62. Memorandum of Discussion at the 278th Meeting of the National Security Council, Washington, March 1, 19561

[Here follow a paragraph listing the participants at the meeting and agenda item 1, “Significant World Developments Affecting U.S. Security”, an oral briefing by Allen Dulles.]

[Page 219]

2. Basic National Security Policy (NSC 5501; NSC 5602; Memo for NSC from Executive Secretary, subject: “U.S. Policy in the Event of a Renewal of Aggression in Vietnam”, dated September 16, 1955; Memos for NSC from Acting Executive Secretary, same subject, dated February 13 and 24, 1956)2

Mr. Dillon Anderson suggested that the Council resume consideration of NSC 5602 where it had stopped at last Monday’s meeting. He proceeded to read paragraphs 33–a and –b, indicating that this paragraph and its successor referred to the subject of East-West relations. He also noted that the specific NSC policies on this subject—namely, NSC 1743 and NSC 55054—were awaiting revision by the NSC Planning Board. He pointed out that paragraph 35 of NSC 5602, likewise on East-West contacts, constituted a new paragraph not covered by NSC 5501. He said that the Planning Board believed the problem set forth in paragraph 35 was becoming of increasing importance, and he accordingly read the paragraph in toto. He noted that in general adoption of paragraph 35 would tend to liberalize somewhat existing policy with respect to the exchange of persons and delegations between the USSR and the United States. Finally, he pointed out that this problem had been the subject of a special report by the Intelligence Advisory Committee (IAC–D–103, entitled “Intelligence Aspects of the Exchange of Delegations With the USSR and the European Satellites”;5 copy filed in the minutes of the meeting). Accordingly, he would invite the comments of the Director of Central Intelligence at this point.

Mr. Allen Dulles read the highlights and conclusions of the above-mentioned estimate, stressing that previous exchanges of delegations, notably the exchange of delegations of farmers, had been on the whole more advantageous to the USSR than it had to the United States, [remainder of paragraph (4½ lines of source text) not declassified]

[1 paragraph (8 lines of source text) not declassified]

Secretary Dulles said that he did not know whether the point was covered elsewhere in NSC 5602, but this particular estimate of the net advantage or disadvantage to be achieved by the exchange of delegations was based on considerations of net gain or loss applying only to the U.S. and the USSR. Visits to the United States of Soviet nationals and delegations would be relatively without danger to the United States, because this country was prepared to handle the risks inherent in such visits. Other countries were less capable of meeting the danger, [Page 220]and we could not afford to ignore the effect of our own example on third countries whose thinking on the subject of the Communist danger was not so clear, strong and united as our own. Countries such as Liberia, for example, might not be able to absorb Soviet visitors without dangerous repercussions. Such countries would be put in an awkward position if the Russians turned to them and said the United States permits us to send delegations to visit it; why do you not do likewise? Quoting from the Bible text, Secretary Dulles warned that we should not follow courses which might cause our neighbors “to stumble”.

Although the President said he thought that Secretary Dulles’ point seemed to be covered in paragraph 36, Secretary Dulles went on to say that we were currently trying to induce Liberia and Uruguay not to accept Soviet visitations, on the assumption that while we could successfully handle such visits, they could not.

The President said that this seemed rather too bad, inasmuch as one of our objectives at Geneva last summer had been to invite and encourage closer contacts between East and West. Secretary Dulles pointed out that the emphasis at Geneva had been rather on the exchange of information and ideas than on the exchange of persons, and he said he still favored the former type of exchange.

Governor Stassen suggested that another aspect of this issue needed to be emphasized. We can also be adroit in making use of the results obtained by visits to the Soviet Union made by other free world citizens. This whole thing, he believed, represented a new situation; that is, both a new threat to the free world and a new opportunity for it. Perhaps the United States could contribute some help to the weaker countries which received Soviet delegations, by assisting these countries [10 words not declassified].

