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November 9, 2016
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October 2, 1998
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May 12, 1959
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Sanitized - Approved Fo CIA-RDP62-0068OR000200190053-9 CIA/BR G/I 59-30 12 i?,ay 1959 !*MORAMD H VU Rs Legislative Counsel, Office of General Counsel Current inadequacies and suggested improvements in US Antarctic Research RMRE' Er Bureau of the Budget Letter to Mr. Dulles, dated 27 April 1959 The views and conclusions included in these cam ants have evolved out of (1) observations Bade syr ce 1955 in the c~jurse of Age--cy representa- tion on the OCg Working Group on Antarctica, arxd (2) continuing intelligence production for the DCI and the 3CB on Soviet Antarctic activities. In the course of this production it has sometimes been necessary to make comparisons with US activities in order to - rovide some judgment on the significance (political, iailiLary, econoreicl) of Antarctic research to the USSR. The historical preeminence of the VS in the Antarctic area is being challenged today by the UBbk -- not in the usual cold-war type of activities but with a well-organized, systematic, and aggressive scientific prok,ram. Soviet motivations in Antarctica are both scientific and political. So-fist scientific entry into Antarctica is a logical extension of its long-standing polar research in the Arctic and is generated by the expander Soviet study of the earth as a whole. There is also direct evidence that Soviet scientific activities are being undertaken for the improvement of the Soviet political position in the Antarctic area. The estimated long-range consequences of these objectives and associated activities are two-fold. First, the systematic collection of scientific data on the Antarctic will contribute significantly to the Soviet study of the whole of interrelated, world-wide physical phenomena. Their objectives in this are to improve Soviet prediction of harmf,l occurences of nature, increase their ability to modify and control some of these, and to locate and develop all possible forms of natural resources. The military implications of these objectives are that, gig any relative degree of equality in the weapons system design, eupro lacy may come to that nation which has gained better knowl- edge and control over the physical environment. Second, the Soviets are developing -- politically -- another opportunity to demonstrate the superiority of the comarunist system through its science, and to establish an interminable right to participate in the political control of a large,' if as yet uninhabited, portion of the southern Hemisphere. Whereas US Sanitized - Approved For Release : CIA-RDP62-0068OR000200190053-9 Sanitized - Approved Ford ase : CIA-RDP62-0068OR000200190053-9 T: Current inadequacies and suggested improvements in US Antarctic Research rights prior to the IOT (1957-58) have been based largely on exploration adventures and military exercises, the Soviets have made and will continue to make significant impressions on world opinion with outstanding scien- tific results from their Antarctic activities. It would follow from this that future 05 activities must continue at a level to (1) produce equal or greater accrual of scientific data in the long-range coWetition to increase mastery over the physical environment; (2) maintain historic US prestige among the peoples of the Southern Hemisphere (particularly Latin America which is deeply concerned with the Antarctic))- (3) prevent Soviet subversion of the administration and control of Antarctica; (14) prevent any military use of a build-up in the area; and () maintain specific US rights in certain minimum specific areas of Antarctica which could be claimed, should such course of action be adopted. The following comments on the specific t?pics are based on the above considerations. 1. On the determination of an appropriate level of effort o! US activities: There appear to be deficience's in the. US effort, both in topical scope and in area of activity. a. As a minimum, US effort should be expanded in Western Antarctica since this appears to %w the most favorable area with respect to access, altitude, ane gmology. Since the US has had no activities in Palmer Peninsula since the Ronne Expedition of 19147, it would appear that at least summer-mason glaciological and geological operations should F a extended from Byrd Station into this area. Seamen of these could be wanted through small, portable buildings that would fly the Uc fli-g and thus serve scientific and political purposes as well. b. US rights can be further strengthened by expanding the areal extent of US activities through a program of air-hopping of scientists aad portable stations to areas not covered by traverses or station activities. c. Current Department of Defense policy