347. Notes from transcripts of JCS meetings, October 211
NOTES TAKEN FROM TRANSCRIPTS OF MEETINGS OF THE JOINT CHIEFS OF STAFF, OCTOBER–NOVEMBER 1962, DEALING WITH THE CUBAN MISSILE CRISIS(Handwritten notes were made in 1976 and typed in 1993.)
CJCS: Chairman, Joint Chiefs of Staff. General Maxwell D. Taylor, USA.
CSA: Chief of Staff, Army. General Earle G. Wheeler.
CSAF: Chief of Staff, Air Force. General Curtis E. LeMay.
CNO: Chief of Naval Operations. Admiral George W. Anderson, Jr.
CMC: Commandant, Marine Corps. General David M. Shoup.
CONAD: Continental Air Defense
DIA: Defense Intelligence Agency
DJS: Director, Joint Staff
NORAD: North American Air Defense
OAS: Organization of American States
RCT: Regimental Combat Team
SAM: Surface-to-Air Missile
TAC: Tactical Air Command[Facsimile Page 2]
Sunday, 21 October
JCS meeting at 1300:
CJCS: Gen. Sweeney and I saw the President this morning. Sweeney said he needed an additional 150 planes to get the missiles and 500 [Typeset Page 1100] planes for the whole job. The President said if we make the strike we will do the whole job. What are the [Facsimile Page 3] chances of getting the known targets?
CSAF: 90 percent.
CNO: The President’s speech is solid for Monday night.
CJCS: How soon after that will the blockade begin?
CMC: State wants to make it indefinite, so as to get OAS reaction first. I said if they wanted 24 hours, all right.
CAPT Houser brought a memo from the DepSecDef into the JCS meeting. The President wants to be sure that Jupiters in Turkey and Italy are not fired without his authorization, even in the event of a Soviet nuclear or non-nuclear attack on those units.
JCS reply is JCSM–800–62, opposing any further steps.
JCS meeting at 1715:
Debrief of a White House meeting that began at 1430:
CJCS: CNO and I attended.
CNO: It was agreed that the President’s speech was too precise on the numbers of missiles and launchers (5–6 MRBM sites, 32 missiles; 2 IRBM sites, 15 missiles). Also, we will call this a quarantine rather than a blockade; then we could escalate to a blockade. References in the draft to horrors of war will be toned down, and direct references to West Berlin eliminated. All Services and the Joint Staff were instructed to shorten from 7 to 5 days the period for execution of OPLAN 316.
CJCS: “The Pearl Harbor complex has affected the good people at the White House. . . . There will be no air strike, but it is in the offing.”
- Debrief of meetings with the President on possible air strikes against Cuba, President’s speech, and blockade of Cuba. Secret. 3 pp. DOD, Office of the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, Office of Joint History.↩