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10. Memorandum From the Counselor of the Department of State (Pedersen) to Secretary of State Rogers and the Under Secretary of State (Richardson)1

SUBJECT

  • NSC Review Group Consideration of Study on NATO. INFORMATION MEMORANDUM.

At its meeting March 24 on the paper on NATO, the NSC Review Group agreed that the NSC should focus on the following issues needing decision prior to the April NATO Ministerial meeting:2

1. Offset: Whether to (a) continue to link our troop levels to offset; (b) drop the link between troop levels and offset but continue to seek German assistance in our balance of payments problems; or (c) seek some German cooperation in international monetary problems in exchange for troop levels.

2. Troop Levels: On the general assumption that there is no possibility for an increase in U.S. troop levels and that we are committed to the general current situation, should we (a) continue present troop levels unchanged; or (b) engage in some reductions under the REDCOSTE program—of up to 34,000 military personnel. In either case should we also undertake qualitative improvements and ask others to do the same.

3. Political Consultation: What suggestions might there be for improved political consultations (e.g., a new organization for political consultation such as an Under Secretaries group, or strengthening of present procedures). (Kissinger thought the President might want to refer to this subject in his address to the NATO meeting.)

4. Consultations outside the Political-Military sphere: What suggestions might there be regarding problems common to modern industrialized societies (e.g. youth, pollution, transportation, crime prevention) and how might consultation be conducted on these subjects (whether in or outside NATO). (Kissinger suggested the President might also want to refer to this subject in his address to the NATO meeting.)

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5. In addition to presenting alternative proposals on the above issues the revised NATO paper will flag for future longer term NSC issues such subjects as:

1. Strategic doctrine.

2. Nuclear relations with UK and France.

3. Troop levels in the long term.

4. The future shape of the Alliance.

5. The relation of SALT talks to NATO.

6. The relation of bi-lateral discussion to multi-lateral discussions.

Short alternatives papers will be prepared on these subjects by the EURIG when asked to do so after the NATO meetings here.

  1. Source: National Archives, RG 59, Executive Secretariat, Files on Select National Security Study Memorandums, 1969–70, Lot 80D212, NSSM 6. Confidential. Sent through Walsh. Copies were sent to Hillenbrand, Deputy Chairman of Policy Planning Council Miriam Camps, and Deputy Assistant Secretary of State for Politico-Military Affairs Philip Farley.
  2. No minutes of this meeting were found.