PROBABLE SINO-SOVIET REACTIONS TO US DEPLOYMENT OF NUCLEAR WEAPONS SYSTEMS (SN

Created: 6/11/1957

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7 II June 7

NATIONAL INTELLIGENCE ESTIMATF

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PROBABLE SINO-SOVIET REACTIONS TO US DEPLOYMENT OF NUCLEAR WEAPONS SYSTEMS

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DIRECTOR OP CENTRAL INTELLIGENCE

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PROBABLE SINO-SOVIET REACTIONS TO US DEPLOYMENT OF NUCLEAR WEAPONS SYSTEMS

THE PROBLEM

To estimate Sino-Soviet Bloc reactions to the buildup of US-manned nuclear weapons and related delivery systems in countries adjacent to or near its borders.

SCOPE NOTE

We do not consider in this paper the effect on non-Bloc countries of US nuclear deployment or of Communist propaganda based on this deployment. We also do not consider Bloc reactions to the eventual deployment overseas of intermediate range ballistic missiles. Other aspects of the general problem of increasing nuclearwill be discussed inImplications for the Communist Bloc and the Free World of Growing NuclearndNuclear Weapons Production in Fourth CountriesLikelihood andhich are to be published shortly.

THE ESTIMATE

Bloc Estimate of and Reactions to US Doployment

he leaders of the Sino-Soviet Bloc almost certainlyuclear capability to all US combat forces overseas. While they may be uncertain about thc extent to whichcomponents have actually been deployed in conjunction with delivery systems, inthey would assume that tlie deployment of such components has occurred or will take place in Uie future, or that it could be carried out quickly ln Ume of emergency. Thus, at present the Sino-Soviet leaders almostconsider Uiat all US guided missile units, combat air units, and major ground forces overseas, as well as carriers and missile equipped cruisers and submarines, have acapability.

For Uie future, thc Sino-Soviet leaders probably believe lhat. In the absenceajor change in Uie International political climate, the US Intends loteady buildup of Its nuclear capabilities. They probably estimate that the US will seek to deploy its nuclear capabilities within effective range of their key targets, to increase the number of bases, and to include in thisimproved weapons systems as these are developed and produced.

The Bloc reaction to US deployment ofweapons has Included bolh military and political measures. The military reaction has been an integral part of Uie general Bloc military buildup, which has included aemphasis on long-range nucleardesigned In part to deter US attack

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on defensive measures against UScapabilities. Politically, the Bloc leaders have sought lo retard or reduceontinuous propaganda andcampaign aimed at nations associated with the US effort through alliances and base agreements and at nations contemplating such association. They have tried tothese counlries and at the same time to persuade them that they face no threatommon defense. In addition, they have used US overseas deploymentajor subject in their worldwide anti-US propaganda.

USSR has recently sought in acommunications to frighten theof the US by pointing out thatin US deployment involvesthc danger of nuclear war. Use ofprobably sternselief that,appreciation of nuclearIs clearly growing, fear of nuclear waran increasingly advantageous pointon US deployment and the NATOsystem ilsclf. Wc do not believetone of current Sovieta new policy departure ormajor change In the Soviet estimatepossible US intentions to attack.

Probable Effect of Further Deployments on the Bloc Estimate of US Intentions

leaders in reappraising, in lhefuture US deployments, their estimateintentions regarding general war,into account the area involved andof the weapons systems.gradual deployments of existingto countries where they arcare unlikely to produce anythis esUmate. Deployments ofinto new areas would causebul probably would not changeBloclocdeployments of short-range nuclearsystems, particularly to new areas,arc heightened by concern that these

'See also ParaGraphs lfl-is. relating to specific areas

moves will lead to the later deployment of long-range systems. Thc eventualof new. long-range weapons, andIRBMs, within range of vital Bloc targets wouldigniflcanUy different situation.

US deployments wouldaffect Lhe Bloc leaders' estimate ofintentions. These moves wouldreinforce their suspicions that the USintend to reduce East-West tensions,proposes, by every availablemilitary pressures, to pursuepolicies aimed at extractingthe Bloc.

Probable General Bloc Reaclions lo Further Deployments

We do not believe that further deployments of nuclear weapons systems now available would, in thc view of Bloc leaders, alter the military situation so radically as to require that they forestall them by force. Hence we do not believe that such deployments would lead them to Initiate hosUlities. Further, we do not believe that these deployments would compel them to offer political concessions.

