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Digital Archive International History Declassified

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  • July 11, 1960

    Letter from MAE to GA on Polaris Issue

    Note for MD Andreotti concerning deployment of Polaris on Italian ships

  • March 15, 1961

    Message by Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Directorate General for Political Affairs and Security (DGAP), 'American attitude toward NATO - President Kennedy's declarations'

    Letter from the Italian Minister of Foreign Affairs analyzing President Kennedy’s State of the Union Address. Despite stating his commitment to cooperating with NATO, the minister suspects that Kennedy has other priorities. The letter suggests that if the Kennedy expresses hesitancy in creating a nuclear force, European nations including Italy will move forward with or without American support.

  • March 22, 1961

    Message by Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Directorate General for Political Affairs and Security (DGAP), 'American attitude toward NATO - German opinions'

    Letter expressing Germany’s opinion that the defense of Europe is impossible without using nuclear weapons as an intimidation tactic and horror at the United States’ suggestion that Europe can defend itself with conventional weapons alone. Defense of Germany should be NATO’s top priority because if Germany falls, the rest of Europe falls. The letter also references NATO’s difficulty in developing a cohesive strategy because each country is too concerned with protecting its own territories and assets.

  • April 27, 1961

    Message by Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Directorate General for Political Affairs and Security (DGAP), 'NATO strategy. Conversation between our Ambassador in London and Lord Home'

    Letter recounting a meeting between the Italian Minister of Foreign Affairs and the British Foreign Secretary regarding NATO’s weapons development. Nuclear weapons should never be employed unless absolutely necessary and instead serve as an intimidation tactic to deter Soviet aggression. The necessity of increasing NATO’s arsenal of conventional weapons to match that of the Soviets was also stressed.

  • May 01, 1961

    Memorandum by Ministry of Foreign Affairs, 'Procedure for the decision to use nuclear weapons'

    In the use of nuclear weapons for a purpose other than response to an attack, NATO members must reach a majority agreement rather than a unanimous vote. Furthermore, this majority vote must include the United States.

  • May 01, 1961

    Memorandum by Ministry of Foreign Affairs, 'Political consultation'

    This letter outlines the problems NATO faces as relations between member and non-member countries are complicated by conflicting interests. Not only is NATO struggling externally to play the field between free and communist countries in forming its alliances, but also internally to reconcile the different objectives of imperialist and non-imperialist countries and form a cohesive defense strategy.

  • May 15, 1961

    Message by Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Directorate General for Political Affairs and Security (DGAP), 'Conversation Brosio-Acheson. NATO's nuclear weapons'

    Report on the United States’ development of nuclear weapons plans without consulting other NATO members and an analysis of the tensions between the United States (particularly Acheson and Herter) and Western Europe in regards to who should lead the nuclear weapons program.

  • December 18, 1961

    Message by Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Directorate General for Political Affairs and Security (DGAP), 'Alessandrini's (RICA) report to MAE Segni'

    Report on the growing threat of a Soviet blockade of Berlin, the focal point also of a meeting of the Atlantic Council in Paris in December, 1961.

  • February 08, 1963

    MAE Cable Report on MLF

    Note by embassies in Parigi, Aja and Italian Atlantic Council delegation on recent developments of NATO MLF.

  • September 13, 1963

    Note by MAE DAP on European Provision in MLF

    Note by NATO Desk on the proposal by the Italian government to include a European Provision in the MLF covenant.

  • October 25, 1963

    MAE report to MD/SMD on MRBM Missiles deployment in Europe

    The report discusses rumors about SECEUR Lemnitzer's intention to deploy MRBM missiles in Europe as well as US government position on the same issue.

  • December 04, 1963

    Message by Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Directorate General for Political Affairs and Security (DGAP), 'NATO strategy'

    The document states what the Italian Embassies in Washington and in London reported to MAE on 30th November 1963, about NATO strategy.

  • 1964

    Memorandum by Ministry of Foreign Affairs, 'Multilateral Nuclear Force'

    Although the MLF topic isn't on the Atlantic Council's agenda, it will be nevertheless one of the topics discussed during the bilateral conversations. The document reports the current situation, Italy's position, the Italian diplomatic action and the viewpoint of other main Allies. There are also 4 attachments (the European clause; an hypothetical MLF base in Italy; the timing of the project; a possible Italian financial commitment).

  • October 01, 1964

    MAE cable on Von Hassel Declaration

    Correction by FRG minister of Defense Von Hassel and discussion of US position concerning veto rights of MLF members.

  • November, 1964

    Memorandum by Ministry of Foreign Affairs, 'NATO's nuclear weapons'

    The memo deals with the reorganization of political control and of the "command chain" with respect to NATO's nuclear deterrent (opinions of the UK and France, Italian and German criticism). There are 3 attachments: 1) Multilateral Nuclear Force. Italian stance with regards to British proposals (2 pages); 2) British position on Multilateral Force - Message from Washington on 4th December (5 pages); 3) Reorganization of the Atlantic nuclear deterrent (12 pages).

  • November 21, 1964

    Telespresso by Ministry of Foreign Affairs to Ministry of Defense, 'Multilateral Nuclear Force. British proposals'

    The document consists of the transcript of what has been told to the Italian Embassy in London (Cattani), November 20th about British remarks with regard to Atlantic Nuclear Force project. The document describes the features of the project, reports the disadvantages that could derive from the proposal and the British doubts about that. In addition, the document underlines the goals and the features that - from the Italian point of view - the MLF project could and should have.

  • November 28, 1964

    Memorandum by Ministry of Foreign Affairs, 'The project of a global reorganization of the Atlantic Alliance's nuclear deterrent'

    The project to which the document is related concerns only the strategic nuclear weapons, leaving instead the tactical ones under the specific territorial systems of control. The present document is about the components, political control and the NATO command.

  • January 10, 1965

    Memorandum by Ministry of Foreign Affairs, 'Origins and evolution of the project to establish a multilateral nuclear force'

    The note describes the story of the project to establish a multilateral nuclear force within NATO, from the origins up to the current situation.

  • March 03, 1965

    Memorandum by Ministry of Foreign Affairs, 'Atlantic Nuclear Forces'

    The document reports some considerations of MAE with regards to the current situation of Atlantic nuclear forces and possible future developments.

  • June 02, 1965

    Memorandum by Ministry of Foreign Affairs, 'Atlantic Nuclear Committee'

    The note describes the proposal made by MacNamara as the most recent element of the US political-strategic thinking. The document explains MacNamara's proposal from its origins to the current situation. The document analyzes the position of various countries, with a focus on the Italian one and some points which still need to be sorted out. Italy seems interested in participating in the proposed Committee.