ABOUT AMERICAN POWs IN NORTH VIETNAM
Hubert de Bèsche (1911-97) Typed Letter Signed, "Hubert de Besche", 8.5 x 11, on "Royal Swedish Embassy" letterhead, no date, the letter is concerning American POW's in North Vietnam, by the Swedish diplomat and Foreign Service officer who served as the Swedish Ambassador to the United States from 1964 to 1973. During his time as ambassador to Washington, DC (1964–73), diplomatic tensions between Sweden and the United States increased. Following the Prime Minister of Sweden, Olof Palme's, statement about the Hanoi bombings in 1972, where he compared the US war in Vietnam and the Christmas bombings of Hanoi with, among other things, Nazi crimes during World War II, de Besche was called to US Deputy Foreign Minister Alexis Johnson and received a strong reprimand. Both De Besche and his then newly appointed successor were declared not welcome in the United States. In this letter, probably written before the above mentioned tensions, he, and the Prime Minister, are very sympathetic to American POWs. In part: "...the tragic situation of the American prisoners of war in North Vietnam...In view of the traditional policy of my country in the humanitarian field, the Swedish Government fully understands and sympathizes with the deep concern you express...The Swedish Prime Minister has expressed his great sympathy with the American prisoners of war and their families...." In fine condition.