The USSR and Communist China winseek by means of propaganda and diplomacy lo prevent or at least delay foreign agreement to further US deployments ofweapons systems, as well as toexisting agreements. 'Ihey willto issue warnings to the governments and peoples of actual and potential hostTo sharpen this point, lhe USSR may supplement ils general theme of Communist military strength with selective revelations about its own capabiliUes for nuclear delivery. Charges of American "atom rattling" will take an even more important place in Communist propaganda. Bloc leaders probably estimate that such propaganda will weaken USand promote neutralism in Europe and especially in uncommitted slatesthe world.

Efforts probably win also be made Io press the development of Bloc deterrent capabilities. These might include lhc stationing of new or

additional nuclear weapons systems InEurope and perhaps even ln Communist China or North Korea and an increasedon the producUon of improved delivery vehicles. New US deployments will tend to support Uie well-established Communistof Uie necessity for maintenance of the Soviel posiUon in Eastern Europe, the solidarity of the Bloc, and continued topfor miliiary producUon.

Reactions fo Deployments in Specific Areas

the NATO area. Uie Sovietprobablyore serious viewinto new areas than theyof deployments which onlynuclear capabiliUes. Theydeployments to Norway,or especially Turkey as increasinglocal capabilities ln varying degreesUie number of peripheralSovicl offensive and defensiveconsider. They would also regardsignifying an increase in US influenceareas. If these deployments wereto weapons which would not reachtargets, their concern would bealthough they would fear thatopened the door to Uie laterof more advanced systems. Anyto these areas of nuclearwhich were within range of suchmight cause the Soviets toefinite hardening in US attitudes.

USSR would probably reactproposed deployments in thcabove, subjecting theirto heavy pressure and seeking topopular domestic opposition. Itout naval or other maneuvers into intimidate these states Iffailed to forestall USUSSR would probably strengthenIn adjacent areas and makeln the disposition of its forcesSoviet Union. In the case of Greecethis response might include, asextreme measure, the introductiontroops into Bulgaria.

Thc USSR will continue to consider that West Germanypecial position. It will seek to prevent further US deployments there or at least to exploit such deployments for political purposes. It will continue to stress to Germany's neighbors thc revival of German militarism and to warn that nucleardecrease the likelihood of reunification. In seeking to offset thc military disadvantages resulting from further US deployment Inthe USSR might introduce new ornuclear weapons systems intoEurope or even,ore extremesend Soviet troops into Czechoslovakia under the Warsaw Pact.

Iran would probably cause the mostconcern of all possible areas ofUS deployment Uicre would involve the possibility that, in spile of the risk of counteraction by the US and the Baghdad Pact countries. Uie USSR might move forces into Iran, citing Uie provisions of1 treaty. It would, in any event,eversal of previous US and Western policy against stationing troops in Iran. For this reason and because of the proximity to the USSR, the Soviet leaders, while they probably would not conclude from this action alone that the US intended to attack, would infer that Uie US was determined to exert maximumpressures in the East-West conflict In addition to intense diplomatic andcampaigns, Uie USSR would probably seek UN action to forestall this move.

In Uie Far East, the Sino-Soviet leaders almost certainly do not regard the present stationing of Matadors on Taiwan asa change in US political or militaryApart from continuing allegations of US aggressiveness and of the subservience of the National government, the Chineseare likely to react by strengthening their defensive capabilities in Southeast China and by pressing the USSR for their ownweapons.

As to South Korea, Sino-Soviet leaders almost certainly would also conclude that US nuclear deployments there did not signify any change in US political or miliiaryalthough they would loudly proclaim

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violation ot truce terms. Such deployment would raise ln the Soviet leaders' minus the question of their sLationing nuclear weapons systems In North Korea. Their attitude lo this problem would be complicated by the further question of what forcesNorthChinese Communist, or Sovietthese systems should be assigned lo. Because of the poliUcal disadvantages which the Soviet leaders would foresee in any of these choices, they probably would not consider the Increase

in US capabilities sufficiently threatening to force themecision on this point.they would probably take such measures as strengUiening of local defense, particularly air defenses, and improvement of their own capabilities for nuclear attack and air defense Ln the Soviet Far East. Deployment to South Korea would, even more than deployment to Taiwan, cause Uie Chinese Communists to press the USSR for Uie acquisition of nuclear weapons.

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