The President said that he would like to [12 words not declassified] see if it were possible to turn the exchange of delegations into a procedure which would be more definitely to the advantage of the United States. [1 sentence (4½ lines of source text) not declassified]

Mr. Allen Dulles commented vigorously that the exchange of persons and delegations between the U.S. and the Soviet bloc countries was a major problem and potentiality for the United States, and that it required to be studied with the very closest care. If properly handled, such exchange of persons could conceivably mean an opportunity to change the whole situation in the Soviet Union.

The President then turned to Mr. Dulles and told him to look into the situation along with the FBI. He further indicated that language should be inserted in paragraph 35 by way of warning of the dangers of the example set by the United States, in accepting Soviet delegations, on countries more vulnerable than the United States to Communist exploitation through the agency of such delegations.

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Admiral Radford expressed the opinion that the considerations which applied to exchange of persons also applied to trade and to negotiations between the U.S. and the USSR. He added that it was very difficult for many other countries to control their Soviet visitors. Governor Stassen, on the other hand, repeated his earlier view that the exchange of persons presented the United States with both a great threat and a great opportunity. He said he believed that this paragraph was one of the most important in NSC 5602.

[1 paragraph (5 lines of source text) not declassified]

The President then inquired of the Council which agencies of the Government should make a study of this problem. He first suggested that this be done by Mr. Allen Dulles and by Mr. J. Edgar Hoover. Mr. Dulles, however, indicated the desirability of adding other officials, and suggested that the OCB undertake the study with the assistance of Mr. J. Edgar Hoover and the Department of Justice. The President indicated that what he wished this study of paragraph 35 to contain was primarily an analysis. What would the United States gain by such exchange of persons, and what would it lose? What were the risks, and what were the advantages?

Mr. Allen Dulles touched on the likelihood of a considerable influx of U.S. tourists to the Soviet Union in the coming months. He indicated that if we did not reciprocate by admitting Soviet tourists, we might lend color to the familiar charge of the Soviet Union that it was the U.S. rather than the USSR which maintained an Iron Curtain.

At this point Mr. Anderson referred to the fact that Mr. William Jackson, who had taken over from Nelson Rockefeller, was present today for the first time in his new capacity,6 and would almost certainly have useful views on this subject.

Mr. Jackson stated that the considerations which the National Security Council had been discussing in connection with paragraph 35 were available in more detailed form and could readily be brought to the Council’s attention. What was required, however, more than detailed considerations, was the exercise of an act of judgment by the National Security Council; that was the heart of the matter. Mr. Jackson added that what had scared him at Geneva was the fact that the Soviets wanted exchange of persons and the development of East-West contacts, and that was all they wanted. From a procedural point of view, the NSC needs to have the considerations pro and con spelled out in greater detail so that the President could reach a judgment between them.

At this point the Secretary of State made reference to the fact that certain areas of the United States were now closed to Soviet visitors (in [Page 222]accordance with paragraph 3 of NSC 5508/17). This had caused embarrassment in the case of a distinguished Soviet violinist, who had been unable to perform at a concert in Rochester, New York. Secretary Dulles believed that it might be desirable to review the policy set forth in NSC 5508/1. The Attorney General commented that the accompanist of the Soviet violinist was a well-known espionage agent. The President wondered whether we could not make exceptions to our geographical restrictions in the case of artists such as this. The Attorney General indicated that it was within his competence to make exceptions. Secretary Hoover pointed out the difficulties which confronted OCB in determining the advisability of admitting Soviet delegations, and supported Secretary Dulles’ suggestion that the time had come for a review of the policy in NSC 5508/1. If a revision were made, the policy should be set forth in greater detail.

Mr. Anderson then invited the Council’s attention to paragraphs 36 and 37, dealing with the problems of negotiation with the Soviet Union and disarmament, respectively. He noted that the Joint Chiefs of Staff had proposed a substitute for the existing paragraph 36, emphasizing the dangers of making concessions to the Soviet Union on any implication of its good will or its good faith. He read the substitute paragraph proposed by the Joint Chiefs of Staff, and then asked Admiral Radford to enlarge on the reasoning of the Joint Chiefs.

