272. Memorandum From the Assistant Secretary of Defense for Intelligence (Hall) to Secretary of Defense Laird 1


  • Issues Arising from the Presidential Intelligence Reorganization

You will recall our recent discussion of the several issues on external participation in the DoD planning and review cycle for intelligence programs2 which have arisen since the President’s memorandum of 5 November.3 The attached memorandum to Dick Helms4 represents the essence of the approach I discussed with you. It has been coordinated with Bob Moot and Gardiner Tucker and includes their suggestions. The issues that I see are the following:

Dissemination of the Fiscal Guidance. This is essentially an internal DoD planning document, but it is part of the data base needed by the DCI if he is to play a meaningful role in program review. I, therefore, [Page 619] propose that we send the intelligence fiscal guidance document to him, for information, and make no other outside dissemination.

Program Managers’ Review. In the past, OMB and DCI staffs have attended some of these reviews. I propose that this practice not be continued, as the reviews are internal and preliminary in character and are too early a forum for debate with outsiders. They are designed to assist the program managers and should be limited to this purpose. The DCI staff can be expected to object to this position. If the DCI, himself, objects strongly, we could fall back from this position.

POMs and Other Preliminary Documentation. I recommend that we do not release these or other subordinate documentation not reflecting your decisions outside the DoD, and that we not fall back from this position.

The CDIP Review and the PDM on Intelligence. The DCI requires an input from us as the basis for the DoD portion of his National Intelligence Program Memorandum, which is his recommendation to the President on all national intelligence programs, and which he submits to the President via OMB. Because of the timing, he cannot wait for your DoD budget submission to the President, but must use the earlier PDM as input. If he is to do so, he should participate in the CDIP review which develops the PDM, in order to understand its rationale. A more important reason for his participation is that he is required by the President to review all of the intelligence programs, and this forum permits him to do this. Finally, his assistance is valuable in assessing the substantive effects on intelligence of the resource issues we will address.

I propose, however, that the OMB not participate in this review if the DCI staff participates. We may have to fall back on this issue with OMB, but I believe it is the conceptually proper stand to take.

Budget Review. This is OMB’s traditional arena, and OMB has a staff responsibility to the President for review of the resulting DoD budget submission. On the other hand, since the major resource issues should have been resolved during the CDIP review, there is no need for DCI participation in the fiscally-oriented budget review process. Our position should be that OMB should be the sole external participant in that review.

Role of the Intelligence Resources Advisory Committee (IRAC). The DCI has developed a concept paper for the IRAC which does not enmesh that body in the DoD intelligence resource planning and review cycle. From this standpoint, the concept is acceptable, and I propose to tell the DCI so.

Review of the Special Air Force and Navy Programs. The proposed memorandum states (without making it an issue) that we will handle all DoD intelligence programs, including the Air Force and Navy special [Page 620] programs, in the same way in the budget cycle. This means that fiscal guidance will be issued to the special intelligence programs, these programs will be considered during the CDIP review, and decisions involving these programs will be included in the Program Decision Memorandum. I believe that this is the only feasible way of managing our DoD intelligence program in its entirety, but it leaves untreated the role of the ExCom. The issue may not be raised by Dick Helms, but it is likely to be raised by the managers of the special programs when this year’s CDIP review is initiated. A possible answer could be that, if the program manager is concerned about an issue, he could request the Deputy Secretary of Defense to consider it in the ExCom arena before the PDM is signed by the Secretary of Defense. In any case, I recommend that we proceed in a common way for all programs.

I will appreciate receiving your guidance on the memorandum to Dick Helms. You may wish (1) to alter some part of the memorandum, (2) to have me send it without a commitment on your part, or (3) to sign it yourself.

Albert Hall
  1. Source: Washington National Records Center, RG 330, OSD Files: FRC 330 77 094, 350.09 (March–Dec) 1972. Secret.
  2. The discussion followed an April 24 memorandum from Hall to Laird concerning “Issues Arising from the Presidential Intelligence Reorganization.” Hall’s memorandum and an April 27 memorandum commenting on it from Moot to Pursley (which Pursley forwarded to Laird) are ibid.
  3. Document 242.
  4. Document 276.