394. Telegram From the Department of State to the Embassy in South Africa 0

12. State/Defense message. Embtel 31 repeated Pretoria 40.1 In connection negotiation tracking station agreement you are authorized in your discretion: (1) Indicate we agree in principle authorize sidewinder purchase, subject completion certain technical security procedures and with delivery dates subject availability of equipment. Department awaiting reply note to SA Embassy January 31 requesting information concerning SA timing requirements and the control and associated equipment planned for acquisition and for utilization with sidewinder; (2) Indicate we would welcome having SAAF liaison officer at site, FYI keeping in mind we not in position assume SAG personnel costs, end FYI; (3) Reiterate substance Deptel 360 to Pretoria2 concerning our willingness compensate SAG for out-of-pocket costs of alternative site.3

  1. Source: Department of State, Central Files, 611.70X7/2-1762. Secret. Drafted by Bronez (OSD/ISA) and Durnan on February 19; cleared by Packard, Hunt in substance, Robinson, Deming, Manning, and Bronez; and approved by Fredericks. Repeated to Pretoria.
  2. Telegram 31, February 17, reported the reservations of some senior South African Defense officials regarding the proposed tracking station agreement. (Ibid.)
  3. Dated October 26, 1961. (Ibid., 770X.56311/10-2661)
  4. On February 27, Ambassador Satterthwaite reported that he had discussed the tracking station agreement with Foreign Minister Jooste as instructed. Jooste had insisted that his government was requesting nothing except essential military items required to protect the country from external military aggression, by which he meant specifically Communist-supported forces from abroad. The Foreign Minister also declared that he was sure South Africa could comply with U.S. security requirements. (Telegram 37 from Cape Town; ibid., 611.70X7/2-2762)