PROBABLE SOVIET REACTION TO A WESTERN EMBARGO

Created: 7/18/1961

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PHURHBI REGISTRY,

Approved tor

Central Intelligence Agency

> by the

OF CENTRAL INTELLIGENCE

* The following intelligence organizations participated in the > reparation of this estimate: The Central Intelligence Agency 'and the intelligence organizations of the Departments of State,my, the Navy,r Force, and The Joint Staff .

Concurred in by STATES INTELLIGENCE BOARD

on)1 - Concurring were the Director ofand Rcsearcti, Department of State; theof Staff for intelligence, Department af the Army; Ihe

ChiefofNavalOperations (IntelligenceJ.Department of Ihe Navy; the Assistant Chief of Staff. Intelligence, USAF; the Director for Intelligence, Joint Staff; the Assistant to the Secretary of Defense, Special Operations; and the Director of the National Security Agency.The Atomic Energy Commission Representative to the USIB and the Assistant Director,Bureau of Investigation, abstained, the subject beingof their jurisdiction.

CENTRAL INTELLIGENCE AGENCY'

I

SUBJECT: PROBABLE SOVIET RE/JTICPEST31N

EMBARGO

THE FRODLSK

To estirate proboblc Soviet reactions to tbe prospectto the iapleoentatlon of an embargo as part ofresponse to denial of access tohe erharso be declared either by the US alono or by KATO pluscd^ht be directed against the entire Sino-Soviet Bloc,/iir-oj, oralone.

if It has been ourn previous estimates that, while the Soviets and East Ger:.ons ulflht at oorte point deny access outricht, the tiore likelyis one in which thoy introduce new procedures, short of or. actual blockade,he Allios feel that they cannot oubult torocedures.

THE ESTIMATE

I. PRIOR TO IMPLEMENTATION

Prospective Economic Effects

I. Bloc isports froa edvacced Western5 billion annuallyaaount to about one-sixth of total in-port s, and their loss would noterious general iupoct upon the volume of Bloc production. The USSR, however, sees in this trade considerable economic advontnae to itself and tto allies. In certain instances it provides thea with key inports. The USSR, for exac.ple, is currently buying advanced equipcttnt for its chenical and several other industries, and loss of these iuports wouldignificant effect upon the prospects for neetlnc planned goals in the industries affected over tho next year or so. The uost critical area of concern, however, is East Geraany, which obtains frou the KAT0 countries about one-sixth of its total loports, including oany products not readilyelsewhere. ull enbargo would cause considerablein the East Geruon econony, and it ciicht take up to six months for nornal Industrial growth to be resuoed.

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believe tliat tbe Sovieto- would prefer tc avoidin whichest resorted to Boncticns on thiswould alcoat certainly beewever, tod.skif they vere cccfidect that in the end thoysubstantial cdvouces tovord their political objectivesins recosuition cf the GDR end ottering the status of Gx> principalor their uiHir.!paoc to tola; such

a risk would be their belief thct NATO would hove wr--ct difficulty ino-.plate enbarco, even against Cost Con=nyor tiorcew iiontha. They would believe thot tony Kf.TO countries would be reluctant tc beer the costsroloi^edthat they could clrcuuvent its effects via j'.or.-KATO countrles, and that NATO's subsequent efforts to tighter, controls would exacerbate ito relations with these countries.

Soviets would be uncor>cor::ed over theeffects,y the US alone. Ito lircctcor.fir.eiit entirely to Poland, which'illicn of the total3 dlli.ee of American expertsDloc.

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h. Tho Soviets, iu atudyinc NATO piaunlnc for various types of counteractions, will bo seeking lndicotioco of the kiadj of seaoures cm which the Alliance car. arpree as responses to encrooch-UMSta ajainst Dorlin (and also of US willin^nocc to accept the vieuo of its allies). If NATO should uanifest considerable unity oixl resolve ir, ojpTseicn; to use uilitory force if necessary, si'.rultoueous acreeLent or. far-reaching econceiic sanctions iii(iit help to persuade the USSR that the Vest wa3 in fact wUULoQ to risk "ar. If, however, unity onurco wore cchlovodackground of conspicuous disunity over the queotlen of cilitcry responses, the Soviets would be encouraged to beliave that eeonocicepresented the true extent of Western intentions. Lastly, if the Soviets should see that HATO couldrt* even or. economic ccui-tcrueasureo, theyprobablythat vary Lonber rations uould also be unwilling to rial; war for OUT save the uost direct ana irradiate threat to West Oar lie.

5. The USSR would view Western efforts to include Japan ill cu otbarsD action aa an opportunity tc press anew its charges that the present covernoeiit is coiipletcly ouboervieut to tho US. Moscow

would lay great stress on the contention that Japan was being asked to cwke sacrifices and run risks for reasons entirelyto its" own interests. Although tho problen assures that Japan would Join in on oobarco, the Soviets probably wouldthat theyood chance, with the old of local leftist forces, of preventing Japanese participation or, foiling that, ooking that participation politically costly.

II. UPON IMPLEMENTATION

6. ATO cnborgo were actually applied in responseenial of Allied access to Borlin, it is very unlikely that the Soviets, having gone this far, would restore access urderconditions oercly in order to haveh or go recoved. Their first response would be determined principally by their Judgoent as to whether the Western sanctions would be followed by nore far-reaching neacures and ultitntely by resort to force. Tbe longer the West confined itself to on eribargo and other nonollitary counter-ueasurcs,re the Soviets would be Inclined to discount the possibilityater Western resort to orus. If, however, at the tirw tho cnborgo was Invoked, the political and nilitary stance adopted by the West suggested that it was seriously considering tho use of force, the initial effect of an embargo right bo to strengthen this possibility in the Soviet rrlnrl.

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7. Short of an aroed clash, Soviet censures ond Allied countero2asuros> including an ocbarga, wouldrolonged state of tension. At sooe point the Soviets tilght decide that it was to their advantage to reduce tensions. This could occur for various reasonc, such as increaced unrest in East Ceruany, or because tbe USSR did. cot wish torolonged_period of heightened tension in which there would he oo opportunity to employ detente toctic3. But It should be stressed that on embargo would be only one eleuent acong the coiisideratlone which Light, in corigination, persuade the Soviets to coderate their Berlinat least sufficiently toesumption of negotiations.

6. Tho East Gercon re^ice uould respond to cn edbargo with threats of retaliation against Gcroan civil access to Berlin, particularly in view of the relationship which has beer, established between intra-Ceroan trade and civil access. Wc believe that East Gercocy would actually take reprisals of this sort or.ly If such action was consistent with tho political stance assuued by the USSR.

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