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May

06

1985

May 06, 1985



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Diary Entry - 05/06/1985

Monday, May 6, 1985

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A 10 A.M. farewell ceremony complete with troops, national anthems & all at Villa Hammerschmidt with the Pres. & his wife. Then the Kohls joined us & we departed for Hambach castle. We made this trip in Marine One & landed at Neustadt. There was some ceremony and then we made the drive up the mountain to the castle. Again there were lines of happy cheering people except for one little group of dissenters. When we went by they turned around, bent over & showed us their bare bottoms. There were about a dozen—boys & girls.

At the castle there were about 10,000 teenagers gathered. I’d been told that German youth were a little down—tired of being told of the Nazi horror & not sure there was a future for them. Accordingly I addressed them in an effort to show them the pride they should have in what their country has achieved in these 40 yrs. & how they have freedom & the chance to make their dreams come true. They really responded. I had a chance to meet a small group of them afterward. They want to participate in an exchange program with us. I’m going to help.

We helicoptered to our Ramstein Air base—the C.O. of our air forces in Europe Gen. Donnely Jr. & other officers met us. We could only wave to the turnout of base personnel & families. It was goodbye to the Kohls—they were quite emotional. Helmut swore undying friendship. Then we boarded A.F. One and on to Madrid. Had lunch on the way and landed at 4:15—Barajas Airport. King Juan Carlos & Queen Sofia (We have known them for some time) met us. More ceremony—review of troops, then a march by—the Nat. Anthems & of course 21 gun salute. Then we met the official party—Pres. Felipe Gonzalez & other officials. I’ve already met Gonzalez in Wash. The King & I rode in one car, Nancy & the Queen in another to Pardo Palace. Again the streets were lined with cheering people. There had been a hostile demonstration before we arrived. It was as if the people were trying to tell us not to feel upset by that. At Pardo another ceremony with troop review, guns & anthems. Then the King & Queen departed—Pardo was to be our residence. At 6 P.M. I had a meeting with Gonzalez who is both Pres. & P.M. We got along fine. I gave him the whole load on Nicaragua & think he’ll be no pushover for Ortega who is visiting him after his visit to Moscow. By the time our meeting was over we were Felipe & Ron.

At 8:50 we motored to the Zarzuela Palace—the Royal home for dinner with their majesties & their daughters the Princesses Elena & Cristina. There was an exchange of gifts—one of his to me was a most interesting saddle. It will dress up our tack room.

They have refused to live in the Royal Palace preferring this smaller, homelike place. The evening was a family dinner & very pleasant although we did manage to get in some talk about Central Am. & Spains place in N.A.T.O.