427. Memorandum From the Chief of the Africa Division, Directorate of Plans, Central Intelligence Agency (Fields) to the Deputy Director for Plans (Fitzgerald)1


  • Discussions at the Department of State on the Congo

1. The following is for your information. Discussions were held on the Congo at the Department of State, 26–27 August 1965. State Department representatives were Wayne Fredericks, Deputy Assistant Secretary for African Affairs; Dean Brown, Director of Office of Central African Affairs; Thomas McElhiney, Congo Working Group; William Schauffele, Office of Central African Affairs; and Ambassador G. McMurtrie Godley. ISA, Department of Defense representatives were William Lang and Col. Richard Kennedy. White House Staff representative was Harold Saunders. CIA representatives were Glenn Fields, John Waller, Lawrence Devlin, and [less than 1 line not declassified].

2. Maritime Operations2

With reference to the Country Team recommendation that two 50 foot Swift boats be dispatched to Lake Tanganyika, CIA described the problem of crewing these boats and stated that our only immediate solution was to man them with 20–25 [less than 1 line not declassified] personnel who were familiar with boat operations and specifically with the Swift. If this were agreed to, it would be our understanding that the [less than 1 line not declassified] would be replaced with [less than 1 line not declassified] crews as quickly as such crews could be recruited, trained and dispatched. However, it was noted that this would require several months to accomplish and that such a time frame was unacceptable in terms of our immediate needs. Mr. McElhiney stated that he and Ambassador Godley had discussed this matter with Assistant Secretary Williams the morning of 26 August. Governor Williams had [Page 618] agreed to the dispatching of the craft but was apprehensive about adding more [less than 1 line not declassified] to the paramilitary program in the Congo. State representatives present accepted the need for [less than 1 line not declassified] and agreed that if assured that every effort would be made to replace [less than 1 line not declassified] they would present this proposal to Assistant Secretary Williams. CIA explained that in addition to the Swift, it was our intent to add four seacraft to the four already present in Albertville. Since this part of the proposal was not included in the Country Team message, Ambassador Godley questioned whether a total of eight seacraft was really necessary. After some discussion of proposed utilization of the additional seacraft, it was left that this would be reconsidered. There seemed to be no objection to their use if they are really needed.

2. Air Operations

A. Addition of three T–28’s to present complement of 12. In response to a proposal by Ambassador Godley and Mr. Devlin that the absolute minimum number of T–28’s needed for air operations in the Congo is 15, Mr. Lang stated that although T–28D’s are available, they are extremely difficult to come by and for budget reasons it seemed unlikely that they could provide the three additional T–28’s. Mr. Lang noted that adding three T–28’s would require a reduction in the MAP budget for the Congo. Such a reduction was unacceptable to Ambassador Godley. The matter was left that Mr. Lang would look further into the matter and see whether some alternative solution was possible. He did, however, spend considerable time describing the light aircraft—Cessna 206—presently being tested by the Air Force for use in counterinsurgency operations. Mr. Lang restated his previous position that the 206 or a similar aircraft could replace the T–28. Devlin noted that the [less than 1 line not declassified] pilots as well as U.S. air operations officers in the Congo feel that the 206 is totally inadequate for the job to be done and cannot replace the T–28.

B. CIA stated that with the withdrawal of the C–130’s and the possible increase in CIA commitments as the result of any expanded maritime operations program, an additional transport plane has become necessary. Unless there were any serious objections on the part of State, we planned to dispatch an additional C–46 to the Congo. It was agreed that the C–46 be sent. There was discussion of the inadequate use by the Belgians of the C–47’s presently in the Congo, but when boiled down, it appeared that we must ask but doubted if we could get their support of the air and maritime operations being run by the Agency. It was agreed that at the planned meetings in Brussels with the Belgians, pressure would be put upon the Belgian Government to result in better utilization of available air transport in the Congo. Mr. Lang’s office will prepare a paper on this topic.

[Page 619]

C. With regard to replacement of the [less than 1 line not declassified] pilots, it was agreed that CIA would attempt to recruit European pilots immediately, and that at the September meetings in Brussels the Belgians would be asked to supply Belgian contract pilots for the 21st Squadron. If pilots could be made available by the Belgians, T–28’s would be transferred to the 21st Squadron as previously proposed by CIA.

D. In connection with U.S. air operations in the Congo, it was explained by CIA that in view of worldwide Agency commitments, it was becoming difficult to continue providing air operations officers for TDY assignment to the Congo. CIA stated that we would have to find some other solution to obtaining air operations officers who were willing to remain for longer periods of time. This generally involved allowing families to join air operations officers and remain in Leopoldville. A possible solution could be that the air operations officers would be dispatched TDY and allowed to have their families in the Congo for the duration of their stay. Ambassador Godley felt this would create considerable personnel problems. It was agreed that this matter would be further discussed and some solution worked out in the field between Ambassador Godley and Devlin.

