153. Memorandum From the Acting Assistant Secretary of Defense for International Security Affairs (Murray) to the Deputy Secretary of Defense (Duncan)1


  • Status of the Kenya Survey Report (U)—INFORMATION MEMORANDUM

On July 13, 1978, I attended a mini-SCC meeting chaired by David Aaron on the Kenya survey report.2 MGen Hill, the survey team chief, accompanied me. The discussion focused mainly on the question of US responsiveness to Kenya—were we considering enough assistance and financial help for Kenya in view of the survey report’s recommendations and Kenyan expectations?

There was general agreement that MGen Hill should be allowed to return to Kenya to present the survey report immediately and offer the following to the Kenyan government:

USG participation in the first phase of Kenya’s defense modernization program.

• the helicopter/TOW system, subject to Presidential and Congressional approval.

• the logistics, training and personnel teams.

• the reallocation of $12M in FY 78 FMS financing to enable the GOK to initiate the helicopter program, and indications that we will consider additional FMS credits in FY 79 and 80 (without making a commitment).

• our expectation that the Kenyans would share the financial burden since there are limitations upon FMS credit which we can make available.

Subsequently, on July 18, 1978 MGen Hill presented the survey report to the Kenyan Ministry of Defense (MOD). Overall, the Kenyans were pleased with the professionalism of the report and intend to use it as a comprehensive strategic objectives plan. Conversely, they expressed some concern about the following:

• the lack of immediate US support—both equipment and money—and the lack of firm, multi-year funding.

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• the limited amount of assistance the USG is prepared to provide in comparison with the magnitude of the overall military modernization program outlined in the survey report.

CONCLUSION. The Kenyans decided to defer a decision on procurement of those items mentioned in the report until the report has been reviewed by the Kenyan MOD and Ministry of Finance. Meanwhile, they intend to proceed with high level military visits to the UK, FRG, France, Israel and Canada to seek additional military assistance.

OUTLOOK. According to MGen Hill, the Kenyans are likely to agree to the modernization program, and will probably request US assistance in those areas where we have shown an interest, i.e., air superiority, logistics, personnel, training and air cavalry. We can expect to receive a request for the 32 Hughes helicopters/TOW package in the near future. Additionally, the Kenyans are acutely aware of their immediate logistics, personnel and training problems and may seek US help in correcting them.

Whether or not we increase our security assistance to Kenya, our Ambassador in Nairobi has asked that we establish an Office of Defense Cooperation within the Embassy sometime in FY 79. We are taking steps to implement his request.

Robert J. Murray
  1. Source: Washington National Records Center, OSD Files, FRC 330–81–0202, Box 58, Kenya 091.3—1978. Secret. “Jul 28, 1978, Dep Sec has seen” and “25 Jul 1978 10:40, Office of the Secretary of Defense” are stamped in the upper right corner.
  2. See Document 152.