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April 3, 2019
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April 12, 2019
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September 4, 1981
INTERNATIONAL SECURITY AFFAIRS 1/4.t- .1-e 1- I Approved for Release: 2018/10/02 C05083439 OFF., OF THE ASSISTANT SECRETARY 411)EFENSE MEMORANDUM OF CONVERSATION WASHINGTON. D.C. 20301 04 SEP 1981 iSUBJECT: Meeting with Argentine y reign Minister Camilion. (U) SEP nal 15 31 OFFICE 0 SECRETARY Ok1JEFENSE In Reply Refer to: 1-23071/81 Argentine Participants (U) Foreign Minister Oscar Hector Camilion Charge' Roberto Dalton Ambassador-designate Estaban Takacs -���� (U) US Participants The Deputy Secretary of Defense, Frank C. Carlucci The Assistant Secretary of Defense for International Security Affairs, Francis J. West, Jr. The Deputy Assistant Secretary of Defense for Inter-American Affairs, Nestor D. Sanchez The Military Assistant to the Deputy Secretary of Defense, RADM Jonathan Howe Country Director, Inter-American Region, LtCol Christopher H. Brown, USAF Director, Southern Cone Affairs, Department of State, Mr. Robert E. Service (U) Time: 1200-1250,N! September 1981 (U) Place: Room 3E928, The Pentagon (C) After mutual opening pleasantries, Foreign Minister Camilion stated that Argentina desired US investment in Argentina and such investment could consolidate, cement relations between the two countries. The Deputy Secretary responded po itively stating that we in Defense are interested in establishing better relations with Argentina for long term strategic reasons. He'was hopeful tl-itt the US could remove the burden of the Humphrey-Kennedy restric- tions and said that anything which leads to better relations is good. (C) The Foreign Minister stated he was very satisfied with the level of relations and he considered the visits (e.g., General Meyer and General Galtieri) tohave been highly successful. The Argentine military has gained experience in government and in the struggle against terrorism and is more sophisticated today. He also hopes Humphrey-Kennedy will be repealed, but does not consider repeal to be the decisive factor in our relations. The Argentines would like to update their equipment and use US items. However, from a military and diplomatic point of view, there are many areas to expand-relations. CLASSIFIED BY: Multiple Sources REVIEW ON: 3 September 2011 REASON: 2-301.C(1) SECRET Approved for Release: 2018/10/02 C05083439 j Sec Def Goat Nr. X- - 6 09 � . Approved for Release: 2018/10/02 C05083439 2 � � (C) The Deputy Secretary of Defense stated we are somewhat optimistic on Humphrey-Kennedy and positive Argentine efforts in the field of human rights are helpful. Mr. Carlucci passed to Foreign Minister Camilion Senator Laxalt's interest in a specific case. (C-Government of Argentine) The Deputy Secretary of Defense turned to the Central American area stating that the situation is getting worse, that the attacks on the economic infrastructure are effective, and that the Mexican- French statement was not helpful. Interdiction of the external arms support from Cuba and Nicaragua is particularly important. The US is currently providing assistance teams and a.modest level of assistance. We welcome Argentina's ideas. The Foreign Minister responded that: - Diplomatic steps are needed. -- Working with Venezuela and Colombia on a Joint Statement to counter French-Mexican one (subsequently released 2 September and endorsed by nine Zatin American countries). -- Need tactics to combat adverse diplomatic actions of other countries. - Argentina views bilateral assistance as a possibility. Some form of financial help possible. Central Bank to Central Bank - $SOM. Line of credit for capital goods - $25M. --- 5-6,900 tons of food next year. -- Some form of military assistance is marginal. --- Deny interferring in internal affairs. --- Covert inore possible now, ' - Multilateral diplomacy must be explored. -- French-Mexican idea is impossible, destabilizing and would create a dangerous situatio4. -- After multilateral efforts, some overt assistance may be possible. - Military problems exist in El Salvador which require military action and assistance. -- Venezuelan example on elections may be applicable. -- Argentina needs to support this process (military and political). -- Will assist to build healthy institutions. -- If elections are held, Argentines believe government would obtain a reasonable victory. SECRET Approved for Release: 2018/10/02 C05083439 a -1 I Approved for Release: 2018/10/02 C05083439 � � 3 (C) The Deputy Secretary responded that the US shares Foreign Minister Camilion's assessment. The Deputy Assistant Secretary of Defense stated the process will be a struggle unless a political party can be put together. Positive elections would be a victory for the system. (C) The Foreign Minister asked how the US viewed the military situation: - Mr. Carlucci stated