117. Minutes of a Verification Panel Meeting1


  • SALT


  • Chairman—Henry A. Kissinger
  • State
    • John Irwin
    • Thomas Pickering
    • Frank Perez
    • Seymour Weiss
  • Defense
    • David Packard
    • Gardiner I. Tucker
  • CIA
    • Richard Helms
    • Carl Duckett
  • JCS
    • Adm. Thomas Moorer
    • Col. Paul Von Ins
  • ACDA
    • Philip J. Farley
    • Spurgeon Keeny
  • Justice
    • Attorney General Mitchell
  • OST
    • Dr. Edward David
    • Ambassador Llewellyn Thompson
  • NSC Staff
    • Dr. K. Wayne Smith
    • Helmut Sonnenfeldt
    • Col. Jack Merritt
    • James Woolsey
    • William Hyland
    • Jeanne W. Davis
[Page 372]


It was agreed that:

  • … the Working Group would try to find a new term to replace “non-limited nuclear systems;”2
  • … the Delegation’s recommendation for a substantive position on non-limited nuclear systems should be rejected;
  • … the Working Group should prepare various formulations for rejection of the Soviet proposal on non-limited systems, for consideration by the SRG and presentation to the President;
  • … to propose at Helsinki a joint study looking toward improvement of the Hot Line;3
  • … the Working Group will prepare various positions to respond to the Soviet NCA ABM proposal.

[Omitted here are the minutes of the meeting.]

  1. Source: National Archives, Nixon Presidential Materials, NSC Files, NSC Institutional (H-Files), Box H–107, Verification Panel Minutes Originals 1969–3/8/72. Top Secret. The meeting was held in the White House Situation Room.
  2. The term refers to what the administration previously called forward-based systems (FBS). According to the meeting minutes, Kissinger asked: “Can we all agree to use ‘non-limited nuclear systems’ rather than forward based systems?’” He then explained his reasoning: “Of course, if we accept a limitation on a non-limited system, it is immediately removed from the non-limited category—we have a major epistemological problem.”
  3. According to the meeting minutes, Kissinger made the following suggestion: “A new dedicated satellite would be the best and most secure, but use of a commercial satellite would reduce the vulnerability of the system and the delivery time. If we could agree on a specific proposal it might be a concrete outcome of the Helsinki talks. But we have to agree on what system to propose.”