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releases on foreign policy, issued by
the White House and the Department,
and statements and addresses made
by the President and by the Secretary
of State and other officers of the De-
partment, as well as special articles on
various phases of international affairs
and the functions of the Department.
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islative material in the field of inter-
national relations are listed currently.



Secretary Herter's News Conference of July 9



Press release 500 dated July S)

Assistant Secretary Berding: Ladies and gen-
tlemen, we haven't had a press conference for
some time. Possibly because of that fact some of
you asked if today I would state again one rule
that we follow and that relates to direct
quotations.

The rule is the same rule that is used by the
"Wliite House and that is, no direct quotations
until the transcript comes out. As you know, we
make eveiy effort to get the transcript out just as
soon as we possibly can, and, in the meantime,
until it does come out, indirect quotations.

Secretary Herter.

Secretary Herter: Ladies and gentlemen, if I
may I would like to say just a word or two
before the questions begin. As Andy Berding
just told you, this is my first open press confer-
ence, and I hope that it will be one of a regular
series just as soon as I can get my life reg-ulated to
a point where I will be in Washington for any
extended period of time.

During the 21^ months that I have been Secre-
tary, I have had a number of background confer-
ences, one here and four in Geneva. But I feel
very strongly that there should be periodic open
press conferences of this kind, and, as I say, I
hope that the exigencies of the Foreign Ministers
Conference will make it possible for me to be with
you at regular intei-vals in the near future. I say
this because of a profound conviction that any
Secretary of State has a definite responsibility
to make as clear as he is able to the bases on which
our Govermnent acts in the foreign policy field.

"With that rather brief preliminary statement
I would be very glad to answer any questions that
I can.

Q. Mr. Secretary, you are returning noto to
Geneva to resumie your talks with Mr. Grorayho



and the Western Ministers. Would you give ws
at this time your assessment of the possiiility of
reaching any ivorthtvhile agreement on Berlin
there and laying the groundioorh for any simimit
conference, please.

A. I am afraid I couldn't give that to you in
terms of betting odds. We naturally don't know
just what we will find at Geneva from the point
of view of any change or any more explicit in-
terpretation of what at the moment we are not
certain about in the Russian position.

As you know, at midnight of the night on which
we decided to recess, Mr. Gromyko put out a state-
ment in Geneva which indicated that the position
we had taken with respect to the last proposal
made by the Soviets contained certain misinter-
pretations.^ However, our statement that we put
out earlier in the day was based not only on the
wording of the document but on Mr. Khru-
shchev's radio speech which had come over to us
that same afternoon.

Here in Washington I made a report to the
Nation a few days after our return,- and I think
it was on June 28th that Mr. Gromyko saw fit to
answer that particular statement. He took excep-
tion to some of the things I had said, and we have
been studying with great care the wording that he
has used with respect to the exceptions that he has
taken. In particular he objected to an assump-
tion that we had made, and I think we probably
made on the basis of evidence before us, that, if
we entered into any mterim agreement with re-
spect to Berlm and then resumed negotiations at
the expiration of the tenn of that agi-eement, we
would have forfeited our occupation rights. Mr.



^ For background on the Foreign Ministers Meeting
wliicli convened at Geneva on May 11 and recessed on
July 20, see Bulletin of July 6, 1959, p. 3.

' For text, see ibid., July 13, 1959, p. 43.



July 27, J 959



107



Gromyko indicated that was an entirely false as-
sumption and that otherwise they would not have
suggested we would resume negotiations after a
blank period of time. That is a new point on
which we certainly would want some clarification.

The other point, which is very indefinite of
course, is the one concerning their suggestion of
an interim agreement, at first for a year and then
11/^ years. Both Mr. Gromyko and Mr. Kliru-
shchev made the statement that the period of time
was neither a matter of importance or of princi-
ple. This presumably means the period of time
is one for negotiation.

I think that we shall have to explore first of all,
when we get back to Geneva, the meaning of those
statements — if the meanings are as apparently in-
tended by the Eussians, but certainly not borne
out by the earlier documents.

I think there is some possibility we might reach
agreement. I dare say there is some possibility,
but we are not saying it with optimism. I have
never been optimistic, as you know, about reach-
ing a successful negotiation.

