341. National Security Study Memorandum 1461


  • The Secretary of State


  • US Policy Toward the GDR

The President has directed that a study be prepared on US interests and policies with respect to the German Democratic Republic.

This study should examine the relevant issues in the context of:

Four Power responsibilities for Germany;
our position in Berlin;
our relations with the Federal Republic of Germany;
the development of the FRG’s relationship with the GDR;
our relations with other East European countries;
the attitudes of our allies and third countries.

The study should consider US policy options over the next few years, including timing of possible US actions. Each option should include a full discussion of probable implications for US interests. Attention should also be given to the implications of possible GDR participation in international organizations and conferences such as the Conference on Security and Cooperation in Europe (CSCE).

The President has directed that the study should be undertaken by the NSC Interdepartmental Group for Europe and should be completed by March 30, 1972, for consideration by the NSC Senior Review Group and, subsequently, by the NSC.

Henry A. Kissinger
  1. Source: National Archives, Nixon Presidential Materials, NSC Files, Box 365, Subject Files, National Security Study Memoranda (NSSM’s), Nos. 104–206. Top Secret. Copies were sent to the Secretaries of Treasury, Defense, and Commerce, and to the Director of Central Intelligence. In the absence of Kissinger, who left Washington that morning to accompany the President to China, Haig asked Kennedy to clear the memorandum with the Department of State. (Memorandum from Haig to Kennedy, February 17; National Security Council, Secretariat Files, NSSM Files, NSSM 146) On February 18 Kennedy noted that Rogers had “no objection to the NSSM as written” and that the memorandum “should be issued with a date of February 17.” (Memorandum for the Record by Kennedy, February 18; ibid.)