66. Memorandum From the President’s Special Assistant for National Security Affairs (Bundy) and Spurgeon Keeny of the National Security Council Staff to President Johnson 1


  • Papers on the FY ′66 DOD Budget
Secretary McNamara has submitted the attached memorandum (Tab 1)2 on the FY ′66 DOD budget for consideration at the meeting with you tomorrow at 12:45 p.m. This is the only vital paper for tomorrow, and the most important stuff is in the first 2 pages. The views of the Chiefs on all aspects of the budget are summarized in Tab B to this memo,3 and Bob hopes you will read them.
The Defense budget is in extremely good shape and there are really no major items seriously at issue. The four items in the memorandum are by their nature difficult problems that by common agreement are being called to your attention. I understand, however, that Mr. Gordon and Dr. Hornig are in general satisfied with the solutions suggested in the memorandum and there should not be a very extended discussion on these items.
There are a number of major actions involved in the current budget that are not reflected in the attached memorandum since they are not in dispute. These issues include the following: the reduction in the Minuteman force, the decision not to go ahead with an advanced manned bomber, the decision not to deploy an anti-ballistic missile system, the decision not to proceed with an advanced manned interceptor, the decision to eliminate the “shelter incentive” plan from the civil defense program, the decision to eliminate the MMRBM, and the decision to go ahead with a deep underground command and control center for the Pentagon and the White House. I am attaching for your information at Tab 2 a background paper on recommended strategic offensive and defensive forces that covers these and other issues.4 This is not essential reading for tomorrow, but it is a most important basic paper on [Page 191]our overall strategic posture, and I think you will want to read it when you have time.
I am also attaching at Tab 3 a very interesting draft memorandum on the role of tactical nuclear weapons in NATO strategy that was prepared as background for the FY ′66 budget submissions.5 Although this paper is preliminary in nature, it has been recognized by the State Department and the BOB as an important policy statement that will affect future budget decisions; it may be referred to in tomorrow’s discussion (see page 2 for the Summary of McNamara’s preliminary conclusions).
Finally, I attach at Tab 4 a copy of a memorandum on nuclear materials production schedules through FY 73.6 In view of the conflict between declining DOD weapons requirements and AEC production aspirations, this subject will present problems in the AEC budget this year and may also be discussed at tomorrow’s meeting.
  • McG. B.
  • SMK 7
  1. Source: Johnson Library, National Security File, Agency File, Defense Budget—FY 1966, Box 16. Top Secret.
  2. Not attached, but presumably Document 65.
  3. See footnote 3, Document 65.
  4. Not attached, but presumably a lengthy December 3 draft memorandum from McNamara to President Johnson on “Recommended FY 1966–1970 Programs for Strategic Offensive Forces, Continental Air and Missile Defense Forces, and Civil Defense” in the Johnson Library, National Security File, Agency File, Defense Budget—FY 1966, Box 16.
  5. A 54-page Defense study, “The Role of Tactical Nuclear Forces in NATO Strategy,” October 26; not printed.
  6. Not attached, but presumably a 2-page memorandum from McNamara to President Johnson, December 8, plus detailed Tables I–IV and two graphs (figures 1 and 2), in the Johnson Library, National Security File, Agency File, Defense Budget—FY 1966, Box 16.
  7. Only Keeny initialed; Bundy’s initials are typewritten.