JFKPOF-036-012-p0047: Private First Class Dwight H. Findley, Tomb of the Unknown Soldier, Arlington National Cemetery, Arlington, VA, 11 November 1961

The Administration's concern over trouble spots abroad was reflected in an announcement by Defense Secretary McNamara of a speedy build-up of long-range cargo and troop carrier planes to meet limited war situations anywhere in the world. (1:6-7) – February 3, 1961

Meanwhile, the Senate Subcommittee on National Policy Machinery issued a nine-page, briskly written study in which it said that the President needed more help in formulating security policy. It said he wouldn’t get it by creating "super Cabinet positions in the White House" but be "strengthening the traditional means of executive power." (1:1) – February 6, 1961

On another defense matter, the new Administration was considering plans for more amphibious assault ships to prepare for possible limited war situations at remote places in the world. (15:1) – February 8, 1961

The President said that the Pentagon, after a reappraisal of defense strategy, had recommended a "general strengthening of our armed forces." He noted that the Department’s recommendations included proposals for augmenting unconventional military forces. No decision has been reached, however, that would indicate a shift from reliance on nuclear weapons, the President declared. (1:4 Text, page 12.) – March 2, 1962

The Appropriations Committee, charging poor Air Force management, called on the Pentagon to appoint "at once" a single head to carry out missiles base construction. (7:1) – March 4, 1962

Defense Secretary McNamara issued a direction giving the Air Force virtually exclusive responsibility for military space-development projects, including a plan to perfect "anti-satellites." (1:6-7) – March 9, 1961

President Kennedy met with Defense Secretary McNamara and Budget Director Bell to put the finishing touches on military budget revisions that are expected to dramatize the need for meeting "limited war" situations. Reversing a ten-year trend, the Administration will seek the first manpower increase since the Korean War. The President will ask Congress for up to $2,000,000,000 in new appropriations, with emphasis on ground weapons and airlift facilities for brush-fire warfare. (1:5) – March 26, 1961

The Pentagon is scheduled to unveil by May a plan to merge Air Force fleets of fighter planes and transport airliners with Army paratrooper and reserve infantry units into a single command under an Army general. The project is part of the general shift in policy to concentrate on limited-war situations. (1:4) – March 27, 1961

President Kennedy made major revisions in the Eisenhower Administration’s last defense budget. Mr. Kennedy urged a speed-up in long-range missile strength but he cut back the B-70 supersonic bomber program and dropped the nuclear plane project. (1:1) – March 29, 1961

All fifty-two of the domestic military installations to be closed or curtailed for economy reasons under President Kennedy’s defense budget were identified by the Pentagon. Twenty-one bases abroad will be named later. (1:2-3) – March 31, 1961

The first military operational assignment in space was given to the Air Force ’ the responsibility for operating all reconnaissance satellites for the collection of intelligence. The move indicated that Air Force research and development assignments in space meant operational authority afterward. (1:2) – April 2, 1961

The President gave a firm pledge that this country’s armed forces would not intervene in Cuba "under any conditions" and he said he would be opposed to any attempt to mount an anti Castro offensive from the United States. (1:1) – April 13, 1961

President Kennedy appointed Gen. Maxwell D. Taylor, former Army Chief of Staff, to review United States intelligence and paramilitary and guerrilla warfare capabilities. General Taylor retired from the Army in self-proclaimed "frustration" over the Eisenhower Administration’s refusal to adopt his views on limited warfare requirements. (1:2) – April 23, 1961

President Kennedy asked his brother, the Attorney General, to help General Taylor investigate the Central Intelligence Agency’s role in the abortive uprising as well as in other aspects of the country’s secret defense activities. The Attorney General before joining the Cabinet, helped investigate Communist and other subversive activities. (1:2) – April 24, 1961

After an hour-long meeting with President Kennedy at the White House, Governor Rockefeller called the situation in Cuba a serious threat to the security of the United States. He urged all Americans to support the President in whatever action was needed to meet it. (1:6) – April 26, 1961

Chairman Fulbright of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee strongly implied that the Administration was considering the possibility of direct military intervention in South Vietnam and Thailand. Secretary of State Rusk told a news conference that military aid to South Vietnam would be increased and left the implication that more economic help was forthcoming. He disclosed he would head the U.S. delegation to the proposed Laos peace conference beginning next Friday. (1:8 ’ excerpts, pg. 10) – May 5, 1961

Defense Secretary McNamara promised that he would reduce the disclosure of military information. He said he had been shocked when his own statement to Senators on aircraft, missile and ship requirements was cleared for publication with details that would be "of great value" to a "Soviet planner." (1:1) – May 11, 1961

A new defense agreement is being negotiated with Canada, under which she will assume responsibility for operating and maintaining the Pine Tree air-defense line. In exchange, Washington will finance the production of NATO fighter aircraft in Canada. (36:1) – June 11, 1961

