21. Response to National Security Study Memorandum 2011 2


I. Introduction and Summary 1
II. Present U.S. Arms Policy 7
III. The Military Situation in Africa 16
IV. U.S. Interests 19
V. U.S. Interests and Military Assistance 23
VI. Other Factors 26
VII. Future Prospects for Military Supply Relationships 32
VIII. Key Issues 35
IX. Options 43
X. Annexes
A. Military Force Strengths of Black African Countries 53
B. U.S. Military Assistance to Black African Countries 59
C. Communits Military Assistance to Black Africa 60
D. Military Assistance and Arms Policy in Black-Africa—Great Britain 78
E. Military Assistance and Arms Policy in Black Africa—France 85
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Response to NSSM 201

I. Introduction and Summary

As the nations of black Africa emerged from colonial rule, the U.S. began providing military assistance2 to some to help them protect their newly won independence against the possible threat of communist backed subversion or insurgency and to demonstrate our friendship and desire to contribute to their goal of nation building. Generally, U.S. arms policy to the countries of black Africa has been characterized by restraint and our preference to deal with the area as a whole in policy formulation. [Page 3] This approach has been based on the premise that the area was marginal to U.S. interests, that the overriding task of these nations was economic and political development, that these transitional societies were unlikely to face serious security threats, and that the former metropoles would continue to provide adequately for their limited security needs.

Over the years, a total of $235 million U.S. grant and $58 million FMS credit was provided to 14 countries (Annex B) in the area. The largest program by far ($181.6 million) has been provided to Ethiopia, where our aid was linked to our Kagnew communications station and more recently was intended to influence the long-term orientation of the regime in face of the potentially destabilizing tensions produced by Soviet support of Somalia. In Zaire, the only country faced with a serious threat of internal dissolution in the immediate post-independence period, timely U.S. assistance played a critical role. The only other significant security assistance program was provided to Liberia, where the U.S. has had a special relationship deriving from the country’s founding by freed American slaves. Programs for other countries were, for the most part, developed at symbolic levels to demonstrate American friendship and our desire to help the new states consolidate and strengthen their sense of independence and nationhood.

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As a result of increased Congressional pressure on worldwide funds, most grant aid programs have been phased out. In FY–75, only Ethiopia is scheduled to receive grant materiel assistance ($11.3 million) and small training programs ($545 thousand) are proposed for Liberia, Senegal, Ghana, Mali, Sudan and Zaire. FMS credit programs of up to $11 million for Ethiopia, $3.5 million for Zaire, and $.5 million for Liberia are also planned. In addition, a $53 million cash sale was approved for Ethiopia and sales requests are anticipated from several others.

Coupled with Congressional pressures on funds (both grant and credit), legislative restrictions also have had direct implications for our arms supply programs in the area: (i) a $40 million ceiling on the total amount of military grants, credits, and credit guarantees (excluding training) that can be provided to Africa (including the countries of North Africa); (ii) a restriction against the use of grant or credit funds for providing sophisticated equipment, such as jet aircraft and missile systems, unless the President determines that it is “important to the national security of the United States to do so.” Similarly, U.S. policy has eschewed providing certain modern weapons, even on a cash basis, that might raise U.S. domestic or Congressional criticism, such as so-called indiscriminate systems (Gatling guns and napalm) [Page 5] and those of advanced modernity or associated with some contentious aspect of our Southeast Asia experience (cluster bombs). Also, no new countries have been added to eligibility lists for grant, FMS credit, or FMS sales since the early sixties because of our reluctance to challenge Congressional attitudes on the so-called perpetuation or proliferation of security assistance in the absence of an overriding or pressing need.

For all of the above reasons, in some countries where it might have been considered in the U.S. interest to provide increased or limited training, credit or FMS sales, we have not been able to do so. Many of these African countries are increasingly turning to the U.S., particularly those with whom we have had a military relationship, those whose economic growth is facilitating a weaning away from former colonial relationships, and those where we have important interests. U.S. efforts to restrain arms buildups in Africa have been undercut by the easy availability of arms from other sources. For example, total agreements between African governments and external arms sources from 1970 to 1973 amounted to over $1 billion. Purchases increased from $187 million in 1972 to $430 million in 1973, of which $300 million was by nations in Black Africa. Eighty-five percent of the 1973 total was from France, Italy, the United Kingdom, and the USSR.

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The study that follows is an attempt to evaluate our arms policy in black Africa, describe the African political/military environment, U.S. interests, the role of the Soviets and PRC, and other factors that relate to our arms policy. The study then identifies the following key issues.

$40 Million Ceiling. Whether to try to raise or eliminate the African $40 million Congressional ceiling on grant and credit (excluding training) or to continue to try to reinstate the Presidential authority to waive the ceiling.

Eligibility Lists. Whether U.S. interests warrant adding/eliminating countries eligible for grant and credit assistance and/or FMS cash sales.

Sophisticated Equipment. Whether U.S. policy should strictly preclude provision of sophisticated and restricted weapons systems in light of similar availability from other sources.

Finally, the study presents the following options with arguments pro and con:

Phased disengagement from all arms supply relationships.

Restrictive policy that would consider arms supply on a country-by-country basis supplying only where justified by our national security interests, and the overall political, economic, and security situation in each instance.

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Selective policy that would consider arms supply on a country-by-country basis, taking into account our national interest and the overall political, economic, and security situation in each instance.

Unrestrictive policy that would generally provide cash arms sales as a tool of U.S. foreign policy.

An arms control policy that, in conjunction with any of the above, might attempt to encourage African states to enter into arms limitations and control agreements.

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Foreign military assistance to Africa, as to the rest of the world, originated in our concern for mutual security. As expressed in 1962 by Secretary of State Dean Rusk:

“Our foreign military assistance program is the principal means by which we help sustain our worldwide collective security systems and the strength and will of free nations. … Without the confidence which the people of nation after nation have developed from the presence of their own forces to which we have given arms and training, the existing structure of free and independent nations might well have crumbled long ago.”

As the wave of independence crested in Africa in 1960, the United States Government was especially concerned that the new nations would prove a fertile ground for communist subversion. In October 1961, Under Secretary of State Chester Bowles described Africa as “one of the highest priority targets for Soviet ambitions and one on which they have set high hopes.” Four years earlier, then Vice-President Nixon declared that “the communist threat underlines the wisdom and necessity of our assisting the countries of Africa to maintain their independence. … the importance of Africa to the free world is too great for us to become complacent about this danger.”

