69. Memorandum From the President’s Assistant for National Security Affairs (Kissinger) to President Nixon 1


  • Program Analysis Studies
[Page 150]

At the August 14 meeting of the NSC, you were briefed on the results of a program analysis of Korea completed under NSSM 27.2

You indicated your desire to have a comprehensive five-year program plan for Korea developed to serve as a guide for agency planning. I am taking the necessary steps to see that this is accomplished for your review.

The Korea study is the first in a series of such country/regional studies being carried out under NSDM–4 (Tab A).3 The next ones to be completed will be for Brazil and Thailand. Their overall purposes are:

  • —To pull together in one place information on all U.S. activities in the area and categorize them by the policy objectives they serve.
  • —Based on careful analysis, to develop alternative U.S. objectives, policies and programs for the ensuing five years so that rational choices can be made.
  • —To formulate the issues in such a way that the President can provide clear and consistent policy and program guidance to the relevant agencies, as opposed to letting each agency determine its priorities and programs based on its own interpretation of national policy.
  • —To provide a basis for translating Presidential guidance into a comprehensive five-year program plan that can be used by each agency for planning purposes and can be reviewed and revised periodically as necessary.

Now that we have a better understanding of the great potential of program analysis studies, as well as a better idea of how to go about it than we had on January 20, and in consonance with your expressed interest in developing programs on a long-term basis, I believe we should revise NSDM–4 to:

  • —clarify the purpose and organization of these study efforts,
  • —specify the procedures for management of these studies and for implementation of NSC decisions resulting from them, and
  • —emphasize the importance of preparing five-year programs as a planning guide to all agencies.

I have enclosed at Tab B a revised version of NSDM–4.4 The revisions are in line with procedures I have agreed to with Elliot Richardson. If you approve, I will issue it.5

  1. Source: National Archives, Nixon Presidential Materials, NSC Files, NSC Institutional Files (H-Files), Box H–209, National Security Decision Memoranda, NSDM 4. Secret; Sensitive. Sent for action. Both the President and Kissinger were at the Western White House in San Clemente. A copy of the memorandum is marked, “Hand carried to Pres., 8–30–69.” (Ibid.)
  2. NSSM 27, “Interagency Planning Programming Budgeting Study for Korea,” February 22, 1969. (Ibid., Boxes H–138–139, National Security Study Memoranda, NSSM 27)
  3. Document 13.
  4. Document 71.
  5. The President initialed his approved on September 2.