he: -- Does not see the guerrillas having the capability to overthrow Che current government militarily. -- Sees a long drawn out process. -- Sees the momentum slipping to the guerrillas. - Mr. Sanchez stated he:. . -- Views situation as a stalemate. -- Views as serious now because of guerrilla concentration on economic targets. -- Sees the Venezuelan political example as an important possible solution, - The Assistant Secretary of Defense, Mr. West, stated he sees Congress looking toward a Zimbabwe solutioh. - The Foreign-Minister stated that the Argentine military also believes the El Salvadoran capability is limited and is not enthusiastic about their qualifications and capabilities. He believes the military stalemate will continue until electiRns. (C) A general discussion on diplomatic efforts to obtain support for the El Salvadoran and the Central American governments followed: - The Deputy Secretary stated a problem is whether or not the press will create an atmosphere orMomentum for the insurgents. The Foreign Minister stated the wire services view the situation as chaotic. - The Foreign Minister stated the Argentines will work with Peru and Ecuador. Asked if Brazil would help, he replied: -- Brazil's policy is hands off, let history take its course, problem . _ is social injustice. -- Foreign Minister Camilion vicwo this as a naive approach and stated many are willing to help history along. -- He will work for a joint statement that Central American stability is � needed for their own internal development and move toward democracy. (C) The Foreign Minister asked what will happen with the stream of arms flowinA to the insurgents. SECRET Approved for Release: 2018/10/02 C05083439 e's Approved for Release: 2018/10/02 C05083439 ik L.. I 4 - Mr. Carlucci stated: -- US has worked hard to improve intelligence capability in El Salvador and Honduras. - -- Some improvement noted, long way from solving problem. -- Problem cannot be solved until we find a way of dealing with the Nicaraguans. During his recent trip, Mr. Enders candidly dlscussed arms traffic and military buildup with Nicaraguans and passed rules of the game. We do not have a lot of hope that Nicaragua will respond, but initiative could free US for future action: Mr: Sanchez briefed the kesults of his tripito the other capitals. Most viewed Nicaragua as becoming more totalitarian and were skeptical US was not viewing as such. Duarte was not highly concerned over the mililary situation; the electircal attacks - yes. - - - - Guatemala is resigned to going it alone. - The Deputy Secretary said that if we get tough with Nicaragua, we will - have to, then what do we do? -- Few military options available. -- Back to diplomatic efforts. -- US, Argentin, and others need to move in unison. -- Mexico will be More difficult to turn around. - The Foreign Minister questioned what brought Mexico to their current direction. � -- Mr. Carlucci stated he viewed it as part of their third world, third force posture. -- Mr. Sanchez stated we need more of a Latin American concern expre::::od, people are looking for support. (S) The Deputy Secretary questioned what would be Latin American reaction to high level military aid in the region. - The Foreign Minister thought overall the reaction would be favorabio. --Necessary to do. - Some critics (more in this country). - Mr. West questioned how the Foreign Minister viewed direct troop support. -- The Foreign Minister stated that would introduce new elements. erODET Approved for Release: 2018/10/02 C05083439 k e -- Effect could be worse than the remedy. -- Difficult to imagine what country could now support. Approved for Release: 2018/10/02 C05083439 - Mr. West then asked about token overt support such as communications support at a low level. -- Foreign Minister Camilion stated .that was another way of presenting -- Diplomatic legwork is first needed. -- First develop as a joint Latin American idea dipfomatically. --- Necessary to plan diplomatically before open forums. --- Then, after consensus, military support may be possible. -- The Foreign Minister felt covert assistance may be possible. (C) The meeting closed with The Deputy Secretary and The Forei n Minister agreeing that their views correspond closely. They agreed that elections in El Salvador are the key and diplomatic initiatives are needed. It is clear that a military solution is probably not possible and not feasible politically. The Deputy Secretary stated there are military areas to consider- which require assistance. The Foreign Minister stated we need to spread the problem around._ Venezuela understands, Peru and Ecuador are upknown, Chile is taken for granted,-and Brazil is hands off. The meeting ended oft a positive note recognizing the need to continue close discussions and coordination. Prepared by: LtCol C. H. Brown, USAF OASD/ISA/1A, X79301 0 Approved by: SECRET Approved for Release: 2018/10/02 C05083439 we,