Kissinger in Israel, 2008
Israel news photo: Flash 90
Transcripts from 39 years ago show that Henry Kissinger, a Jew who later served as U.S. Secretary of State Kissinger under President Richard Nixon, held anti-Jewish views.
In 1972, then-Prime Minister Golda Meir asked Nixon to protest to the Kremlin over its levying of fees for exit permits for Jews who wish to emigrate.
The Associated Press quotes Kissinger as calling Jews "self serving" and using the word "bastards" in reference to them.
At the time of the events, AP explains, the White House was "defending its strategy of quiet diplomacy" and sought to assure American Jews that Nixon was very concerned about the plight of Soviet Jews but that quiet diplomacy was the best approach.
A White House official, Leonard Garment asked Kissinger for help and guidance, saying he was flooded with letters and phone calls from concerned Jews. The late Alexander Haig, Nixon's national security adviser, had forwarded Meir's letter to him as well. Kissinger was Haig's deputy at the time.
The transcripts show that Kissinger said to Garment: "Is there a more self-serving group of people than the Jewish community?"
Garment, also Jewish, replied: "None in the world."
Kissinger was then quoted as saying "What the hell do they think they are accomplishing?" and "You can't even tell [the] bastards anything in confidence because they'll leak it."
Kissinger said, however, that he would take up the issue with Soviet Ambassador Anatoly Dobrynin and also meet again with Jewish leaders. "They ought to remember what this administration has done," he added.