S/SNSC files, lot 66 D 148, “Solarium”

Memorandum for the Record by the Special Assistant to the President for National Security Affairs (Cutler)

top secret

I discussed with the President today the presentation of Solarium Project.

The President believes he will be back from Bermuda1 not later than the morning of July 13. He therefore suggests, if the Solarium people are ready, the regular Council day of Thursday, July 16, be set apart for the Solarium presentation. I have asked Tom Stephens tentatively to reserve that entire day for this purpose.

The President wishes to begin at 8:30 a.m., to allow to each Team two hours for its presentation, to have a break between presentations, and a break for lunch, and to have all questions reserved until the conclusion. Thus the schedule would run something as follows:

  • 8:30 to 10:30—Task Force A
  • 10:30 to 10:45—Break
  • 10:45 to 12:45—Task Force B
  • 12:45 to 2:15—Luncheon
  • 2:15 to 4:15—Task Force C
  • 4:15 to 4:30—Break
  • 4:30 and thereafter as long as might be needed: Questions

The President thought that if the Task Forces coordinated their presentations to some extent by reviewing them together before the presentation day, a lot of duplication could be avoided. He thought that two hours per Task Force would undoubtedly be sufficient time, because undoubtedly some of the material for each Task Force would be covered by the earlier Task Forces.

The President made a point that he wanted the maximum time for questions. He thought that if questions were permitted after each Task Force presentation, such questions would tend to cut into the later presentations.

I suggested to the President that we put the presentation on in the theater in the basement of the White House. He wanted to be sure that the room was airconditioned, and that there was a platform. He inquired whether they would want to use slides. Of course they will use a lot of charts and maps. I am not sure that the lighting is as good in the theater as it might be. I think I will inquire of the Usher as to what other large room might be available. There [Page 388]will be in attendance, in addition to the Council personnel, numbering normally about 13, three Task Force Teams totaling 21, and very likely 5 or 6 other persons, like General Craig, General Smith, Skip Koons, etc.

I did not speak to the President about the desirability of giving luncheon to all of these people in the White House, in order that their ingress and outgo would not be noticed by people on the outside.

Robert Cutler
  1. The proposed tripartite conference at Bermuda, scheduled for late June 1953, was postponed until December due to the illness of Prime Minister Churchill. See vol. v, Part 2, pp. 1710 ff.