154. Telegram From the Embassy in Portugal to the Department of State1
Without knowing what Foreign Minister may have on his mind, I presume he will seek support Portuguese position in Africa and may [Page 316] advance thesis that recent provincial elections there evidence progress on part GOP along lines consistent with reasonable concept self-determination. Foreign Minister may also refer your request at last meeting with him for documented case of transborder aggression from Congo, may note that factual dossier submitted, and may inquire as to USG action contemplated on basis thereof.
For our part, I would like to suggest possible desirability raising following two subjects:
- Loran-C: Without entering into technical details with Foreign Minister, I believe it might be very helpful were you personally to impress upon him importance which we attach to Loran-C not merely for US but for all of NATO and necessity we feel for early action this matter.
- Self-determination: My most recent talks with Salazar (Embtel 813)4 and Foreign Minister (Embtel 848)5 convince me that neither is at this time willing consider any public statement on self-determination of type we have been recommending. I am personally highly dubious as to merit or net advantage to USG of continuing to hammer away at theme at once unacceptable and unpalatable to GOP. Apart from being unproductive, such continuing effort progressively erodes our good will credit and our ability influence Portuguese on other matters of importance to us. We are already, I believe, undesirably far out in front of practically all other countries in this regard. While we continue press and irritate Portuguese on matter of Africa and self-determination, other nations through more passive role are picking up points and advantages in other areas.
I therefore suggest as means moving this problem off dead center and for purpose introducing new element flexibility that, in your conversation with Foreign Minister at The Hague, you probe GOP position in following manner. After making reference our continuing but as yet unfruitful effort elicit GOP public statement on self-determination and reasons why US believes such statement would be helpful to GOP position, inquire of Foreign Minister as to what if any action, assurances, or guarantee of support on part of USG would persuade GOP issue such statement. You could indicate our familiarity with standard GOP arguments but also make reference again to frequently expressed belief by GOP that we are in position materially influence course of events in Africa. While reiterating view that US influence significantly overrated, you could conclude that US willingness attempt find peaceful resolution of problems besetting our allies can stand, and has stood, [Page 317] severe tests and we quite prepared place our prestige along side Portuguese on a specific and defensible proposal if this will move issue forward. Foreign Minister would then specifically be asked whether any action or guarantee of support on our part could induce GOP come forth with desired statement. His answer, or Salazar’s, should then either open up new and more fruitful avenue of discussion (which I doubt) or provide clear evidence no useful purpose served by continuing present tactics until circumstances have changed significantly to so warrant.6
- Source: National Archives and Records Administration, RG 59, Central Files 1964-66, POL 10 PORT. Secret.↩
- Telegram 847 from Lisbon, May 2, reported that Anderson encouraged Noguiera to seek a luncheon meeting with Rusk. (Ibid., ORG 7 S)↩
- Not found.↩
- Telegram 813 from Lisbon, April 18, reported Anderson’s April 17 meeting with Salazar on colonial issues. (National Archives and Records Administration, RG 59, Central Files 1964-66, POL 15-1 PORT)↩
- In telegram 848 from Lisbon, May 2, Anderson reported he had pressed Noguiera for a declaration on “self-determination” for the African colonies. (Ibid., POL 10 PORT)↩
- Telegram Secto 18, May 12, reported that on the initiative of the Secretary, he and Nogueira discussed Cuba, Brazilian developments, the Congo, and Angola, and that “neither F-86’s nor Loran-C nor question of self-determination” were raised. (Johnson Library, National Security File, Country File, Portugal, Vol. 1) Memoranda of the Rusk-Noguiera discussions are in the National Archives and Records Administration, RG 59, Conference Files: Lot 66 D 110, CF 2397.↩