204. Telegram From the Department of State to the Embassy in Jamaica1

71678. Subject: The U.S. and Jamaica’s Elections. Reference: Kingston 1514, Kingston 1551.2

1. C—Entire text.

2. Department approves and commends guidelines established for the conduct of Embassy personnel during Jamaica’s electoral campaign (Kingston 1551). As stated in Kingston 1514, the actions of U.S. officials will receive careful scrutiny from all political factions in Jamaica, and partisan efforts to distort our behavior and intentions can be anticipated. In Washington and Kingston, therefore, we should ensure to the extent possible that our deeds and words convey the unambiguous U.S. stance of strict neutrality toward Jamaica’s electoral contest. Our interests will be best served by support for the principle and actual occurrence of free, fair elections. We are following substantially identical guidelines here and appreciate your timely input and suggestions.

  1. Source: National Archives, RG 59, Central Foreign Policy File, D800138–0670. Confidential. Drafted by LeBourgeois; cleared in ARA/CHP and ICA; and approved by Warne.
  2. In telegram 1514 from Kingston, February 29, the Embassy stated that “the USG will have to be extra sensitive to developments in the electoral process here that are potentially damaging to the United States and its interests,” such as PNP efforts to scapegoat the United States for Jamaican domestic problems. At the same time, however, the Embassy concluded, “we cannot avoid being used by both sides in the election.” (National Archives, RG 59, Central Foreign Policy File, D800109–0697) In telegram 1551 from Kingston, February 29, the Embassy reiterated its strategy, delineating the duties of key Embassy officers. (National Archives, RG 59, Central Foreign Policy File, D800110–0099)