The Soviet Communist Party newspaper Pravda yesterday likened Zbigniew Brzezinski to the "enemies of detente" in the first official retort to the White House national security adviser's blunt weekend charges against Soviet involvement in Africa.
The authoritative newspaper denied any Soviet or Cuban military involvement in Zaire and said Brzezinski was advancing "fabrications" against Moscow and its allies.
"Brzezinski, in fact, appears before the world as an enemy of detente, as an enemy of international cooperation," Pravda said in a commentary.
Brzezinski, in a television interview Sunday, said the Soviets were volating "the code of detente" with their attempts to "exploit global difficulties." He added that the Soviet Union shared responsibility with Cuba for the recent bloody invasion of Zaire's Shaba Province.
While denying that there is a Soviet military presence in Zaire - something Brzezinski never alleged - Pravda carefully skirted the issue of whether Soviet and Cuban experts based in Angola had a role in training and equipping the invading Katangan rebels.
The article, signed by commentator Vitaly Korinov, was sharp in its tone but die not attack President Carter and his administration's policies.
By forcusing criticism on Brzezinski, the Pravda commentary seems to have been designed as a preliminary response to Washington at a time when the two countries are reported to be making progress toward a new strategic arms limitation agreement.
Responding to Brzezinski's statement about the invasion of Zaire's Shaba Province by Katangese rebels, Pravda said:
"There is no need of denying Brzezinski's inventions. The Soviet Union i not involved in the events in Zaire. There has never been and there is no armed Soviet man in the territory of that country."
"Neither are there any Cuban soldiers or military experts in Zaire, the commentary said. "This was repeatedly stated by government organs of Cuba."
The article also revealed Kremlin anxieties over Brzezinski's recent visit to Peking.Since China stands at the top of foreign dangers perceived by Moscow, the news that Brzezinski was warmly received by the Chinese leaders is sure to have a special impact here.
Brzezinski "has stated that the U.S. and China have very important mutual interests," wrote Korionov, "though he prefers not to give details. But it is pretty obvious without his help. The world has witnessed many times such 'concidence' in joint actions of Washington and Peking against Angola, in support of the Chilean junta, and in assistance to those who tried to split Ethiopia. This list could be continued."
Pravda concludes: "Brzezinski's efforts to pretend he is a supporter of 'Normal relations among states' are useless. His inventions present exactly that 'poiosonous propagandist campaign' with which he charges the Soviet Union without any grounds."
The Pravda piece continued the Soviet line that the Franco-Belgian military action in Kolwezi was NATO-inspired, and that NATO commander Gen. Alexander Haig, after receiving "special instructions from the top government institutions of the U.S., took a direct part in implementation of the operation."