American Republics Regional


1. National Security Study Memorandum 15, Washington, February 3, 1969.

President Nixon asked for a review of U.S. posture toward internal political developments in Latin America, U.S. security interests, development assistance strategy, and the role of the OAS and other multilateral organizations.

Source: National Archives, Nixon Presidential Materials, NSC Files, NSC Institutional Files (H-Files), Box H–134, NSSM 15. Secret. A copy was sent to the Chairman of the JCS. An Analytical Summary of the five papers is printed as Document 5. The overall statement of U.S. policy towards Latin America is printed as Document 4.


2. Memorandum From the President’s Assistant for National Security Affairs (Kissinger) to President Nixon, Washington, May 7, 1969.

President’s Assistant for National Security Affairs Kissinger summarized a memorandum from AID regarding the possibility of transferring funding from housing to highways in AID programs in Latin America. Kissinger informed Nixon that AID Administrator Rutherford Poats thought it would be difficult to transfer funding and outlined his reasoning. Nixon disagreed with AID’s conclusion and asked the State Department for a new study.

Source: National Archives, Nixon Presidential Material, NSC Files, Box 797, Country Files, Latin America, LA General, volume I 1–7/69. No classification marking. At the end of the memorandum the President wrote, “1) I expected this. 2) I am not satisfied. 3) In all our Latin program I want to turn away from Housing and other welfare handouts—and toward highways, etc.—which produce wealth and where we know our money does something tangible. 4) Have Meyer et al. Give me a report on this.” A report was not found.


3. Minutes of an NSC Review Group Meeting, Washington, July 3, 1969, 2–3:50 p.m.

The participants reviewed U.S. interests and policy in Latin America. In addition, the participants discussed issues of political structure, economic development, and the future of U.S. assistance to the region.

Source: National Archives, Nixon Presidential Materials, NSC Files, NSC Institutional Files (H-Files) Box H–111, SRG Minutes, Originals. Confidential. The meeting took place in the White House Situation Room. The revised version of the Latin American Study, which was written in response to NSDM 15, is printed as Document 4.


4. Study Prepared in Response to National Security Study Memorandum 15, Washington, July 5, 1969.

The Interdepartmental Group for Inter-American Affairs outlined general considerations and guidelines for determining U.S. policy toward Latin America and the Caribbean. The study focused on the basic nature of U.S.-Latin American relations, defining U.S. objectives in the hemisphere, establishing what style or technique would guide U.S. policy, and where the United States should concentrate its attention.

Source: National Archives, Nixon Presidential Materials, NSC Files, NSC Institutional Files (H-Files), Box–134, NSSM 15 [1 of 3]. Secret. The revised draft of a study prepared by the IB/ARA in March 1969. The original draft is not published. National Security Study Memorandum 15 is Document 1.


5. Analytical Summary Prepared by the NSC Interdepartmental Group for Latin America, Washington, undated.

To brief the NSC for its July 9 meeting on Latin America, the NSC Interdepartmental Group for Latin America outlined U.S. interests in the region and discussed the possible directions that United States-Latin American relations might take during the Nixon administration.

Source: National Archives, Nixon Presidential Materials, NSC Files, NSC Institutional Files (H-Files), Box H–23, NSC Meeting 7/9/69, Latin America. Secret. Forwarded under cover of an undated memorandum from Kissinger to Nixon, in which Kissinger recommended that the President make no decisions at the July 9 NSC meeting on Latin America. The memorandum is not published. The IG Paper is printed as Document 4. NSC meeting minutes were not found, but Alexander Haig kept handwritten notes. (Ibid., Box H–121, NSC Meeting, July 9, 1969)


7. National Security Study Memorandum 68, Washington, July 12, 1969.

Following the July 9 NSC meeting on Latin American policy, Nixon directed that the CIA prepare a report on the Catholic Church in Latin America by October 10 and that the Joint Chiefs of Staff prepare a report on the Military Establishments in Latin America by October 30.

Source: National Archives, Nixon Presidential Materials, NSC Files, NSC Institutional Files (H-Files), Box H–159. Secret. A copy was sent to the Secretary of Defense. The CIA report is printed as Document 13. The JCS report has not been found.


8. Memorandum From the President’s Assistant for National Security Affairs (Kissinger) to President Nixon, Washington, July 22, 1969.