Admiral Radford said that the reasons behind the proposed JCS substitution were clearly set forth in their memorandum. The same considerations, moreover, applied to negotiations with the Soviet Union as applied to the exchange of visiting delegations, which the Council had just discussed. Every negotiation between the United States and a Communist country, whatever other advantage it might have for the Communists, provided them with a little more “respectability”. There were also great propaganda advantages for the USSR. This had been true of the Geneva negotiations, particularly in their repercussions in the Far East. In sum, the Joint Chiefs of Staff simply felt that a readiness to negotiate was one thing; but we must not forget the repercussions of our negotiations with the Soviets on other countries.

The President inquired as to the precise difference between the language suggested by the Planning Board and that suggested by the Joint Chiefs of Staff with respect to the problem of negotiations. Mr. Anderson read the JCS language, and pointed out that in general the Joint Chiefs stressed the need for caution and the danger that the USSR would be the gainer by U.S. concessions.

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Secretary Dulles said that he could perceive no objection to the phraseology of the Joint Chiefs of Staff if they would take the word “clearly” out of their first sentence. It was never possible to state “clearly” when negotiations would appear to serve the security interests of the United States. Often you had to enter into negotiations before you could perceive either a clear advantage or a clear disadvantage.

Governor Stassen countered by suggesting that there was something of value both in the language suggested by the Planning Board and in that suggested by the Joint Chiefs of Staff. Accordingly, he recommended retaining the language suggested by the Planning Board and adding to it that proposed by the Joint Chiefs.

Admiral Radford contended that the language of the Planning Board tended to emphasize only the “good side” of negotiations with the Soviet Union. The JCS language, on the other hand, added a warning as to the “bad side”. The Joint Chiefs of Staff felt that we should be much less anxious to negotiate with the Soviet Union, and should carefully weigh the pros and cons before we did so. Governor Stassen agreed, but pointed out that if the JCS language were added, both sides of the question would receive due emphasis. The President agreed with this proposal.

Mr. Anderson then turned to paragraph 37, on disarmament. The Secretary of State left the meeting to keep an appointment at the State Department, and Secretary Hoover replaced him at the Council table. With respect to paragraph 37, Mr. Anderson pointed out the suggestion of the Joint Chiefs of Staff for an additional sentence which would stress the importance of safeguards against violations and evasions of a disarmament agreement, and especially the importance of the inspection system.

Governor Stassen agreed with the desirability of adding the language proposed by the Joint Chiefs, but thought that the sentence would come better at the end of the existing paragraph. He said that his own position did not differ from that taken by the Joint Chiefs of Staff.

Secretary Robertson said that he was uncertain of the meaning of the language in paragraph 37 which said that, along with the search for a safeguarded disarmament system, the U.S. should seek concurrently in related parallel steps to resolve other major international issues. Mr. Anderson explained the import of this language. The President enlarged on this explanation, and cited the unification of Germany as an example of a major international issue. He said, with a sigh, that this was probably not much more than a collection of “pious platitudes”.

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Mr. Anderson indicated that there were no major issues until paragraph 45, on the mobilization base, where there was now a three-way split. On the left-hand side of page 25 was the language on the mobilization base proposed by the majority of the Planning Board; on the right-hand side was language proposed by the Treasury and Budget members of the Planning Board. In addition, the Joint Chiefs of Staff, while accepting in the main the language of the majority proposal, had nevertheless suggested a revision and shortening of this language which would eliminate all the details in paragraph 45–b and substitute therefor the statement that “the mobilization base should be predicated upon war plans”.

Dr. Flemming indicated that as far as he was concerned, he liked the proposal of the Joint Chiefs of Staff and believed that their revision of the introductory phrase in paragraph 45–a constituted a clarification. He also agreed to the elimination of the details in paragraph 45–b. On the other hand, as for the rest of the language in 45–a, he much preferred the language of the majority of the Planning Board to the shorter version proposed by the Treasury and Budget.

Mr. Anderson said that probably Secretary Humphrey or Mr. Brundage, the Acting Director of the Budget, would wish to comment at this point.

