383. Memorandum for the Record1


  • Discussion with Secretary Rusk—8 January 1965

[Omitted here is material unrelated to the Congo.]

4. In connection with the Congo, Rusk suggested after considerable discussion that CIA do everything possible covertly to stimulate and incite resentment on the part of the Black Africans against the Muslim slave traders of Egypt, Algeria and elsewhere in the Middle East and that conversely incite resentment among the Muslims over supplying arms to the Black Africans which would ultimately be used against the Muslim population in the Sudan. Rusk stated that it was his understanding that one convoy of arms from Khartoum to the Congo had been taken over by the Sanu tribesmen and would be used in the Sudan conflict.

Action: Carefully prepare a dynamic program to meet these requirements.

5. Rusk said that he was informed that Tshombe and Nkrumah were in contact with one another. This information had come from Wayne Fredericks. I said I knew of no such contact. Rusk said he thought that perhaps this information had not gotten up to me.

Action: I wish to be informed, to review the reporting, and also CIA evaluation of the reliability of the reports, and the probable courses of action.

[Page 554]

6. [Omitted here is material unrelated to the Congo.]

7. At the close of the meeting, Governor Harriman came in, having just arrived from Europe, and reported briefly on his talks in Paris, purpose of which was to insist upon European participation in the Congo and other African problems. He apparently leveled pretty heavily on the British to use their influence with the East African states. Stated that Spaak handled the meeting in superb fashion. I asked Harriman what he meant by “twisting Tshombe’s arm”—what did he expect Tshombe to do? He retorted “write to the Emporer” (presumably Haille Salassie).

Action: I should meet early next week with Harriman to be sure that we are together on the Congo policy and that we are working on parallel tracks.2

Addendum to Discussion with Secty Rusk on 1/8/65:

8. Rusk had a [less than 1 line not declassified] on his desk and made reference to the paragraph on the Congo in which it was stated that Kasavubu supported Tshombe, was against broadening the government, was in favor of mercenaries and couldn’t care less where they came from. It interested me that the report had been so carefully studied, as it was heavily underlined with red pencil and there were a number of questions and comments in the border. In answer to my question, the Secretary said that the Brief was extremely useful, very well done, and he hoped we would continue it in its present form.

With respect to the Congo, I stated to the Secretary that I felt we had no choice except to insure victory for Tshombe, that I thought the covert support we were giving had turned the tide of the battle in the last 2 weeks and if we continued our help, we had a good chance of stabilizing the situation within 60 to 90 days. I said we should not be deterred from this by the persuasion of do-gooders, by reactions from African states in the United Nations who didn’t like us anyway, or from the vote in the OAU. Rusk said he agreed completely and that he felt that once Tshombe had established control, the attitude of the neighboring African states, which was now antagonistic, would change. I concurred, stating this had been my viewpoint right along. Harriman who entered the meeting somewhat later, however, expressed the view that “Tshombe would be cut to pieces” by rebels assisted by the soldiers of a great many of the antagonistic African states supplied with modern weapons from China and the Soviet Union. I intend to discuss this matter in depth with Harriman next week.

[Page 555]

Addendum #2 to Discussion with Secretary Rusk on 1/8/65

9. Rusk stated that he had been informed that Kanza, rebel Foreign Minister, had been approached by Tshombe and was to come over to Tshombe. I pointed out that Kanza had been associated with Tshombe until Tshombe took over as PM. I said that we had reports that Kanza and Gbenye had split, that I could not verify the rapprochement between Kanza and Tshombe.

Action: I would like this thoroughly checked and if necessary communicate with Station for report on Monday.

10. [1 paragraph (5½ lines) not declassified]

[1 paragraph (1 line) not declassified]

11. [1 paragraph (9 lines) not declassified]

[Omitted here is material unrelated to the Congo.]

  1. Source: Central Intelligence Agency Files, Job 80B01285A, DCI/McCone Files, DCI (McCone) Memo for the Record, 01 Jan.–28 Feb. 65. Secret; Eyes Only. Drafted by McCone on January 9. Paragraphs 8 and 9 were originally an addendum, but are printed as part of the memorandum of record.
  2. See Document 385.