APPROVED FOR RELEASE DATE:?
0 FUTURE OF THEAPABILITY
1. The problem laapability should be maintained in the handsoint CIA/USAF Project aa in the past and, if so, for what purpose, on what scale, and where deployed.
2- Employment ofs; It ia assumed that, at least for the next seven months, no reconnaissance will be conducted with these aircraft over the USSR or the European Satellite*. It ia further aaaumed, however, thatrastic change ihould occur in the world situation, thia policy might be re-examined and that it may in any event be reconsidered eight months hence. Thie contingency should be provided for. In the meanwhile it is hoped that an appropriate way can be found toigh priority requirement for additional photographic reconnaissance over Communist China. Specificalso arise from time to time for reconnaissance over neutral areas. In such regions as the Near East, Southeast Asia and the Caribbean,
3, Vulnerability: The vulnerability ofo the Soviet air defense system has been exhaustively studied by the Central Intelligence Agency and the Air Force in the Ught of the May Day Early conclusions concerning that event and previous estimates of Soviet interception capabilities have been substantially reaffirmed to the effect that:
is unlikely (but possible) that damageon the aircraft at cruising altitude by amissile. Tha probable cause of itsa malfunction which forced it to descendaltitude,
missions which might in the futureover the USSR should avoid flyingknown or suspected SAM (ground-to-air If this practice were followed, thesuccessful interception would remain low.
Certain modlficationa could beith some sacrifice in range, in order to reduceeliminate dependence on bases cloee to the periphery of the These include the following:
ignition, which permits anat or close to fall cruising altitude in the eventftameout not dueasic malfunction.
side-band radio, which would permita mission in the event of evidence of dangerousinterception.
a provision for improvedwhich would interfere withguidance and thus reduce risk.
for in-flight refueling, whichmobility by making possible longer andflights and would permit operational missions tofrom basesoiles from thepenetration of the target area.
and Cover: rogram hasits Inception the employment of these aircraft ostensibly (andths time actually) for innocent purposes bat also foroverflight missions. It was organised jointly by thethe Air Force but within the Agency's administrativeline of command In order to avoid any military coloration andthat in the event of compromise the activity would bea form of civilian espionage rather than an aggressive military act.
ircraft are to be available for tbe purposes set forth in paragraphbove, it would appear that the tame considerations would appty and would argue for the maintenanceapability under civilian, or non-U,r at any rate non-tactical cover.
a. reatly reduced andapability will be maintained within the same organisational frameworkoint CIA/USAF Project and subject to the same control procedures as in the past. The modifications proposed in paragraphbove will be carried out on five aircraft. As
a as these modifications and redeployment aref the Agency'e present inventory ofircraft will be ned over to the Air Force for use by SAC and ARDC,
b. Allformerly deployed to Japan have
turned tohose stall deployed at Adana, Turkey,be returned in the near
d. It is proposed that the fours to bethis Project be maintainedase in the ZI withorganised and prepared for quick staging to anythe world where they may -be required. Their typical modewould be toerry flighttaging base only when conditions are expected to be
for an operational mission, to complete thethe following day or as soon as feasible, thento the ZX. This procedure would avoids stationed at an overseas base and would avoid the
needlausible but innocent explanation of the permanent basing of these aircraft near the USSR. Since with in-flight refueling even the staging bases can be reasonably remote from Communist areas, it ia to be hoped that the Soviets would not even know what overseas bases were being used. Another technically feasible mode of operation would be to load the aircraftarrier (inaunch at sea, refuel aloft close to the target area, and landtaging base after completion of the mission.
7. Alternatives: Tha alternative to the maiatenaoceeduced and modified formapability outside of the Military establishment is the liquidation of the existing Project and the transfer of all equipment to the Air Force. It should be emphasized that this capability could not be reconstituted without three to six months delay, mainly because the particular personnel could not be reassembled and considerable time would be required for recruitment, clearances, and training. On the other hand, there exists inholly competent Military organisation possessed of this capability.Original document.