126. Editorial Note

On January 16, 1971, the Verification Panel met to consider the Safeguard program and agreed that it was necessary to hold a National Security Council meeting in order to determine how to proceed with Safeguard. The participants also decided that they should meet again to discuss those issues, including hard-site concepts and the implications of such defenses for the Soviets, that the NSC would deliberate. (National Archives, Nixon Presidential Materials, NSC Files, NSC Institutional Files (H-Files), Box H–107, Verification Panel Minutes Originals 1969–3/8/72)

When the Verification Panel met on January 25, the participants agreed to the following: “to formulate the issues for the President so as to get a decision on what our FY 72 Safeguard Program should be, and its relation to our SALT position; to put before him the full range of proposals, including Mr. Smith’s views on the difficulties in changing our SALT position; to review our SALT position during the next month.” (Ibid.) The full text of the minutes of both meetings are printed in Foreign Relations, 1969–1976, volume XXXIV, National Security Policy, 1969–1972, Documents 167 and 168.