100. Policy Directive0


I. Political


Basic Political Policy: The political nexus between North America and Western Europe—i.e., the Atlantic Community—is and must continue to be the foundation of U.S. foreign policy. The purpose of that policy is to maintain an environment in which free societies may flourish. The U.S. alone is not strong enough to maintain that environment, by holding Soviet military power in check and by making possible the development of the less developed countries within a free and open system.

NATO is the principal form which this coalition takes. It is of first importance to the U.S. to maintain its coherence and strength. To the Soviet Union first importance is given to disrupting it.

On the political side coherence is achieved through seeking a consensus among the allies on major policies. This means consulting frankly about policies which are still in a formative stage, and being willing to alter policies, if warranted, in the light of the discussion.

At the optimum a consensus should be agreement on common action in the best interests of the alliance as a whole; at the minimum it should be an understanding on how to handle a disagreement so as to cause the minimum damage to the coalition.


Particular Working Principles and Policies. To a large extent, the miseries of colonial disengagement are behind us. Where colonial problems remain, however, they can become a fertile source of disagreement between the U.S. and its NATO allies. These problems usually arise publicly in the United Nations. All differences cannot be removed but their disruptive consequences can be reduced if the U.S. will:

associate cooperatively with its allies in preparing remaining dependent areas politically, socially, and economically for their independence;
aid any ally or its emerging dependent area in preparing for economic adjustments which may be necessary as their political relation changes;
In the United Nations, the U.S. should continue to make clear that it believes in and looks forward to the independence of peoples now under colonial rule. In deciding on when and how to vote in the United Nations, a primary U.S. purpose should be to take action which will advance constructive solutions. The U.S. should seek allied agreement to the maximum extent feasible and, where such agreement cannot be obtained, at least assure that any U.S. action is preceded by full and frank consultation.

The U.S. should seek allied agreement on a sustained effort to remedy—in both dependent and newly independent areas—the deficiencies in civil and military competence, education, and economic development which are among the principal obstacles to successful independence. In pressing this effort, problems will sometimes arise out of special interests that some of our allies have in specific less developed areas. We should make a concerted effort, through consultative machinery, to reach agreements which will subordinate such special interests to the larger goal of denying these areas to chaos or Communism.

In thus leading the Atlantic nations in common action to meet the needs of the less developed world as a whole, the U.S. can help the Atlantic Community to see its task in larger terms, which will transcend differences on specific colonial issues, and which will enable its colonial or ex-colonial members to cease to regard the only alternatives as being to hang on to historic footholds to the bitter end or return to a limited European status.

One purpose of such genuine—and often abrasive—consultation in NATO should be to bring about this change in perspective and policy by our allies, by convincing them of our understanding of their problems. Other purposes are described in the Discussion of this paper, which should serve as a general guide to U.S. action in this field.


European Integration and Beyond. The U.S. should make clear its support for the movement toward European integration. The U.K. should not be encouraged to oppose or stay apart from that movement by doubts as to the U.S. attitude or by hopes of a “special” relation with [Page 287] the U.S. The Six should be encouraged to welcome U.K. association with the Community and not to set the price too high for such association, providing that there is to be no weakening of essential ties among the Six.

The ultimate goal of the Atlantic nations should be to develop a genuine community, in which common institutions are increasingly developed to address common problems. Opportunities for moving in this direction may arise over time, and the Atlantic nations will be in a better position to exploit these opportunities if they are clear beforehand that this is the general direction in which they want to move. Such a Community should be capable of embracing Japan, at least in the economic sphere, at the earliest possible time. Over the long run, it might be open to other countries willing and able to share its responsibilities.

Organization and Method. The principal organ for consultation should be the North Atlantic Council. Two subordinate instruments may be helpful:
NAC Committees. The U.S. should encourage the Council to set up informal committees to address regional and functional problems. These committees’ membership should be on the basis of national involvement, and their task should be to make policy recommendations—not necessarily based on unanimity—to the Council.
NATO Policy Advisory Committee. The U.S. should propose that the Council establish a Policy Advisory Committee to meet once or twice a year to seek a consensus on basic objectives and tasks, and to report that consensus and its appraisal of movement toward or away from those ends to the Council. This Committee might consist of 3–5 men of broad repute, who would not be national representatives.

II. Military


A Pragmatic Doctrine. The U.S. should urge that:

First priority be given, in NATO programs for the European area, to preparing for the more likely contingencies, i.e., those short of nuclear or massive non-nuclear attack.
NATO continue, under this pragmatic doctrine, to prepare to meet nuclear or massive non-nuclear attack in the theater—but not to a degree that would divert needed resources from non-nuclear theater programs to meet lesser threats or from programs to assure an ample and protected U.S. strategic power.

