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Penetrating the Iron Curtain Resolving the Missile Gap with Technology

ENETRATING THE IRON CURTAINRESOLVING THE MISSILE GAP WITH TECHNOLOGYe mid-1950s the uS faced theallenge since World Warrategic superiority over any nation on earth First it seemed that the Soviet Unionas challenging us by producing and deploying a large strategic bomber forcehen, even as that perception was disproved, it became evident that the Sovietsyere placing their major effort toward developing strategic missiles against whimulate policy to address the new circumstances, the Intelligence Communityovided no clear picture of the scale, rate of production or breadth of deployment ofoviet missiles The perceivedn a compansetween US ICBM strength as then programmed, andSoviet ICBM strength that were generallyble offieThe administration increturned to thnce to policymakers It was a challengingtion clues

secrets, or wded to deceive The goal was not only to guess what was behind the curtaiut also to find all ways possible to approximate with ever greater certaintye papers provide an enhanced anatoric controversy On the way to the solution, the process becameand sidelined by competing political, corporate, diplomat品∽≥moand intelligence goals, providing us today with a fascinating templateafield of the complexities facing modem intelligence missions and actssy, CiA has released a largewith others whichwere formerly declassified, but arxt now restored based on new, broader declassification guidelines Togethered to determine Soviet missile strenglarm and pressure And it happened by CIAs eventual ability to crack the totalCurtain darkness and turn it into a thin, transparent veil, converting those early bestuesses into reliable, solid "I can easily show you numbers and photos But, for thepeman sources inside the Soviet Union, it was only with the CIAs development ofd, timely technologicalSatellite reconnaissance program-that breakthroughs occurred in gaining valuablehotography and other technical collection programs, the efforts began to produces essay was produced by Joan and John Bird

the outset of this period, the National Intelligence Estimates (Nd best bearacterized as a collection of possibilities about the Soviet ICBMlackingfirm basis for national security policyncern over what many saw as an alarming " missile gap Better intelligence wascontributors added to the quandary of policymakers Nonetheless, nationaligence products provided extalternative hypotheses-based orcted-for different ratesdevelopment and production of Soviet ICBMsely, as collection improved

ization of theunity joined in theThe apparent success of the soviet icbm and sateunik) programs in 1957awned major reactions inprognd the initial or accelerated funding of about a dozen strategic attack programsItaneously The Intelligence Commerely a product of ignorance and that the gap in missile programs actually favorede United States, not the USSR That estimate provided, for the first time in overyears, a basis for a new rationalization of defense procurement programng the period 1962-1963 More importantly, it punctured Khrushchev's carefullyurtured deception of Soviet superiority just as the Berlin Crisis was coming to a headessayCIAO from Wizards of Armageddon by Fred Kaplan, critiquing the whole Missile Gapcontroversy, Most important for historians, this study contains a DvD attached toe back cover containing the declassified copies of some 200 intelligence ander documents pertalogue of Documents"that provides information about who, what, where theits were produced and, in some cases, to whom they were disseminatedlong with a brief description of the contents of each dourThe missile gap" was in essence a growing perception in the West, espernpability than that of the United States, Although there were several ingredientsSoviet secrecy, limited intelligence collection: biasedcements, and the actual soviimited the role analysis, and directedof the Nscid broadenedwhichthe CiA could produce intelligence

fter World War Il, Stalin reinstated in the Soviet Union draconian peacetimeiting communists were closely monitored Westerners faced far greater travtrictions including wholesale proscription against travel in most of the USSRgence responses by Soviet secret police organizations, variously namedMGB MVDlyby Khrushchev,the ussr and interaction with its citizenverely hindered Under themstances, Westem intelligenceR militaraccess to the Soviet missile programs during most of the 1950smz>Limited Intelligence Collectionthe US military, did develop some information about the Sovietm a number of sources--in the beginning, mainly emigres-who corinto the soviet development efforts, but those sources provideabout current activity Ananformation fromvarious human sources eventually succeeded in providing thetechnical collection efforts against the Soviet missile test center at Kapusple, the British attemptedthe Kapustin Yar test center in 1953 but their sperm≤connaissance aircraft was damaged and almost shot down by Soviet fightersther technical collection efforts included radar, intercepted telemetry, and finally,these effgence orgaable to monitor the Soviet medium-and intermediate-range missile (MRBM andRBM)develprocess centeredstin yiThe Soviet iCBM test site however, was in a more remote part of entral Asiaation but some of the technicaplace for the Kapustin Yar effort yielded important evidenceof icBM testing Other evidence, which became available, provided the baearching for a new iCBM launch complex in Kazakhstan and an associatedct area on the Kamchatka peninsula

