295. Memorandum From the Joint Chiefs of Staff to Secretary of Defense McNamara1



  • US Policies and Programs for Ethiopia (U)
The Joint Chiefs of Staff have reviewed US policies and programs for Ethiopia in the context of comments and recommendations received from the US Ambassador to Ethiopia and CINCSTRIKE/USCINCMEAFSA and of discussions in Washington during the period 1–5 June 1964. This review has led the Joint Chiefs of Staff to conclude that a substantial and prompt increase in US political, economic, and military assistance to Ethiopia is justified by:
The importance of Ethiopia to US politico/military interests.
The recent deterioration in US-Ethiopian relations.
Sino-Soviet progress in efforts to influence and subvert East African countries.
CINCSTRIKE/USCINCMEAFSA has proposed a military assistance program for Ethiopia which includes the following:
Dollar ceilings (in millions): FY 1965–18.24; FY 1966–20.44; FY 1967–19.56; FY 1968–12.15; FY 1969–10.13; and FY 1970–12.02.
MAAG manpower ceilings (including training teams): FY 1964–126; FY 1965–231; FY 1966–542; FY 1967–246; FY 1968–246; FY 1969–221; and FY 1970–121.
Specific findings of the Joint Chiefs of Staff are provided in Appendix A2 hereto. Appendix B hereto contains background information and discussion of the problem.
Consideration has been given to advice from Ambassador Korry and CINCSTRIKE/USCINCMEAFSA concerning the possible appointment of a British military advisor to the Emperor. Diplomatic efforts should be undertaken to discourage such an appointment. If these efforts fail, action should be taken to insure that the UK-Ethiopian relationship is consistent with US interests. In any event, the problems of a British advisor and US support to Ethiopia should be treated as separate issues.
The Joint Chiefs of Staff recommend that: [Page 514]
The planned review of the National Policy Paper for Ethiopia3 be expedited, and that such review reflect increased US interest in the development and security of Ethiopia.
Priority action be taken to secure approval of a separate, basic US national objective as follows: to organize, equip, train, and support an effective 40,000-man Ethiopian Army and minimum, but effective, Air Force and Navy forces as rapidly as Ethiopian capabilities permit.
The plan proposed by CINCSTRIKE/USCINCMEAFSA be approved, in principle, subject to refinements resulting from detailed planning and discussions with the Ethiopian Government.
Service and Military Assistance Program manpower and dollar ceilings be increased as required to support the proposed plan.4
For the Joint Chiefs of Staff:
J.W. Davis
Rear Admiral, USN
Deputy Director, Joint Staff
  1. Source: Washington National Records Center, RG 330, OSD Files: FRC 70 A 1266, 381 Ethiopia. Secret.
  2. The appendices are not printed.
  3. For the National Policy Paper on Ethiopia, December 19, 1963, see Foreign Relations, 1961–1963, vol. XXI, pp. 486489.
  4. In telegram 131 to Addis Ababa, August 13, the Departments of State and Defense informed Ambassador Korry and the Chief of MAAG, Ethiopia, that there was an estimated global shortfall in FY 1965 MAP funds of at least $170 million. MAP funds for Ethiopia were currently set at $9.9 million and the possibility of any increase in FY 1965 was unlikely. The agencies were aware of the problems this created at the present juncture in the U.S. military aid relationship with Ethiopia and still hoped to give fullest consideration to the long-range policy approach discussed during Korry’s consultations in June. (Department of State, Central Files, DEF 19 US–ETH)