1956: US Envoy in Pak Cables Washington

“I took (an) opportunity (on) May 17 to discuss (the State) Department telegram 2707 with (the) Prime Minister (of Pakistan) pursuant (to) instructions therein making clear that (the) US deprecated (the) idea of (an) arms race between (the) GOP (Government of Pakistan) and the GOI (Government of India) and (emphasized that the) purpose of US MDA (Military and Defence Aid) was (to) strengthen Pakistan forces for other purposes which should be clearly understood. (The) Prime Minister said (that he) fully appreciated the USG (United States Government) position and emphasized their increased interest in bombers was not due (to the) desire (of a) greater force vis-à-vis India for (Pakistan) had lived without undue fear India for several years despite overwhelming superior military power of India. (The) Pakistanis wanted bombers to avoid qualitative inferiority and to keep India aware of Pakistan’s retaliatory power, although power ratios (would remain) unaffected.

(The) Prime Minister went on to point out that India’s policy was aimed at containment and possible absorption of Pakistan. He referred to (the) fact that (the) London Economist had recently published (an) article indicating (the) Indian belief that 3 to 1 superiority over Pakistan in armaments was essential (to) Indian policy. (The) Prime Minister pointed out (that) US bombers would be required to keep Pakistan’s ratio strength up to level of 1 to 3 and went on to say (that) if (the) GOI argued for 3 to 1 ratio it could not be because of any fear complex in Indian minds nor could (the) GOI be thinking purely in terms of defense against Pakistan. (The) ratio of 1 to 1 should be enough for defense purposes as the country on (the) defensive had certain, obvious advantages over (the) aggressor.

Embassy awaits (the) Department’s instruction (with regard to) Embassy telegram 2418. H


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