9. Supnu 1428 from Geneva, March 241

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From Dean. Following represents purely speculative analysis on our part as to why, before hearing any of our proposals, the Soviets should have demanded a tripartite administrator since they must know we could not in any event accept what constitutes an absolute veto on working of control system as a part of the treaty.

Possibility one: Because of strong elements of public opinion currently expressed in the US rpt US that either a further moratorium or a successful test ban treaty was in the best interests of the United States they may have decided to face us with a known impossible condition in the hope that we would seize this as a break point and thereby put the onus and responsibility on US for terminating the treaty negotiation; or

Possibility two: They may have put it forward merely for delay or for the purpose of inducing us to be more forthcoming on the number of on-site inspections, staffing, etc.; or

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Possibility three: They may have put it forward with the intent of using any flat US rejection as the occasion for Soviet termination of negotiations. This possibility seems on the fact of it remote, but conceivably they might be seeking for a way to merge the test talks with general disarmament negotiation and might, therefore, be ready to break off the talks on an issue on which they were fully prepared to stand in wider disarmament negotiations; or

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Possibility four: They are probably au courant with the general thinking that any system of control worked out in the test ban treaty would probably be used as precedents in general disarmament negotiations. Since they may insist on a tripartite control system in general disarmament negotiations they may not have wanted us to use the 4–4–3 formula with a single administrator as a precedent in such negotiations. If it develops that they really want a test ban treaty, they may ultimately come to the single administrator in that treaty, but insist that it cannot constitute a precedent in the GCD negotiations and might make their agreement on a single administrator in the test ban treaty contingent upon a satisfactory tripartite administrator in the GCD negotiations.

Tsarapkin’s attitude continues completely non-committal, but on surface friendly and cordial and he apparently wants to give appearance that he personally wants to see test ban treaty successfully concluded. His conduct, however, provides no helpful clue as to which, if any, of the above alternatives is near the mark.

Possibility five: That they have no firm idea as to what they will eventually do about the issue in these negotiations but merely felt uncomfortable with having accepted a single administrator in the face of their position on the SYG.

In view of our inability to determine what motivates Soviet proposal for tripartite administrator, we intend to handle our replies on subject with great caution, focusing on the point that our offer of parity in the control commission gives the Russians every protection of their interest they require and makes it unnecessary as well as undesirable for them to stick on their tripartite proposal.

  1. Soviet proposal for tripartite administrator. Confidential. 2 pp. Department of State, Central Files, 397.5611–GE/3–2461.