It was recognized that the armies of Africa would be too weak to contribute significantly to Free World [Page 9] defense, but the participation of Ethiopian troops in the Korean conflict was often cited as evidence of African willingness to participate in collective defense undertakings. The threat to the security of the new African countries was seen to come from internal subversion and insurgencies rather than from external attack. U.S. policy makers recognized that in order to achieve their goal of economic and social development, the African states would have to ensure their domestic tranquility and stability against what Secretary of Defense McNamara, in testimony before the House Foreign Affairs Committee in 1961, termed “the now familiar pattern of penetration, infiltration, subversion, dissidence and guerrilla warfare.”

While the general aim was to keep Africa free from communism, it was also recognized that military assistance might also yield other benefits to the United States. Appearing before the House Committee during its hearings on Mutual Security Appropriations for 1961, Assistant Secretary for African Affairs Joseph Satterthwaite pointed out that “it is … essential for the United States to retain its right to operate certain key bases in North Africa, and that the United States and its allies have continued access to a wide range of important materials in Africa, principally minerals. To achieve these strategic [Page 10] and political objectives, the United States has undertaken to assist a few of the African states in providing equipment and training to the maintenance of their internal security.”

From the inception of our military assistance programs in Africa, both the Executive Branch and the Congress have recognized that the African nations, all of whom were poor and underdeveloped, could ill afford to equip and support large defense forces. Money spent on unnecessary arms is better spent on development. Following an extended trip to Africa in 1962, Senator Allen Ellender of Louisiana stated: “All should know that it will require strenuous efforts to develop the economies of these new countries, and to have any of them burdened with the necessity of providing for armies would lead to tragedy.” To the Executive Branch, Assistant Secretary Mennan Williams declared that“African nations in general have only small military forces, and we believe that they should continue to be modest.”

Guidelines adopted in 1962 established the general objectives for military supply policy in Africa: (1) prevention of arms races; (2) to supplement not supplant the former metropoles in providing military support where required; (3) to limit military assistance to minimum internal security requirements in civic action; (4) to counter communist penetration; (5) to utilize military [Page 11] assistance primarily for political purposes; (6) to administer military assistance in an unpretentious manner; (7) to foster an anti-communist, western-oriented military community.

The stated aims of our arms policy have remained basically unchanged over the years.

Section 501 of the Foreign Assistance Act of 1961, as amended (1974), (FAA) describes the purposes of the military component of our foreign assistance program as follows:

In enacting this legislation, it is therefore the intention of the Congress to promote the peace of the world and the foreign policy, security, and general welfare of the United States by fostering an improved climate of political independence and individual liberty, improving the ability of friendly countries and international organizations to deter or, if necessary, defeat Communist or Communist-supported aggression, facilitating arrangements for individual and collective security, assisting friendly countries to maintain internal security, and creating an environment of security and stability in the developing friendly countries’ essential to their more rapid social, economic and political progress.

Current legislation also reflects concern that the countries of Africa not divert an undue amount of their scarce resources to military purposes, especially the acquisition of sophisticated weaponry. Section 620 (s) of the Foreign Assistance Act (FAA) requires the President to take into account in considering development [Page 12] loans, supporting assistance, or PL 480 programs the extent of the proposed recipient’s military expenditures including the acquisition of sophisticated weaponry. Section 504 of the FAA and Section 4 of the Foreign Military Sales Act (FMSA) prohibit use of military assistance programs (MAP) or foreign military sales (FMS) credit or guaranty funds to furnish sophisticated weapons (e.g., missile systems or jet aircraft) to underdeveloped countries unless the President finds it important to the national security of the United States to do so. Finally, Section 35 of the FMSA requires the suspension of FMS sales, credits, and guarantees to any economically less developed country that is found to be diverting U.S. development assistance or its own resources to unnecessary military expenditures which materially interfere with its development.

U.S. military assistance in Africa has never attained a funding level commensurate with the importance implied in the Administration’s justifications of the program to the Congress in the early sixties. In fact perhaps the most striking aspect of the U.S. military supply in Black Africa has been its quantitative insignificance when considered in the context of our total arms aid abroad. Through fiscal year 1973, U.S. military aid to Black Africa amounted to $251.8 million, only .4% of the $62.1 billion total of U.S. foreign military assistance (includes worldwide grant, FMS credit and FMS sales).

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There are several reasons for the paucity of U.S. military supply to Africa. Most importantly, Africa proved not to be a fertile field for communist supported subversion or insurgency. Thus, with the exception of the Congo (K) (Zaire), and Nigeria, where separatist attempts threatened national unity after independence, the governments of the new nations had no need of massive military assistance to help them preserve their independence and territorial integrity. The former metropoles furnished most of the materiel and training for the small armed forces. Secondly, Ethiopia was the only country in Black Africa where the United States acquired and maintained a major military asset (Kagnew Station) in return for which military supply assistance was an element of compensation. Thirdly, just as Africa did not swing toward the Communists, it also didn’t swing to the West. Fourthly, there has been no war between African nations, which might have required major external arms sources/and—again with the exception of Zaire—we have maintained neutrality in the internal conflicts that have taken place. Finally, the concern of successive American administrations to avoid contributing to an arms race in Africa has kept our programs small. This administration policy has be reinforced by constant Congressional opposition to U.S. participation in the acquisition of arms by the fledgling [Page 14] African states, whose financial resources are so badly needed for economic development. Section 33 of the FMSA for FY 1974 retains the $40 million annual ceiling for credit and grant sales of materiel and training for all of Africa (including the Arab north) that has been a feature of the Act since 1968. The ceiling for grant assistance, including training, is $25 million.

Sophisticated Weapons: The U.S. policy of restraint has been qualitative as well as quantitative. There has been resistance both in the Executive and the Congress to providing the sophisticated weapons or modern, high-potency weapons systems to Black African countries because (a) no security threat sufficient to justify the acquisition of these weapons has been demonstrated; (b) their high cost, if not acquired as a grant, would divert resources from development needs; and (c) acquisition by one country would stimulate acquisition by others, compounding the economic waste and increasing—if only slightly—the potential threat to peace.

Policy Goals: Since few communist-backed insurgencies have developed in Africa since the pacification of the various rebellions in Zaire, U.S. military assistance in most of Black Africa has been aimed at political rather than security goals. Military supply has been only one of the several means by which we have sought to assist the young states in developing their governmental infrastructure and reinforcing their sense of national unity. In Africa [Page 15] as elsewhere, arms are viewed as a mark of sovereignty and the acquisition of arms a matter of prestige. By providing small quantities of material and training, the United States has been able to support some friendly governments and thereby encourage a political climate which facilitated other policy objectives.

