January 21, 1963
Memorandum for the Record by Lt. Colonel R.B. Spilman, Assistant Secretary, 'Summary of Discussions by the Joint Chiefs of Staff and Deputy Director, STPS [Strategic Target Planning Staff], Regarding Retargeting to Cover Withdrawal of JUPITER Missiles fr
This document was made possible with support from Carnegie Corporation of New York (CCNY)
The Joint Chiefs met with Admiral Roy L. Johnson, the deputy director of the Joint Strategic Targeting Planning Staff [JSTPS], to discuss how to cover the target gap left by the dismantling of 45 Jupiter missiles and also the gap that would be caused by the temporary absence of one Polaris submarine during its transit from Holy Loch (Scotland) to the Mediterranean. Johnson saw the missile shortage as one that would be of “decreasing significance after July 1963” when more ICBMs would be entering the nuclear arsenal. To complete retargeting of the previous Jupiter targets would take 90 days while retargeting of the Polaris submarines, which involved “cutting new cards for the computers,” would take several months. Johnson reviewed in detail the problems involved in providing coverage of the previously targeted bomber bases, military control centers, and other targets.
JCS Chairman Taylor emphasized the importance of assuring General Lemnitzer that retargeting would not injure NATO’s position and that the U.S. would retain the “present level of missile attacks” against Soviet missile and bomber bases that threatened NATO. Johnson made suggestions for “alternative criteria” to provide coverage of Soviet threat targets, while the Chiefs conveyed their criteria for retargeting, such as the same level of damage expectancy for the Jupiter targets.
Written on top of this document is the word “SIOP [Single Integrated Operational Plan]” because the targeting problems that the Chiefs were discussing with Admiral Johnson were integral to the U.S. nuclear war plan.
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