157. Memorandum From the Assistant Secretary of Defense for International Security Affairs (Nutter) to the Deputy Secretary of Defense (Packard)1



  • Country Program Memoranda (CPMs)—NSDM 112

In a 21 June memorandum to Mr. Kissinger (Tab A),2 the Secretary strongly endorsed the President’s decision (NSDM 112, Tab B)3 to establish a new system for comprehensive review of US policies and programs in key foreign countries. On 17 June the NSDM was withdrawn pending its revision, apparently at State’s insistence. We understand State’s objection is based on the position that the Coordinator for Security Assistance, rather than the NSC Director for Program Analysis should head any CPM mechanism that is established. (However, State may be split, with some elements arguing that since the CPMs are intended to deal with the spectrum of US relations with and programs in various countries, the geographic bureaus in State should take the lead, through the IGs, in preparing the CPMs for senior level consideration.)

NSDM 112, in our view, would:

  • —provide for thorough analysis of long-term US objectives as well as current and future programs in selected countries in the new context of the President’s national security strategy and our defense strategy of realistic deterrence;
  • —provide for systematic channeling of basic policy issues regarding these countries through the SRG to the President for decision;
  • —provide DOD substantial assurance that US defense interests were given appropriate weight in options on US security and other aid to key friends and allies;
  • —by channeling key country foreign aid options to the President through the SRG, probably lead to overall Security Assistance Program options following the same route in the November–December budget review, as opposed to their being framed by the new State Department Coordinator for Security Assistance.

I anticipate that Mr. Kissinger will discuss the NSDM with State this week. In view of the importance to DOD of the issues at stake here, [Page 327] I recommend that you phone Mr. Kissinger early in the week, refer to the Secretary’s 21 June memorandum and underline DOD’s concerns on the following points:

  • —The interagency CPM approach to reviewing US policies toward critical foreign countries is a sound one and the NSC machinery—particularly the SRG—is well suited to the task of coordinating the country reviews.
  • —The schedule for completion of the CPMs should be adhered to in order to permit careful review and policy decisions prior to the FY 73 budget decisions. This will require expeditious reissuance of the NSDM.
  • —Particularly as a consequence of actions in train to implement the concept of total force planning in the FY 73–77 Defense PPB cycle, we would expect to make a major contribution to the CPMs for six of the seven countries selected for review.
  • —As Secretary Laird stated in his 21 June memorandum, we believe DOD should chair at least the CPM committees for South Vietnam, Thailand, Cambodia, and Korea.

G. Warren Nutter
  1. Source: Washington National Records Center, RG 330 OASD/ISA Files: FRC 330 74 040, NSC June 1971. Confidential.
  2. See Document 156.
  3. Document 151.