Archive (Reagan Library)

Cold War: Reagan letter to Thatcher (INF negotiating stance) [declassified 2000]

Document type: Declassified documents
Venue: White House
Source: Reagan Library: NSA Head of State File (Thatcher: Cables [2]) Box 34
Editorial comments: Document available in draft only, and incomplete. Declassified 27 March 2000.
Importance ranking: Major
Word count: 339 words
Themes: Defence (arms control), Foreign policy (USA), Foreign policy (USSR & successor states), Foreign policy (Western Europe - non-EU), MT contacts with Ronald Reagan
Declassified F96-107#29
By SMF, NARA, Date 3/27/00


To: Prime Minister Thatcher, Prime Minister Fanfani, Chancellor Kohl, Prime Minister Martens

Subject: Next Steps in INF

Dear [left blank]

1. In my last message of February 16 I invited your views on how to treat the INF issue so as to assure a united allied position and thus, counter [sic] Soviet efforts to delay or prevent the deployment or any real progress in Geneva. It seems to me that our consultations, particularly during the Vice President’s trip and in written exchanges since, have served that purpose very well.

2. As I stated in my message of February ___, my foremost concern is to proceed in a way which complements your own efforts and which sustains support for both tracks of the December ’79 decision. I remain committed to these goals. Toward that end I have directed that a prompt review of our position be undertaken discreetly so as not to invite a spate of Soviet pressure to which we would ultimately appear to be yielding. I expect that this review will produce the basis for new instructions to Paul Nitze providing for his introducing an interim proposal even as we maintain zero-zero as our goal. I will keep you informed and will of course seek your comments before reaching any decisions.

3. As we proceed, however, it would be helpful if we could avoid public calls from your European capitals for change or greater flexibility. Here again, since we are moving in this direction, it is unnecessary to put us in the apparent position of being the reluctant partner, which of course, we are not. Indeed, it would be extremely helpful if you were time find it possible to

[document incomplete]