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November 28, 1988
Staff time at 10 A.M.—after months of negotiation—a Grain agreement with the Soviet U. Extends present agreement (now expiring) until 1990—thru 1990 harvest. Then we talked about reaction to my veto of the ethics bill. Some flurry in Press but already running down. Then subject of Ollie North & possible pardon. I cant do that before the trial. It would leave him under a cloud of guilt for the rest of his life.
N.R.A. [N.S.C.]—George Shultz’s decision to deny Arafat a visa to come to U.N. Israel is very happy. Arab States are upset about it. Our law is very clear on the subject. George is right & the visa should be denied.
Then a little planning talk re Gorbachevs visit to U.N. George & I will spend about 2 hrs. at lunch with him at residence on Governors Island in N.Y.
Desk time until 11:30 A.M. then an artist arrived who will visit me one or two more times doing photos & sketches from which he’ll do my portrait in Oil for the National Gallery. Lunch—Jim Baker dropped in for a quick hello. Then a quick photo with a retiring employee & wife. He’s been with govt. 43 yrs. Desk time until 3:15 at which time Dick & Tommy Smothers plus officials of Am. Lung Assn. came by to present me with Xmas seals & a big poster size of the seal. Downstairs for a haircut. A W.H. phone operator—the one assigned to me from 4 P.M. to midnight came in for a goodbye. On Dec. 1st she’ll be operated on for a brain tumor. Then over to W.H. & upstairs where Nancy & I will do individual photos with entire W.H. staff—93 people. And we did.
“Lady Bruce” (Betts Bloomingdale) coming to stay the night & have dinner with us. She has arrived. She & Nancy are buried in closets—I think eliminating clothes that will not go back to Calif. with us. A brief interlude for dinner—then back to the closets. I went back to my desk. Then early to bed.