344. Supplement 1 to Joint Evaluation prepared by Guided Missile and Astronautics Intelligence Committee, Joint Atomic Energy Intelligence Committee, and National Photographic Interpretation Center, October 201

[Facsimile Page 1]


[Facsimile Page 2]


This supplement up-dates and amplifies [less than 1 line not declassified] dated 2000 hours, 19 October 1962. Emphasis is on the READINESS status of the offensive missiles in Cuba.

Offensive Missile Readiness


1. Analysis of the comparative photographic coverage of the offensive-missile sites in Cuba now leads us to conclude that the Soviets did not have as their main objective an immediate operational capability at any of the identified sites. An emergency operational capability to launch some of the missiles on hand within about 8 hours could now exist at the four MRBM sites. They appear to be pursuing an urgent but systematic plan to achieve an operational capability which will maximize the effectiveness of the missile regiments. Within the sites the steps necessary to achieve an immediate operational capability have not occurred. For example, at San Cristobal Site 2 the three launchers and five missiles present continue to be bunched together in a field. Were an immediate launch capability intended one would expect deployment of the launcher to the vicinity of the intended launch positions.

San Cristobal Area

2. Activity in Site 1 and Site 2 continues to indicate an urgent effort to achieve full operational readiness. The launch crews, missiles and associated equipment are in the immediate area. From the status of the sites as of our last coverage (Mission 3111 on 18 October), we estimate that Site 1 could now have full operational readiness and that [Typeset Page 1093] Site 2 could achieve [Facsimile Page 3] this status by 25 October. By full operational readiness we mean the ability to launch in salvo four missiles per site with a refire capability of four missiles per site within 4 to 6 hours.

Sagua La Grande Area

3. The MRBM sites at Sagua La Grande were first identified on 17 October and were covered by photography twice that day. (The last previous coverage was on 7 July and showed no evidence of missile activity.) The status of preparation at the two sites on 17 October was approximately the same. It is believed that the missile regiment was moving into the area on 17 October, inasmuch as 35 vehicles arrived in a support area at Site 1 within the 1¾ hour period between two photographic coverages.

4. Construction activity and random location of missile support equipment indicate that development of the area was not complete. The presence of missiles and launchers indicates that the sites have an emergency operational capability. However, the regiment could reach full operational readiness at these sites by 1 November.

Guanajay Area

5. A detailed reexamination of the evidence available at this time indicates that the operational date for these launch sites may be somewhat earlier than our previous estimate. Construction activity appears to be progressing at a more rapid pace than that observed in the USSR at similar facilities. Several features of the sites such as the control bunkers, excavations for fuel tanks, and blast walls for component protection are several days more advanced than previously determined. Mission 3111 on 18 October indicates that concrete is being installed at all four pads at Site 1.

[Facsimile Page 4]

6. Although we are unable to determine a precise date for an operational capability, we believe these sites may be ready to launch missiles between 1 December and 15 December.

[text not declassified]

[Facsimile Page 5]

Nuclear Warheads for Offensive Missiles

9. At the probable nuclear storage site under construction adjacent to the Guanajay IRBM fixed missile launch Site 1, earth-moving activity at the 114 by 60 foot drive-through building continues at an apparent high rate.

10. A curved-roof building similar to that at Guanajay Site 1, but only about 35 by 67 feet has been observed at the newly identified possible missile site near Remedios.

11. Foundations of structures (approximately 60 by 35 feet) which might be intended to be future nuclear warhead storage facilities have [Typeset Page 1094] been observed at the San Cristobal Sites 1 and 3 and at Sagua La Grande Site 1. The appearance of concrete arches nearby indicates that these buildings will be earth-covered.

12. The tank trailers observed in the quay area of the Punta Gerardo port facility are similar to those seen in 22 May 1962 photography taken before security fences were erected. This strongly suggests that these trucks have no nuclear association.

13. Search of the major airfields in Cuba has not as yet revealed any structures that can be identified as intended for nuclear storage.

Offensive Force Levels

See Table 2.

Support and Supply

No change.

[Facsimile Page 6]

Coastal Defense Missiles

No change.

Air Defense Missiles

14. There are now 24 primary surface-to-air missile (SA–2) sites located in Cuba (see Figure 2). Two of these sites, Santa Lucia and Deleite, each have an alternate site located 3 to 5 nm from the primary site. These alternate sites are pre-surveyed, have no equipment and could possibly be used for mobility training exercises. Of the 24 primary sites, 20 are individually operational at the present time. The remaining primary SA–2 sites could be operational sites in approximately one week.

15. There are 6 surface-to-air missile assembly and support areas. Photography shows large quantities of surface-to-air missile cannisters and missile transporters. See Table 3 for a list of surface-to-air missile sites, missile assembly areas and associated equipment.

[text not declassified]

Guided Missile Patrol Craft

17. There are now a total of 12 KOMAR class patrol craft in Cuba. Each KOMAR craft carries two homing missiles which have an effective range of 10 to 15 nm and carry 2000 pound HE warheads. The KOMARs [Facsimile Page 7] must return to base or to a tender for reloading. Tenders for these craft have not yet been identified in Cuba. All KOMARs in Cuba are considered to be operational. At least six are based at Havana and four at Banes. The remaining two have been observed operating in the Mariel area, but it is not known whether they are based there or were operating from the Havana base.

18. The KOMARs have all been transported to Cuba as deck cargo on Soviet ships, two and four per shipload. The first shipment arrived [Typeset Page 1095] in Havana on 14 August 1962. Whereas it probably took several weeks to establish base and logistic support for the first KOMARs to become integrated fully operational units, additional units can probably become operational within one week after offloading.

Tactical Missiles

No change.


19. The apparent Soviet objective to rapidly achieve full operational status for their MRBM and IRBM regiments rather than to achieve an immediate operational capability at each site as the missiles and equipment arrive, may be very significant to the planners judging various Soviet courses of action.

[1 paragraph (3 lines) not declassified]

[Facsimile Page 8]


Preliminary analysis of photography of 18 October reveals an unidentified secured installation in an early stage of construction 5 nm southwest of the town of REMEDIOS. It consists of 4 large excavations in a symmetrical pattern; however, their function cannot be determined at this time. This installation is, however, considered to be a suspected surface-to-surface missile site.

  1. Soviet missile threat in Cuba. Top Secret. 8 pp. CIA Files: Job 80–R01386R, O/D/NFAC, Box 1, Cuba (20 Oct–22 Oct 1962).