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Document Creation Date: 
December 16, 2016
Document Release Date: 
June 6, 2005
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Publication Date: 
July 19, 1979
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PDF icon CIA-RDP81B00401R000200020006-5.pdf671.21 KB
National tnte;l+gence Officers 19 July 1979 MEMORANDUM FOR: Director, of Central Intelligence VIA . Robert R. Bowie Deputy Director, National Foreign Assessment FROM National Intelligence Officer for USSR-EE SUBJECT . The Army Dissent Issue differing views are disseminated to policymakers, etc. 1. Attached for your inspection and approval is the final draft of the IIM.on the Possible Presence of Soviet Ground Forces in Cuba. Changes and concurrences, with the large exception noted below, were handled telephonically during the day and I believe .the agencies involved other than the Army will re and this as a fair and accurate reflection of their views. 2. The proposed Army footnotes are a different matter. The picture has changed somewhat since Bob Bowie filled you in and received your direction to exclude the nuclear site security force mission tick proposed by Army. I conveyed this decision to the Army rep who informed me that another Army LDX with revised language was on the way. Our LDXs broke down so I had to have the text of the proposed footnote dictated over the phone. It was accompanied by a long paragraph, which was read to me, citing chapter and verse of laws which forbid suppression of dissenting intelligence Agency views and enjoin the DCI to ensure that 3. The new footnote is less offensive and inflammatory than the two it replaces, but still quite far-fetched and dubiously germane to the discussion in the IIM. The Assistant Chief of Staff for Intelligence, Department of the Army, would point out: that, although the mission.. of this Brigade is not clear, its presence in Cuba would provide the Soviets with a contingency force and would enhance their capability for power projection in the Western Hemisp ere. If necessary, extra transport aircraft could be introduced into Cuba to deploy these troops to a crisis area. Should the Soviets decide to introduce nuclear weapons into Cuba this force could also be used to insure that appropriate security is provided. Approved For Release 2005/06/09 : CIA-RDP81 B00401 ROOOR00020006-5 25X1 25X1 25X1 25X1 I TnP gx'rRRT SUBJECT: The Army Dissent Issue (U) Approved For Release 2005/06/09 CIA-RDP81 800401 R000200020006-5 25X1 ou ptevfousZy ec d c o "reject `and iecaiuse the- 71's-sue of right a dissent has been raised, I believe you will want an opportunity to review the new Army language before I go ahead and enforce your previous decision. F 1 4. Your options: (a) Reject the ,footnote as before and publish the ILM as in the present draft with a footnote identifying those agencies with which it was coordinated and stating that ACSI, Department of the Array, does not concur. The ACSI, perhaps supported by General Tighe, will probably try to take you to court. (b) Agree to include the footnote in which case it. is essential that other agencies be informed of its content and offered the opportunity to refute it, which I am certain at least some of them will insist on doing. I might in that case attempt to draft a position reflecting the views of all agencies other than Army. This would take some time tomorrow and almost certainly would prevent the IIM from being distributed until Monday. 25X1 -1 1~ 25X1 (c) Pro ose to ACSI the following substitute footnote drafted by The Assistant Chief of Staff for Intelligence, Department of the Army, believes that the above list of possible missions does not cover the full range of possibilities. In the interests of disseminating this IIM to policymakers in a timely fashion, the Director of Central Intelligence .has directed that interagency discussion of the possibility of additional missions be deferred until the NFIB representatives meet again on the forthcoming I111 on the Soviet-Cuban military relationship. This would permit the ACSI to indicate disagreement while you asserted your authority to channel the dispute into amore appropriate and less time-constrained channel. This would be an ideal solution, but-I doubt very, much that the ACSI would buy it, unless perhaps you dealt with him personally. discuss this further and: receive your instructions. 5. In any case, I will need to have your decision very quickly if we want to have any chance at all of disseminating an IIM tomorrow. I shall be phoning you at home this evening from the Ops Center to 25X1 Attachment: As Stated Approved For R+ 25X1 lease? 05 UT ~IA-KUPU - 25X1 y -o- yy proposed by the Army which has now been superceded by the language in Paragraph 3 of my memorandum. 