159. Telegram From the Department of State to the Embassy in Germany1

2546. Ref: Bonn’s 3281, Deptel 2507.2 Joint State/Defense Message. Subject: FRG Plane Sale to Portugal. Fol are our views for use in reply to MOD:

Since proposed transaction involves political considerations of considerable sensitivity, it would appear MOD and FonOff should consult on issue in interest arriving at coordinated FRG position.
It is our understanding that position of FonOff on matter is that, regardless of US position, FonOff approval of transaction would be given only if Portuguese provided assurances that use of aircraft would be restricted to NATO area as defined Article 6 NATO Treaty. MOD may wish ascertain directly from FonOff latter’s view on this point.
If FonOff gets meaningful assurances as described in point (2) above from Portuguese, we would have no objection to plane sale to Portugal. Under circumstances, we would give definitive opinion when satisfactory assurances are obtained.

  1. Source: National Archives and Records Administration, RG 59, Central Files 1964-66, DEF 12-5 PORT. Confidential. Drafted by Creel; cleared in EUR, DOD, RPM, G, and AFC; and approved by Tyler. Repeated to Lisbon, Ottawa, Paris, and USCINCEUR.
  2. Telegram 3281 from Bonn, March 3, reported German assurances that no sales to Portugal would take place without prior guarantee that the aircraft would not be used in the colonies. Telegram 2507 to Bonn, March 1, requested information on the prospective sale. (Both ibid., DEF 12-5 GERM-PORT)