15. Editorial Note

Pursuant to NSC approval of the OCB Planning Board’s recommendation in its report of April 6, calling for a review of the policy statement in NSC 5902/1, the Bureau of Inter-American Affairs (ARA) in the Department of State prepared a draft revision dated June 15, for presentation to the OCB Planning Board on July 1. In the meantime, however, Deputy Coordinator for Mutual Security John O. Bell, requested ARA to defer completion of the draft statement in order to consider an extensive paper prepared in his office reviewing existing military and economic aid programs in Latin America. (Memorandum from Bell to Rubottom, July 1; Department of State, ARA/REA Files: Lot 63 D 211, “NSC”) Assistant Secretary for Policy Planning Smith also requested postponement to enable ARA to take into account the President’s special aid program for Latin America announced on July 11 (see Document 41), and the results of the OAS economic conference at the meeting of the Committee of 21 in Bogotá, Colombia, beginning September 5. (Memorandum from Rubottom to Bell, July 14; Department of State, RubottomMann Files: Lot 62 D 418, Policy 1960) Further work on the draft statement was postponed, with the concurrence of the NSC and the OCB, until October, for the reasons suggested by Assistant Secretary Smith. (Minutes of the OCB Working Group on Latin America, approved September 1; ibid., S/S–NSC Files: Lot 61 D 385, Latin America—General) On July 14, Rubottom informed Bell that the postponement would give ARA “an opportunity to factor in U/MSC’s conclusions and findings in the further revision of the draft which will be necessary.” (Memorandum from Rubottom to Bell, July 14; ibid.)

The Bureau of Inter-American Affairs completed a second draft revision of a new policy statement in October, and a third on November 15. Assistant Secretary Thomas C. Mann sent a copy of the November 15 revision to Gordon Gray at the White House in December, commenting in part as follows: “It seems to me that this draft is too long for a policy paper and not detailed enough for a paper of policy guidelines. In view of the time element, however, I am not going to try for an extensive revision.” (Letter from Mann to Gray, December 17; Eisenhower Library, Project Clean Up) The Department of State submitted a final revised draft to the NSC Planning Board under date of January 4, 1961, for consideration at the Board’s meeting on January 6. (Memorandum from Director of the Planning Board Secretariat Robert H. Johnson to the NSC Planning Board, January 4, 1961; Department of State S/S–NSC (Miscellaneous) Files: Lot 66 D 95, Latin America)