236. Memorandum From Marshall Wright of the National Security Council Staff to the Presidentʼs Assistant for National Security Affairs (Kissinger)1 2


  • Mobutu and C–130ʼs

The Department of Defense will have to me by 9:00 tomorrow morning a letter of authorization on the sale of three C–130ʼs. It has got to be a cash deal, but Mobutu said five times “Je suis prepare acheter.” I have put the arm on Defense for two things which can serve to illustrate the warmth of our Presidentʼs regard. First, waiver of the 2% charge on quality control. It amounts to $300 thousand, most of which is not actually out of pocket. The second is waiver of the R&D cost, in this case $48 thousand, none of which is out of pocket. I have got Defense moving in this direction but you will probably get a call tomorrow morning from Dick Ware or Warren Nutter to confirm that this is what the President wants. Please tell them yes.

There is no problem about Presidential determination under Conte-Long. If Mobutu is really prepared to pay for these aircraft, we will have everything done before he leaves town tomorrow, including expediting delivery.

  1. Source: National Archives, Nixon Presidential Materials, NSC Files, Box 746, Country Files, Africa, Zaire (Republic of the Zaire) (Congo-Kinshasa), Vol. I. No classification marking. Kissinger initialed the memorandum and added a handwritten note, “Good job!” In an August 6 memorandum to the Assistant Secretary of Defense, Wright confirmed in writing that Kissinger had informed him the President wanted the administration to be as helpful as possible in assisting the Congolese in their purchase of the three C–130 aircraft, including waiver of the normal administrative charges. (Ibid.)
  2. Wright reported that he had arranged authorization from the Department of Defense for sale of three C–130s with waivers of both the 2% charge on quality control and the research and development cost.