711.56373/12–1951: Telegram

The Secretary of State to the Consulate General at Tripoli 1

top secret

219. Reurtel 286 Dec 19:2

Your intention sign base rights agreement and exchange notes with PriMin approved.
Although we had preferred no publicity at this time re notes on financial aid US Govt reluctantly agrees, since newspaper stories already issued, PriMin may make announcement re exchange notes on financial aid in speech soon after independence.
PriMin shld understand that no payments of financial aid will begin until Libyan Parliament and King have finally ratified base agreement. This has been made clear previous Deptels this subj but US Govt wants be certain PriMin and King have no misunderstanding this matter.
Although no objection stating publicly that our mil facilities are being covered by exchange notes Dept and Defense do not want text note or base agreement released until presented for ratification. This particularly important to avoid text becoming, as you say, subj for 55 opposition candidates for Libyan Parliament to debate during election campaign. Since text note re mil facilities refers specifically to agreement both US and Libyan Govt wld be under heavy pressure to make public text of agreement if only note is released. Dept wishes avoid having details of agreement discussed when Libyan item brought up in UN. Texts note and agreement shld not be released until agreed to by US and Libyan govts at later date.
  1. Repeated to London and Paris. This telegram was drafted by Wellons, and cleared by Defense, Army, Air Force, FUR, UNP, RA, AF, and S/S-CR.
  2. Supra.