3. Ground Operations

In connection with ground operations note was made of the apparent lack of unified direction of military operations in the Congo. The unfortunate pay problem appeared to be hampering the Fifth Commando preparations for the Fizi-Baraka campaign and seemed to be the result of mismanagement rather than intentional obstruction. Noting a previous informal conversation with Ambassador Godley on the subject, Devlin mentioned the idea of bringing Col. Dodds (now retired from the U.S. Army) back to the Congo primarily to help out in Albertville. It was observed that Dodds was well received by Congolese military figures Mobutu and Mulamba and could be of considerable assistance to Lt. Col. Michael Hoare in planning and executing the campaign as well as coordinating the operation with the local Congolese commanders and Belgian advisors. Ambassador Godley was receptive to the idea but felt that he should first consult Col. Williams, the COMISH chief. It was also agreed that if the idea has merit, General Adams would have to be consulted. (Col. Williams has since turned this down.)

4. Political

Upon completion of discussions of paramilitary activity the Defense Department representatives withdrew, and the discussions turned to political matters. CIA presented the proposition that in order to carry out the U.S. policy objectives of maintaining Kasavubu and [Page 620] Tshombe in tandem, we should be in a position to fund both factions on the understanding that such funding would continue only as long as each faction worked in agreement with the other. Specifically, Mr. Devlin described our approach as the following:

Contact with Tshombe by CIA [less than 1 line not declassified] and in return for his agreement to do all possible to support the present arrangement with Kasavubu, we would offer him certain financial assistance. It would be understood that the other faction would become aware of such funding, and consideration would be given to advis-ing them shortly after the offer to Tshombe. The Kasavubu faction would be funded on the same basis through General Mobutu on the grounds that he is the one individual most nearly acceptable to both contingencies.

Ambassador Godley took issue with the above proposal in strongest terms, stating that he was dead against giving either side anything at this time. He was opposed to giving anything to Tshombe after his behavior with Senator Dodd, i.e., end-running Godley. He felt that such funding would be clear evidence that such end-running payed off and would be an encouragement to Tshombe to by-pass the Ambassador, thereby making his position untenable. In addition he was equally dead set against establishing any more channels to Tshombe either by CIA or others. He stated that he considered Tshombe his particular preserve, and that if anything should happen to him, his DCM was fully able to carry on the relationship. After considerable further discussion, the meeting closed without any satisfactory conclusion. Mr. McElhiney did, however, state that it was the Bureau’s position that the 303 Committee should be requested to approve a contingency fund of [dollar amount not declassified] for use in maintaining a political balance between the two factions.

The meeting resumed on 27 August. The matter of a CIA/Tshombe relationship was reopened and with equal fervor Ambassador Godley once more spoke out against the proposal to establish another channel for Tshombe to the U.S. Government, stating that he felt that this was not in the best U.S. interest. Further discussions of this proposal did not seem worthwhile. However, Mr. Fields presented a proposal that we attempt, in any case, to establish a controlled penetration of the Tshombe office by providing Tshombe with a public relations advisor. Mr. Devlin reminded Godley of Tshombe’s request for such an advisor approximately a year ago. Ambassador Godley stated that he did not look favorably on such a proposal on the grounds that it would not only not be effective, but would probably not be acceptable to Tshombe. After further discussion, however, Ambassador Godley noted that what Tshombe needed in the worst way was a fully competent economist as an advisor, observing that Tshombe had from time to [Page 621] time mentioned this problem to Ambassador Godley. Godley stated that if we could come up with a fluent French speaking economist with a good political head, he (Godley) could offer such an individual to Tshombe. [1 line not declassified]

The subject of a contingency fund was raised next by Mr. McElhiney who stated that he had discussed this matter with Assistant Secretary Williams and that it was acceptable to him. It was agreed that all the matters discussed in the past two meetings would be presented to Assistant Secretary Williams for his concurrence, and that if the contingency fund was still agreeable to Williams, the Agency would be asked to prepare a paper for the 303 Committee. The meeting concluded on this note.

Glenn Fields
Chief, Africa Division
  1. Source: Central Intelligence Agency Files, Job 78–03805R, DDO/IMS Files, Box 3, Folder 11, US Govt.—Dept. of State. Secret.
  2. On April 1, Fields sent Deputy Director for Plans Helms a memorandum on the status of maritime assets on Lake Tanganyika, reporting that there were currently on the lake eight craft of various sizes belonging to the Congolese Government. Five Agency-owned craft were scheduled for deployment on the lake by April 5. (Ibid., Job 78–02502R, DDO/ISS Files, Box 1, [cryptonym not declassified] Operations (Jan. 65–Apr. 65), [text not declassified]) A May 5 memorandum to the 303 Committee reported that the five boats had been covertly supplied to the Congolese Government by CIA and placed on the lake. (National Security Council, Intelligence Files, Congo 1960–1964)