Secretary Humphrey said that he simply believed that the degree of detail in which the statement of the majority had been set forth was too great, until such time, at least, as we have agreed on how we propose to fight a future war, and until we have a basic defense plan for the United States. If we did otherwise, we would be laying the policy groundwork for a lot of things in our mobilization base that may never be required. Secretary Humphrey said with great emphasis that we must always strive to balance what we wanted in our national defense against what we could afford to spend. This was the practical approach. Accordingly, all the generalities which occurred in the language of the majority, respecting all the things we’d like to have in our mobilization base, could be very dangerous indeed.

Mr. Brundage said he felt the same way. He could find nothing to quarrel with in the statement on the mobilization base which had been in NSC 5501 and which was in the main now being proposed by the Treasury and Budget members of the Planning Board. He did not believe that the implications of the more detailed language of the majority proposal had been sufficiently explored

Admiral Radford said that he was inclined also to agree with Secretary Humphrey’s position, although when this subject had come up for discussion among the Joint Chiefs of Staff, he had indicated that he did not care one way or another as between the two versions. The real problem regarding the mobilization base at the present time was whether or not our mobilization base was intended to make allowance [Page 225]for enemy bomb damage and for the provision of support by the United States to its allies in a major war. In the event that it were not actually destroyed in the initial phases of a war, said Admiral Radford, the United States now has a mobilization base better than it had ever before had in its history. Admiral Radford expressed skepticism as to the possibility of doing much by way of dispersion to diminish the vulnerability of the mobilization base. Moreover, though there was some real advantage in safe storage, this was difficult and expensive to achieve. Secretary Humphrey expressed hearty agreement with the sentiments of Admiral Radford.

Dr. Flemming observed that the recent comments of Secretary Humphrey, Mr. Brundage and Admiral Radford, had been directed more to paragraph 45–b than to 45–a. In so far as these comments applied to paragraph 45–b, he was inclined to agree. As to paragraph 45–a, however, it was in fact the mobilization base policy currently being followed by the Joint Chiefs of Staff and the ODM. While he was perfectly willing to agree to the elimination of paragraph 45–b in favor of the brief JCS substitute, he did feel it essential to point out that the issues identified in paragraph 45–b were all issues which the Administration must ultimately face and resolve.

Turning to Secretary Humphrey, the President said that he failed to see any particular language in paragraph 45 which seemed to call for additional expenditures. So far as he could see, the staff people who had formulated this language were simply trying to spell out in more precise language the existing directives regarding the mobilization base. Secretary Humphrey replied that if the language did not mean that any new things were to be done in this area, why was it necessary to have new language at all? This would only get us into trouble. Dr. Flemming assured the President that the language recommended by Defense and ODM in paragraphs 45–a–(1), –(2) and –(3) would not be the basis for the development of any new mobilization base programs. Futhermore, he insisted that from a fiscal point of view there were no essential differences between the language on the right and left sides of the page, although the longer version on the left represented a more accurate description of the requirements of our mobilization base.

Mr. Brundage said he emphatically believed that more work should be done in defining the term “mobilization base”. Mr. Anderson referred to the language on the mobilization base which occurred in the previous basic national security policy, NCS 5501. It had the advantage of brevity, and did not differ in substance from what was recommended in the right-hand column. He also reminded the Council that Defense and ODM were developing a new study of the requirements of the mobilization base.

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The President warned that the Defense Department must not “clam up” and refuse to give enough of the outlines of its war plans so that ODM could not go ahead and do the job which was required of them. Dr. Flemming assured the President that to date, at any rate, the military had not clammed up on ODM. He again pointed out his agreement with the JCS proposal to drop most of paragraph 45–b. On the other hand, sooner or later, in dealing with the mobilization base, we should have to face up to the problem of whether this base must include support of our allies and the element allowed for bomb damage.

The President observed that one of the main troubles confronting the Council in considering the mobilization base was, as Mr. Brundage had just suggested, the fact that no one had yet given us a clear definition of what was meant by the term “mobilization base”. Once we had defined this term, we wouldn’t scare so many people into thinking that our mobilization base called for enormous reserves of war material. In any event, the President said, he was personally quite satisfied with the brief language on the right-hand page proposed by the Treasury and the Budget. On the other hand, if Dr. Flemming preferred the more detailed language on the left, the President saw no objection to its adoption.

