233. Telegram From the Department of State to the Embassy in the Congo1

408. For Ambassador. Embtels 675, 677 and 679.2 Subject your views propose following message be sent to Hoyt in reply message transmitted reftels 675 and 677.

Begin text.

I have received the message from Stanleyville with your signature. It has also been transmitted to Washington.

In accordance with normal international practice your consular duties include contact with authorities in control in the localities covered by your consular district. You may so inform General Olenga. You are requested ask him whether he will arrange safe conduct for the [Page 340] landing of a plane at the Stanleyville airport carrying official American supplies and personnel. They would confirm that you and your present staff as well as other American citizens in the area are in good health and are allowed freely to come and go and that you have free and unrestricted access to communications with me. Please advise promptly whether it would be useful send US official to consult with you further on these matters.

You should also repeat to General Olenga and the authorities in Stanleyville my earlier message that I hold them personally responsible for the safety and well being of all Americans in the Stanleyville area. End text.3

You may wish to explain to Tshombe and Kasavubu what we propose to do. Have you any recommendations as to who should go in and by what means. FYI Dept considers proposed message does not imply recognition.

For Brussels: You may wish to keep Spaak informed.

  1. Source: National Archives, RG 59, Central Files 1964–66, POL 23–9 THE CONGO. Confidential; Flash; Limdis. Drafted by Schaufele; cleared by O’Sullivan, Fredericks, Runyan, and Lindsey Grant in M; and approved by Tasca. Repeated to Brussels and to CINCSTRIKE for Ramsey.
  2. Telegrams 675 and 677, August 21, transmitted a message to the Department and President Johnson, purportedly from Hoyt, asking that the U.S. Government reconsider its policy of military assistance to the Congolese Government, and warning that the lives of all Americans resident in Stanleyville, including those of Consulate personnel, were at stake. (Ibid.) In telegram 679, August 21, Godley reported that the Embassy did not believe that Hoyt had written the message, noting that he was obviously under rebel control. He warned, however, that the Embassy was inclined to believe from the tone of the communication that the threat should be taken seriously. (Ibid.)
  3. Telegram 690 from Leopoldville, August 22, reported that all communications with Stanleyville had been out since early that morning and the Department’s message to Hoyt could not be delivered. Telegram 312 to Brussels (414 to Leopoldville), August 22, asked the U.S. Embassies in Brussels and Leopoldville to attempt to have the message to Hoyt passed via ham radio. (Ibid.)