Zaire: In Zaire during the early sixties arms played a major role in security operations. There, timely U.S. arms deliveries shored up the shaky central government and enabled it to quell the dissident faction. Perhaps more importantly, our arms aid enabled General Mobutu to defeat the communist-supported rebels before the insurgency grew to a size that might have brought the United States into confrontation with the Soviet Union as suppliers of the opposing sides.

Ethiopia and Liberia: The United States became the major arms supplier to Ethiopia and Liberia for historical and strategic reasons. Neither country had a colonial power to look to for its military assistance needs, and the United States had a special relationship with Liberia dating from the time of Liberia’s settlement by freed American slaves in the middle of the nineteenth century. U.S. military association with Ethiopia began in 1942 when the United States took over a small British signal station in Asmara, Eritrea. Kagnew Station, as the post came to be called, grew to be a major communications installation. In return for access to Kagnew, the United States [Page 16] became in time the major supplier both of materiel and training to the Ethiopian armed forces.

Quids pro quo: With the exception of our base rights in Ethiopia and special access rights to ports and airfields in Liberia, we have neither asked for nor received specific quids pro quo for our military supply assistance in Black Africa. Military supply, along with economic development assistance, has probably contributed to the development of an atmosphere of trust and cooperation between the United States and various African governments, but in a manner that would be impossible to specify or quantify. Overall, our military supply role in Black Africa has been limited, as have any benefits we have derived from it. At the same time, to some similarly unquantifiable degree, our refusal to supply arms have put strains on our relationships with some Black African countries, 16 of which have military governments. A case in point is Nigeria where during the civil war we refused to supply ammunition to the Federal Military Government for recoilless rifles we had sold them earlier. The Nigerians took our refusal as an indication of sympathy for the Biafran rebels, and the incident troubled our relations for some time. Our reluctance to supply arms to Somalia in 1964 probably influenced the Somalis to turn to the Soviet Union to supply their arms needs, thus giving the Soviets the opportunity to establish the [Page 17] dominant position they enjoy in Somalia today, including a fleet broadcasting facility and access to Somali ports and airfields in support of the Soviet presence in the Indian Ocean.


There has never been a war between independent black African states. There have been clashes along the arbitrary and often vague boundaries inherited from colonial times, but peace has been quickly restored, and there has been nowhere a sustained military conflict. This has meant that armaments have been a relatively minor factor in the history of independent Black Africa. Major exceptions have been in the Sudan and Nigeria, both of which went through traumatic civil wars, and Zaire. There have been other small-scale insurgencies in countries throughout the continent, but except in Ethiopia, the insurgents represented more a political than a military threat. In each case the solutions have had to be sought (or still must be sought) in political accommodation rather than in enhanced government fire power. The general absence of interstate military conflict has obviated the necessity for large military establishments for external defense. Only Ethiopia, Kenya and Zambia can be considered to have a rational basis for concern over possible external [Page 18] aggression. The threat is particularly acute in the Horn of Africa where tensions has been kept high by the Somali claim (on ethnic grounds) to a large area of eastern Ethiopia and northern Kenya. Here, too, is Black Africa’s only “arms race” as Ethiopia and Somalia seek new arms for fear of seeing the balance of military power tip towards its opponent.

The Liberation Movements: The most active combatant elements in Black Africa today have been the insurgent groups that for the past decade have sought to break the Portuguese hold on their African colonies of Guinea Bissau, Angola, and Mozambique. More recently, guerrilla groups have begun carrying out insurgent operations against the white minority regime in Rhodesia. The liberation movements have caused significant and continuing policy problems for the United States. On the one hand, Portugal is a NATO ally of the United States, whose support we counted on in the European politico/military context. We have also felt that continued access to our airbase at Lajes in the Azores has been strategically important in the Atlantic area, and it proved to be essential in our resupply operations to Israel in October of 1973. On the other hand, U.S. support of Portugal, even though it was strictly confined to the NATO framework, was bitterly resented by many of the independent African nations and made us appear in their eyes enemies of freedom in the [Page 19] Portuguese territories. There are hopeful signs that these dilemmas may be resolved by the decolonization action that has been initiated recently by the new Portuguese government.

The insurgent forces in Rhodesia, until fairly recently quiescent, are becoming more and more active and have been one of the factors that prompted the Smith government to seek a negotiated settlement with the African National Congress and is now moving Prime Minister Smith to undertake wider consultations with the African majority in an effort to reach a political accommodation between the races. If the conflicts are resolved in the neighboring Portuguese territories, resources previously available to the guerrilla groups there might be directed to the Rhodesian insurgents, thus increasing the risk of armed confrontation between the blacks and the white minority government.

As yet, South Africa has been practically free of insurgent activity. Nevertheless as guerilla successes are registered elsewhere, it is not unlikely that their example will give impetus to insurgent operations in South Africa as well.

The ELF and FROLINAT: There are two active insurgencies in Black Africa that are not supported by the Organization of African Unity but are, rather, separatist movements directed against OAU member governments. These are the [Page 20] Eritrean Liberation Front (ELF) in Ethiopia and the Front de la Liberation Nationale (FROLINAT) in Chad. Since most of the members in both movements are Muslims in conflict with predominantly non-Muslim governments, both the ELF and FROLINAT have been supported by various Arab governments. At present, FROLINAT, whose backing from Libya seems to be on the decline, shows little vitality. The ELF, to the contrary, seems to be gaining strength and increasing its activity concomitantly with the other troubles that are currently plaguing the Ethiopian empire.


U.S. interests in Africa are not crucial but are important and will probably become more so in the coming years.

Strategic: Although the United States substantially phased down its only major strategic installation, the communications complex at Kagnew Station in Asmara, Ethiopia, on June 30, 1974, the residual capabilities there are of strategic significance to us. Particularly important at the moment is access to ports for refueling and bunkering by U.S. ships en route from our Atlantic ports to the Indian Ocean. Ordinarily U.S. naval forces operating in the Indian Ocean require access to East African ports for bunkering and crew shore leave; airfield facilities for surveillance aircraft are desirable. Over-flight rights, including an alternate air route to the [Page 21] Mid-East, are another valuable consideration. Access to some African ports and airfields has been limited by African perception of U.S. opposition to the southern African liberation movements, yet a sufficient number of countries are still open to us to take care of our normal needs. The hoped for end to hostilities in the Portuguese colonies may remove a large part of this contentious issue, but, due to African opposition to the expansion of our naval presence in the Indian Ocean, we must still expect that our ships and planes will not be welcome in some countries.

