192. Telegram From the Department of State to the Embassy in Belgium1

1825. View has been expressed (e.g. Brussels 1292 to Dept)2 that it now unwise follow up on economic program since Tshombe cooperating and because this may result in Tshombe backing away from Kitona accord. In Dept view Tshombe entered Kitona accord because he felt no other acceptable alternative available at that time. Thus he may not carry out accord, whether by own decision or under pressure extremist politicians and advisers, if way appears open to resume secession. In Dept view Tshombe must not be permitted to lose sight of inevitability integration. Best protection against possible resumption hostilities is progress in negotiations on constitution and in actual economic integration.

As should be clear, while three phase economic program may appear to Katanga secessionists to be sanctions against Katanga, nevertheless it is in fact series of measures necessary to achieve economic integration which would necessarily accompany implementation political settlement on basis Kitona accord.

Western unity in willingness continue political urging and prepare for and when necessary carry out economic measures essential. If US, Belgium or UK should in any way give Tshombe or his advisers impression they disunited re importance implementation Kitona accord, Katanga regime would undoubtedly interpret it as implied encouragement delay implementation Kitona accord and eventually resume secessionist [Page 366] policy. As indicated Deptel 1216 to Léopoldville3 Dept urging GOC get Tshombe so deeply involved in programs leading to integration as to make it difficult for him to back out. Important element in this approach will be to make known to Tshombe complete lack Western support for secession and willingness US, UK, Belgium and UN (in cooperation with GOC) to undertake measures economic integration (FYI. Not at maximum but at optimum level to further objective. End FYI) in event there is any sign Tshombe attempting back out Kitona accord. Accordingly, it is essential that preparatory work (Deptel 1208 to Léopoldville)4 be completed soon.

For London: Foregoing discussed informally in recent US–UK talks in Washington, record of which will be sent soon.5

For USUN: Amb Stevenson may wish to draw on foregoing in talks with Spaak.

  1. Source: Department of State, Central Files, 770G.00/1–1362. Confidential. Drafted by Assistant Legal Adviser for African Affairs Alan W. Ford; cleared in draft by Robert M. Beaudry of the Office of Western European Affairs, Williams, Wallner, and McGhee; and approved by Fredericks. Also sent to USUN and repeated to London, Léopoldville, Salisbury, and Paris.
  2. Telegram 1292, January 13, reported that Spaak felt Tshombe was “behaving about as well as could be expected” and that under the circumstances he thought it unwise to apply pressure lest it cause Tshombe to back away from the Kitona accord. (Ibid.)
  3. Telegram 1216, January 5, instructed the Embassy to suggest to Adoula that he propose to Tshombe several steps toward the economic reintegration of Katanga. (Ibid., 770G.00/1–562)
  4. See footnote 3, Document 185.
  5. See Document 191.