At this point Mr. Anderson suggested that the language on the left-hand side of the page had the support of the Defense Department and was not, as he had earlier suggested, proposed solely by the ODM.

Secretary Humphrey said that this discussion was not very useful. He was not interested in words, but only in concrete issues. In short, he did not wish to adopt language which would ultimately mean the addition of $5 billion to the Defense Department budget.

Secretary Robertson said that the Defense Department was hard at work on its study of the mobilization base. Before completing its task, however, it required clearer guidelines from the National Security Council. Admiral Radford said that at the present time the military were operating on the basis of having war reserves sufficient to last for six months in a future war. This was the basis given to the military in a directive from Secretary Wilson. On the other hand, provision for aid to our allies had not been cranked into this mobilization base concept. Moreover, the concept assumed that the United States would make at least as good a recovery from the initial attacks as would the Soviet Union. If we went beyond this six-months reserve concept, Admiral Radford freely admitted that the mobilization base would cost a lot more money.

Addressing himself to Admiral Radford, the President inquired as to whether any of our allies overseas had been building facilities to provide spare parts and ammunition for the weapons we gave them. It [Page 227]had always been the President’s idea that we should simply provide these allies with weapons in amounts for which they were in a position to provide replacements and ammunition.

Secretary Humphrey said that if the Council was convinced that the policies concerning the mobilization base under which we are now operating are the right policies, why could not this fact be stated in very simple terms? Introducing a lot of generalities in the statement on mobilization base would inevitably cost money. Secretary Robertson assured Secretary Humphrey that paragraph 45–a conformed almost exactly to the actualities of what we were now doing to build up our mobilization base. Secretary Humphrey said that if he was assured that it would not cost any more money, he was willing to accept the language proposed by the majority of the Planning Board. The President concurred in this propsal, and went on to state that he wished the Department of Defense and the ODM to get together and provide an agreed definition of the term “mobilization base”.

Mr. Anderson said the next important paragraph was 48, dealing with the manpower program. Subparagraph 48–a contained a split as follows: “Expand and improve scientific and technical training [at all appropriate levels as a matter of national urgency requiring Federal leadership].”8 The Treasury and Budget members of the Planning Board proposed deletion of the bracketed phraseology.

The President said that he was getting “a little tired” of statements like this in paragraph 48–a, which called for more Federal leadership. All we seemed to be doing these days was to shout more and more about the need for additional technical and scientific personnel. He personally would very much like to see a thoroughgoing study of this problem from the Department of Health, Education and Welfare, particularly an analysis of the number of students entering scientific fields. He warned that a country like this needed a great deal more than simply scientists if it was to be properly run. We could not afford to neglect our social sciences and other professions. The President stated with emphasis that there is an inherent balance in civilization, and we should attempt to define it. Why, therefore, call for Federal money and leadership to be devoted to the sciences only? If we did this we would find all young people going into the sciences, while as a matter of fact we needed equally trained lawyers and good statesmen in the country.

Mr. Anderson pointed out that the President had captured the essence of the split in views respecting paragraph 48–a. He went on to say that a considerable study of our scientific and technological manpower problems had already been made. In this study, representatives of the Department of Health, Education and Welfare had participated. [Page 228]Moreover, the Planning Board had recommended that this study be made the subject of a presentation to the National Security Council. In reply, the President stressed that he wanted the heads of HEW to approve the analysis and findings of any study of our technological and scientific manpower problem. He was not willing simply to take the word of staff representatives from that Department. He added that he believed the Council should take a hard, cold look at our needs in this field. If necessity dictated it, he said, he would be willing to provide funds for Federal scholarships to able scientific students. On the other hand, he did not wish to pour Federal money into the colleges and universities as a means of encouraging scientific training. All too often such funds ended up being diverted to overhead. Above all, the President called for a businesslike approach to the problem.

Mr. Anderson said he judged from the President’s remarks that he favored deletion of the bracketed language. The President said that he did wish to see it removed, because as it was written no one could see the limit of money involved in carrying out the proposed policy.

