US embassy cable - 86STATE29781

DEVELOPMENTS IN UGANDA

Identifier: 86STATE29781
Wikileaks: View 86STATE29781 at Wikileaks.org
Origin: Secretary of State
Created: 1986-01-30 11:33:00
Classification: CONFIDENTIAL
Tags: PGOV PREL UG
Redacted: This cable was not redacted by Wikileaks.
R 301133Z JAN 86
FM SECSTATE WASHDC
INFO AMEMBASSY ATHENS
C O N F I D E N T I A L STATE 029781 
 
FOLLOWING STATE 029781 DTD JAN 30, 1986 SENT ACTION 
ALL AFRICAN DIPLOMATIC POSTS, INFO LONDON, PARIS, 
BRUSSELS, BONN, TOKYO, SEOUL, CAIRO, SECDEF, DIA, 
CENTCOM MACDILL AFB, USEUCOM VAIHINGEN, JSOC FT BRAGG, 
BEING REPEATED FOR YOUR INFO: 
 
QUOTE: 
C O N F I D E N T I A L STATE 029781 
 
E.O. 12356: DECL:OADR 
TAGS: PGOV, PREL, UG 
SUBJECT: DEVELOPMENTS IN UGANDA 
 
1. CONFIDENTIAL - ENTIRE TEXT. 
 
2.  FOLLOWING FOR POST'S INFORMATION IS TEXT OF 
INFORMATION MEMO DATED 1/28/86 ON DEVELOPMENTS IN 
UGANDA. 
 
3.  BEGIN TEXT.  SUMMARY:  SOUTHERN GUERRILLAS HAVE WON 
THE CAPITAL AND HEARTLAND OF UGANDA AND HAVE THE 
MILITARY EDGE ON DISSIDENT NORTHERN TRIBES. THE NEW 
HEAD OF STATE IS A FERVENT NATIONALIST WHO LIKELY WILL 
COMBINE THIRD-WORLD RHETORIC WITH PRAGMATIC POLICIES. 
END SUMMARY. 
 
THE 5,000-MAN NATIONAL RESISTANCE ARMY (NRA) NOW 
CONTROLS THE SOUTHERN HALF OF UGANDA AND GAINS GROUND 
DAILY FROM FORMER GOVERNMENT TROOPS IN DISORDERLY 
RETREAT.  LONGER TERM, NRA FORCES LIKELY WILL FACE 
 
LOW-GRADE BUSH WARFARE FROM DISSIDENT NORTHERN TRIBES. 
NRA'S SUPERIOR DISCIPLINE AND ORGANIZATION, AND ITS 
CONTROL OVER THE CAPITAL AND ECONOMIC HEART OF UGANDA, 
SHOULD GIVE IT A DECISIVE EDGE.  NRA ESCHEWS THE HUMAN 
RIGHTS ABUSES OF FORMER MILITARY LEADERS AND HAS BEEN 
MORE SUCCESSFUL THAN THEY IN WINNING THE POPULATION'S 
AFFECTIONS. 
 
ALL 170 AMERICANS IN UGANDA ARE REPORTED SAFE AND 
KAMPALA IS RETURNING TO NORMAL WITH RESTORATION OF 
POWER, WATER AND TELEPHONE, AND REOPENING OF MARKETS. 
IN CONTRAST TO THE BEHAVIOR OF GOVERNMENT TROOPS AFTER 
THE JULY 85 COUP, NRA SOLDIERS ARE REPORTED TO BE 
WELLDISCIPLINED AND POPULAR WITH TOWNSPEOPLE. 
 
AMBASSADOR HOUDEK HAS MET WITH NRA COMMANDER YOWERI 
MUSEVENI AND FEELS WE CAN WORK WITH THE NEW REGIME. 
MUSEVENI MAY BE A STRIDENT INTERLOCUTOR, BUT HIS 
GOVERNMENT SHOULD NOT BE INIMICAL TO U.S. INTERESTS. 
 
MUSEVENI'S IDEOLOGICAL ORIENTATION IS MURKY, COMBINING 
FERVENT NATIONALISM, THIRD WORLD RHETORIC AND PRAGMATIC 
OPPORTUNISM.  HE DECLARED TO THE DIPLOMATIC COMMUNITY 
THAT HIS FOREIGN POLICY WOULD BE NON-ALIGNED AND THAT 
HE WOULD HAVE NOTHING TO DO WITH SOUTH AFRICA AND 
ISRAEL.  LIKE MANY UGANDAN FACTIONS, HE HAS SOUGHT 
LIBYAN ASSISTANCE, BUT WAS MOTIVATED PROBABLY MORE BY 
OPPORTUNISM THAN IDEOLOGICAL AFFILIATION.  NRA 
REPRESENTATIVES HAVE STRESSED TO US THEIR DESIRE FOR 
GOOD RELATIONS WITH THE U.S. 
 
IN HIS WRITINGS, MUSEVENI HAS FAVORED ACTIVE STATE 
GUIDANCE OVER THE ECONOMY.  BUT HE HAS ALSO RECOGNIZED 
THAT FREE ENTERPRISE BASED ON SMALLHOLDER AGRICULTURE 
IS THE KEY TO UGANDA'S ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT.  MUSEVENI 
SAID HIS GOVERNMENT WILL WELCOME FOREIGN ASSISTANCE IN 
DEVELOPING PRODUCTIVE ENTERPRISES.  OUR AMBASSADOR IS 
ANXIOUS TO RESUME THE AID PROGRAM AND ENGAGE MUSEVENI 
IN DIALOGUE ON UGANDA'S ECONOMIC AND POLITICAL 
EVOLUTION. END TEXT. 
 
4.  KAMPALA MINIMIZE CONSIDERED. 
UNQUOTE 
 
SHULTZ 

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