The U.S. should urge that this view be given effect by a constructive interpretation of existing doctrine, and that this doctrine only be rewritten if needed European energies and resources cannot be mobilized in any other way, and if it is clear that NATO agreement can be reached on a revision.

Non-nuclear Forces.
The U.S. should announce that the U.S. means to maintain its own divisions and supporting units in Europe. While these forces have as their primary objective the defense of the NATO area, certain of these forces may be required, temporarily and in exceptional cases, to meet limited military situations short of general war outside the NATO area.
The U.S. should propose that the objective of improving NATO’s non-nuclear forces should be to create a capability for halting Soviet forces now in or rapidly deployable to Central Europe for a sufficient period to allow the Soviets to appreciate the wider risks of the course on which they are embarked. This program should emphasize raising the manning levels, modernizing the equipment, and improving the mobility of presently projected NATO non-nuclear forces. The U.S. should then press strongly for NATO execution of this program, as a matter of the highest priority. The U.S. should urge rapid progress toward building up a mobile task force to deal with threats to NATO flanks, as part of this program.
The U.S. should press for greater NATO research and development regarding non-nuclear weaponry, and for coordinated alliancewide production of major military matériel. The U.S. should lead toward further coordination and integration of defense arrangements. It is particularly important to be responsive to strong German desires in this regard.
Nuclear Forces.
The President should state that an effective nuclear capability will be maintained in the European area and that nuclear weapons will not be withdrawn without adequate replacement. Nuclear weapons in NATO Europe may be regrouped as further studies may indicate.
Additional resources should be used to strengthen the nuclear capability now in Europe only where (i) ongoing programs are so far underway that they could not be changed without serious adverse political effects, or (ii) the increase will not divert needed resources from non-nuclear tasks and is clearly required to cover needs either for replacement or expansion that cannot be met from outside the theater. The 1963 MC–70 goals, as well as the proposed 1966 goals, should be reviewed by the State and Defense Departments from this standpoint.
The Secretary of Defense should undertake a study of the extent to which nuclear weapons in NATO Europe could be made more secure against unauthorized use. Consideration should be given, in this study, to the problem of control after initial use of nuclear weapons, as well as before. Some possible safeguards to be considered in such a study are discussed in the body of this report. These include making SACEUR headquarters and communications more secure against wartime disruption.
SACEUR procedures for ordering use of nuclear weapons, once he has been given political direction, should be clarified and made more explicit.
It is vital that the major part of U.S. nuclear power not be subject to veto. It is not essential that the part of that power deployed in Europe be veto-free. It is, however, most important to the U.S. that use of nuclear weapons by the forces of other powers in Europe should be subject to U.S. veto and control. Therefore, the concept of a veto by another than ourselves in Europe is not contrary to our interests.
The U.S. should suggest that the NATO Council try to work out general guidelines regarding the use of nuclear weapons or a political method for determining such use. The U.S. should undertake to observe any agreed guidelines or political method, insofar as feasible. Until some other indication of desire reaches him, the President should make entirely clear his intention to direct use of nuclear weapons if European NATO forces have been subjected to an unmistakable nuclear attack or are about to be overwhelmed by non-nuclear forces.
The U.S. should announce its intention to commit, say, five Polaris submarines to NATO for the life of the alliance, for use by the President in accordance with the procedures outlined above, except that the U.S. would remain free to use them in self-defense. The U.S. should commit additional sea-borne missiles deployed in the Atlantic or the Mediterranean to NATO, as they become available. The deployment and targeting of these missiles should be worked out jointly by NATO commands and the U.S., with appropriate participation by the Standing Group, so as to cover military targets in Europe in the degree that this could be done without change in projected U.S. military programs.
The U.S. should urge the U.K. to commit its strategic forces to NATO, in the same manner as suggested above for U.S. forces. Since the U.K. probably would be reluctant to do so unless the U.S. also committed such B–47 SAC forces as it decides to station in the U.K. to NATO, we should seriously consider the possibility of taking such action in a manner which would maintain the essential mission and U.S. control of these forces.
Over the long run, it would be desirable if the British decided to phase out of the nuclear deterrent business. If the development of Skybolt is not warranted for U.S. purposes alone, the U.S. should not prolong the life of the V-Bomber force by this or other means.
The U.S. should not assist the French to attain a nuclear weapons capability, but should seek to respond to the French interest in matters nuclear in the other ways indicated above.
If the European NATO countries wish to expand the NATO seaborne missile force, after completion of the 1962–66 non-nuclear buildup, [Page 290] the U.S. should then be willing to discuss the possibility of some multilateral contribution by them. The U.S. should insist, in any such discussion, on the need to avoid (i) national ownership or control of MRBM forces; (ii) any weakening of centralized command and control over these forces; (iii) any diversion of required resources from non-nuclear programs. The U.S. should not facilitate European production of MRBMs or procurement of MRBMs for European national forces, whether or not these forces are committed to SACEUR.