Dr. Flemming said that he was glad to hear the President’s views on this matter. He had just sent the President a written statement on scientific problems which he would now recall. He did add, however, that at the secondary school level the teaching of the social sciences was much more effective than the teaching of mathematics and the natural sciences. The President quipped, why then do we get so many left-wingers from our high schools? The President went on to state that his show of emphasis in his remarks on this subject should not be misunderstood. Of course he wanted to encourage the study of the sciences by our young people.

Secretary Humphrey observed that these things come and go in waves. We were in real difficulty a few years ago because there were more engineers being trained than there were jobs for them to fill. He himself had started life as an engineer, but had changed because he could not earn enough money to get married (laughter).

The President repeated his earlier view that money might be found to give scholarship assistance to promising Ph.D. students in the sciences. Admiral Strauss, however, pointed out that the real bottleneck was at the secondary school rather than at the university level. There were too few teacher of the sciences in our secondary schools, and those we had were not particularly competent. This was a very serious matter indeed, and could not be remedied as a matter of urgency. It would take years to correct the imbalance, but every effort should be made to do so. Progress over the short term might be made if large companies would lend their employees for a certain number of days each month to teach the sciences in our secondary schools of the [Page 229]communities in which these companies were situated. Over the long term the most feasible solution would be to have the colleges and universities stipulate the sciences as requirements for entry.

The President appeared surprised to learn that the problem was largely at the secondary school level, and inquired how many scientists our colleges and universities were now turning out and how many we needed. Secretary Hoover said that we were producing about 25,000 engineers a year from our colleges. We wanted to increase that number to at least 50,000.

Admiral Strauss pointed out that last year 32% of the college students who had entered upon a scientific course in college either switched to some other major field or flunked out of college as a result of inadequate scientific preparation.

Mr. Anderson said that the Council had now completed its consideration of NSC 5602, and recapitulated the decisions of the Council. In particular he suggested that paragraph 11 of NSC 5602 be tentatively adopted subject to revision following consideration of the study of nuclear weapons expected from the Joint Chiefs of Staff. The President said he understood that the Department of Defense wanted to suspend action on paragraph 11. Admiral Radford, however, stated that he believed paragraph 11 as it stood would be satisfactory without the additional language proposed by the Department of State. Secretary Robertson pointed out that the new paper from the Joint Chiefs, on the subject of the use of atomic weapons, would be ready for the President’s consideration early next week. The President indicated that action on paragraph 11 would be suspended.9

At the very end of the meeting, Admiral Strauss pointed out, with respect to paragraph 12, that the United States possessed no radiological weapons and, moreover, he knew of no requirement for such weapons. In the light of this information, inclusion of the reference to radiological weapons in paragraph 12 might lead to a misunderstanding. Accordingly, the President directed the deletion of the reference to radiological weapons in paragraph 12.

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The National Security Council:10

Discussed the reference report on the subject (NSC 5602) in the light of the conclusions, comments and recommendations of the NSC Planning Board contained in the enclosure to the reference memorandum of February 13, and the views of the Department of Defense and the Joint Chiefs of Staff contained in the enclosures to the reference memorandum of February 24.
Adopted NSC 5602, subject to:
Addition (on page 6, paragraph 11) of a final sentence reading: “Such authorization as may be given in advance will be determined by the President.”
Substitution (on page 6, paragraph 12) of the words “chemical and bacteriological” for the words “chemical, bacteriological and radiological”.
Deletion of the footnote on page 6, and insertion of an additional paragraph 12 as follows:

“If time permits and an attack on the U.S. or U.S. forces is not involved, the United States should consult appropriate allies before any decision to use nuclear, chemical or bacteriological weapons is made by the President.”