President’s Assistant for National Security Affairs Kissinger recounted the preliminary conclusions for the President of the CIA paper “The Church and Change in Latin America.” The paper highlighted that advocacy by the Catholic Church for social reforms may, in some cases, produce greater instability. Over a longer period of time, those reforms had the potential of spurring revolution in some areas and more radical trends promoted by the Church would most likely strengthen anti-American sentiment in the region.

Source: National Archives, Nixon Presidential Materials, NSC Files, Box 797, Country Files, Latin America, Latin America General, volume II, September–October 1969. Secret. Sent for information. On the first page, Nixon wrote, “K—get this info to Buchanan for some column and think pieces.” Attached but not published at Tab A is the CIA’s July 10 report. The July 9 NSC meeting is referenced in Document 6. The CIA study is Document 13.


9. Memorandum From the Chairman of the National Security Council Undersecretaries Committee (Richardson) to President Nixon, Washington, August 13, 1969.

Richardson discussed the efforts of the NSC Undersecretaries Committee to convince Congress to modify the Conte Amendment which restricted the Administration from selling jet military aircraft to Latin American nations.

Source: National Archives, Nixon Presidential Materials, NSC Files, Box 779, Country Files, Latin America, Colombia, Vol. 1. Secret. For more information on the concerns of the Nixon administration regarding Congressional restrictions on military sales to Latin America, see the Argentina, Colombia, Brazil, and Venezuela country chapters of this volume.


10. Memorandum From the President’s Assistant for National Security Affairs (Kissinger) to President Nixon, Washington, October 2, 1969.

In this 4 page memorandum, President’s Assistant for National Security Affairs Kissinger discussed the 4 proposals regarding U.S. negotiations on financing the cost of the Darien Gap portion of the Pan American Highway. Nixon agreed to the 4 recommendations presented by Kissinger and agreed to inform President Lleras of Colombia of his intentions.

Source: National Archives, Nixon Presidential Materials, NSC Files, Box 797, Country Files, Latin America General, volume 2, September–October 1969. Secret. Sent for action. Nixon initialed for approval on all recommendations on October 7. Attached but not published are Tabs A through F. Tab A is a June 13 memorandum of conversation; Tab B is an August 13 memorandum from the Department of State to the President; Tab C is an August 18 memorandum from Volcker to the President; Tab D is an August 20 memorandum from Hughes to the President; Tab E is a July 10 memorandum from Kearns to Secretary Rogers; and Tab F is a June 30 memorandum from Beggs to Secretary Rogers. Attached but not published at Annex I is a paper titled, “Alternative Financing Formulas.” In a December 8 memorandum to the President, Kissinger requested his support for a bill in the House of Representatives for funding to complete the Pan American highway. Nixon initialed his approval on December 10. (Ibid., Box 798, Country Files, Latin America General, volume 3, November 1969–May 1970)


11. Memorandum From the President’s Assistant for National Security Affairs (Kissinger) to President Nixon, Washington, October 8, 1969.

President’s Assistant for National Security Affairs Kissinger reported on the views of the personal assistant to Colombian PresidentLleras, Rodrigo Botero, on the U.S.-Latin American economic relations.

Source: National Archives, Nixon Presidential Materials, NSC File, Box 797, Country Files, Latin America, Latin America General, volume 2, September–October 1969. Confidential. Sent for information. In the margin next to the section beginning with “What they need basically,” Nixon underlined most of the sentence and wrote, “ agree —this Oct 31 speech must not be a dud stylistically.” Nixon also underlined most of the next statement and the penultimate sentence, and wrote, “do it” in the margin. Nixon’s comment was dated October 20. The attached memorandum of conversation has not been found.


12. Minutes of an NSC Review Group Meeting, Washington, October 9, 1969, 2:15–4:15 p.m.

The Review Group discussed U.S. economic policy towards Latin America and the upcoming IA–ECOSOC meetings.

Source: National Archives, Nixon Presidential Materials, NSC Files, NSC Institutional Files (H-Files), Box H–111, SRG Minutes, Originals, 1969. Secret. The meeting took place in the White House Situation Room. The agendas for the October 15 and 17 meetings were forwarded to the NSC Review Group under the cover of an October 4 memorandum from Davis. (Ibid., NSC Files, Box 797, Country Files, Latin America, Latin America General, volume 2, September–October 1969) The IA–ECOSOC paper was forwarded to Nixon under the cover of an undated memorandum from Kissinger. (Ibid., NSC Institutional Files (H-Files), Box H–211, NSDM Files, NSDM 30) The proposals for the IA–ECOSOC are published as Document 15. The minutes of the October 15 NSC meeting are published as Document 14.


