8. Briefing Memorandum From the Presidentʼs Assistant for National Security Affairs (Kissinger) to President Nixon1 2


  • Secretary Rogersʼ Report on his African Trip—Your Meeting with the Secretary—Tuesday, February 24, 4:30pm

Secretary Rogers reports to you today on his trip to Africa. He visited Morocco and Tunisia in North Africa; in Black Africa he visited in turn Ethiopia, Kenya, Zambia, the Congo, Cameroon, Nigeria, Ghana and Liberia.

Talking points are at Tab A. The following is a brief review of the main themes of discussions in the several countries:

In Black Africa

Communist Influence

Ethiopiaʼs Emperor Haile Selassie was concerned (as he had been during his visit here last year) over increasing Soviet influence in the Horn of Africa;

The Congoʼs Mobuto is worried over Communist Chinese inroads in neighboring Congo-Brazzaville, the Sudan and Tanzantia;

Liberiaʼs Tubman also warned of the possible spread of communism in Africa to the detriment of the West.

On the other hand, Zambiaʼs Kaunda and Gowon in Nigeria were aware of the dangers of dealing with the Chinese and the Soviets but generally discounted the impact of the Communists on the political fabric of their countries and on the continent.


All evidenced a strong desire for more U.S. assistance preferably bilateral and with as few strings as possible. All recognized the great need for development and the related need for an improved climate for foreign investment. Specific requests for bilateral assistance are noted in the enclosed country summaries. Bilateral issues for each country are summarized at Tab B.

[Page 2]

Southern Africa

Most expressed some concern for U.S. policy toward the White Regimes but emphasis varied. The subject was only lightly touched upon in Ethiopia, Kenya and Congo(K). In Zambia and Ghana we were asked to take a more positive stance against the racial and colonial policies of the White States. OAU Secretary General Telli pressed hard on this point. Cameroon urged a stronger stand in support of UN jurisdiction over South West Africa. Our own Ambassadors, who were meeting in Kinshasa, want us to maintain moral and political pressures on the racial situation in Southern Africa.

In North Africa

Morocco and Tunisia. In both countries the Secretary encountered what is becoming a common North African view of the Arab-Israeli problem—that there will not be a settlement until Israel and the Palestinians come to terms with each other. This has long been President Bourguibaʼs sincerely held view, but King Hassan may have adopted it as a convenient way of bowing to the Palestinian cause while extricating himself from unqualified backing for Nasser. Since you will be talking with Hassan in July, you may be interested to ask the Secretary his view on how deeply held a position this is in Hassanʼs mind.

Having expressed an interest in pursuing further the concept of a Mediterranean policy, you might also be interested to ask the Secretaryʼs view on whether North African leaders look more to their African or their Mediterranean relationships.

Tab B

[Page 3]


Black Africa

Ethiopia—Emphasis was on security matters. The Emperor is concerned about insurgency and communist influence in the Horn. He wants more military and economic aid.

Kenya—Emphasis was on economic development. Kenya wants more bilateral aid in preference to regional aid. They asked also for helicopters for the police.

Zambia—Wants an unequivocal US stand against racial and colonial repression in the White States of Southern Africa.

Congo(K)—Emphasis was on security. Mobutu is concerned over potential Communist-supported insurgency from neighboring states. He asked for C–130ʼs and patrol craft for his armed forces.

Cameroon—Emphasis was on continued US economic assistance in the regional context. Cameroon is not a concentration country for bilateral economic assistance but wants to be.

Nigeria—Emphasis was on rehabilitation and reconstruction. Nigeria wants increased economic assistance for roads, bridges and pre-fab housing.

Ghana—Emphasis was on economic development. Ghana wants help in debt-rescheduling (we are not a principal creditor), more aggressive US private investment, and a world cocoa agreement.

North Africa

Morocco—The Moroccans repeated the line Finance Minister Tahiri took when he saw you last fall, urging us to increase the flexibility of our aid procedures. Hassan may make a similar request of you when he visits Washington later this year.

Tunisia—The Tunisians were preoccupied with [Page 4] the Arab-Israeli situation and with their own problems in rebuilding from last fallʼs floods. They expressed genuine concern about US policy on the Arab-Israeli impasse and about Nasserʼs increasing influence in neighboring Libya. But, according to the Secretaryʼs reports, they did not mention specific bilateral issues.

  1. Source: National Archives, Nixon Presidential Materials, NSC Files, Box 281, Agency Files, Department of State, 12/01/69–02/21/70, Vol. V. Confidential. Attached but not published at Tab A are Talking Points for Nixonʼs meeting with Rogers.
  2. Kissinger reviewed the main themes of Secretary Rogersʼ discussions during his trip to Africa.