363. Memorandum From the Director of the Office of Emergency Planning (McDermott) to President Kennedy0

I am pleased to reply to NSAM No. 187, dated September 20, 1962,1 in which you suggested further consideration of recommendation 6b and clarification of recommendation 6d of the report of the Executive Stockpile Committee on the Barter Program.

After reviewing a special task force report on recommendation 6b concerning the use of barter to maintain the processing mobilization base or relieve unemployment,2 the weight of Committee opinion is that the recommendation should be withdrawn. The Committee feels, however, that no restraints should be placed on any department or agency’s sponsoring a barter transaction which would accomplish one or both of the objectives described. Such recommendations should be presented to you through the Secretary of Agriculture for consideration on a case-by-case [Page 811] basis as an exception to the principle that barter shall not be used to acquire strategic and critical materials that would be excess to National Stockpile needs.

The following amplification of recommendation 6d is submitted for your approval:3

“Any existing contract for cash purchases may be converted to a barter arrangement on terms and conditions serving the best interests of the United States if the Secretary of the Treasury has found that such conversions would result in an improvement in our balance of payments”.


Edward A. McDermott4
  1. Source: Washington National Records Center,RG 40, Department of Commerce, Executive Secretariat Files: FRC 69 A 6828, Office of the Secretary, President’s Committee on Stockpiling. No classification marking. McDermott was the Chairman of the Executive Stockpile Committee.
  2. Document 359.
  3. A copy of the Report of the Special Task Force to Review Recommendation 6b of the Report to the President on the Barter Program is attached to a letter from McDermott to Rusk, November 2, requesting Rusk’s comments on a rephrased Recommendation 6b. (Department of State, Central Files, 411.0041/11-262)
  4. No record of President Kennedy’s approval or disapproval of this recommendation has been found.
  5. Printed from a copy that bears this stamped signature.