13. Intelligence Memorandum 2609/69, Washington, October 9, 1969.

In this 3 page memorandum titled “The Church in Latin America,” the CIA reported that, while foreign priests played an important role in the more progressive, social-reform branch of the Catholic Church, they remained a minority segment, facing an ambivalent Vatican and traditional Latin American conservatism.

Source: National Archives, Nixon Presidential Materials, NSC Files, NSC Institutional Files (H-Files), Box H–177, NSSM 108. Secret. The study was prepared in response to NSSM 68, published as Document 7. The study was prepared in the Office of Current Intelligence, Central Intelligence Agency.


14. Minutes of National Security Council Meeting, Washington, October 15, 1969.

The participants discussed United States-Latin American economic issues, particularly trade. President Nixon concluded the meeting by stating that the United States needed to firmly support its friends in Latin America, including military governments in the region.

Source: National Archives, Nixon Presidential Materials, NSC Files, NSC Institutional Files (H-Files), Box H–109, NSC Meetings Minutes, Originals, 1969. Secret. According to the President’s Daily Diary, the following attended the meeting, the meeting lasted from 10:05 a.m. to 12:20 p.m. (Ibid., White House Central Files, President’s Daily Diary)


15. Annex A to a Paper Prepared in the Department of State, Washington, undated.

The Under Secretaries Committee identified 26 proposals for the U.S. position at the November Inter-American Economic and Social Council (IA–ECOSOC) meetings.

Source: National Archives, Nixon Presidential Materials, NSC Files, NSC Institutional Files (H-Files), Box H–211, NSDM Files, NSDM 30. Confidential. Attached to a memorandum from Richardson to Nixon, October 17. For the proposals adopted, see Document 17.


16. National Security Decision Memorandum 28, Washington, October 20, 1969.

The President’s Assistant for National Security Affairs, Henry Kissinger, informed Secretary of State William Rogers and AID Administrator Hannah that the President had decided to untie all AID procurement loans to Latin America.

Source: National Archives, Nixon Presidential Materials, NSC Files, NSC Institutional Files (H-Files), Box H–211, NSDM Files, NSDM 28. Confidential. A copy was sent to the Secretaries of Treasury and Commerce, and the Director of the Bureau of the Budget. For the text of Nixon’s October 31 speech see Public Papers: Nixon, 1969, pp. 893–901. The October 15 NSC meeting is published as Document 14. In an October 17 memorandum to the President, Hannah advocated Nixon only untie U.S. assistance used to acquire local currencies for financing local costs of development programs in Latin America. (Ibid., NSC Files, Box 193, Agency Files, AID, January 1969–December 1969, Vol. 1)


17. National Security Decision Memorandum 30, Washington, November 5, 1969.

In anticipation of the IA–ECOSOC meetings, President Nixon approved 12 of the proposals made by the Under Secretaries Committee without modification, and did not approve four of the proposals. He approved eight of the proposals with modifications.

Source: National Archives, Nixon Presidential Materials, NSC Files, NSC Institutional Files (H-Files), Box H–211, NSDM Files, NSDM 30. Confidential. A copy was sent to the Secretaries of Defense and Labor; the Director of the Bureau of Budget, the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, the Director of the CIA, the Special Representative for Trade Negotiations, and the Chairman of the Council of Economic Advisors. For the text of the October 31 speech, see Public Papers: Nixon, 1969, pp. 893–907. A list of the Under Secretaries’ proposals are published as Document 15. NSDM 28 is Document 16.


18. Memorandum From Viron P. Vaky of the National Security Council Staff to the President’s Assistant for National Security Affairs (Kissinger), Washington, December 2, 1969.

Vaky summarized the list of recommendations on individual countries made by Governor Rockefeller after his Latin American visit.

Source: National Archives, Nixon Presidential Materials, NSC Files, Box 798, Country Files, Latin America, Latin America General, Volume 3, November 1969–May 1970. Confidential. Sent for information. Kissinger wrote on the first page, “Pete—Can we show this to Rockefeller?” Also written, in an unknown hand, was “OBE.” Nixon dispatched Rockefeller to Latin America confer with leaders in the region.


19. Intelligence Memorandum, OCI No. 2622/69, Washington, December 8, 1969.

In this 5 page intelligence memorandum titled “The Military and Nationalism in Latin America,” the CIA analyzed the influence of nationalism on the behavior of Latin American militaries and implications for U.S. policy.

