80. Editorial Note

On January 4, 1972, Secretary of State Rogers and Secretary of Defense Laird sent separate memoranda to the President requesting his reconsideration of the MAP levels he approved in the closing days of 1971 (see Document 79). Laird sought the full amount of the original Defense Department request ($847.8 million compared to the $710.0 million that was approved), but Rogers was less ambitious. Laird also sought restoration of funds for the Korea program and took exception to a “financial legerdemain” that reduced new obligational authority by $50 million and which he thought might raise questions in Congress. Richard Kennedy summarized the Secretaries’ reclamas in a January 4 memorandum to Henry Kissinger to which he attached their memoranda.

In his covering memorandum Kennedy agreed with Rogers that the financial sleight of hand might cause difficulties with Congress and that the request for new obligational authority should be increased accordingly, along with another $5 million in MAP for Indonesia that Kissinger had requested. Kennedy recommended that Kissinger tell OMB Director Shultz that the NOA figure should be increased by $55 million but that, with the exception of Indonesia levels, other country programs should remain as approved. (All in National Archives, Nixon Presidential Materials, NSC Files, Agency Files, Box 230, Department of Defense, Volume 15 1/72)

Kissinger accompanied the President on his flight to California on January 3, preparatory to the Summit with Prime Minister Sato on January 6. (Ibid., White House Central Files, President’s Daily Diary) Kennedy’s January 4 memorandum was brought to Kissinger’s attention, and on January 5 Kennedy wrote on it: “HAK approved except that $15 million was added to Korea. This was passed to OMBDam/Shultz and Defense—Pursley. OMB confirmed that changes were made per this instruction.”