It is also very much in the United States strategic interest that African areas be denied for operational purposes to the armed forces of our potential enemies. At present, our best intelligence indicates that the Soviet Union has built a communications station in Somalia and has operational access to ports and airfields in Somalia and Guinea (though both governments argue the degree of accessibility). Although the Chinese have large numbers of people in Tanzania and Zambia, where the PRC is building the Tanzam Railway, there is no evidence that the Chinese have established any strategic facilities there.

Obviously, the maintenance of peace is one of the primary objectives of U.S. arms policy in Black Africa. A serious outbreak of hostilities between states in the [Page 22] region could lead to the involvement of the great powers as suppliers to the opposing sides. This sort of quasi- confrontation, while unlikely to lead to armed conflict with the Soviets or the PRC, would not be conducive to the furtherance of detente or to the maintenance of the cooperative relationships that the Administration has been attempting to build with the Soviet Union and China.

Further, any large scale breach of the peace in Black Africa could destroy capital investment of American firms, and interrupt U.S. access to important raw materials. Thus, in addition to humanitarian concerns, the United States has a real, material interest in seeing peace maintained in Black Africa.

U.S. policy aims at minimizing (or at least not contributing to) the military and political confrontation between the Black African states and the white-ruled states and territories in Southern Africa. As far as can be determined, U.S. arms policy has thus far had no bearing on the southern African situation. Available evidence would indicate that no U.S. arms have been diverted from Black African countries to the liberation movements, nor is there evidence that the Black African governments have ever seriously entertained, their rhetoric notwithstanding, the thought of mounting a military campaign against the white dominated lands.

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Economic: It is important that the United States maintain access to African natural resources. Within twenty-five years it is estimated that the United States will depend on imports for all its aluminum, chromium, manganese, tin, and tungsten and for two-thirds of its copper, iron, and lead. Imports of phosphates will also grow in importance as the United States strives to raise more food on less suitable land. Africa is an important supplier of all of these commodities and is also our second largest supplier of crude petroleum. World consumption of these commodities is rising, and there will be increasingly intensified competition for them in the future.

United States investment in Black Africa now totals about $4 billion and is growing faster than in South Africa which has until now been the center of U.S. business interests in sub-saharan Africa.

In 1973 U.S. trade with Black Africa amounted to approximately $2.5 billion. The importance of African minerals in that trade is indicated by our $626.5 million trade deficit with the region for the year.

Political: In the abstract without a specific issue on which to focus, political interest is impossible to quantify and difficult to describe. It hardly needs to be said that it is more advantageous to have friends than enemies. Although some aspects of the cold war have eased [Page 24] during recent years, bloc politics have not vanished from the international scene, but seem, rather, to be expanding. In addition to the east-west cleavage which continues to influence approaches to world questions, we are now faced with a growing separation between the rich nations and the poor with the tendency—as exemplified in the recent Sixth Special UNGA and last year’s non-aligned conference—of the poor nations to act as a bloc becoming the rule rather than the exception. The thirty-five nations of Black Africa comprise over a fourth of the membership of the United Nations and other important world organizations. It is clearly in the United States’ interest to maintain maximum access and influence with these governments with the view of influencing them to treat issues important to us on their merits rather than following the Third World line as a matter of principle. Some important policy issues, however, such as the situation in southern Africa, are not likely to be amenable to U.S. influence.


The benefits to U.S. national interests as a result of our arms role in Black Africa have been uneven and for the most part tend to reflect the size and scope of our effort. Overall our role has been marginal and in most cases so have the gains. Except in Ethiopia, where [Page 25] we received base rights to Kagnew and have been allowed free access to ports for bunkering and crew leave, and Liberia where we have special rights at Roberts Field and the port of Monrovia, it is impossible to make a positive correlation between the levels of U.S. assistance, either economic or military, and the cooperation afforded the United States by the African governments.

In the future, sales programs are less likely to offer as much leverage as grants, although they still provide a means of promoting our interests. We are not likely to obtain specific strategic quids pro quo in return for U.S. military sales in most instances. This is not, however, to say that there will be no return on investments in military assistance. Perhaps even more than economic assistance, a military supply relationship can serve to promote an atmosphere of trust and cooperation between the partners, which can be important to the achievement of our economic and political objectives. Further, a military supply relationship of sufficient magnitude can be more enduring than ties based on other factors. The recipient country may be forced to maintain acceptable relations with its external arms source in order to have continuing access to replacements, spare parts, and munitions for its imported weapons systems. A recipient state in this position may thus be less likely to exhibit the type of mercurial behavior in its foreign relations that has [Page 26] been characteristic of some Black African governments. It should be emphasized, however, that this factor would only be of importance when a recipient country is dependent upon one external source for the bulk of its arms or its most important weapons systems (i.e., jet aircraft) and has no alternative sources. Only in Ethiopia do we have such a relationship in Black Africa at present.

The training element of military assistance may be especially useful in creating the conditions for the exercise of influence on African military establishments. This may be especially important in view of the important political roles that most African military establishments play. (Seventeen out of thirty-five Black African governments are now controlled by the military.) The “comrade-in-arms” tradition is still very strong in Africa and has often provided our military attaches more intimate access to their host government counterparts than is generally achieved by our diplomatic representatives. Relationships established during training periods can be very much like old school ties and can be just as useful.

A military supply relationship can also help us discourage wasteful expenditures by the recipient governments on unnecessary weapons systems. We believe it probable, for example, that had we been willing or able [Page 27] to offer President Mobutu an acceptable jet fighter, we could have influenced him to spend less on the system than on the Mirages he eventually bought from France, thus conserving Zairian budgetary resources.


A number of factors wholly or partially beyond U.S. (Executive Branch) control, impinge upon the latitude or effectiveness of our arms policy in Black Africa.

Other Sources: The political or strategic leverage we might be able to exercise through our arms policy is obviously limited by the ready availability of arms to the Black African states from other sources. Sales agreements between African governments and external arms supplies 1970–73 amounted to over $1 billion. With rare exceptions, when we have refused to provide military equipment or if our terms have been unacceptable, Black African governments have been able to obtain acceptable alternative supply elsewhere. Total African arms purchases increased from $187 million in 1972 to about $430 million in 1973, of which $300 million was by Black African countries. Eighty-five percent of the 1973 total was from France, Italy, United Kingdom and the USSR.

France—France has traditionally supplied most of the needs for military hardware for her former colonies on a grant basis and has for the past several [Page 28] years been selling for cash any type of arms to any Black African buyer.

Great Britain.—The United Kingdom has supplied both weaponry and training to her former colonies, but, because of Britain’s own precarious economic situation, rarely on a grant basis.

