128. Action Memorandum From the Deputy Under Secretary of State for Management (Brown) to Secretary of State Kissinger1

Bureau Reorganization

The present bureau set-up is cumbersome and does not relate easily to political realities. A re-alignment is in order.

1. Transfer to EUR: Cyprus, Greece, and Turkey. It is logical to put Greece and Turkey into EUR and the NATO context. Cyprus follows naturally.

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2. Transfer to NEA: Morocco, Tunisia, Algeria, and Libya. This action puts the Arab states of the Maghreb with their Middle Eastern brethren. AF becomes Black-Africa oriented and thus cohesive.

3. Transform NEA: NEA, in the first bite, could be constituted into two sections: Middle East/Maghreb (largely Arab/moslem); the subcontinent (India, Pakistan, Bangladesh, Ceylon, etc.). In the second bite, NEA could sensibly be split in two. This will require Congressional approval as we would be creating an additional Assistant Secretary for the new Bureau which would emerge.

I have consulted Easum, Hartman, and Atherton. Easum has no problems. He does not think that Diggs2 will object but agrees that he should be consulted. Hartman goes along. Atherton wonders if Sudan should be included. There is some logic to this because of the relationship with Egypt. There is a perverse logic as well in not putting all the Arab League countries into NEA, especially those like Sudan and Mauritania whose populations are largely black.

Atherton has some doubts about the second bite. He wants a chance to think it over. Easum believes the eventual division of NEA is the sensible way out of what could become an overly large and diverse bureau.


(1) That you approve the switch of countries to and from NEA.

(2) That you approve for planning purposes and discussion with the Congress the later split of NEA into (a) Near Eastern and Maghrebian Affairs, (b) South Asian Affairs.4

  1. Source: Department of State, Policy and Procedural Files of the Deputy Under Secretary for Management: Lot 79 D 63, January 1974 Chron. No classification marking. Sent through Sisco.
  2. Representative Charles C. Diggs, Jr. (D–Michigan), was Chairman of the Subcommittee on Africa of the House International Relations Committee.
  3. Kissinger initialed his approval of both recommendations.
  4. The Bureau of South and Central Asian Affairs would not be created until 1992.