the day.” (Kissinger, White House Years, pages 1331-1332)
Memorandum of Conversation?
Moscow, September 11, 1972, 11 a.m.-3 p.m.
Leonid I. Brezhnev, Secretary General, CCP
The meeting began with a friendly and vigorous greeting by Brezhnev and his party who were standing behind the table on the side where the Americans were supposed to sit. In responding to Dr. Kissinger's compliments concerning Brezhnev's negotiating skill, the Secre
Source: National Archives, Nixon Presidential Materials, NSC Files, Kissinger Office Files, Box 74, Country Files—Europe-USSR, Moscow Trip-Economic Talks, Henry A. Kissinger. Top Secret; Sensitive. The meeting took place in a meeting room near Brezhnev's office in the Kremlin. All brackets except those that indicate an omission are in the original. Kissinger summarized the meeting in message Hakto 12 to Haig, September 11. Haig summarized Kissinger's message in a memorandum to Nixon the same day. With regard to the “atmospherics of the meeting,” Haig wrote Nixon, “Henry reports that the general atmosphere so far has been excellent and that Brezhnev clearly remains committed to his U.S. policy line. Brezhnev was relaxed and said he had just had a good trip around the country." (Both ibid., Box 24, HAK Trip Files, HAK's Germany, Moscow, London, Paris Trip, Sep. 9–15, 1972, HAKTO 1–35)
tary General commented that he wanted to get Dr. Kissinger to a state where he simply nodded his head without having heard what Brezhnev said. After several crisp but warm exchanges, the two sides sat down.
Kissinger began the meeting by handing over pictures of his ride with Ambassador Dobrynin in the hydrofoil boat which had been a gift to President Nixon on the occasion of his visit to the Soviet Union.
Brezhnev (Observing pictures of Dr. Kissinger and Ambassador Dobrynin on the hydrofoil): Has President Nixon ridden on the new hydrofoil? I don't see President Nixon on it.
Kissinger: Last Friday he took a group of his friends out.
Kissinger: We hope that by the time the General Secretary comes to the United States you will be able to have a ride in it.
Brezhnev: That would not be a bad idea and you could fill me with meat pies.
Kissinger: I will bring some of my own but the ones you have here are really better.
(Brezhnev appeared to be reading letter from the President concerning Hydrofoil, although it is in English.)
Brezhnev: I would like to understand what you would like to discuss first. I would invite Manzhulo to be present for illumination on trade issues if you wish to discuss them. But I also would be glad to start with any question.
Kissinger: I think it is a good idea to begin with economics. Then Secretary Lynn and whomever you designate can leave and come back later after they have held discussions. In that way we can make progress because I am here to achieve whatever agreement we can.
Brezhnev: Certainly. I am certainly agreeable to that. But first I want to greet you. You have been given a most responsible mission in following up on problems pursuant to what President Nixon and I discussed when he visited here. On my part, I will make every effort to be responsive to the important task that has been entrusted to us. It is a most important mission. This is in accordance with what Ambassador Dobrynin had discussed with you in Washington.
Let me, before we turn to specific matters, say a few words. Time has elapsed since our last talk with President Nixon and members of his party. A good deal of work went into that visit and the agreements signed were of momentous significance. These actions were important indicies of our relationship. Public opinion in the Soviet Union accepted them, both the Communist party and the people and the general public, and this includes public opinion throughout the world. China of course is an exception and that is no news. They tried to distort the visit. As we see it, public opinion in the United States for the most part also took a positive attitude. There does exist hope that the U.S.-Soviet relationship will take a positive course. Although there are shades of differences, the general view is favorable, with the exception of the few of those who are in opposition. I believe we are moving on a constructive course. I hope we won't disappoint all those who hope for favorable developments toward peace and tranquility in the world. I have said it before but I wanted to repeat it. I hope that we will have frank and forthright discussions and that they will be based on complete confidence in each other.
Kissinger: Your remarks reflect the sentiments of the President. Improving relations between our two countries is a central tenet in our foreign policy. Our two countries must maintain peace, not just to remove crises, but to improve our basic relations for peace in the world. We have made a fundamental decision, this Administration has, that our relations affect the peace in the world. They affect confidence and constructive relations in the world. We have conducted our relation with you on the basis of confidence and so have you. We do not seek little advantages in particular areas. We have shown restraint towards each other. You have done so and so have we. And we have made preliminary steps for advances here. When you come to the United States next year, we may be able to achieve advances as big as those that were made at the Summit. Meanwhile, we will make progress on a number of topics. We will proceed with an attitude of frankness, candor and a desire for constructive relations that has been set by the President. In this spirit we will conduct ourselves.
(Brezhnev reads notes while HAK's comments are being translated. Has glasses on and marks some of the notes before him.)
Brezhnev: I am pleased to hear that. We too feel that we should proceed in that framework. Those who persist in negative speculations in the world have existed for a long time and will continue to exist. I have on occasion had to call to the attention of President Nixon and yourself anti-Soviet propaganda in the United States. It is not conducive to good relations or in bringing about greater understanding by the U.S. public toward the Soviet Union. Even we, and we perhaps are stauncher in this respect, are disenchanted at how things go on propaganda, but we hope our talks will be stronger than any speculation and that the results will be highly esteemed by history. If we are prone to minor irritants, we can never agree on any point.
Kissinger: We have done and hope to do more to steer public opinion more directly toward that which encourages constructive rela