The Communist Countries—Both the USSR and the PRC have provided significant military assistance to Black African countries primarily to increase their presence and influence on the continent and to enhance their reputation as defenders of the Third World against the “imperialists, colonialists, and neo-colonialists.” The Soviets have been the major supplier to Somalia where they have about 700 military advisors, operate a communications facility, and have bunkering rights at the port of Berbera. Soviet weaponry provided Somalia has included tanks, missiles and MIG–21 aircraft. The Soviets exploited the West’s refusal to provide arms to the Federal Military Government of Nigeria during the civil war by providing the FMG with MIG aircraft and technicians. At present, the Soviet Union and the PRC appear to be entering into significant supply relationships with both Nigeria and Zaire, the most affluent of the Black African states. The PRC’s military assistance exposure in Black Africa is smaller than that of the Soviet Union and is concentrated primarily in Tanzania [Page 29] where the Chinese have 745 military advisors and technicians. An estimated 6,700 Africans have received military training in the communist countries.

Other Suppliers—Belgium has also continued its military assistance to its former possessions, but on a relatively minor scale. Belgium presently has small programs in Zaire, Rwanda and Burundi. There have been reports that the Arab states, principally Libya and Saudi Arabia, have offered to finance arms acquisitions to the Black African states and have already provided some training.

Congressional and Public Opposition: As mentioned earlier there is significant opposition in the Congress to the expansion of U.S. grant military assistance or credit arms sales in Black Africa and this opposition is reflected in current foreign assistance legislation. In 1973, the Congress removed from the FMSA (Sec. 33, para C) authority that had been previously granted the President to waive the $40 million African ceiling for reasons of “overriding requirements of the national security of the United States.” In the FAA of the same year, the Congress reduced the number of countries eligible worldwide for grant military assistance (excluding training in the United States) from [Page 30] 40 to 31. Congressional attitudes reflect the apparently widespread conviction that poor countries should spend their money on development rather than on armaments and that it is contrary to America’s declared humanitarian ideals to traffic in instruments of death and destruction. These entrenched and longstanding attitudes are not likely to change in the near future and will seriously inhibit the Administration’s ability to employ military supply as a foreign policy tool.

Disarmament Policy: The Administration’s freedom of action in military assistance and arms policy is also inhibited by its own frequently declared position in favor of arms limitations generally, and in Africa particularly. In September, 1960, President Eisenhower listed as one of five American objectives in Africa “help in assuring their security without wasteful and dangerous competition in armaments.” He went on to say that, “If, through concerted effort, these nations can close off competition in armaments they can give the whole world a lesson in international relations.”

President Johnson and Secretary of State Rusk, during the period 1964 to 1966, sought to generate international interest in limiting conventional arms, and they suggested that the developing countries, on a regional basis, explore ways to control their arms acquisitions. Although not [Page 31] directed toward any specific region, the U.S. has on several occasions since 1966 in the Conference of the Committee on Disarmament (CCD) in Geneva and the UN called for the exploration of various approaches which might be helpful in achieving a consensus on the overall problem of conventional arms control. The U.S. has urged other governments to consider regional arms control as one of the more promising avenues to be explored and has suggested principles for such arrangements. In other international forums, including SALT and MBFR the United States has emphasized the desirability of limiting the world’s armaments.

Undemocratic Regimes: U.S. policy in Latin America and Asia has frequently been criticized as supportive of undemocratic regimes, especially those controlled by the military. Until now, there has been little criticism in this country of Africa’s undemocratic governments. Nevertheless, most of Black Africa’s thirty-five governments are not democratic according to our standards and sixteen of them are controlled by the military establishment. A significant expansion of U.S. military supply relationships with these governments could provoke unpleasant domestic criticism of our policies, which could, if sufficiently strong, reflect itself in legislative restrictions.

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Foreign Reactions to U.S. Arms Policy

In Africa: Within Africa—With the exception of Somalia, which has raised low-key objections to U.S. provision of arms to Ethiopia, our military assistance and supply operations have not been opposed by the neighbors of the recipient countries.

From the Communists—Since the end of the Congolese (Zairian) rebellions, there has been little overt communist opposition to U.S. arms policy in Africa. There have been occasional communist propaganda charges that NATO (U.S.) arms were being used by the government troops in the Portuguese territories, but these have been only sporadic.

The Former Metropoles—The United States has not entered into active commercial competition with either the French or the British in arms sales in Black Africa, and there has been no perceptible opposition on the part of the former metropoles to our small MAP or FMS programs.

Southern Africa—Were we to lift our arms embargo to South Africa, there would, of course, be an immediate and intense reaction from the Black African states. Given the wide availability of arms from other sources, our embargo has not, however, been effective in impeding the development of military capabilities in south Africa.

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For the foreseeable future we anticipate no slackening of demand for U.S. military equipment from Black African countries. There are present indications that the demands are likely to increase. As certain African states become more affluent they will seek to increase their arms acquisitions from the United States and to raise the level of sophistication of their arsenals. At the moment we have outstanding requests for C–130s from Nigeria and Zaire, for fighter aircraft from Sudan, Nigeria and Zaire, for training aircraft, transport aircraft, M–16s, advanced weapons systems (VULCAN), tanks, helicopters and military vehicles from Zaire. These are in addition to the requests from Ethiopia, which fears it has fallen into a position of strategic inferiority vis-a-vis Somalia.

Should our ban on the sale of more modern or sophisticated weaponry be relaxed, we would expect to see a greater demand in Black Africa for our light, rapid-fire, infantry weapons (e.g., the M–16) and our less expensive missile systems, both ground-to-air and air-to-air (SIDEWINDER, RED-EYE, etc.) In all of these cases, with the exception of Ethiopia, the choice of U.S. weapons systems would not necessarily indicate any degree of special affinity for the United States, its philosophies, or its policies, but, rather, the judgment that our materiel [Page 34] represents the best merchandise for the money. Further, U.S. technical military training is generally recognized as the finest available in the world, and a growing number of African states are likely to be willing to pay for American training for their military if they cannot obtain it on a grant basis.

The continuing Black African demand for American military supply does not reflect any growing tension or tendency to instability in the region with the exception of the Horn. Rather, enhancement of military capability, particularly in the more affluent states (Nigeria, Zaire), will be sought to give visible evidence of the growing strength and grandeur of the state. Nigeria, Zaire, and probably the Sudan as well, aspire to positions of continental preeminence. Impressive armed might would appear to give substance to such pretensions. Since considerable centrifugal tendencies still exist in each of these three countries, a stronger military establishment may some day be useful in maintaining national unity against secession attempts. While the richer countries will increasingly be able to acquire weaponry on a commercial basis, we can anticipate continued requests for grants or credit sales from the smaller less financially able nations.