excludes any logistic re-supply of Wilkes and gllsvorth Stations under any circumstances. Accordtngl, these have been leased to the Australians and Argentinians, respectively. In the event, howsver, that Wilkes were to be given up by the Australians, it would be desirable to modify the present Defense policy by a stand-by plan to re-occupy the station with US scientists. This would prevent its possible occupation by the US;R or another Bloc power (Poland was brought into Antarctica for the first time in January 1959 by being given Oasis Station by the USER). SEhE I Sanitized - Approved For Release : CIA-RDP62-0068OR000200190053-9 Sanitized -Approved Foee` a CIA-RDP62-0068OR00020,0190053-9 SUUJECTI Current inadequacies and suggested L-Aprovements in US Antarctic Research d. A serious deficiency in the terminated US IGY program as well as in the current post--IOT program is the absence of oceanographic surveys. (Soviet oceanographic surveys to date extend almost around the entire continent). A specially reinforced vessel would make possible a systematic oceanographic and hydrographic survey program, of significant value to basic science. Such a vessel would also provide important military as well as psychological advantages. We anticipate that the Soviets will ultimately introduce the atomic icebrealer and scientific submarine into their Antarctic research. Each would cause a grave impact upon the peoples of the Southern Hemisphere, e. The absence of any extensive US topo aphie mapping of Antarctica despite more than three decades of intermittent activity is a serious deficiency -- political and scientific. While such mapping was excluded under the US IGY program, the Soviets have undertaken extens-1-ve mapping which now covers a coastal zone between 400E and ]46?E. They have also pushed to establish an international program in which they have offered to map a third of the area. It has long been proposed by US dentists and others that the US systematically map extensive portionss,, chiefly siestern Antarctica? at lzl,00J,000. The scientific need is (1) to establish the topography, geology, and glacial characteristics of Antarctica; (2) for tae geodetic study of the size and shape of the earth (included in the Defense proposed 20-year geodetic program, but of low priority); and (3) eventually essential to polar-orbit satellite tracking. Politically, mapping is nep.ded to (1) provide the best tangible evidence of US activity and topographic knowledge of an area; (2) evaluate and delineate areas of importance to the US; and (3) use in any possible future resolution of claims disputes. 2. On the development, coordination and financing of US activities: a. The feeuitf 1, creative development of US activities in Antarctica over the P1st three years has been seriously hampered by the fact that dcmii nt control -- fiscal and logistic -- has been vested in the M. Navy which (1) has had no substantive scientific interest in ta area, and (2) has been forced to finance activities out of ceiling defense funds for an activity which has a comparatively low military priority, As a consequence, all planning by the Working Group repeatedly has developed into a tense, negative climate dominated by the conviction of the suecresive Navy representatives that all other Departments gather at the Working Group to spend Navy funds which are being diverted {roe higher priority defense requirements. Such a W3- SEC E.T Sanitized - Approved For Release : CIA-RDP62-0068OR000200190053-9 Sanitized - Approved For - CIA-RDP62-00680R00020.0190053-9 yU3JECT: Current inadequacies and su,tgested improvements in tS antarctic hesearch climate has of necessity frustratr;?d a constructive exploration and interchange of ideas and methods to develop and implemen4t a balanced, suitable proms It has been particularly difficult in the formula- tion of long-range objectives and programs, since avy representatiw a have alway felt constra ned by the fear of overcomasitaent into an unknown b.xdgstarr f iture. This in particularly serious since the seasonal nature of Antarctic operations requires the loudest possible lead?ttms for program planning w id implementation. be A further complicating factor lies in (1) the mysterious cost determination system employed by US Navy procedure s and (2) the complete abser:se of meaningful cost account-n& of past operations. This has proved to be a source of such suspicion that navy uses cost estimates to scuttle programs which otherwise would not be eltMn ted by substantive debate. Sh cost of i liavy operations hl. s been frequently emphasised sennel who have been in Antarctica. It is also evident from ace comparisons with Soviet operations. For exa le, in Deep Frecfe a I"V (1 i=>"`~ ) the US Nary allocated 2700 officers and men and 8 ships including b ice-breakers, 2 cargo sups, and 2 tankers. The Soviets at their peak season have used a mLxLmux of 60(0 men and 3 