25. National Security Decision Memorandum 2161


  • The Secretary of State
  • The Acting Secretary of Defense
  • The Acting Director, Arms Control and Disarmament Agency
  • Chairman, U.S. SALT Delegation


  • Instructions for SALT Talks

1. The U.S. Delegation to the Strategic Arms Limitations Talks should be guided by the following additional instructions, in addition to those contained in NSDM 213.2

2. The elements of the Interim Agreement on certain measures with respect to the Limitation of Strategic Offensive Arms which are not modified by NSDM 213 remain part of the U.S. position on a permanent SALT agreement. Specifically:

(a) There is to be no construction of additional fixed land-based ICBM launchers.

(b) There is to be no conversion of light and older ICBM launchers into launchers for modern large ballistic missiles.

(c) There would have to be appropriate provisions which would provide for the orderly and equitable transition from the provisions of Article III and the Protocol of the Interim Agreement to the terms of the new permanent agreement.

(d) There would be provisions in a permanent agreement along the lines of Articles IV, V, VI and VIII.

3. The specific provisions under paragraph 4 of NSDM 213 relating to endoatmospheric penetration aids and dispensing mechanisms for exoatmospheric decoys should apply only to ICBMs.

Henry A. Kissinger3
  1. Source: Library of Congress, Manuscript Division, Kissinger Papers, Box TS 87, National Security Council, 1969–1976, NSDM, August 1971–January 1974. Top Secret. Copies were sent to the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff and the Director of Central Intelligence.
  2. Document 23.
  3. Scowcroft signed for Kissinger above this typed signature.