75 0icinorn!aus Approved For Release 2005/06/09 : CIA-RDP81 B00401 R00020002000675 25X1 Approved For Release 2005/06/09 : CIA-RDP81 800401 R000200020006-5 Next 5 Page(s) In Document Exempt Approved For Release 2005/06/09 : CIA-RDP81 800401 R000200020006-5 Appr~vec For. R,elease.2Q05/951-09. , GI~4 P81_ 04018000200020006-5 QUESTIONS AND ANSWERS 6'7'nen Did This Unit First Appear? I indicates that most or all of the-prThe esent lelements ofithise brigade were deployed by early 1976. We have seen no sign f o a significant alteration of the unit's composition since that time. These conclusions are possible because, with the recent pinpointing of the site of the brigade's home station, we can trace its record through available photography over the last several years. In fact, we can also note that preparations for this unit's arrival were begun early in 1975, although the major construction efforts started a year later. When Did You First Learn Th t a The Soyoviets Had A Combat Uni In Cuba? - The first relat:ie l a _ v +- . Soviet ground force activity in Cuba became a ns of beginnin of August 1978 p PFarent at th ri 25X1 or to that time, occasional uous and conclusion torbee ry to allow the a~enta S i ov et was taking place. The fact that thisgactivityrreflectedtfthe actual presence of a Soviet unit became clear only in Jul -and, the confirmation of an e y 179 1 ssentially fully manned and;. equipped brigade was available only in late August. What Did You Do With This Information.? - This information led to a realization that 25X' d for t h=t -wy-PAly nac long been employed in search unit, but it had not turned up Pictures =-- deuce differentiating Cuban fror!tssibl e that et units on the island.) Quintu l d p e collection (by aircraft well off Cuba's shores) during the first two weeks of August resulted Approved For Release 2005/06/09 : CIA-RDP81 B00401 RDD0200020Q06-5= . TOP SECRET TOP SECRq Approved For Release 2005/06/09 : ClA-RE)RM50Nt1M0020002 006-5 --L .) avail air or sea lift capab ilitynavaiiable T eitrigade does not have (or in Cuba) for assault operations outsiam. ,-F { L_ even available u er strength have Ion rse, Cuban for any action a a' g been read'l c 5 y defended U.S_ essfully attack such units of much 'great base as Guatanamo. Of co ion to fixed installations. Dula provide some of miles distant, it could probabl (Except that it is hundred a li ht'i y suc For example, it could engage a unit of similarrsizehanduCompositi ne can defend a small piece of the coast. on- It could protect' It location. The errs o a Soviet ground force exercise at a named It, provided the first co cre-tefevidenceaofytheanumb this site personnel and pieces of equipment that might beers involved with the Soviet unit. A further recent acquisition of inform a human source about the camp where Soviets mi th atldn lent itself to Photographic collection. From the t be llityeda: this information has come the data now wh t led to the Government's action, of which at hand which has led you are aware. What Does The Soviet Combat Unit In Cuba Consist of? - Th brigade c o nsists of The rifle battalions, one armored Probably three (tank motorized bat alion (including 122mm howitzer)andtmiltipleoroc er eld~ts), and su 'lie. medical., transportPorepair.meanti-aircraftheanauartersstaff~che etc. In all, this probably amounts to some twoatolthree units, thousand men, commanded by a Colonel. One motorized rifl battalion is apparently stationed at thelarge viet core and SIGINT facility at Torrens (Lourdes), brigade is at a cantonment 5 miles east fWtheeowe ofstnf ago' de gas Vegas. These locations are on the souther fringes of go the Havana metropolitan area. n frnges of What Has This Soviet Combat Unit Been Doin In Cuba? activities observed have been routine exercises indistinThe only from those conducted by Soviet ground force units of z and composition in the USSR and Eastern Europe. f similar sia What Are The Combat Ca abilities Of This hypothesize ca '1? - Q the Brigade? ab 25X1 in advance ti off f e - The des3 nation of thi L ere bz~ a ind cotes-that it"is independent and n!-!:' bordinate orrela;e3 to any other Soviet unit. d not a re--x Moreover, "brigade' is .~lar or frequent designation in Soviet practice- Whereas, over time, we have had considerable evidence about How Do You Know That There Aren't More Combat Forces r,h Than You Now Beev li TOP SECRE SECkE Approved For Release 2005/06/09: CIA-RDP81B00401R00Q20002000 -5 25X1 TOP SECRET1----7 .25X1 Approved For Release 2005/06/09.: ($I~E / DU401 R000200020006-5-- the existence of this unit, we have not, even with an extensive collection effort, obtained indications of any kind of any other units. Nevertheless, we are maintaining a strong collection program to see whether additional evidence becomes available. What Missions Might The USSR Have It Perform? - The mission of this brigade is not known. Five hypotheses are: 1. Security of Soviet installations and personnel. 2. Protection of the Castro regime against internal enemies. 3. Limited participation in the defense of Cuba against external attack. 4. Training for Cuban military personnel or for Soviet personnel in tropical conditions. 5. Provisions of psychic reassurance to Castro at a time when 40,000 Cuban troops are in Africa and the Middle East on contentious and possibly risky adventures. Does This Unit Communicate Directly With Moscow? -- We do not know, but we assume it communicates either through the advisors mission or directly to the General Staff in Moscow via the General Staff communications link between. Havana. and Moscow. When Will You Know The Purpose Of This Brigade? We continue to collect whatever evidence becomes available, but we may never know what was in the minds of the Soviet leadership when it authorized the deployment of the brigade. Indeed, its mission might have changed or evolved over the years. As a guess, purposes 1 and 5 of the last question seem the most 25X1 plausible. TOP SECRET/ Approved For Release 2005/06/09 B00401R00 20002,0006-5..