30. Memorandum From Secretary of State Rusk to President Kennedy/1/
Washington, February 17, 1961.
/1/Source: Department of State, S/S-NSC Files, NSAMs: Lot 72 D 316. Official Use Only. Drafted by Siscoe.
Expansion of Exchanges with the Soviet Union and Eastern Europe
Your memorandum of February 8/2/ asked for a
report on exchanges with the Soviet Union and Eastern Europe and for recommendations
for expanding those exchanges with the Soviet Union and Poland. An interim
reply was sent to you on February 11./3/
/2/Reference is to NSAM 13, which reads: "I would like to get a memorandum on our exchange of persons programs behind the Iron Curtain, particularly with Poland and Russia. What could we do to step them up?" (Ibid.) Also printed in Claflin, The President Wants To Know, p. 14.
/3/Not printed. (Department of State, S/S-NSC Files, NSAMs: Lot 72 D 316)
The report which you requested is attached/4/ and consists of four parts which are summarized below.
1. Interim Report on Implementation of U.S.-U.S.S.R. Exchanges Under
November 21, 1959 Agreement. This paper reviews the implementation for 1960
of the current America-Soviet Agreement and reflects that only about 40 percent
of the planned exchanges have been completed. The performance within the several
categories varies for different reasons, the primary ones being Soviet interest
in scientific and technical exchanges, reluctance to engage in long-term exchanges
and a desire to avoid informational exchanges.
2. Exchanges with Eastern Europe and Possibilities for Expansion. This paper
reviews exchanges with Eastern European countries and indicates that, except
in the case of Poland, exchange activity has been strictly limited because
of the unfavorable political climate in Hungary and Czechoslovakia, the
cautious attitude of Rumania, and the only recent resumption of diplomatic
relations with Bulgaria. Modest and gradual increases can be expected with
Rumania and Bulgaria, but there is little hope for any significant change
in the cases of Hungary and Czechoslovakia. The large-scale Polish program
is unique because exchanges have been developed and financed primarily by
private American groups, particularly the Ford and Rockerfeller Foundations.
The opportunities in Poland are still large but these are limited by the attitude
of the Polish Government and the available political funds.
3. Background Considerations: Expansion of Soviet Bloc Exchanges. This
paper considers the basic factors involved in joining in exchange programs
with the Soviet Union, notes the inherent risks and the need to negotiate
firmly for equivalent advantages, but concludes that exchanges arranged and
carried out imaginatively, persistently, and with adequate resources of trained
personnel and funds can be responsive to and advance our long term interests.
4. Possible Increases in Exchanges Program with the Soviet Union. This paper reviews the possibilities for expansion of exchanges with the Soviet Union and suggests specific fields in which these exchanges may be increased. It also sets forth financial requirements for this expansion and recommends measures to increase the efficiency of administrative procedures.
31. Editorial Note
A meeting to discuss differing views on the best way to proceed with the
paramilitary operation against Cuba was convened at the White House on
February 18, 1961. According to summary notes of the meeting, CIA Deputy
Director for Plans Richard Bissell outlined the status of planning and preparation,
following which the group discussed how to generate support for the operation
and other matters. Ambassador Bohlen expressed the view that the USSR would
not react if the operation were finished quickly but might react if it dragged
on. For text of the notes, see Foreign Relations,
1961-1963, volume X, page 108.
FOREIGN RELATIONS OF THE UNITED STATES - 1961-1963 - Volume V - Soviet Union P15