Zambia President Kenneth Kaunda met U.S. Ambassador Andrew Young, today and said he wanted the United States to take over the lead from Britain in trying to bring majority rule to all Southern Africa.
"At the moment Britain is the colonial power but Britain has not got the will or ability to help the Organization of African Unity solve the problem," the president told reporters after a 70-minute meeting with the new American ambassador to the United Nations.
He said it was to the United States to decide what role it could play.
He said he welcomed the appointment of Ambassador Young "not because he is black but because of his principles and beliefs, which we think are in agreement with those of his leader, President Jimmy Carter.
"We have a lot of confidence in the Carter administration. This should show up in time," he added.
Asked what intervention was possible from the United States if black southern Africa states had decided the only path left open to them was armed struggle, President Kaunda said, "Who am I to tell the U.S. what to do? We want majority rule so that Zimbabwe [Rhodesia] can be born and people there - black and white, yellow and brown - can live a normal life."
"Now we are engaged in armed struggled. U.S. intervention of a peaceful kind should be aimed at avoiding unnecessary bloodshed."
He said that if South Africa intervened military in Rhodesia, the Patriotic Front alliance of Rhodesian nationalists would have the moral and spiritual right to ask for help from other African countries.
The meeting between Ambassador Young and President Kaunda followed meetings yesterday between the U.S. envoy and President Julius Nyerere of Tanzania and Juvenal Habyalimana of Rwanda. Young also had meetings today with President Siad Barre of Somalia and President Jean Baptiste Bagaza of Burundi.
The presidents are gathered on this palm-fringed island to celebrate the launching today of a unified political party for the Tanzanian mainland and Zanzibar, which have been one country since 1964.
Young said he did not consider the prospect of Marxist governments sprouting of southern Africa a threat to the United States.
"What is a Marxist government?" Young asked."If Angola is a Marxist state and its major trading partner is the United States, that does not worry me. For all its ideology, Angola has never broken relations with Gulf Oil."
Young told reporters his conversations with African leaders here were "far more substantive and even moderate" than their public statements and his briefings notes had led him to expect.
"I regret more of the liberation movements did not come," he said.
Young said Nyerere had assured him that "in truth no African nation will become Communist."
"He said there may be intellectual Marxists among the leader but that didn't mean they were going to set up Communist states," Young said.
"One of the most wholesome things about our administration is that . . . it won't be paranoid about communism," Young said.
Young elaborated on a statement he made last month in which he said Cuban troops had helped provide stability in Angola. Young said he had been thinking only of practical matters such as getting water pumps running after Portuguese technicians fled the country.
"I never meant to imply that heavy military intervention was a stalibizing force," he said.
Young said he did not think Ian Smith's white-minority government wanted a settlement with blacks in southern Africa.
"The people in Rhodesia will see Smith is leading them down a dead-end street," Young said of the Rhodesia prime minister's plan to work out an internal settlement with unnamed black moderates rather than guerrilla leaders who he claims are Soviet-backed.