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Sources for the Foreign Relations Series
The Foreign Relations statute requires that the published record in the Foreign Relations series include all records needed to provide comprehensive documentation on major U.S. foreign policy decisions and significant U.S. diplomatic activity. It further requires that government agencies, departments, and other entities of the U.S. Government engaged in foreign policy formulation, execution, or support cooperate with the Department of State Historian by providing full and complete access to records pertinent to foreign policy decisions and actions and by providing copies of selected records. Many of the sources consulted in the preparation of this volume have been declassified and are available for review at the National Archives and Records Administration.
The editors of the Foreign Relations series have complete access to all the retired records and papers of the Department of State: the central files of the Department; the special decentralized files (“lot files") of the Department at the bureau, office, and division levels; the files of the Department's Executive Secretariat, which contain the records of international conferences and high-level official visits, correspondence with foreign leaders by the President and Secretary of State, and memoranda of conversations between the President and Secretary of State and foreign officials; and the files of overseas diplomatic posts. All the Department's indexed central files through July 1973 have been permanently transferred to the National Archives and Records Administration at College Park, Maryland (Archives II). Many of the Department's decentralized office (or lot) files covering the 1969–1976 period, which the National Archives deems worthy of permanent retention, have been transferred or are in the process of being transferred from the Department's custody to Archives II.
The editors of the Foreign Relations series also have full access to the papers of President Nixon and other White House foreign policy records, including tape recordings of conversations with key U.S. and foreign officials. Presidential papers maintained and preserved at the Presidential libraries and the Nixon Presidential Materials Project at Archives II include some of the most significant foreign affairs-related documentation from the Department of State and other Federal agencies including the National Security Council, the Central Intelligence Agency, the Department of Defense, and the Joint Chiefs of Staff.
Access to the Nixon White House tape recordings is governed by the terms of the Presidential Recordings and Materials Preservation Act (P.L. 93–526; 88 Stat. 1695) and an access agreement with the Office of
Presidential Libraries of the National Archives and Records Administration and the Nixon Estate. In February 1971 President Nixon initiated a voice activated taping system in the Oval Office of the White House and, subsequently, in the President's Office in the Executive Office Building, Camp David, the Cabinet Room, and White House and Camp David telephones. The audiotapes include conversations of President Nixon with his Assistant for National Security Affairs Henry Kissinger, other White House aides, Secretary of State Rogers, other Cabinet officers, members of Congress, and key foreign officials. The clarity of the voices on the tape recordings is often very poor, but the editors make every effort to try to verify the accuracy of the conversations. Readers are urged to consult the recordings for a full appreciation of those aspects of the discussions that cannot be fully captured in a transcription, such as the speakers' inflections and emphases that may convey nuances of meaning, as well as the larger context of the discussion.
Research for this volume was completed through special access to restricted documents at the Nixon Presidential Materials Project. While all the material printed in this volume has been declassified, some of it is extracted from still-classified documents. The Nixon Presidential Materials Staff is processing and declassifying many of the documents used in this volume, but they may not be available in their entirety at the time of publication. Sources for Foreign Relations, 1969–1976, Volume XI
In preparing this volume, the editor made extensive use of Presidential papers and other White House records at the Nixon Presidential Materials Project, which proved to be the richest collection bearing on the Nixon administration's management of the crisis in South Asia. The bulk of the foreign policy records at the Nixon Project are in the National Security Council Files. Within the National Security Council Files, the Country Files, the files created for the Indo-Pak crisis, the Backchannel Files, the Kissinger Office Files, and the President's Daily Briefing Files proved to be of particular value. The Backchannel Files were especially important as containing the private channel of communication between Kissinger and Ambassador Farland in Pakistan. The Subject Files were also valuable and include memoranda from Kissinger to Nixon as well as memoranda of conversation involving Kissinger and the President. The President's Trip Files contain the important memoranda of Kissinger's conversations with Soviet Ambassador Anatoly Dobrynin. The National Security Council Institutional Files (H-Files) are a fundamental source for the policy process and for crisis management. The White House Special Files contain the President's Office Files and a number of important Staff Member and Office Files. The editor also made use of the White House tape recordings, which are of central importance to an understanding of the management of the crisis by Nixon and Kissinger. Extensive extracts from the tape recordings are printed in editorial notes in the volume and the full transcripts will be published in Foreign Relations, 1969–1976, volume E-7, Documents on South Asia, 1969–1972.
Second in importance to the records in the Nixon Presidential Materials Project are the records of the Department of State. The Department's Central Files contain cable traffic that illuminated the crisis as it developed and was the channel for instructions dealing with such issues as assistance for the Bengali refugees that flooded into India from East Pakistan and contacts with representatives of the Awami League. The lot files of the Department were also important, particularly the files of Assistant Secretary of State Joseph Sisco that contain the only record found of a meeting of the NSC crisis management group, the Washington Special Actions Group.
The Kissinger Papers at the Library of Congress in large measure replicate documentation found in other collections. In the Geopolitical File, the file on Memoranda to the President, and the Presidential File, the editor did find some important documentation unique to the collection. The collection also contains the records of Kissinger's telephone conversations. Boxes 359–375 contain a chronological file of transcripts of conversations covering the period 1969–1972. Boxes 394–395 comprise the Dobrynin file of telephone conversations, including Kissinger's conversations with Ambassador Dobrynin and Chargé Vorontsov. Boxes 396–397 contain transcripts of conversations recorded at Kissinger's residence. The entire collection is invaluable for the light it sheds not only on the crisis in South Asia but also on the full range of foreign policy issues dealt with by the Nixon administration. Copies of the Kissinger telephone conversations are now open at the National Archives and are part of the Nixon Presidential Materials.
The editor also had access to the files of the Department of Defense and the Central Intelligence Agency. The files of the Office of the Secretary of Defense and the Office of the Assistant Secretary of Defense for International Security Affairs were valuable for the issue of military assistance to India and Pakistan. The files of the Central Intelligence Agency, particularly the NIC Registry of NIE and SNIE Files and the DCI (Helms) Files, were essential for the intelligence reports and assessments on which the Nixon administration based its policy judgments.
Almost all of this documentation has been made available for use in the Foreign Relations series thanks to the consent of the agencies mentioned, the assistance of their staffs, and especially the cooperation and support of the National Archives and Records Administration. In addition, John H. Taylor, Executive Director of the Richard Nixon Library & Birthplace Foundation, facilitated access to relevant tape recordings of the Nixon White House.
The following list identifies the particular files and collections used in the preparation of this volume. The declassification and transfer to the National Archives of the Department of State records is in process, and many of these records are already available for public review at the National Archives.
Department of State
Central Files. See National Archives and Records Administration below.
Lot Files. For other lot files already transferred to the National Archives and Records Administration at College Park, Maryland, Record Group 59, see National Archives and Records Administration below.
INR/IL Historical Files
Files of the Office of Intelligence Coordination, containing records from the 1940s through the 1970s, maintained by the Office of Intelligence Liaison, Bureau of Intelligence and Research
National Archives and Records Administration, College Park, Maryland
Record Group 59, Records of the Department of State
AGR 15 PAK: food supply, Pakistan
tions, Pakistan-United States
E 8 PAK: economic conditions, Pakistan
International Narcotics Affairs
NEA Files: Lot 73 D 69
Subject files of Assistant Secretary of State Joseph Sisco for 1970–1971, maintained by the Bureau of Near Eastern and South Asian Affairs