With respect to the summit conference, I think
that was made amply clear by the President:
unless we can make progress which would jus-
tify such a conference, that he would not be will-
ing to go.

Q. Mr. Secretary, have you made an effort,
through Ambassador Thompson in Moscow, to
clarify these two points in Mr. Gromykd's state-
ment?

A. No, we haven't.

Q. Mr. Secretary, if the Soviet Union indi-
cates in Geneva, as GromyJco^s statement seems
to indicate, that our rights would not run out
at the end of this period, would we he willing
to settle for an indefinite or an intermediate ex-
tension of those rights laid down, as you put it,
I believe, in your speech — or in the official West-
ern statement — until the reunification of Germany
is brought about?

A. I would hesitate to make any commitment
on that. Actually it is difficult to make a com-
mitment, speaking as only one Foreign Minister
among four. Obviously the first thing, and the
very important thing, is to concert our position
with our allies. Before making any reply as to



what we might do under hypothetical circum-
stances, naturally, we would want to be certain
of the attitude of the allies.

Q. Has there not been in this period any dis-
cussion with our allies on this point?

A. Veiy little discussion, largely because of
other engagements on the part of our allies.
Couve de Murville, the Foreign Minister of
France, went to Madagascar with General de
Gaulle and has been away from Paris. Mr. von
Brentano has been away for some time from Bonn.
The consultations will take place just as soon as
we return to Geneva.

Q. Mr. Secretary, since your return have you
had the opportunity to examine the mounting un-
rest in Latin America, and, if so, would you tell
us if you favor a conference of Latin American
States at this time specifically to deal loith prob-
lems of the Canbbean?

A. The problems of the Caribbean, as you
know, are a very real concern to us. This is a
matter that is going to be discussed tomorrow at
the Organization of American States, and we are
not certain as yet just what procedural questions
will come up or what fonn the discussion will
take.

We are in the process of discussing the overall
picture with some of our South American and
Central American friends, and I would not want
to express a specific view as of the moment. We
will be expressing our views at the OAS confer-
ence tomorrow.^

Q. Mr. Secretary, what is your reaction to the
character of tJie reinarhs which Mr. Khrushchev
mad,e to Governor Harriman?

A. Well, I don't know just how to characterize
them. I think the President did it pretty well
yesterday, and I think we liad better stand on
what he then said.

Q. Mr. Secretary, in the event that your nego-
tiations at Geneva are not successful, is there a
fully agreed Allied plan on countenneasures to
maintain ou/r position in Berlim, if the Soviets
take some unilateral action?

A. That matter has been discussed for a consid-



' See page 136.



108



Depariment of Sfafe Bulletin



erable period of time, and I would say that on the
whole our position is well concerted.

Q. Could you elaborate on that?

A. No, I wouldn't go into details.

Situation in Far East

Q. Mr. Secretary, xoovM you assess the situa-
tion in the Far East, in view of tliese rather men-
acing remarks from Mr. Khrushchev and in the
light of the incidents that have come along in tlie
Taiwan Straits and in Yiet-Nam,?

A. Well, with regard to the remarks made by
Mr. Khrushchev — which I assume are those that
have been attributed to Mr. Harriman in his inter-
view with respect to rockets in Communist
China — that is the fii-st news of anything of that
kind that we have had; so I am in no position to
assess the validity of tliose statements.

With respect to the recent incidents, there is no
question but what shelling has continued on odd
days in Quemoy, that there is always the oppor-
tunity of a breakout again of hostilities in the
Far East. We have to be continually alert. I
think that perhaps the most disturbing tiling with
regard to the Far East that has happened has
been the cut that has been made in military as-
sistance in the Senate in the last 48 hours. It is
not because of the amount of the cut as such, alone,
but it is because it has to be taken in conjunction
with the provision that a very large percentage
of the money remaining must be assigned to
NATO, which means that a disproportionately
large amount has to be cut in the Far Eastern
area. That may present some very serious prob-
lems for us in connection with the nations border-
ing on China, to whom we have been giving mili-
tary assistance and to whom military assistance
is of great importance from the point of view of
maintaining stability.

