386. National Security Study Memorandum 701 2

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  • Secretary of State
  • Secretary of Defense
  • Secretary of Treasury
  • Director, Central Intelligence Agency
  • Administrator, Agency for International Development


  • Haiti

The President has directed the preparation of a study of US policy toward Haiti. This should be a general study covering all aspects of our relations, and should focus on the central issue of whether there is anything that can be done now at an acceptable political cost a) to prepare for or influence the transition to a post-Duvalier period and b) to help Haiti toward modernity and satisfy humanitarian needs. Alternative views and strategies should be examined and assessed.

The study should include the following:

An assessment of the current situation and the most likely course of future developments.
A discussion of US interests and objectives, and the degree to which we really should or need get involved.
A description of the broad lines of policy and concepts that we have hitherto pursued.
Options open to us a) to assist development, and b) to help the population overcome poverty and disease for humanitarian reasons; and the political costs, advantages and disadvantages of each.
Options open to us with regard to relations with the Duvalier regime, and to the possibilities of preparing for or influencing political transition, on the assumption Duvalier’s days are numbered; the political costs, advantages and disadvantages of each.
An assessment of US security interests, and options open to us to protect those interests.
The role of the OAS and/or Caribbean nations, particularly with respect to 4 and 5, options open to us to improve or support multilateral actions.

The President has directed that the NSC Interdepartmental Group for Latin America perform this study.

The paper should be forwarded to the NSC Review Group by September 19, 1969.

Henry A. Kissinger
  1. Source: National Archives, Nixon Presidential Materials, NSC Files, NSC Institutional Files (H-Files), Box H–161, NSSMs, NSSM 70 [1 of 4]. Secret.
  2. Kissinger tasked the Departments of State, Defense, and Treasury, and the CIA and AID with preparing a study of U.S. policy toward Haiti, with a focus on the post-Duvalier period.