Source: Central Intelligence Agency, Office of Current Intelligence, Job 79–T00829A. Secret; No Foreign Dissem. This memorandum was produced solely by CIA. NSSM 68 is Document 7. The JCS response to NSSM 68 has not been found.


20. Memorandum From the President’s Assistant for National Security Affairs (Kissinger) to the Chairman of the Under Secretaries Committee, Washington, December 30, 1969.

As a follow-up to President Nixon’s October 31 speech on U.S. policy toward Latin America, President’s Assistant for National Security Affairs Kissinger directed the Under Secretaries Committee to submit a report to the President that outlined U.S. positions on various issues that would be discussed at the forthcoming round of IA–ECOSOC talks.

Source: National Archives, RG 59, Deputy Assistant Secretary (Economic Policy), Subject and Country Files: Lot 72 D 464, IA–ECOSOC, Caracas, January and February 1970. Confidential. The Committee’s report, January 21, 1970, is ibid., National Security Council Under Secretaries Committee Decision Memorandum, 1969–1977; Lot 83 D 276, NSC U/DM 25. Kissinger communicated Nixon’s responses to the Committee’s recommendations in NSDM 39 (Document 23).


21. Memorandum From Viron P. Vaky of the National Security Council Staff to the President’s Assistant for National Security Affairs (Kissinger), Washington, January 1, 1970.

National Security Council staff member Vaky urged President’s Assistant for National Security Affairs Kissinger to allocate more resources to Latin America, give it special treatment, advocate pro-Latin American policies even if they conflicted with U.S. domestic interests, and cultivate sympathy and understanding toward the region.

Source: National Archives, Nixon Presidential Materials, NSC Files, Box 798, Country Files, Latin America, Latin America General, Volume III, November 1969–May 1970. Confidential. Sent for information. Kissinger wrote on the top of the memorandum, “Excellent paper.” At the end of the memorandum, Kissinger wrote, “All right, how do we get it?”


22. National Security Decision Memorandum 37, Washington, January 27, 1970.

President’s Assistant for National Security Affairs Kissinger communicated President Nixon’s response to the Under Secretaries Committee’s recommendations on Latin American economic policy, particularly efforts to promote multilateral assistance, strengthen capital markets, and expand exports.

Source: National Archives, Nixon Presidential Materials, NSC Files, NSC Institutional Files (H-Files), Box H–213, NSDM 37. Confidential. A copy was sent to the Secretaries of Defense, Labor, Interior, the Director of the Bureau of the Budget, Chairman of the JCS, the DCI, the President of the EXIM Bank, the Special Representative for Trade Negotiations, and the Chairman of the CEA. The proposals are described in Document 23. The NSC Under Secretaries Committee issued its report on January 21. (Ibid., Department of State, National Security Council Under Secretaries Committee Decision Memorandum, 1969–1977: Lot 83 D 276, NSC U/DM 25)


23. National Security Decision Memorandum 39, Washington, January 29, 1970.

President Nixon approved the existing GATT standstill commitment for Latin America, the untying of local currency loans, and the componentry rule for untying AID-financed loans for the upcoming Special Meeting of the Inter-American Economic and Social Council.

Source: National Archives, Nixon Presidential Material, NSC Files, NSC Institutional Files (H-Files), Box H–213, NSDM Files, NSDM 37. Confidential. A copy was sent to the Secretaries of Defense, Labor, and Interior, the Administrator of AID, the Chairman of the NSC Under Secretaries Committee, the Director of Bureau of the Budget, the Chairman of the JCS, the DCI; the President of the EXIM Bank, the Special Representative for Trade negotiations, and the Chairman of the CEA. Hannah’s November 21 memorandum to Nixon is printed as Document 14 in Foreign Relations, vol. IV, 1969–1976, Foreign Assistance, International Development, Trade Policies, 1969–1972. The NSC Under Secretaries Committee issued its report on January 21. (Ibid., Department of State, National Security Council Under Secretaries Committee Decision Memorandum, 1969–1977: Lot 83 D 276, NSC U/DM 25)


24. Memorandum From the President’s Assistant for National Security Affairs (Kissinger) to President Nixon, Washington, January 29, 1970.

In this 4 page memorandum, President’s Assistant for National Security Affairs Kissinger discussed the U.S. position for the special meetings of the IA–ECOSOC. Kissinger informed the President of the decisions that he had made on behalf of the President regarding the IA–ECOSOC special meetings.