[Page 35]

The rising Black African demand for U.S. military equipment and training, will offer the United States both economic and political openings if we are able to take advantage of the opportunities as they arise. To provide military equipment to a country, on whatever basis, is to share to some extent the interests which the weaponry is designed to protect or further. This sharing of interests tends to strengthen the confidence and cooperation between the supplier and recipient states. We should not, however, expect in most cases to be able to obtain strategic quids pro quo for our assistance, and any attempt on our part to demand direct concessions in return for military supply could easily sour the relationships.

Without a major administration effort to have certain legislative restrictions removed from military assistance and sales programs, the potential gains of a flexible and responsive arms policy cannot be realized. The first necessity will be an administration decision to enlarge the list of Black African countries eligible for FMS cash sales. The present list of fourteen countries has stood unchanged for a decade. Unless other countries are added to the list by a Presidential determination under Section 503 (A) of the FAA, any supply relationships with additional states will have to be on a strictly commercial sales basis and our choice of policy alternatives in [Page 36] regard to them strictly circumscribed.


$40 Million Congressional Ceiling on Africa3

Section 33 (b) of the Foreign Military Sales Act imposes a limitation of $40 million a year on the total amount of military grants, credits and participation in credits (excluding training) that can be provided to African countries. (Earlier Presidential waiver authority was removed in the 1974 legislation.) Until FY–71 the ceiling was not a particularly serious problem to U.S. policy and security interests in Africa. As a matter of policy, we attempt to discourage unnecessary defense expenditures and, for the most part, attempt to encourage African countries to look to their former metropoles for military equipment, advice, and assistance. There are some countries, however, which look to the U.S. as a source for certain items which they consider essential to their security. In FY–71, the President found it necessary to waive the $40 million ceiling in order to permit the U.S. to be responsive to reasonable and legitimate requests from such countries. Looking to the future, we can expect that more of them will assume an increasing share of the financial burden of meeting their own security requirements, and the $40 million ceiling is likely to become less of a [Page 37] problem. Experience has shown that being unresponsive to reasonable military requirements does not necessarily result in reducing defense expenditures since the countries invariably turn to other nations for their requirements, often purchasing more expensive and advanced equipment than originally sought from the U.S.

Some of these countries, as already being demonstrated, will increasingly turn to the U.S., particularly those with whom we have had a military relationship (e.g., Zaire and Liberia), those whose economic growth will facilitate a weaning from the colonial relationship (e.g., Nigeria), and those where we have an important DOD asset i.e., Ethiopia. Others, such as Sudan, Malagasy Republic, Kenya, and Ethiopia, are likely to become more important to the U.S. because of the opening of the Suez Canal, changing perceptions of our interests and strategic needs in the area. The African ceiling was set seven years ago. Given inflationary trends since that time, this figure may not represent the same degree of concern with the defense requirements of friendly Black African countries as was originally intended. Further, as our need to promote access to the raw materials of the area becomes more demonstrative, e.g., Nigeria’s oil, our need to be more responsive to selective [Page 38] military requirements may also become more obvious. In more immediate terms, the ceiling problem may be of increased concern in FY 75. Our planned materiel program (credit and grant) for FY 75 would total about the same as in FY 74—$39.9 million. The program has been artificially constrained, partly to fit the ceiling, and partly because the ceiling encourages a system of resource allocation that perpetuates the rigidities of past perceptions of U.S. interests without adequate regard for a constantly changing world environment. At least two countries (Ethiopia and Morocco), where we have important strategic interests, our planned levels are considered inadequate by the recipients. In the case of Ethiopia, which could be geographically important to our strategic interests in the Indian Ocean area, the regime is already seriously disappointed with our assistance levels. This redefinition of our interests in Ethiopia and Morocco could result in a redefinition of our worldwide priorities and the allocation of our resources. While the ceiling does not apply directly to commercial sales, many of these countries will have a need for credit assistance or credit guarantees to help mitigate the financial impact on their scarce resources. Consequently, this could present U.S. commercial firms with a disadvantage [Page 39] in attempting to compete with foreign companies whose governments make available financial assistance.

The issue that should be determined is whether we should try to eliminate the ceiling entirely; raise the ceiling to a level representing a more realistic reflection of our interests and need to be responsive to legitimate security concerns of the governments in the area; exempt Arab North Africa from this ceiling; retain the existing ceiling; or as a minimum continue to try for reinstating the Presidential waiver authority.

Eligibility of African Countries for Grant Training, FMS Credit and FMS Sales

During Africa’s rush for independence in the late fifties and early sixties, a total of 14 of the 35 countries in the area were procedurally processed for findings by the President of eligibility to receive grant and credit assistance in conformance with the requirements of the Foreign Assistance Act. The selection of these countries over other countries in the area, if not arbitrary, was for the most part an accident of history: either early independence or a temporary internal situation that warranted a token or limited military assistance program. The findings of eligibility were not premised on analytical criteria that included a projection of long-term U.S. political and strategic interests in the area, nor of the genuine military needs of the countries. Kenya, Zambia, Malawi and [Page 40] the Malagasy Republic, for example, where it could be argued the U.S. has greater interests than some other countries previously found eligible, either obtained independence later or were still having their security needs adequately addressed by their former metropole. In any event, these countries were not initially recommended for findings of eligibility by the President, and by the late sixties, Congressional attitudes had hardened on the proliferation of MAP and it was judged wiser to wait for a more receptive attitude before adding additional countries to the eligibility list. As a consequence, some countries where it might be in our interest to provide a one-time grant equipment impact package, credit or limited training are denied, at the same time we have terminated or phased back on programs elsewhere that had either filled their purpose or where changing circumstance obviated the need. (It is recognized that in order to provide grant or credit materiel to the countries, other countries now receiving such assistance would have to be eliminated from the program in order to keep within the 31 country worldwide total). There is a need to consider the utility of U.S. interests of recommending certain countries, e.g., Kenya, Zambia, Malawi and the Malagasy Republic for Presidential Determinations of eligibility for grant training, FMS sales or FMS credit. In Kenya, anxious over the intentions of [Page 41] neighboring Uganda, Tanzania and Somalia, the Government feels a growing need for an improved security posture at the same time that the U.S. has an increased need for Nairobi’s willingness to allow USN ship visits as a result of our significantly expanded presence in the Indian Ocean. While our naval forces in the area have been increasing, the receptivity to port calls and refueling stops by the littoral states has been diminishing. Also, the availability of oil has added to our need to find alternative ports. An offer of limited grant military training or our ability to consider FMS cash or credit sales would be a useful political tool in promoting improved relations in Kenya. Similarly, the Malagasy Republic, where until recently our periodic ship visits were welcomed, is in the process of attempting to wean itself away from the French—and the USSR and the PRC are among the options being considered. Zambia and Malawi, located on the perimeter of southern Africa’s white redoubt, are countries where it would be helpful, as a hedge against future uncertainties of the racial confrontation in the area, to have improved communications, particularly with the military.