Change of the lead-in clause in paragraph 13 to read: “In carrying out the central aim of deterring general war,”; and insertion in the 2nd line of paragraph 13, between the words “maintain” and “its”, of the following: “as part of its military forces”.
Deletion (on page 9, paragraph 16, 3rd line from top of page) of the words “at least”.
Insertion (on page 9, paragraph 16, 3rd line from end of paragraph) of the word “U.S. allies”.
Substitution (on page 9, paragraph 18, 4th line) of the word “effectiveness” for the word “efforts.”
Inclusion (on page 13, paragraph 24) of the bracketed phrase, and deletion of the footnote relating thereto.
Substitution (on page 13, paragraph 25–b) of the words, “such as Spain, Yugoslavia and Turkey,” for “(e.g., Spain, Yugoslavia, Turkey)”.
Insertion (on page 14, paragraph 26) of a new sentence after the 4th sentence, reading: “Utilization of private investment should be encouraged to the maximum feasible extent.”
Insertion (on page 14, paragraph 27–a) in the last sentence, after the words “should be at”, of the words “but not exceed”; and deletion of the bracketed sentence and the footnote relating thereto.
Insertion (on page 15, paragraph 27–b–(3)) of the word “apparent” before the word “attractiveness”.
Insertion (on page 15, paragraph 27–c) of a new subparagraph (3), reading as follows: [Page 231]

“(3) To exercise greater flexibility in planning, timing and administration of economic aid programs.”

Deletion (on page 17) of the footnote to paragraph 30.
Addition (on page 19, paragraph 35) of a final sentence reading: “In considering proposals for such free world-Communist bloc contacts, the United States should take account of the effect of the U.S. example upon other free nations more vulnerable to Communist penetration.”
Deletion (on page 19, paragraph 36, 2nd line) of the word “clearly”; and addition at the end of paragraph 36 of the following sentences: “The United States should not, however, make concessions in advance of similar action by the Soviets, in the hope of inspiring Soviet concessions. Until the USSR evidences a modification of its basic hostility toward the non-Communist world through concrete actions, agreements should be dependent upon a balance of advantages to the non-Communist world and not upon implied good will or trust in written documents.”
Addition (on page 20, paragraph 37) of the following final sentence: “The acceptability and character of any international system for the regulation and reduction of armed forces and armaments depend primarily on the scope and effectiveness of the safeguards against violations and evasions, and especially the inspection system.”
Adoption (on page 25, paragraph 45) of the Majority Proposal in the left-hand column, changed as follows:
Substitution for the lead-in phrase of subparagraph a of the following:

“a. Inasmuch as no one can foresee with certainty the nature and extent of future conflicts in which the United States may become involved, the national mobilization base must be so constituted as to maintain military readiness to enter combat, ranging from local to general war, and to provide the capability of meeting expeditiously the needs of our national effort to bring hostilities to an early and successful conclusion. Such a requirement demands a mobilization base:”

Substitution for subparagraph b of the following:

“b. The mobilization base should be predicated upon approved war plans.”

Deletion (on page 29, paragraph 48–a) of the bracketed phrase and the footnote relating thereto.
Insertion (on page 32, paragraph 3) of the following sentence before the present last sentence: “Moreover, a general war might occur as the climax of a series of actions and counteractions which neither side originally intended to lead to general war.”
Requested the Department of Defense to make a presentation on the capabilities, with or without nuclear weapons, of the U.S. military forces referred to in paragraph 32 and other appropriate paragraphs of NSC 5501, to deal with local aggression in Vietnam, [Page 232]utilizing as appropriate the study transmitted by the reference memorandum of September 16, 1955.11
Agreed that the Council, after submission to the President of the report on the subject now in preparation by the Chairman, Council on Foreign Economic Policy, should give further consideration to basic U.S. policies with respect to the less developed and uncommitted areas.
Requested that a presentation to the Council on the problem of technological superiority be made by the Department of Defense, the Office of Defense Mobilization and the National Science Foundation; with the collaboration of the Department of Health, Education and Welfare on those aspects of the presentation respecting the educational objectives in the United States.12
Agreed that intensive efforts should be continued on all aspects of the problem of devising a safeguarded system of disarmament.
Requested the Operations Coordinating Board, with the participation of the Department of Justice, to prepare a study of the factors involved in implementing paragraph 35 of NSC 5602, dealing with free world–Communist bloc contacts;13 and directed the NSC Planning Board to review pertinent policies (particularly NSC 5508/1 and NSC 542714) based upon such an OCB study.
Noted the President’s request that the Department of Defense and the Office of Defense Mobilization, in consultation with the Bureau of the Budget, prepare for Council consideration a definition of the term “mobilization base”.15

Note:NSC 5602, as amended above and approved by the President, subsequently circulated as NSC 5602/116 for implementation by all appropriate executive departments and agencies of the U.S. Government, with the understanding that final determination on budget requests based thereon will be made by the President after normal budgetary review. NSC 5602/1 is a substitute for NSC 5501, and is the basic guide in the implementation of all other national security policies, superseding any provisions in such other policies as may be [Page 233]in conflict with it. Progress Reports to the National Security Council on other policies should include specific reference to policies which have been modified by NSC 5602/1.