Q. Mr. Secretary, you spoke of the absence of
the German and the French Foreign Ministers.
Have you been in consultation with Secretary
Lloyd over the last several weeks?

A. No, I haven't been in direct conversation
with him at all. I have talked with the Ambassa-
dor once or twice here.

Q. Has there been contact between the Presi-
dent and Mr. Macmillun?

A. None direct, that I know of.



Q. Mr. Secretary, in view of the lack of these
contacts in the interim, plus a number of other
items, including an interpretation by Mr. Mac-
millan xohich differed from ours on the progress
of the first meeting and the near crisis situation
in some respects between our Government and
France over nuclear armaments — taking these
things cumulatively, how 7nuch are they likely to
militate against a united front amongst the West-
em allies at this second meeting?

A. Well, I assume that any family difficulties
we liave are always taken account of by the Rus-
sians. On the other hand, I can say this — I have
said it before, and I want to repeat it: that in
Geneva the united, front was a genuine front, and
I hope it is a front that will hold and hold effec-
tively. Both the process of consultation and the
process of reaching agi-eement — and I mean
genuine agreement — was very real and to me very
heartening.

Q. In that connection, sir, if I may, does it
mean that the position of our Government is that
we are willing to go to these meetings — / am not
talking about the summit now — on the foreign
ministers'' level, ad infinitum?

A. No, not necessarily. "Ad infinitum" is quite
a long time. (Laughter.) I think that, if we
feel we are making real progress, we will stick
with them. If we feel that we are stymied and
are making no further progress, we would be very
frank about it.

Q. Mr. Secretary, KhrushcJiev is quoted in Life
magazine as having told Mr. Haririman that the
Soviet Union would positively support Com-
munist China in an offensive against Formosa.
This seemed to go beyond his previous statements.
Do you have any knowledge yourself of any
such commitment or any such statement by
Khrushchev?

A. None whatsoever.

Q. Mr. Secretary, independent of tomorrow's
meeting of the OAS, could you give ms some idea
just how serious this Government thinks the sit-
uation in the Caribbean is?

A. Well, I think that the whole problem of tlie
intervention of one country in the internal affairs
of another coimtry we always regard with real
seriousness. It is very difficult to assess how se-
rious any one of the individual reported actions



July 27, 1959



109




Secretary Herter holds his first news conference at the Department of State, July 9, 1959.



may be. However, there has been enough smoke,
at least, to warrant the assumption that there is a
certain amoimt of fire, and we take tliat seriously.

Q. Mr. Secretary, in your speech I ielieve you
said that Mr. Khrushcliev had said that no item
in the Western proposal package was negotiable.
Have you liad any reason to revise your ojyinion
of that now?

A. No, that statement of Mr. Khrushchev's ap-
plied to our proposal, the seven-point proposal
with regard to West Berlin,^ not to the initial
Western peace plan. It was on that that he said
that none of the seven points was subject to
negotiation.



' For a statement by Mr. Hertpr on May 26, see Bulle-
tin of .Tune 1!>, lOr.O, p. 8G0.



Q. Mr. Secretary, how long would you go on
in Geneva if there were no progress, as there was
in the previous 6 weeks? Would you stay on 2
or 3 weeks, or longer? Or how seriously do you
take your Puerto Rico engagement?

A. Well, I wish I could give you the answer to
that. I am hoping that we will not be there
longer than 3 weeks.

Q. Mr. Secretary, in view of the position the
United States has taken with regard to the con-
tinwation of our rights in Berlin, how could these
he modified at all in any new discussion, based on
these latest remarks of Mr. Gromyko''s?

A. Well, as I say, the remarks of Mr. Khini-

shchev and those of Islv. Groniyko do not exactly
gibe, and I think that our first responsibility is to



110



Department of Stale Bulletin



find out what the official position is. As you
know, tlie remarks of Mi'. Klirushchev were as re-
ported in an interview, tlie remarks of Mr. Gro-
myko in documentary form, and I tliink that we
have a definite responsibility to find out which
repi-esents the official Kussian attitude.

