336. Memorandum From the President’s Assistant for National Security Affairs (Brzezinski) to President Carter1
- Proliferation—Follow-on to PD–8
As a result of the Presidential Decision you signed last week, several tasks were immediately assigned to the follow-on group. The first paper is attached. A second decision paper addressing the Japanese problem is also ready at this time.2 Negotiations with the Japanese begin next Tuesday. Three more short papers, dealing with different aspects of U.S. nuclear export policies, will be ready within a few days.[Page 848]
In PD–8, you build U.S. policy around the central concept that the U.S. will attempt to discourage the further development and use of “sensitive nuclear power technologies which involve direct access to weapons useable materials.” The first task is therefore to define exactly what we will classify as “sensitive,” and in so doing, to achieve government-wide agreement on this central issue. Since these definitions will form the conceptual bedrock of our policy, they do require your approval. One issue—concerning technologies which appear to lie on the boarderline—is flagged for your special attention (Part II).
Part III of the paper deals with important political questions, and with the crucial issue on which the bureaucracy is still deeply divided, of whether our evaluation program will include reprocessing, or just alternatives to it, and more specifically, what the U.S. attitude should be toward existing reprocessing plants.
The attached paper (much of which I do not understand) was approved by an interagency group, including Jim Schlesinger.
- Source: Carter Library, National Security Council, Institutional Files, Box 4, PD–08 . Confidential. Sent for action. In the upper right-hand corner, Carter wrote “Zbig—What do we have in reprocessing capacity now. For military or other purpose? J.”↩
- Reference is to a discussion paper on Japan’s reprocessing plant at Tokai. The paper can be found in the Library of Congress, Manuscript Division, James Schlesinger Papers, Energy Department, Japan, 1977–1979.↩
- There is some controversy over whether Categories B and C are really different. The answer is not yet known. You should note that they may turn out to be essentially one category. However the gap between C and D is very large. [Footnote is in the original.]↩