The other actions above subsequently transmitted to the following departments and agencies:

Secretary of Defense.
Chairman, Council on Foreign Economic Policy.
Secretary of Defense, Director, Office of Defense Mobilization, Director, National Science Foundation, and Secretary of Health, Education and Welfare.
Special Assistant to the President for Disarmament.
Executive Officer, Operations Coordinating Board.
Secretary of Defense, Director, Office of Defense Mobilization, and Director, Bureau of the Budget.

(Note: The above action combines the action taken by the National Security Council on the subject at both the 277th and 278th meetings.)

S. Everett Gleason
  1. Source: Eisenhower Library, Whitman File, NSC Records. Top Secret. Prepared by Gleason on March 2.
  2. See footnotes 2 4, supra.
  3. For text of NSC 174, see Foreign Relations, 1952–1954, vol. VIII, p. 110.
  4. Not printed, but see NSC 5505/1, “Exploitation of Soviet and European Satellite Vulnerabilities,” January 31, vol. XXIV, p. 20.
  5. Dated February 28, not printed.
  6. Special Assistant to the President.
  7. NSC 5508/1, “Admission to the United States of Certain European Non-Official Temporary Visitors Excludable Under Existing Law,” dated March 26, is not printed. (Department of State, S/SNSC Files: Lot 63 D 351, NSC 5508 Memoranda)
  8. Brackets in the source text.
  9. In a memorandum dated March 15 to the Secretary of State, Secretary of Defense, and the Chairman of the Atomic Energy Commission, Executive Secretary Lay stated that the President, taking note of a memorandum from the Joint Chiefs of Staff to the Secretary of Defense entitled “Presidential Authorization for the Use of Atomic Weapons,” dated February 15, approved paragraph 11 of NSC 5602/1, with the addition of a final sentence. The paragraph, as approved, reads as follows: “It is the policy of the United States to integrate nuclear weapons with other weapons in the arsenal of the United States. Nuclear weapons will be used in general war and in military operations short of general war as authorized by the President. Such authorization as may be given in advance will be determined by the President.” (Eisenhower Library, Sp. Asst. for Natl. Sec. Affs. Records, Presidential Approval–Atomic Energy)
  10. Paragraphs a–h and the Notes that follow constitute NSC Action No. 1522, approved by the President on March 15. (Department of State, S/SNSC (Miscellaneous) Files: Lot 66 D 95, Records of Action by the National Security Council)
  11. Admiral Radford presented the Department of Defense report on U.S. military capabilities to deal with local aggression in Vietnam to the National Security Council on June 7. For text, see vol. i, p. 703.
  12. This presentation was made at the NSC meeting on May 31. (Eisenhower Library, Whitman File, NSC Records) NSC Action No. 1566, approved by the President on June 5, noted the discussion and “the President’s statement that the Department of Defense, the National Science Foundation, and the Department of Health, Education, and Welfare should devise programs of actions in their respective spheres of responsibility to meet the problem of maintaining free world technological superiority over the Soviet bloc; reporting to the President any further ways in which the Federal Government might help to meet this problem.” (Department of State, S/SNSC (Miscellaneous) Files: Lot 66 D 95, Records of Action by the National Security Council)
  13. Not found in the Eisenhower Library or Department of State files.
  14. NSC 5427, “Restricting Diplomatic and Official Representatives of Soviet Bloc Countries in the United States in Connection with Strategic Intelligence,” dated July 19, 1954, is not printed. (Department of State, S/SNSC (Miscellaneous) Files: Lot 66 D 95, NSC 5427)
  15. See Document 134.
  16. Document 66.