- .. As the Administration has stated, this bri a significant Soviet unit in termc of It - g de is not a Our evidence Points to the arrival of this unit ea l?,.4and the unit has remained virtually unchanged since late August, however, we could not determine rl~i iua 1976, included more than a skeleton structure of per then. Until; nclude men. that this several several i Thus, what has, changed over the past months has been our estimate, not te actual sizeast months in Cuba , Of Soviet military B. That apart from a military advisory does not warrant the conclusion that there are any significant, P our intelligence Soviet other presence in Cuba overoth-J -L egnf1cant increase in Soviet military of a Soviet military past several years or of the base" and presence } roved- F-or Release:2005/06/09: CIA-R D, i d The Secretar Write 0ri July 27 Tha A. "There has been n L? 1S - security Construction activities at Cienfeugos e ne in Arm one in And ror;. let union Have Other Brigades Dep at Purposes? - loye units = There are onl =s=gnated as brigades in the Sovi ytheo tf e -~? '.uud. 1''here Dc~es The Sov' st-Lons. One of v1tzes are also- however, be to prot th-e missions of the brigade may ~ect er ov ~e n a broader sense, the brigadetmar Soviet represent one aspect of an expanding Soviet- y well relationship, of which these other at' Cuban =ailitar man+Fe 3e The appearance of Soviet Pilot flying aircraft in Cuba 4. The delivery Of MIG-23s At present, we see-no direct connection with the sense that there is no evidence that the brigade in conjunction with or in any of these, in activities g of these functionLEG1B 2? Soviet naval activities in the Caribbean TOP SECRET Approved For, Release 200 ]8.d: 1-RDP81E~04(YlMQA20002OGQ6-5_ -ILLEGIB TOP SECRET SEC T a Dictiona US Defines, Base As ace Fron Which 2lilitar 7p S erati Of ons TheAre A up 3 Fl ~ot ss^he Presence Of I q East Germany, one in cen ` 1`I.xlatary District ``?~ USSR, one in the Far , and one i Ea t s SI s Isis n:ds. ecently formed in do n t fff""" o trile know what their missi appear to h 25X1 ons are u ave been formed for re but they specific areas, general purpose missions in 2'he Official Milit A Base Bri Ode Indicate That Theortea Does In Cuba' We cannot now characterize Soviets Have as constituting a base in the sense of this unit's a locality from which etoE Y opera tions--~the common definition of a n Whatever this unit's mission and capabilities, however a unmet that could operate -without extensive outsid "base. ,.-- it rv Ftc ssupporuppor`tItUt it arcould not conduct assault operation e logistic kind Of air and sea lift not s without the defintion Of a "base", according in Cuba. (The agreed ; efj and the Inter- g to the Department of American Defense Board is: Defense, fr-0-17 is=9 operations are projected or supported ~~1) ~' locality or _.. operations : 2) An area or c- u- containing installations which provide to pport. 11 ) logistic Approved For Release 2005 $ 1 RD 81 B004GTR000200020005-5 SECP.ET -- 25X1 Doesn't The Commitment Of A Soviet Brigade Indicate Virtually Comolet!? Identity Between Soviet And Cuban Forei n Polk Airs? It certainly suggests a high degree of security cooperation. EGIB The Cubans would have had some reasons of their own for deploying armed forces abroad to s h er t h re an.ous about Cuba s own security. Hence, Soviet troop r)rPgArat u S ec zvesas ell; and these same actions probably made them. mo ns as a ru1e, seem to nave coincided with Soviet o ' 4 ve a t ey call revolutionary causes, but these actin ection When We Promised in 1962 That We Would Not Invade Cuba? - As you recall, that promise had been conditioned on e But Why Should The Cubans Feel A Need For Soviet Prot p rmission for adequate inspection in Cuba of the withdrawal f o nuclear missiles and bombers from the island. In 1962, this permission was ref d u Of well have doubts about the reliability under all contingencies of U.S. pledges non-intervention. In any case, Cuba would se . course, the U.S. has since then repeatedly stated its intention not to invade Cuba. However, given the overwhelming power of the U.S. compared to Cuba, given Cuba's location adjacent to the U.S., and given Cuba's practice of pursuing foreign policy objectives and foreign operations completely inimical to Washington's interests Havana Does The Unit Present In Cuba Constitute A Violation Of The Understanding With The Soviets On Cuba? - Ground forces per se in a generic sense do not figure in our bilateral understanding with the USSR, which was directed at offensive weapons systems, although the U.S. made known its concern about any Soviet forces in Cuba. Nonetheless, the USSR did withdraw those forces which had come to Cuba to operate or to protect the missiles which'the Soviets had installed. ROTE: All questions related to current US-Soviet and US-Cuban diplomatic activity should be characterized as a non-intelligence matter, and should be referred to Secretary Vance for answers during his forthcoming SFRC testimony. YOP SECRET SECRET 25X1 Approved For Release 2005/06/09 : B 0401R000200020006-5