strips, one ice--reinforced (for ice-forcin; , cargo, passenger, and scientific research), one cargo-paasengr, and one refrigsratur vessel. Part of this disparity in m a:power is due to the military T/O system of staffing which may be futlyr warranted under battle conditions but has no place in peacetime pursuits. The Soviets se scientifie peso r4l for manual labor at peak unloading periods. This disparity in costs has two serious implications: (1) high t logistic costs place an ).nvarranted limitation on the Level of scientific operations, thus reducing the effectiveness of t efforts, and (2) the Soviets are in a better competitive pore'} t'a on sines their efforts are relatively leas burdensome fiscally. d. Since the termination of the 1GY (31 December 1958), the scientific planning and eoordiniti a or 05 Antarctic research has been taken well in hand by the National. Science Foundation through its Antarctic Research Jffice, Its Interdepartmental Comimittt-* for Antarctic Research, and the CannAtt ee on Polar Research of the National Acadss4r of Sciences, As this established mechanism owns to be developing with promise, little woui d be gained by establishing a Coraission which as a concr pt is as arietruated among the scientific community dues to the fear that it would tend to mix scientific and political considerattons. Science might then -4- Sanitized - Approved For Release : CIA-RDP62-0068OR000200190053-9 Sanitized - Approved F least: CIA-RDP62-0068OR000200190053-9 ?U&1! 'T: Currexet inadequac es and suggested i pro'vewnts in tl Antarctic Research become subverted by political considerations aid lose, its objectivity. Moreover, sire* the F already is responsible for coordinating basic research, a Commission would become an additional channel which could interfere with effective plarsrting mad operations. 3. Jn the a+-.tbo=is of providing and financing logistic supports a. A basic requireownt for tae strengthening of U Antarctic opc atd oonsa and increasing the rate of scientific and political benefits i .d be the eliadnation of the Depertmeent of Defense from its dominant logistic and fiscal activity in operations. The conti=xed presence of military personnel and equipment nay well become an increasing source of eabaras rzt to the US us it tries to r+ strict the use of Antarctica to e.ftt3. purposes. Since U& Antarctic operations are designed ri as rily for scientific purposes, it is unsound to obscure these costs within the defense area of the goner t. Moreover, by the elimination of high-cost ailitsry uperatio s, a greater return of scientific results voui.d follow fran a given unit of investarente b. The , reatest probleass are to (1) develo22 a budget procedure independent of the Department of Defense, and (2) provide a means by which a civilian Antarctic operations unit can be organized to fund and ~andertske operations an the lee cuntJnQkt. Jne posai'~.,lee approach could be t c enabling legislation that would per ait a nose-profit orgyeni' ation (e.e., American o r*pbical society, New York) to submit beset requests to Congress for continental operations funds; t its vy operats one could be limited to delivery only of ,sect, eegaipm et, and supplies to the continent -- the systems now a apl.ayed In the Arctic. Special tending procedures wood t,* reequtred since the National Science foundation is not engaged in field operations, but it would seem unaccessary to require the establishment of a Commission solely for funding and sea-su?:=ply operations. 4. a depositing and cataloging of Antarctic records The stional Science Foundation and its ! cientif# c Information Office can be expected to provide a c trali ed data center on tins Antarctic. The National Archives already serves are a depository for seeps and rel itod materials. 5. 'an special interests of the A,cts a. The A en y is interested in the development of the fulleit possible ewe arge of scientific personnel, particularly with the 'US'SR, to include if possible year-rte resident exchanges at all Soviet Antaretic stat`.ona. This would facilitate not only the SECRET Sanitized - Approved For Release : CIA-RDP62-0068OR000200190053-9 Sanitized - Approved For Release:_ CIA-RDP62-00680R000200190053-9 SECRET SUBJECT: Current inadequacies and suggested isprovenrents in US Antarctic Research monitoring of Soviet activities as such, buy would yield intelligence on Soviet polar operations, personnel, capabilities, and equipment that might not be accessible in the Soviet Arctic. b. The Agency is also interested that provisions are aiadd for an equitable exchange of scientific reports, data, maps and charts among all participants in Antarctic research, and particularly with the USSR which has been notorious in withholding such information on the Arctic Basin as well as other areas. 25X1A9a CIA member, Working Group on Antarctica Sanitized - Approved For Release : CIA-RDP62-0068OR000200190053-9