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March 16, 1983
Meeting with our team Phil Habib et al & F.M. Salem & former P.M. & now elder statesman Salam of Lebanon. I assured them we’d stay in there helping to get foreign forces out of Lebanon. The old gentleman told me I was much loved in Lebanon. He said previous experience with Am. Presidents was that they advanced so far & then retreated. I told him I didn’t have any reverse gear. Met with Repub. Congressmen regarding Sen. Roths proposal for a new Cab. dept. of Trade. This is a sticky one. Dropped in on a meeting with several dept. heads from E.P.A. We’re trying to boost their morale. Took the afternoon off & rode in Rock Creek Park. First time on horseback in a long time—not since last Fall. Tonite Constitution Hall for the Country Music Assn. anniversary. A great show & a wonderful warm evening. Minnie Pearl. Roy Acuff, Tennessee Ernie Ford, Gene Autry—well on & on. High spot—a piano & singing duet—Ray Charles & a young (also blind) artist who said Ray had been his inspiration. They drew a standing ovation that came from the heart.