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Digital Archive International History Declassified

February 15, 1983

LETTER FROM LAWRENCE S. EAGLEBURGER TO R. F. BOTHA

This document was made possible with support from the Leon Levy Foundation

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    Letter from the US State Department to R. F. "Pik" Botha, thanking him for his interests in the US evaluation of Soviet intentions in the area. Notes the need for cooperation between the two countries in the future to ensure the best possible handling of Soviet issues.
    "Letter from Lawrence S. Eagleburger to R. F. Botha," February 15, 1983, History and Public Policy Program Digital Archive, Available at www.aluka.org. Included in "Southern Africa in the Cold War, Post-1974," edited by Sue Onslow and Anna-Mark Van Wyk. https://digitalarchive.wilsoncenter.org/document/118296
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United States Department of State 

Undersecretary of State for Political Affairs 

Washington, D.C. 20520 

February 15, 1983

Dear Pik:

I would like to express my personal appreciation for your interest in the U.S. evaluation of Soviet intentions toward southern Africa in the post-Brezhnev era. As we survey the global implications of the USSR’s actions, there can be little doubt that one of the areas of greatest concern has to be southern Africa. Dealing effectively with the Soviet policy in this region is a challenging task. It is important that the United States and the Republic of South Africa share their views on how best to manage this issue.

Because we place so much importance on this topic we have taken great pains to insure that the evaluation of the Soviet position which we are providing you incorporates the best thinking of all relevant agencies of my Government. The results of our efforts are contained in the reply I have asked Herman Nickel to deliver to you. This answer represents the considered opinion of the United States Government; it also reflects my own views.

I hope that you will find our evaluation useful in reaching your own conclusions. Once you and your colleagues have had a chance to construct your own assessment of the Andropov regime’s policy toward southern Africa, I would appreciate hearing from you.

I enjoyed talking with you in November, and hope to have the opportunity to do so again.

Sincerely,

Lawrence S. Eagleburger

His Excellency

Roelof F. Botha,

Minister of Foreign Affairs and Information of the Republic of South Africa, Cape Town