89. Memorandum From the President’s Staff Secretary (Goodpaster) to the Secretary of State1


  • Summary record of meeting, 2 October 1956


  • The President
  • Secretary Dulles
  • Mr. MacArthur
  • Mr. Elbrick
  • Secretary Robertson
  • Secretary Gray
  • Mr. McNeil
  • Admiral Radford
  • Col. Goodpaster

In the meeting today, the President indicated he thought there should be no decrease in U.S. divisions in Europe for the present, and no statement indicating that such decreases are planned.2

Nevertheless, he considers—as he has from the beginning of the NATO build-up—that the U.S. reinforcements sent to Europe were provided to bridge the crisis period during which European forces were building up; however, practical considerations have limited, and still limit, action or policy statements initiating withdrawal.

The President considers that significant manpower savings can and should be made by reducing the manpower strength of divisions, and by cutting down on administrative overhead and support elements. In addition, he feels that economy should be sought in other priority military programs.

The President indicated general agreement with Secretary Dulles’ memorandum of October 1, 1956, subject to revision of Section II thereof as agreed in the meeting. With these revisions, no objection to the provisions of the outline was indicated by those present. The memorandum as revised is attached.3

A. J. Goodpaster

Colonel, CE, US Army
  1. Source: Department of State, Central Files, 711.5/10–256. Top Secret. A copy was sent to Secretary of Defense Wilson.
  2. For documentation on this subject, see vol. IV, pp. 1 ff.
  3. Dulles’ memorandum of October 1 is not attached, but for the revised version, see Ibid., p. 96.