344. Memorandum From the White House Situation Room to the President’s Assistant for National Security Affairs (Brzezinski)1


  • Additional Information Items

Shahi Comments on Washington Visit and Pakistan’s Nuclear Program: Pakistani Foreign Affairs advisor Aga Shahi recently briefed [less than 1 line not declassified] on his meetings in Washington.2 [less than 1 line not declassified] Shahi:

—denigrated the U.S. as a “second-rate superpower” which is being used “by Zionist elements to further the hegemonistic policy”;

—claimed the Soviet Union was clearly the dominant power on the world’s seas and would soon overtake the U.S. in the nuclear weapons field;

—asserted that Moscow had proven itself to be loyal to their friends, regardless of whether their friends were right or wrong, while Washington had demonstrated that it could not be trusted. (S)

Shahi [less than 1 line not declassified] dismissed the U.S. statement that under the 1959 bilateral agreement it would assist Pakistan if Islamabad were attacked by a Communist nation as only a ploy. In the foreign affairs advisor’s reasoning, the U.S. was attempting to undermine Pakistan’s efforts to gain entry into the nonalign movement by creating the impression that Islamabad was still aligned to the U.S. under the 1959 agreement. (S)

Shahi added that it was impossible to acquiesce to a U.S. request that Pakistan freeze its nuclear program at the present levels because it would be too expensive and difficult to resume in the future. He also inferred that Pakistan may explode a nuclear device in three months. Other Pakistani officials have recently mentioned the “within three months” time frame for a possible nuclear explosion.3 (S)

[Omitted here is material unrelated to Pakistan.]

  1. Source: Carter Library, National Security Affairs, Brzezinski Material, President’s Daily CIA Brief File, Box 19, 5/23/79–5/29/1979. Top Secret; Sensitive; [handling restriction not declassified].
  2. See Document 342.
  3. See footnote 2, Document 345.