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Rowny Gets White House Lecture

May 02, 1987|From a Times Staff Writer

WASHINGTON — Edward L. Rowny, President Reagan's special arms control adviser who recently criticized the Administration's stance in its negotiations with the Soviet Union, was told Friday that "there are ways to voice an opinion" without making opposition public, a White House official said.

Rowny was summoned to a meeting with White House Chief of Staff Howard H. Baker Jr. after his remarks to reporters prompted concern among Reagan's advisers.

But officials took pains to stress that the session was not intended to be confrontational, and Rowny, a retired lieutenant general, said in a statement Thursday that his remarks were designed to simply "focus attention" on his concerns.

On Monday, Rowny said that the United States should consider insisting on major changes in the nuclear arms reduction pact being negotiated. He called criticism by former President Richard M. Nixon and Henry A. Kissinger of the proposed agreement "refreshing and helpful."

The displeasure of White House officials was evident on Tuesday, when Marlin Fitzwater, the President's spokesman, said that Rowny's remarks were "not particularly helpful" to U.S. arms control negotiators and that Administration officials were "somewhat upset."

Nixon and Kissinger, in a column for the Los Angeles Times Syndicate that was published Sunday, wrote that it would be a "profound mistake" to sign an agreement unless it linked the withdrawal of medium-range missiles from Europe to the elimination of the Soviets' overwhelming advantage in conventional forces.

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