279. Memorandum From the Director of the Policy Planning Staff (Kennan) to the Under Secretary of State (Lovett)0

We are concerned here in the Staff about the political warfare question. If the Executive Branch does not act soon to firm up its ideas as to what should be done along these lines, the possibility of getting secret funds out of Congress for covert operations will be lost. If this is not done now, it will mean that this Government has given up hope of conducting effective political warfare activities for the duration of this administration.

If nothing is done along the lines recommended in NSC 10, this Staff will have to recommend that the State Department press for the abrogation of NSC 4–A, which is not working out well.

If you want further information on the background of this project, I would suggest that you talk with Davies,1 of my staff, who is thoroughly familiar with it.

I understand that Allen Dulles is arriving in Washington on Thursday and will be here through Saturday morning. He is fully acquainted with the NSC 10 project and it is our hope that he will head the organization. During his stay here, he will make himself available for discussion and comment on NSC 10. We are informed by Mr. Forrestal’s office that Mr. Forrestal is so strongly in favor of implementation of NSC 10 that he is prepared to come over to the Department to discuss the problem with you and Mr. Dulles if you wish.2

  1. Source: National Archives and Records Administration, RG 59, Records of the Department of State, Policy Planning Staff Files, 1947–53: Lot 64 D 563, Box 719, Pol & Psych Warfare. Top Secret.
  2. John P. Davies, Jr.
  3. Next to this paragraph a handwritten annotation from Lovett reads: “I think we ought to meet with Forrestal promptly. L”