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Foreign Relations of the United States, 1961–1963
Volume XXII, Northeast Asia, Document 155


155. Editorial Note

On November 10, 1962, Director of Central Intelligence John A. McCone met with Secretary of State Dean Rusk to discuss several subjects, including the question of [text not declassified] Tibet. McCone summarized the meeting in a memorandum for the record, dated November 13; the portion pertaining to Tibet reads as follows:

“I reviewed with the Secretary the plan CIA had developed [7 lines of source text not declassified] in an effort to free Tibet of the ChiCom occupation. I said this objective was a stated policy of the United States adopted about 1958 and supported by CIA. I had gathered from discussions at the Special Group some doubt as to whether this policy remained valid—some doubt as to whether the United States really wished to exercise effort to free Tibet of Chinese Communist occupation, and if there was an inclination to change this policy, I wished to know it promptly [less than 1 line of source text not declassified].

“I said that objectives and viewpoints expressed by Secretaries Harriman and Martin and Ambassador Galbraith restrained and frustrated long range plans developed in support of U.S. policy and because of the weight given to these viewpoints, I felt that here again we were not operating on a policy line but were acting from day to day in a manner considered best by an individual of the State Department. [5-1/2 lines of source text not declassified] I therefore stated that we will make no move whatsoever until there is a policy determination on this matter.” (Central Intelligence Agency, DCI (McCone) Files, Job 80-B01285A DCI Memos for the Record)

Ambassador Galbraith had objected to projected CIA plans in a message of November 5, which argued that the United States should not risk possible exposure of such activities “unless it is necessary to do so in order attain major objective, and unless there is no other feasible way in which achieve desired result” and asserted that the current proposal failed on both counts. (Attached to a November 15 memorandum from Parrott to Bundy; Kennedy Library, National Security Files, Countries Series, Tibet)

A November 16 message from Bundy to Galbraith states that the Special Group had considered how best to employ the CIA [text not declassified] and had concluded as follows:

“[1 paragraph (3 lines of source text) not declassified]

“[5 lines of source text not declassified] CIA intends to initiate a program of active contingency planning [2-1/2 lines of source text not declassified]. No active operations will be undertaken until such plans have been worked out.” (Ibid.)