Source: National Archives, Nixon Presidential Materials, NSC Files, NSC Institutional Files (H-Files), Box H–213, NSDM Files, NSDM 39. Confidential. Sent for information. Annex I has not been found. Annex II is published.


25. Memorandum From the President’s Assistant for National Security Affairs (Kissinger) to President Nixon, Washington, February 17, 1970.

President Nixon approved the cash sale of jet military aircraft to Argentina and postponed decision on the broader issue of restriction waivers for arms sales to other Latin American countries.

Source: National Archives, Nixon Presidential Materials, NSC Files, Box 797, Country Files, Latin America, Latin America General, Volume 3, November 1969–May 1970. Secret. Sent for action. Nixon initialed for approval on February 20. Attached but not published at Tab A is the February 2 NSC Under Secretaries Committee Decision 26. In NSDM 42, February 19, Nixon approved the sale of the aircraft. (Ibid., NSC Files, Box 363, Subject Files, National Security Decision Memoranda (NSDMs), Numbers 1 through 50, January 1969–April 1970)


26. National Security Decision Memorandum 46, Washington, March 5, 1970.

President Nixon approved in principle waiving the aid penalty provision of Section 119 of the Foreign Assistance Act for Chile, Colombia, and Brazil to allow those countries to purchase jet military aircraft, but demurred on the waiver of FMS credit restrictions, pending further consultations with Congress.

Source: National Archives, Nixon Presidential Materials, NSC Files, NSC Institutional Files (H-Files), Box H–214, NSDM 46. Secret; Nodis. A copy was sent to the Deputy Secretary of Defense, the DCI, and the Chairman of the JCS.


27. Memorandum From the President’s Assistant for National Security Affairs (Kissinger) to President Nixon, Washington, April 13, 1970.

President’s Assistant for National Security Affairs Kissinger recommended that the U.S. Government support a replenishment of the Inter-American Development Bank to assist the institution’s efforts to expand lending operations.

Source: National Archives, Nixon Presidential Materials, NSC Files, NSC Institutional Files (H-Files) Box H–215, NSDM files, NSDM 54. Confidential. Sent for action. Kissinger initialed approval for the President on April 15. Attached but not published are Tabs A and Tab B. Written under the recommendation was “CFB [C. Fred Bergsten] informed Treasury (Petty) orally 4/15, 2:30 p.m.” The replenishment of IDB, including NSDM 54, is discussed in Foreign Relations, volume IV, 1969–1976, Foreign Assistance, International Development, and Trade Policies, 1969–1972, Document 25.


28. Memorandum From the Acting Chairman of the Under Secretaries Committee (Samuels) to President Nixon, Washington, August 31, 1970.

Acting Chairman of the Under Secretaries Committee Samuels reported on key issues for the upcoming IA–ECOSOC meetings and outlined the Department’s recommended responses to Latin American requests for reductions or elimination of trade barriers on exports from the region.

Source: National Archives, Nixon Presidential Materials, NSC Files, NSC Institutional Files (H-Files), Box H–219, NSDM Files, NSDM 83. Confidential. Attached but not published are the Annexes, and the August 28 memoranda from Palmby to Samuels and from Nehmer to Samuels.


29. National Security Decision Memorandum 83, Washington, September 7, 1970.

The President decided not to increase the level of the 1970 meat import program, demurred on changes to the level of textile imports, but concurred with the recommendation to include the Options I and II lists in the trade preference scheme.

Source: National Archives, Nixon Presidential Materials, NSC Files, Subject Files, Box 363, National Security Decision Memoranda, Nos. 51–96. Confidential. The Under Secretaries Committee August 31 memorandum is printed as Document 28.


30. Memorandum From the Senior Military Attaché in Paris (Walters) to the President’s Assistant for National Security Affairs (Kissinger), Washington, November 3, 1970.

Arguing that Latin America was a key region in the struggle against communism, military attaché Walters outlined alternative courses of action for military and economic assistance to the region to engage its allies and counter the communist influence.

Source: National Archives, Nixon Presidential Materials, Kissinger Office Files, Box 147, Agency Files, CIA Colby, General Walters. Secret. Sent for information. In the margin of the second paragraph of section 4, Nixon wrote, “ This is my preference. ” In the margin of the last paragraph, he wrote, “This should be our line, ” and underlined significant portions of the paragraph. Attached but not published is a paper prepared by Walters titled, “Specific Actions in the Military Field in Latin America.”