Q. Do you have any idea that the U.S. might
modify its position on the maintenance of its
rights in Berlin?

A. We have not indicated any such thing.

Q. If the Russians withdraw their limitation on
alleged — or proposed — limitation on our rights in
Berlin, does that qualify as the progress that is
necessary to go on to the summit? Or will we
require some other further progress?

A. Well, as you know, we hadn't come close to
agreement. There are otlier elements, obviously,
that have still got to be planed out, and, when
I mentioned this one particular attitude of the
Kussians, it doesn't necessarily mean that a satis-
factory answer to that means a satisfactory
agreement.

Q. Mr. Secretary, if the Soviets did give a satis-
factory answer on that point, would it he possible
for the Western Powers then to join in negotia-
tions on the basis of the Soviet proposal?

A. Not necessarily. The Soviet proposal con-
tains a number of things that I think you would
realize, in view of our position, are objectionable
to us. The Soviet proposal and our own pro-
posals I think had only two or three thuigs in
common, that actually overlapped, from the point
of view of points at issue. I would hope that we
would return to negotiation on the basis of our
proposals.

Q. Mr. Secretary, have you given any thought
to a substitute to take your plaice in case the For-
eign Ministers Conference is prolonged?

A. Yes, that obviously has to be considered.

Question of Agreement on Atomic Test Ban

Q. Mr. Secretary, we haven't seen you since the
Berkner report ° has come out. Could you tell us
how you feel that affects the prospects of our



^ For a sunimary of the conclusions reported on Mar. 16
by the Panel on Seismic Improvement, see ihid., July 6,
1959, p. 16.



agreement on the test ban, particularly in regard
to the neio findings about the possibilities of con-
cealing tests?

A. Well, it is very difficult to tell. If we should
reach an agreement with the llussians in regard
to inspection of underground testing or under-
gi-ound illegal explosions, we could never expect
that that would be a perfect system. We are not
even sure that it would be an adequate system.
The whole range of scientific data from a seismic
point of view — and here we get into real teclmi-
calities — is a fairly uncertain one. The amount
of work that has been done on underground ex-
plosions is comparatively small, and at the mo-
ment we have to operate with a considerable de-
gree of uncertainty as to how effective the type
of inspection system that we believe is desirable
would be, once it was installed. We think it
would probably be adequate to constitute a very
real deterrent, but there are continual studies and
evaluations being made on that subject and I
would not want at this stage of the game to ex-
press a layman's opinion on what is a very highly
scientific opinion that we will be receiving very
shortly.

Q. Mr. Secreta/ry, on that point, in view of the
fact that the two Senate observers who called on
you yesterday, I believe, and a number of other
Senators have expressed opposition to a total ban
and are favoring the alternative of an atmos-
pheric ban, is it fair to say that the administra-
tion would prefer at this point, because of these
technical uncertainties, to have only an atmos-
pheric ban if that can be negotiated?

A. Well, I wouldn't say "prefer." I think that
the administration might feel that it was more
expedient and more practical to start in on an
atmospheric ban and work toward better scientific
competence from the point of view of inspections
in connection with an overall ban.

Q. Mr. Secretary, a year ago the situation in the
Middle East, to say the least, was unstuck. Can
you assess for u^ briefly what you think the situa-
tion there is now from our point of view, particu-
larly in respect to Iraq aiid our relations with
Cairo?

A. Well, I would say that we are coming nearer
to normalizing the situation in the Middle East,
that from that point of view the signs are en-



Jw// 27, 1959



111



couraging. With respect to detail in either the
Cairo or the Iraqi situation, we are obviously
maintaining an attitude of friendliness and hope-
fulness that our relations will be normalized even
more. Stated in other terms, we, I think, are
more optimistic than we have been on the turn
the developments have taken in the Middle East
area.

Q. Mr. Secretary, there is a movement in the
Labor Party in Great Britain to create what is
called a nonnuclear club to which Britain will
invite all nations besides the United States and
Russia to join. Has the American Government
formulated any policy as concerns that kind of
an intei'Tiational movement?

A. I am sorry to say this is the first I had
heard of that particular movement, so that I don't
think we have had an opportunity of formulat-
ing any policy with regard to it.

