325. Memorandum of a Conversation, Department of State, Washington, October 25, 1957, 10:30 a.m.1



  • Arms to Tunisia

[Here follows the same list of participants as the memorandum of conversation, supra.]

At the Secretary’s request, Mr. Rountree reported the status of Tunisia’s request for arms. Mr. Rountree pointed out that the US and UK Ambassadors had approached Bourguiba with respect to delaying arms delivery to Tunisia until after the new French Government had been formed. Bourguiba’s attitude had been satisfactory, Mr. Rountree said, and he had made useful statements not only with respect to arms deliveries to Tunisia but also regarding the Syrian situation. Bourguiba had agreed to postpone accepting even a token shipment of arms from Egypt before arms from the West arrived. Mr. Rountree added that the United States had a supply of arms in a nearby depot and these could be delivered to Tunisia on a crash basis if this were necessary.

Mr. Lloyd said the British had hoped the French Government would provide Tunisia with arms. He pointed out there had been no incidents since October 4, a record which was a credit to Bourguiba.

Mr. Rountree indicated that in his opinion the coordinated approach by the US and UK Ambassadors to Bourguiba had been very effective.

  1. Source: Department of State, Conference Files: Lot 62 D 181, CF 926. Confidential. Drafted by Dorman and circulated to appropriate U.S. officials on October 25.