13. Editorial Note

The Atomic Energy Act of 1954 (Public Law 83–703, enacted August 30, 1954; 68 Stat. 919) empowered the President to authorize the Department of Defense, with the assistance of the Atomic Energy Commission, to cooperate with a regional defense organization to which the United States was a party. It further authorized the Defense Department and AEC to communicate to that organization, so long as it continued to make substantial and material contributions to the mutual defense effort, certain atomic information necessary to the development of defense plans, including the training of personnel in the use of and defense against atomic weapons, and the evaluation of the atomic capabilities of potential enemies. Such cooperation, however, was only to be undertaken in the context of an agreement entered into for that purpose by the member nations of that regional organization.

A draft of such an agreement between the member nations of the North Atlantic Treaty Organization was prepared in the fall of 1954, with the cooperation of the Department of State and the Atomic Energy Commission, and was submitted to the North Atlantic Council for negotiation. On March 2, 1955, the North Atlantic Council approved a draft agreement as well as a revised set of security regulations for NATO. The March 2 draft agreement, an April 2 letter from Secretary of Defense Wilson to the President recommending approval, and an April 13 letter from the President to the Chairman of the Joint [Page 60]Committee on Atomic Energy, Senator Clinton Anderson, transmitting the agreement to the Joint Committee, are all printed in Department of State Bulletin, April 25, 1955, pages 687–689.