105. National Security Action Memorandum No. 1820


  • The Secretary of State
  • The Secretary of Defense
  • The Attorney General
  • The Chairman, Joint Chiefs of Staff
  • The Director of Central Intelligence
  • The Administrator, Agency for International Development
  • The Director, U.S. Information Agency
  • The Military Representative of the President


  • Counterinsurgency Doctrine

The President has approved the document entitled “U.S. Overseas Internal Defense Policy”,1 which sets forth a national counterinsurgency doctrine for the use of U.S. departments and agencies concerned with the internal defense of overseas areas threatened by subversive insurgency, and has directed its promulgation to serve as basic policy guidance to diplomatic missions, consular personnel, and military commands abroad; to government departments and agencies at home; and to the government educational system. The addressees of this NSAM will take action to insure that the policies set forth in the document are reflected in departmental and agency operations and in such additional instructions and guidance as may be required to assure uniformity of effort. They will also initiate the formulation of the internal doctrine, tactics, and techniques appropriate to their own department or agency, based upon “U.S. Overseas Defense Policy.” These studies when completed will be reviewed by the Special Group (CI).

The Department of State in consultation with the other addressees of this memorandum is assigned the task of keeping the “U.S. Overseas Internal Defense Policy” up to date, making such modification as changes in policy or practical experience may require, and publishing revised editions as necessary.

McGeorge Bundy
  1. Source: Department of State, S/S-NSC Files: Lot 72 D 316, NSAM 182. Secret.
  2. A copy of this 39-page paper, dated August 6, is attached to a memorandum from U. Alexis Johnson to Rusk dated August 8. (Ibid., Special Group (CI) Files: Lot 68 D 451, Special Group (CI) 8/1/62-10/31/62) Another copy dated September 1962 is substantively identical but lacks two annexes. (Ibid., S/S-NSC Files: Lot 72 D 316, NSAM 182) For a summary, see Document 106. According to Johnson, the role of the CIA was “given only an abbreviated treatment in the basic document; for security reasons its function is being separately described in a companion paper to be distributed to qualified recipients.” The companion paper has not been found.