611.90D/12–153: Telegram

The Ambassador in Pakistan ( Hildreth ) to the Department of State


396. Embassy believes Vice President’s visit1 could be made opportunity for making several points which we believe extremely important to future United States–Pakistan relations. We have reported dissension within Cabinet and frustration developing in country. Cabinet changes are expected but we do not anticipate elimination Mohammed Ali although it possible he might resign in discouragement. We believe with all his weaknesses he still represents best hope for Pakistan. Consequently, while scrupulously refraining from suggestions subject to mistaken interpretation, we believe we should use our influence to strengthen Mohammed Ali’s position.

As we have reported, extension military aid would we believe improve Prime Minister’s position and might counteract some of frustration now prevalent. However, more decisive action on several fronts is required if Prime Minister is to galvanize government and inspire confidence.

I suggest that in his talks with Governor General and Prime Minister Vice President might, without getting into details, impress upon government necessity for strong and firm leadership.

Following points are suggested:

(1) United States hopes Pakistan will develop as modern, progressive state. (2) United States believes Pakistan appreciates importance ME defense (if affirmative decision military aid reached or about to be reached Vice President might refer to it). (3) United States hopes Pakistan can succeed in perfecting unity of country, hopes Prime Minister will assert himself strongly in bringing factions together. (4) Strengthened United States–Pakistan relations inevitably condition to considerable degree by stability GOP. Stable strong GOP can play important world role contribute much to development free world concept. (5) United States hopes for progress Indo-Pakistan relations appreciates efforts GOP settle outstanding issues hopes these will continue.

Unless Department perceives objection I intend make those suggestions to Vice President upon his arrival.2

  1. See the editorial note, p. 1088.
  2. For the Department of State answer, see telegram 425 to Karachi, Dec. 4, infra .