34. Memorandum From the Assistant Director of the Office of Management and Budget (Schlesinger) to C. Fred Bergsten of the National Security Council Staff1


  • U.S. Position on Aid Targets

Your memorandum of September 15 asked for our views on the State Department proposal on a U.S. position in the United Nations on aid targets.2

It is our understanding that the President has consistently opposed any pledge on aid targets. NSDM No. 763 stated “the U.S. will avoid any pledges to meet the international targets relating foreign assistance to GNP but will seek to minimize damaging their usefulness to other donor countries.” It seems to us that State’s modest proposal goes beyond the bounds of that statement. For example, the last sentence of their proposed statement reads, “it is in this spirit that we are willing to join in the reaffirmation of the aid target.”

Moreover, you will recall that during the meeting in his office on the evening of September 104 Dr. Kissinger stated quite firmly that we should not take a position establishing any specific percentage as an aid target. His view was that foreign assistance, like national defense and other programs, must compete each year in the total process of resource allocation. In view of his statements that evening it would not seem to us advisable to send this memorandum forward.

James R. Schlesinger 5
  1. Source: National Archives, Nixon Presidential Materials, NSC Files, Agency Files, Box 194, AID, Volume IV 9/11/70-10/6/70. No classification marking.
  2. The September 15 memorandum was not found. The State Department proposals are in Document 26.
  3. Document 136.
  4. Not further identified.
  5. Printed from a copy that bears this typed signature.