The Cuban Missile Crisis
Telegram From the Mission to the United Nations to the Department of State


New York, December 7, 1962, 8 p.m.

2189. Dept pass White House. Eyes only for Secretary. Cuba.

1. Following are preliminary (A) US draft declaration, (B) revised Sov declaration, (C) elements of supplementary US statement including essentially sections taken out of present text US declaration, and (D) draft consensus statement by SC Pres in accordance mytel 2183.(1)

2. In its proposal of last night USSR is in effect asking us to agree that they have now fulfilled all of their undertakings therefore that US assurance should be categorical, and to maximize future obligation of US through SC res that would transform our assurance into decision of SC.

3. To achieve these purposes they suppress references to exchange of letters between Kennedy and Khrushchev in preference for references to subsequent agreements worked out in negotiations, thus eliminating all reference in their statement to verification; they also seek to revise our declaration to imply that verification has been complied with. They also are seeking to write Cuba into picture as much as possible, including support for future negotiations on "normalization" of Caribbean. Sov draft res, by approving declarations, but with no notice taken of supplemental statements would leave us in difficult future situation on overflights, Sov military personnel in Cuba and other problems.

4. It seems to us our objective should continue to be to draw line under current crisis but only on contingent basis, and retain statement in our declaration that USSR has not fulfilled all undertakings which is justification for our continued overflights and for qualifications we place on no invasion assurance. For same reason we should keep SC action to minimum possible. Draft consensus statement we have prepared therefore is only expression of attitude of SC and not of approval or decision.

5. We have also deleted references in Sov declaration and in res to continued negotiations to normalize situation in Caribbean. We have done this on assumption USSR means Castro's five points and that negotiations on political settlement in Caribbean is unacceptable either with Russians or with Cubans. In light size and sophistication Sov military presence, which apparently will continue in Cuba even after present crisis is settled, however, we may want to consider whether further negotiations of some sort around this issue might be foreshadowed. If so some appropriate wording might go into our "statement".

(A) US draft declaration

In letters of President Kennedy on October 27 and of Premier Khrushchev and President Kennedy on October 28, 1962,(2) firm undertakings were made regarding the settlement of the Cuban crisis.

In connection therewith the United States notes the declaration of the Soviet Union today that all weapons, on which agreement was reached in accordance with the undertaking, have been removed from Cuba and returned to the Soviet Union and that the sites have been dismantled. The United States notes further the declaration of the USSR that no weapons of this nature, that is, offensive weapons systems, will be introduced by the USSR in the territory of the Republic of Cuba. We welcome these assurances.

While the undertakings that the United Nations would be enabled to verify the removal of missiles and bombers and the destruction of sites and that suitable United Nations safeguards would be agreed upon to ensure against further introduction into Cuba of weapons systems capable of offensive use have not been capable of being fulfilled, a procedure was arranged in cooperation with the USSR, under which the United States has verified that Soviet vessels leaving Cuba have carried away the number of missiles and IL-28 bombers which the USSR certified as having been in Cuba.

In view of the substantial steps that have been taken by the Soviet Union in implementation of the undertakings and in the hope that a termination of the present crisis will lead toward progress on other issues:

The United States on its part, as of November 20, 1962, lifted the quarantine instituted on October 23, 1962, and the United States further gives assurance that, provided no nuclear weapons and no offensive weapons systems are present in or re-introduced into Cuba, and provided Cuba does not commit aggressive acts against any nation of the Western Hemisphere, it does not intend, as the President made clear at this press conference on November 20, to invade Cuba or support an invasion of Cuba.

The undertakings stated herein do not alter or impair the rights and obligations under all existing treaties to which the United States is a party.

(B) Revised Soviet declaration

Being guided by the interests of strengthening peace throughout the world and seeking to conclude peaceful settlement of the dangerous crisis in the Caribbean according to undertakings reached in letters of President Kennedy on October 27 and of President Kennedy and Chairman Khrushchev on October 28, 1962;

Taking into consideration that on November 20, 1962 the Government of the United States suspended the quarantine it introduced on October 23, 1962 regarding the ships bound for the Republic of Cuba;

Taking further into consideration the statement of the United States Government as contained in its declaration of (blank) 1962 to the effect that the United States will not invade Cuba or support an invasion of Cuba;

The Government of the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics states the following:

1. All weapons regarding the dismantling and withdrawal of which from Cuba agreement was reached in accordance with the undertakings between President Kennedy and Chairman Khrushchev, have, with the consent of the Government of the Republic of Cuba, by this time been removed from Cuba and returned to the Soviet Union, and all the sites dismantled.

2. Weapons of this nature shall not in the future be introduced by the USSR into Cuba.

(C) Elements of supplementary US statement

The undertakings to which this declaration refers were stated in President Kennedy's letter of October 27 along the following lines:

1. The USSR would agree to remove from Cuba, under appropriate United Nations observation and supervision, all weapons systems capable of offensive use and would undertake, with suitable safeguards, to halt the further introduction of such weapons systems into Cuba.

2. The United States would agree--upon the establishment of adequate arrangements through the United Nations to ensure the carrying out and continuation of these commitments--(A) to remove promptly the quarantine measure now in effect, and (B) to give assurances against an invasion of Cuba. The President also expressed his confidence that other nations of the Western Hemisphere would be prepared to do likewise.

In addition to the removal of those weapons systems capable of offensive use to which I have already referred, the US takes note of the stated intention of the USSR to withdraw all military units and personnel placed in Cuba for the servicing or guarding of these weapons systems.

The United States regrets that the undertakings for United Nations verification of the removal of missiles and bombers and destruction of sites, and for suitable United Nations safeguards against further introduction into Cuba of weapons systems capable of offensive use have not been capable of being fulfilled. In the absence of such fulfillment the United States will employ such other means of observation and verification as may be necessary to ensure that no such weapons are present or introduced into Cuba.

We earnestly trust that this session of the Security Council marks the achievement of a peaceful solution of the crisis caused by the introduction of offensive weapons systems into Cuba, and that the door to a solution of other outstanding problems might now be opened.

[The United States will not, of course, abandon the political, economic and other efforts of this hemisphere to halt subversion from Cuba, nor our purpose and hope that the Cuban people shall one day be truly free.](3)

(Other elements might have to be added after we see Soviet and Cuban statements. Last para suggested on assumption their statements would necessitate it.)

(D) Draft consensus statement

The President and the Security Council:

Members will have taken note of the declaration and statements made by the representatives of the United States of America, and of the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics with respect to the Cuban crisis which gave rise to the Security Council meeting of October 23, 1962, as well as the statements of the Secretary General, and by members of the Council and Cuba.

I am confident that all members of the Council will join me in an expression of satisfaction that the crisis the world has recently faced in the Caribbean has been terminated through direct negotiations with the active participation of the Secretary General, and of earnest hope that the door is now open to the solution of other outstanding problems.


1 Document 235. Back

2 See Documents 95, 102, and 104. Back

3 Brackets in the source text. Back

Source: Department of State, Central Files, 737.56361/12-762. Top Secret. A note on the source text indicates it was passed to the White House at 8:35 p.m. December 7 and to principal officers of the Executive Committee.

127 Wall Street, New Haven, CT 06511.