The issue that should be determined is whether U.S. interests in such countries as Kenya, the Malagasy Republic, and Mauritius would justify recommended findings of eligibility by the President for grant training, FMS credit and FMS sales. A request for a Presidential Determination for FMS cash sales to these countries has been sent to the White House.

[Page 42]

U.S. Embargo of Sophisticated/Specialized Weapons Systems

Over the last decade, U.S. policy has generally prohibited the furnishing of sophisticated/specialized weapons systems to African countries under grant or credit sales. This policy is partly the result of restrictive legislation prohibiting the use of grant or credit funds for sophisticated equipment (unless waived by the President) and restrictive criteria applied against PL–480 loan authorities, and partly as a result of USG desires to limit its own role as an arms supplier, particularly for so-called contentious weapons systems (VULCAN, etc). While the Congressional definition of sophisticated equipment is to a large extent ambiguous, i.e., “such as missile systems and jet aircraft for military purposes,” it has generally been interpreted as applying to those weapons of advanced technology that would pose particularly difficult problems for the host country in operation and maintenance. This broader usage consequently has come to include not only advanced jet aircraft and all missile systems, but also such modern weapons as VULCAN and most [Page 43] self-propelled artillery. Similarly, U.S. policy has shied away from providing certain weapons that could raise U.S. domestic and Congressional criticism, such as so-called indiscriminate systems (Gatling guns and napalm) and those of advanced modernity or associated with some unfavorable aspect of our Southeast Asian experience (M16 rifles).

There have been few exceptions to this generally preclusive policy. In the late sixties, Presidential Determinations were obtained for providing F–5 aircraft to Morocco under credit and Ethiopia under grant. More recently, policy exceptions were made for the cash sale (does not require a Presidential Determination) of F–5Es and SIDEWINDERS to Nigeria; SIDEWINDERS, TOWs, and CHAPARRALS for Morocco; and SIDEWINDERS, TOWS, and VULCANs for Ethiopia.

The issue that should be decided is whether the generally restrictive policy should be adhered to in the future or exceptions considered on a case-by-case basis.

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Option 1

Phased Disengagement. Phase out all existing arms-supply relationships in the area and refuse all future requests for grants or sales of training and materiel. This option assumes that the primary task of these countries is economic and political development and that their interests and ours would best be served by an even-handed refusal to supply arms to any country in Black Africa. This option is premised on the belief that any political/strategic advantages offered in arms-supply relationships are at best transitory, subject to increasing criticism in Congress and Third World, and risks U.S. identification and involvement with unsavory and unstable regimes. Under this option the U.S. might, for example:

Inform those countries with whom we have existing assistance relations, i.e., Ethiopia, Zaire, Liberia, Mali, Ghana, Senegal and Sudan of our decision and establish phase-out goals for program terminations;

Publicly announce our withdrawal from arms relationships and refusal to supply arms or training to any country in the area.

Pro—This alternative would:

  • —Preclude cash FMS sales.
  • —Conserve limited grant and credit funds for programs elsewhere.
  • —Avoid risk of U.S. being drawn into African disputes, local arms races and cold war confrontations with the USSR and the PRC.
  • —Avoid U.S. domestic and Congressional criticism and possibly improve credibility of overall Security Assistance Program.
  • —Shore up U.S. moral credentials in Third World.
  • —Demonstrate seriousness of U.S. belief in desirability of arms limitation.
  • —Lessen, perhaps, diversion of scarce African resources from development.

Con—This alternative could:

  • —Sacrifice U.S. strategic interests in some countries, particularly Ethiopia where future tenure at Kagnew, stability of regime and U.S. influence in the area would likely be at stake.
  • —Reduce political access to many regimes.
  • —Fail to reduce arms supply to area since U.S. does not have monopoly.
  • —Create new instabilities in some areas, such as the Horn since Ethiopia would no longer be able to support sizeable inventory of U.S. equipment.
  • —Open the area to further USSR and PRC intrusion, particularly those countries that want to lessen dependence on former metropole.
  • —Make it impossible to take into account different U.S. interests in individual countries in area by treating them all the same.
  • —Ignore legitimate needs and likely threats in some countries.
  • —Eliminate U.S. ability to restrain some arms aspirations.
  • —Open the U.S. to criticism of paternalism toward Africa.
  • —Deny an area of increasing sales potential to U.S. arms industry and loss to balance of payments.

Option 2

Restrictive. As a general policy discourage arms-supply relationships with the area, except where an important U.S. national security interest is involved. This option assumes that U.S. interest would be best served by carefully restricting arms-supply relationships to those countries where the U.S. has important interests, e.g., Ethiopia, Liberia, Zaire and Nigeria. This option is premised on the perception that the area is for the most part marginal to U.S. interests, that these transitional societies are not likely to face serious threats to their security and that the metropoles are likely to [Page 47] continue to provide adequately for their limited security needs. Under this option the U.S. might, for example,

Limit U.S. grant materiel assistance to Ethiopia at projected planned levels of about $11.3 million annually.
Limit grant training and credit assistance to Ethiopia, Liberia and Zaire and terminate training programs for Ghana, Mali, Senegal, Sudan and regional orientation programs.
Continue training on a sales basis for Nigeria and authorize cash sales.
Refuse all other sales and credit requests where an important U.S. national security interest is not involved.
Authorize cash sales of selected sophisticated and specialized weapons systems to Nigeria, Ethiopia and Zaire.

Seek Presidential Waiver authority for $40 million ceiling.

Pro—This alternative would:

  • —Conserve limited grant and credit funds for programs elsewhere.
  • —Please Congress, as a result of terminating small training programs, and thus might improve overall acceptability of the Security Assistance Program.
  • —Avoid risks of U.S. being drawn into African disputes and cold war confrontations with USSR and PRC.
  • —Perhaps lessen diversion of scarce African resources from developmental needs.

Con—This alternative would:

  • —Create political problems with those countries where grant training is terminated.
  • —Limit political access to some regimes.
  • —Fail to reduce arms-supply to area since U.S. does not have arms monopoly.
  • —Open the area to further USSR and PRC intrusion, particularly those countries that want to lessen dependence on former metropole.
  • —Reduce U.S. ability to restrain some arms aspirations.
  • —Open the U.S. to criticism of paternalistic policies to Africa.
  • —Do nothing to open access to Kenya and the Malagasy Republic where USN ship visits might be facilitated by sales or training programs.