Procedures. The U.S. should lay before the NAC the general guidelines that it believes should govern future NATO military programs, based on the pragmatic doctrine suggested in this report.

If allied agreement to these guidelines can be secured, the NATO military commanders should be asked by the Council to design alternative programs that would be consistent with these guidelines and with two levels of resource availabilities: one corresponding to present levels of military spending, and one projecting as significant an increase as seems realistically feasible, in order to elicit increased NATO effort. (As part of such an increased NATO effort, U.S. military aid would probably need to be increased and should include provision of advanced non-nuclear weapons—instead of emphasizing nuclear weapons as heavily as at present.) On the basis of the NATO commanders’ replies, a decision could be made as to the size and nature of future NATO programs that would be designed to fulfill the strategy outlined in this report.

III. Economic


Purpose. The OECD should be the principal means of achieving needed coordination between the financial, aid, and trade policies of Europe and North America and, eventually, of Japan. Its object should be to achieve higher rates of growth in some Atlantic countries and a larger allocation of resources to important tasks facing the Atlantic Community. This will require that the OECD develop organs which are capable not only of serving as forums for discussion but also of developing joint decisions and, in some cases, joint programs.
Fiscal and Monetary Policy. In the fiscal field, the U.S. and other Atlantic nations should be prepared to discuss and coordinate their most sensitive internal economic policies, e.g., interest rates. Some of this coordination should be achieved within smaller groupings of the OECD. An OECD Monetary Committee might be set up for this purpose.
Aid to Less Developed Areas. The U.S. should urge the OECD to undertake specific functions to promote modernization of less developed areas through three subsidiary organs: [Page 291]
The Development Assistance Group should seek both to recommend the increased levels of aid that various donor countries should provide and to ensure that the most urgent needs of specific less developed areas are taken care of in a coordinated fashion.
An Atlantic program—possibly involving establishment of an Atlantic Development Center—should be mounted under OECD auspices, on a mixed public-private basis, to promote (i) assistance to less developed countries in their development planning; (ii) certain kinds of technical aid to and exchanges with less developed countries; (iii) the training and recruiting of qualified young people from other Atlantic nations (to match the U.S. Peace Corps) for service in these countries; (iv) research in both Atlantic and less developed nations on key development problems.
A multilateral program of aid to the less developed countries of the Atlantic Community—Greece, Turkey, Cyprus, Spain, and Portugal—be mounted under OECD auspices, either by using the European Fund of the EMA or by establishing a new OECD fund for this purpose.
Trade. The U.S. should maintain high level representation at meetings of the Trade Committee of the OECD. Without impinging on the functions of the GATT, the U.S. should encourage wide-ranging discussion within this Committee.
The Common Burden. The costs of the military programs and the economic aid discussed under II and III, above, should be shared equitably by the members of the alliance.
The amount of these shares should reflect the differing resource capacities of these members. NATO and the OECD both offer forums in which this can be discussed.
The form of these shares should reflect these countries’ balance of payments positions. For example, countries with favorable balance of payments might try to buy military equipment from countries less well situated and might, where appropriate, make joint military facilities and services available to the forces of such countries on especially advantageous terms.
  1. Source: Department of State, NSAMs: Lot 72 D 316, NSAM 40. Secret. Attached to the source text was a memorandum to the National Security Council from its Executive Secretary, dated April 24, which stated that it had been approved by the President on April 21 and transmitted for implementation by all appropriate Executive departments and agencies. The same day NSAM 40 directed that all members of theNSC having responsibilities in connection with its implementation should report their progress to the President from time to time. (Ibid.)

    Following a suggestion by Merchant on January 30, Secretary of State Rusk had called former Secretary of State Dean Acheson on February 6 to ask him to chair a working group on NATO composed of Nitze, Finletter, Kohler, McGhee, and Fessenden among others. (Ibid., Rusk Files: Lot 72 D 192 and Central Files, 740.5/2–461) Acheson met with the President March 7 and 14 to discuss his thinking about the report (Memorandum of conversation; Kennedy Library, National Security Files, Staff Memoranda, Robert F. Komer) before submitting a draft of the report on March 24. (Ibid., President’s Office Files, NATO General) The draft report was considered by the NSC on March 29, which recommended various changes and additions and in particular referred the draft policy directive to McGeorge Bundy for revision of nine of its paragraphs. (NSC Action No. 2405; ibid., National Security Files, NSC Meetings) Following these revisions, which affected about 10 percent of the directive, it was approved by the President.