Q. Mr. Secretary, you have recently received a
letter from Congressman [Francis E.l Walter on
the art that is about to be exhibited in Moscow.
Do you plan to ansioer him? I understand that
he tvanted you to screen the art and possibly re-
move some of the paintings.

A. It is true that we did receive such a letter.
I think it is in the process of being answered now.
My own feeling with regard to that exhibit is
very much the same as that of the President. I
would hate to see the administration or Govern-
ment officials become art censors. I feel veiy
much as the President does, as a lay individual,
about the quality of some of the pictures that are
being exhibited. But that is entirely a personal
judgment. Unhappily I come from a family of
painters — my grandfather, mother, fatlier, broth-
er, and daughter — and I feel less qualified per-
haps tlian anybody to be an art critic.
{Laughter.)

Q. Mr. Secretary, I am not clear from your re-
marks as to whether you are more optimistic now
as to some agreement toith the Soviets than you
were after the negotiations recessed and you gave
your television report to the Nation.

A. No, nothing has happened since. The only
thing is the Gromyko statement I spoke of — that
is the only thing that has intervened, and that is
an important statement.

Q. Mr. Secretary, on the movement of tlie
American fighter bombers from, France, this is a



Defense matter, but it is generally regarded that
the motives behind it are political and diplomatic.
Could you tell us how much this is going to cost
and whether it will come out of the mutual de-
fense funds for European defense or whether it
will come out of the Pentagon funds or even out
of State Department funds?

A. That I cannot tell you the answer to. I
have no idea what it would cost. This redeploy-
ment to facilities that have already been prepared
may not cost a great deal — I just don't know.

Q. Mr. Secretary, the French Government has
been pressing u^ for some time for sharing in
global, strategic planning and the control of the
use and deployment of nuclear weapons. Could
you tell us \ohere those discussions now stand?

A. There have been discussions, as you know,
that have been taking place in Washington from
time to time at the ambassadorial level which
have covered some of that ground. They have
not been conclusive in any way; they have been
exploratory. That is where they stand at the
present time. But I am hopeful, as I think both
General de Gaulle and the President are, that be-
fore too long the opportunity will arise when they
can discuss these matters themselves. They have
a peculiar individual and personal interest in
these matters entirely aside from the positions
that they hold. For that reason it is entirely ap-
propriate that they should discuss them together.

Q. Mr. Secretary, would agreement on a rea-
sonable agenda be enough at Geneva to take the
two sides on to a summit meeting?

A. Well, that determination would be made
elsewhere. I would not make that determina-
tion. A reasonable agenda might cover a lot of
things. At a svimmit meeting there is no way of
stopping any Head of State who is there from
bringing up any subject he M-ants to bring up.
I am not at all sure how precise an agenda would
be required, if any at all. The President has
taken the same position consistentl}', that if the
developments were sucli in the present negotia-
tions that are going on to justify a simimit con-
ference, he will be glad to go to it.

Q. What xoo^dd you consider as progress suf-
ficient to toarrant a summit conference?

A. That determination I would not want to
make at this time.



112



Department of Sfafe Bulletin



Q. Mr. Secretary, do you have any plans to
bring Ambassador [Charhs E.^ Bohlen back from
Manila to serve you in some capacity liere in
the State Department?

A. That is something I discussed with Asa-
bassador Bohlen some months ago when he was
here in tlie United States. Notliing definite has
come out of it for the simple reason that he has
been engaged in very important negotiations with
the Philippines as Ambassador. They are still
continuing, and there is no telling how soon the
crucial phases of those negotiations may have fin-
ished up. I have a real admiration for Am-
bassador Bohlen. He is reaching a time in his
career when he could retire with, I think, the
maximum retirement allowance and where he un-
doubtedly would have to consider retirement just
fi-om a financial point of view. "Whether or not
we can induce him to stay on and give his talents
to the Government is something that still has to
be explored.

Q. To clarify an earlier question, Mr. Secre-
tary, I think you said you loould have to con-
sider a substitute for you perhaps at the Geneva
talks at sonw point. Did you mean that that
would be at a foreign ministers^ level or some lesser
level in the consultations?

A. Well, if it were agreed that the conversa-
tions should cari-y on for this indefinite period,
then they would probably be carried on at a lower
level.



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