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

1030. Deptel 1017.2 We are sending you through other channels detailed guidance re use of planes. When you have implemented instructions contained para 7 that message, you are authorized lift stand-down on any planes affected.

You should continue your efforts to see Tshombe and carry out instructions contained Deptel 1017 modified to conform to further instructions contained this tel. In urging on Tshombe need for proposed letters to meet our concerns, you should say we are proceeding on assumption problem can be worked out. You authorized to assure him in this connection that US will continue cooperate to insure essential air operations requirements are met. If consistent your earlier talk with him, suggest you avoid any reference to stand-down and merely indicate your understanding that current operational needs will shortly be [Page 432] met. We remain concerned, like GDRC, to meet essential military needs, and at any time problems arise regarding US military assistance, Tshombe should raise them with you immediately so that the two of you can resolve them. You should point out, however, our understanding that as condition of this cooperation there will be no South African T–6 unit in Congo.

You should likewise reiterate that experience of past week has raised serious question both for you and highest levels Washington with regard to effective working relations between US and GDRC. You should emphasize that magnitude and complexity of US commitment to GDRC makes it essential that Tshombe and Ambassador work on continuous, close, and confidential basis. We must have situation permitting prompt and frequent consultation and frank exchange. While we appreciate GDRC has its own political problems, so do we and we believe both sides will benefit if we can work together in spirit of understanding and mutual give and take.

Department concurs fully your handling of situation described Embtel 1591,3 and your insistence Tshombe must work out problem with you in Leopoldville.

You should reaffirm that position and tell him that Washington strongly concurs.

  1. Source: National Archives, RG 59, Central Files 1964–66, POL 23–9 THE CONGO. Top Secret; Immediate; Exdis. Drafted and approved by Palmer and cleared by Brubeck. Repeated to Brussels and Nairobi.
  2. Document 295.
  3. In telegram 1591 from Leopoldville, October 22, Godley described his continuing difficulties in arranging a meeting with Tshombe. He also reported that he had received a message from Tshombe stating that Kasavubu wanted to send a special emissary to the United States to meet with the President and discuss the current situation. The Ambassador replied that he did not know whether the President would receive a special emissary but that he personally had to see Tshombe on an urgent matter pursuant to formal orders from the U.S. Government or else U.S. military aid to the Congo might be jeopardized. (National Archives, RG 59, Central Files 1964–66, POL 23–9 THE CONGO)