Congressmen heard testimony from the nation’s civilian and military defense chiefs that the Russians and Chinese Communists were shipping large amounts of arms to Cuba in order to make the island a base for the export of revolution to Latin America. Congress should remove barriers on military aid to Latin American countries. (2:3) – June 15, 1961

The Kennedy Administration has asked Congress to authorize a special "anti-subversive" military program in Latin America. (1:1) – July 4, 1961

The Pentagon disclosed it was studying plans to mobilize certain National Guard and Army Reserve units for a speedy build-up of military manpower to deal with the Berlin crisis. These plans would permit a sizable troop increase "within six months," and are among the "possibilities" now being explored by the Joint Chiefs of Staff at the request of President Kennedy. (1:8) – July 12, 1961

President Kennedy called the Joint Chiefs of Staff to the White House for a special conference late yesterday and ordered a meeting of the National Security Council today. All the emergency defense measures under consideration would cost $4,300,000,000 in addition to the $43 billion defense bill now before Congress. (1:7) – July 19, 1961

Secretary McNamara said only sparing use would be made of requested authority to activate reservists and to extend military training obligations. He also said the Government would try to pass over those who had completed regular, full-time enlistments. (1:5) – July 28, 1961

Defense Secretary McNamara said the Administration’s fall-out shelter plan was only "the first phase" of a greater civil defense effort. (1:6-7) – August 2, 1961

A Senate House conference committee approved the record peacetime defense appropriations bill. It included virtually all Mr. Kennedy’s military fund requests to meet the Berlin crisis. But his shelter proposal appeared headed for trouble. (1:2-3) – August 10, 1961

The House and Senate passed the $46,662,550,000 defense budget. For the first time it included a major fall-out shelter program. (1:8) – August 11, 1961

A further build-up of United States military readiness in Berlin was reportedly recommended to President Kennedy by Vice President Johnson. (1:8) – August 24, 1961

Governor Rockefeller called a meeting of the Civil Defense Committee of the Governors’ Conference to discuss fall-out shelters and other civil defense problems. The meeting, which will be held in Washington Sept. 17, was apparently scheduled because of Moscow’s decision to resume nuclear weapons tests. (1:8) – September 2, 1961

Military sources in Washington said they had been advised by Pentagon officials that military manpower might be cut back sharply if the Berlin crisis eased and no major crisis developed elsewhere. At the same time, there were forecasts that military spending next year would be "many billions" higher than the $47,000,000,000 estimate for the current fiscal year. (1:4) – October 7, 1961

The United States Army has reduced its patrols on the U.S. sector of the border facing East Berlin and transferred this function from regular troops to military police units. It also became known that the twelve-mile border section was now being patrolled only sporadically by the military police units. These disclosures were made by United States military authorities as three West Berlin newspapers demanded that the Western Allies take on more responsibility for guarding the border in the wake of a series of incidents in which East German policemen fired across the border barricades into West Berlin. (1:8) – October 8, 1961

The Defense Department announced further reinforcements of United States forces in Europe, including an armored cavalry regiment and eleven squadrons of fighter planes. 10,000 men are involved. (1:6-7) – October 12, 1961

While all non-military aircraft remained strangely still on commercial runways in the United States and Canada, 1,800 fighter planes and crews at 250 missile sites took part in the largest air-defense maneuvers ever held in the West. The twelve-hour exercise involved mock interceptions of hundreds of "Attacking" bombers. (1:1) – October 15, 1961

Secretary of State Rusk rejected yesterday any type of military disengagement in Central Europe as a solution to the crisis over Berlin and Germany. Mr. Rusk said at a news conference that some kind of troop reduction in Europe and possibly in other parts of the world might well be taken up in the context of general disarmament. But he promised that the United States would not take part in any arrangement that discriminated against one country, presumably West Germany. (1:8; page 15) – October 19, 1961

The Army expects to resume in January its enlistment of six-month volunteers who will take further Reserve or National Guard training after their return to civilian status. A popular program among men seeking the least amount of active duty, it was suspended at the start of the Berlin build-up. Its renewal results from lower draft calls and expanded training facilities. (1:1) – November 22, 1961

A Pentagon request for a considerably higher defense budget than the present one in understood to be in the final phase of preparation. Defense officials are said to have agreed to seek a $51,000,000,000 appropriation from Congress. The current military budget, drawn up by the last Administration, totaled less than $43,000,000,000. (1:5) – December 6, 1961

The Administration proposed a $700,000,000 civil defense program designed to provide community fall-out shelters for 20,000,000 persons. Most of the money, for the fiscal year starting July 1, would be spent as matching grants to help schools, universities and other nonprofit institutions build public shelters. (1:6; Excerpts, 26) – December 15, 1961