24. Memorandom From Charles E. Johnson of the National Security Council Staff to the President’s Special Assistant for National Security Affairs (Bundy)1


The President can get the gist of the entire report by reading Mr. Webb’s four-page letter.2
The attached draft NSAM3 has been prepared after consultation with NASA, State and Ed Welsh. The action proposed is the one they would like to have.
No dramatic move is recommended at this time. The action is now with the Soviet Union and it is generally agreed that some performance on their part is needed before we should make our next moves.
If the President intends to communicate secretly with K.,4 he might consider including a personal expression of hope that K. would personally oversee and expedite the Soviet response to our offers of cooperation, realizing the great difficulty any Chief of State has in getting the bureaucracy moving with alacrity particularly when mistaken notions of military security may be impeding performance.
The item concerning Ed Welsh’s Space Council is included in Ed’s suggestion.5 He has already made his suggestion orally and in writing to the President. It certainly would do no harm to the program of cooperation and might be the occasion for the President to impress his personal stamp on this program, it would be all to the good.
Charles E. Johnson 6
  1. Source: Johnson Library, National Security File, Charles E. Johnson Files, Cooperation in Space, US–USSR #2, Box 14. No classification marking.
  2. Document 22.
  3. The attached draft text with handwritten changes is identical to the final version of NSAM No. 285 (Document 25).
  4. Nikita S. Khrushchev.
  5. Welsh suggested that the report form the basis of a briefing to the Space Council; see the last paragraph of NSAM No. 285, Document 25.
  6. Printed from a copy that bears this typed signature.