155. Memorandum From the President’s Assistant for National Security Affairs (Brzezinski) to President Carter1
- Report on ICA’s First Six Months
John Reinhardt has prepared a brief report (TAB A) for you on the first six months of the International Communication Agency, which came into being on April 1, 1978. He cites several examples of the effectiveness of this agency’s work, much of which results cumulatively from the efforts of the past, e.g. large VOA listenership in the Soviet Union, participation in past exchange programs by 38 current heads of government and emulation of our cultural exchange programs by many other countries. His agency, as he points out in respect to Camp David, has a capacity to communicate important information rapidly to all parts of the world.
What is disturbing in this report, however, is the information that our exchange programs have declined by 57% in constant dollars over [Page 452] the past twelve years. This illustrates dramatically a point made in PRM–10:2 our expenditures on the competition for ideas have not kept pace with military outlays and we have a serious lag to make good. Unless we put more money and assign more talent to this area, our successors ten years hence will not have as much evidence of effectiveness to cite as John Reinhardt does in this report.
There are many more countries in the world now educating more people for accelerated political, economic and social development than there were even ten years ago. We should expose more of them to the United States so that they will understand us better when they take leadership positions. I would like to have your approval to take up with John Reinhardt the need for planning systematic expansion of ICA’s exchange programs.3
- Source: Carter Library, National Security Affairs, Brzezinski Material, Agency File, Box 9, International Communication Agency: 9–12/78. No classification marking. Sent for action. Carter initialed the top right-hand corner of the memorandum, indicating that he saw it. Dodson sent a copy of the memorandum to Reinhardt under a November 2 memorandum, indicating that Carter had reviewed Reinhardt’s October 5 memorandum (attached and printed as Tab A) and “pronounced it ‛Good.’” She also noted that the President had approved Brzezinski’s recommendation in his October 24 memorandum that “steps be taken to reverse” the decline in funding for exchange programs. Dodson concluded, “The NSC Staff is ready to assist you in developing plans for expansion of exchange programs and in securing Congressional approval for them.” (Ibid.) An earlier draft of Brzezinski’s memorandum to the President, with Brzezinski’s handwritten notations, is ibid. An NSC Correspondence Profile, attached to the October 24 memorandum, indicates that the original copy of Reinhardt’s memorandum was sent directly to Henze, that Brzezinski transmitted a copy of Reinhardt’s memorandum and his memorandum to the President on October 24, and that Carter approved the recommendation on October 31. (Ibid.)↩
- See footnote 2, Document 42.↩
- The President approved this recommendation and initialed “J” below it.↩
- No classification marking. A copy was sent to Vance. The President wrote “good J” in the top right-hand corner of the memorandum.↩
- See Document 121.↩
- See footnote 4, Document 130.↩
- See footnote 2, Document 151.↩
- See Document 130.↩