Option 3

Selective. Consider future grant and sales on case-by-case basis, subject to individual country’s need, ability to absorb and afford, U.S. legislative [Page 49] restraints, and U.S. interests served. This option assumes that the security needs and U.S. political interest concerned can only be determined on a country-by-country basis and that U.S. interest would be best served by a flexible arms supply policy keyed to individual circumstances. This option is premised on the belief that African requests for arms are likely to increase in the future and that the U.S. has specific interests in some of these countries that would be best promoted by an arms-supply relationship. Under this option the U.S. might, for example:

Continue U.S. grant materiel assistance to Ethiopia at projected planned levels of about $11.3 annually.
Continue grant training where we have special interests, e.g., Ethiopia, Liberia, Zaire, Ghana, Mali, Senegal, Sudan, and regional orientation programs.
Continue credit assistance for Ethiopia, Liberia, and Zaire.
Continue training for Nigeria on FMS cash sale basis.
Provide sophisticated and previously restricted equipment on a case-by-case basis.
Attempt to get African ceiling raised in FY 76.

Consider Presidential finding of FMS for selected African countries including Kenya, Mauritius, [Page 50] and the Malagasy Republic.

Pro—This alternative would:

  • —Recognize that U.S. interests and African arms needs will vary on a country-by-country basis.
  • —Promote U.S. security interests in Black African countries including Ethiopia, Nigeria, Zaire, and possibly Kenya and the Malagasy Republic (facilitating increasing needs for USN port calls).
  • —Demonstrate U.S. concern for legitimate security needs.
  • —Help promote stability in some areas, such as the Horn.
  • —Permit maximum flexibility to meet changing U.S. interests and African developments.
  • —Permit the widest possible number of contacts with increasingly important African military regimes, thereby facilitating future, as well as present political access.
  • —Help limit opportunities for the USSR and the PRC.

Con—This alternative would:

  • —Risk U.S. domestic and Congressional criticism in proliferation of arms supply relationships.
  • —Risk U.S. being drawn into African disputes, local arms races, and cold war confrontation with the USSR and the PRC.
  • —Do nothing to discourage diversion of scarce African resources from developmental needs.

Option 4

Unrestrictive. Expand arms-supply relationships, primarily by generally permissive attitude on sales. This option assumes that U.S. interests would be best served by discontinuing past paternalistic policies and recognize the sovereign right of these nations to improve their military posture. This option is premised on the belief that the African countries will increasingly want to diversify their arms sources and that the advantages to U.S. balance of payments and political interests will more than offset possible Congressional criticism. Under this option, the U.S. might, for example:

Continue grant, credit, and training programs.
Generally permit cash sales to all countries in the area, including sales of sophisticated and specialized weapons systems.
Attempt to get African ceiling abolished or raised or have the Presidential authority to waive the ceiling reinstated.

Consider Presidential finding of FMS eligibility for selected Black African countries including Zambia and the Malagasy Republic.

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Pro—This alternative would:

  • —Avoid invidious implications of alleged U.S. paternalism toward Africa or of U.S. fostering a client-state relationship.
  • —Recognize that these countries will buy arms from other sources if they cannot obtain them from the U.S.
  • —Benefit the U.S. balance of payments and U.S. industry.
  • —Improve political access throughout area, particularly those countries where our changing security interests have created a need for greater access, e.g., Kenya and the Malagasy Republic.
  • —Help limit opportunities for USSR and PRC.

Con—This alternative would:

  • —Risk Congressional criticism of proliferation of U.S. arms.
  • —Risk the U.S. being drawn into African disputes.
  • —Encourage diversion of scarce African resources from developmental needs.
  • —Encourage arms escalation and tensions.

Arms Control

Concomitant with its provision of arms to sub-Saharan African states under any of the foregoing options, the [Page 53] United States might, as appropriate, suggest to arms recipients the desirability of seeking agreements with neighboring states to restrain arms acquisitions, particularly of an advanced type. Such arrangements, whether formal or tacit, could help to insure that African states do not unnecessarily divert resources from economic and social development; could help to reduce the risk of hostilities in the region; and could reduce pressures on limited U.S. security assistance funds.

Particular consideration might be given to a discreet U.S. effort to encourage Ethiopia and Somalia to discuss the possibilities of mutual restraint in their arms acquisitions. Such an arrangement could help to free resources for badly needed economic and social development, reduce the risk of renewed hostilities between the two countries, and reduce Ethiopian demands for additional arms from the U.S. Negotiations of an arms restraint arrangement could take place within the context of negotiations to resolve the border dispute between the two states.

  1. Source: Ford Library, National Security Adviser, NSC Institutional File, Box 7, IF/NS File for President, Military Assistance and Arms Policy in Black Africa. Secret. The annexes are not published here. DOD endorsed Option 3 (Memorandum from Clements to Kissinger, December 13; ibid.), as did the Department of State. (Memorandum from Springsteen to Scowcroft, December 16; ibid., Box 10, IF/NA File for the President, Military Assistance and Arms Policy in Black Africa) The CIA suggested a few changes to the background portion of the study, but endorsed no specific option. (Memorandum from Colby to Davis, December 4, 1974; ibid.)
  2. The document reviewed U.S. arms policy in black Africa, U.S. interests, future prospects, and options.
  3. Includes the 35/37 countries south of the Sahara or of all Africa except for the northern tier of Morocco, Algeria, Tunisia, Libya and Egypt and the “white redoubt” of South Africa, Rhodesia, and the Portuguese Territories.
  4. Comprehension of the issues under discussion in this paper has been hindered during discussion and in earlier drafts by semantic difficulties, which should be clarified. In the text, the term “assistance,” when used without a modifier (e.g., “grant”) is intended to be understood in a general sense. It is recognized that this is at variance with the usage of military “assistance” in the Foreign Assistance Act, which clearly means only grant transfers from the United States to a foreign country.

    “Assistance,” in this paper, should be understood to mean “that which assists,” without regard to the modality. It clearly “assists” a government to be accorded FMS credits. It “assists” a country to be declared eligible for FMS sales for cash, if the country can thereby acquire war materiel that it wants and that it could not otherwise obtain (viz. the recent WSAG decision on Ethiopia).

    In practice we operate on the assumption that any of these types of “assistance” can be used to further the foreign policy interests of the United States.

  5. This provision applies to all of Africa, not just to Black Africa.