461. Memorandum from the Joint Chiefs of Staff to McNamara, October 301

[Facsimile Page 1]


  • Points to be Considered in Current Negotiations (U)

1. The Joint Chiefs of Staff consider that the following points should be included as conditions to negotiations on the removal of Soviet offensive capabilities from Cuba:

a. The elimination of any and all surface-to-surface missiles (including ship-based), bomber aircraft, bombs, air-to-surface rockets and guided missiles, warheads for any of the above weapons, mechanical or electronic equipment to support or operate the above items, and missile fuel. This category must exclude from Cuba all nuclear-capable delivery systems.

b. The continuing right of the United States to conduct adequate aerial surveillance, to include a guarantee of noninterference by surface-to-air missiles, aircraft, and other air defense weapons, during negotiations, and as long as the United States has in any manner guaranteed noninvasion of Cuba.

c. The immediate cessation of construction of all missile sites and bases for bomber aircraft.

d. The right to continue, and if necessary, to increase, the quarantine and other protective measures until the United States is satisfied that any threat is removed.

e. Members of any UN inspection team cannot be drawn from Communist Bloc countries, should come from neutral or nonaligned countries, and must have technical competence adequate to carry out this task. The inspection must include not only missile sites but ports and airfields.

2. The Joint Chiefs of Staff consider that the following are matters against which we should guard in negotiations, and that the US negotiators should exclude these matters from discussion:

[Facsimile Page 2]

a. The involvement of Guantanamo base rights, aircraft landing rights, and water supply guarantees.

b. The involvement of any other multilateral or bilateral alliance agreements and collective security arrangements such as NATO, CENTO, SEATO, the problem of Berlin, the matters of JUPITER and THOR bases, SAC bases, and POLARIS support facilities. In short, the discussion must be limited to Cuba alone.

[Typeset Page 1290]

c. Any arrangements for the withdrawal of US forces or reduction in the present buildup until after the United States is assured that all of the offensive weapon capability has been eliminated from Cuba.

d. Any arrangements which would restrict the rights of the Cuban people, wherever they may be, to determine for themselves the political future of their country.

For the Joints Chiefs of Staff:

Maxwell D. Taylor
Joint Chiefs of Staff
  1. Points to consider in current negotiations on the removal of Soviet offensive capabilities from Cuba. Top Secret. 2 pp. WNRC, OASD/ISA Files; FRC 65 A 3501, Cuba 1962, 381 Jan–Oct.