New collection effortoviet ICBM A U-2 mission penetrated the Soviet air defenses and successfullyONA satellites began providing low resolution, broad area coverageof the USSR By the surduced the projections of Soviet ICBM deployment Not only was the technicalram successful, but the clandestine service hadat thehe Ministry of Defense In 1961, Penkovskiy reportedSoviet gtial movieBy the end of 1962 the veil of total secrecy maintained by the Soviet Union hadnoe program The CORONA satellitesAugust 196D Problems withsatellites did not end then but graduaalbeit very low resolution coverage of the territory o

Communist Party of the USSR Khrushchev in particearly distorted the facof Soviet development, creating the false impression that Soviet ICBM developmentopaganda found a receptive US audience The chapter from the wizards ofArmageddon by Fred Kaplan(reproducedtudorthat the US responseget or sharedministrationPolitical Pressures Grow In Information VacuThe political pressures, which fed upon the facts and the misperceptions of theSoviet ICBM program, included the selective leakage of intelligence judgmernd the exaggeration and distortion of the Soviet statements by the press andwere available, the military services clearly [and understandably took positionsthe National Estimates reflecting their convictions--public and private--tharojections of various Soviet weapons procurement and deployment programswould unquestionably impact their share of Us defense appropriations, In contrastaked information to opposition politicians seeking to discredit the Eisenhowerdministration put pressure on the administratseek every means to discote reality of the situation, resulting in the development of the U-2 for overflights ofSR and finally, the successful satellite recors and Soviet foreign policy initiatives added to the problem, with disincentives toundertake risky intelligence collection efforts Opposing the pressure to succeed withmore and bolder intelligence collection were other administration pleas to use theportunity to achieve some kind of negotiated0

agorous complaints by the Soviets over violations of their territory These externals so influenced President eisenat he actually stoppedU-2 overflights for sixterths at the height of the missile gap controversypolitical pressures grew to unmaskoviet ICBM program, the President relented and reauthorized overflights Alessful right up to the Soviet downing of Gary Powers U-2 over Sverdlovsk, U-2lected photography did not answercial question about the extent of Soviete 1961 when enough successful flights of the new US CORONA photographrovided coverage of the USSR suffiSoyhave many deployed ICBMs--in fact, far fewer than the United StatesBiased AnalysisUSSR by the CORONAatistical analysis and, as events proved, evengments based on intuitee Document 58, FBIS Radio Propaganda Report, Sowiet Propaganda Treatment of the USSRs Strateg

ith the military branches and other militaryg, exclusiveigence analysis on all aspects of the Soviet forces, including size, operationnd capabilities, it does not seem surprising the most egregious exaggerationsoviet military strength emanated from the branch of service likely to benefit by anenemy threaM production were very conservative In the National Intelligence Estimate-60, Soviet Capabilities for Long-Range Attack, they estimated the Sovietswould have only a few iCBMs by mid-1960 and about 50 by mid-1961 In thestimate, the usaf confidently estimated the soviets would haby mid-1960nd about 200 by mid-1961 The CiA estimate fell between the two

However, asat Nie and the few following prior to september 1961 indicated, there clearly wasort any of those estimates otherfirst Soviet ICBM and some gross estimates of potential ICBM production capacityAll the estimates were of a larger force than existed In the graph below taken from-B-1900 the USAF estimate is"Program B, the Army and Navy estimaogram C, and the CiA estimate is Program A22mm≤mxzing the period up to 1964, the bureaucratic undertone of resistance to allowinge Cia to engage in any sort of intelligence on military issues continued The CIAbomber and missile gaps, and later of the Soviet greof the nathe NSCIDs and DCIDs-authorizing or requiring various IC actions that broadenedReal world FactsOn 26 August 1957, the Soviets announced they successfully tested an ICBM/Thelaunch from the new icBm and spacend that the missilee site On 4 October 1957, the Soviets successfully launched the first spatee document 84 fo8-1960, Sowiet Capabilities for Long- Range Attackknown later as the ss-6 or Type A surface-to-surface mi

tellite: Sputnik In the eyes of the world, both feats established a prominent placefor Soviet space science In reality the Soviet ICBM was unwieldy as a weapon foras aepMost US intelligence organizations greatly overestimated the extent of productind deployment of this missile, and it was these estimatesecame the sovlethe soyoping two new modelCBM the ssnd the ss-8, that would be tested beginning in the early 1960s and deployersome number by 1963 The early evidence of prfor their deploymentded to blend with the testing of thethebasis for estimating an early and widespread deployment of the Ss-6 system, aantically working on several versions of an ICBM capable of carrying a nucleaseveral messful and deployed Indeed their deployment outstripped the soviet's efforts sothat bynd probably as early as 1959, the gaphe Us though not widely recognized avelopment of ICBMs and Reconnaissance ProgramsBM program was the culmination of a long, deliberate research and developmentogram started soon after World War l It was significantly aided in the early yearsWest learned of the program through interviews with returnees and an occasiodefector Westem intelligence organizations soon set up technical collection systemsdevelopment at the soviet's Kapustin Yar test range

The big radaup by the USAF at Diyarbakir, Turkey was one example The Soviet programapable of traveling 700-1000 nautical miles or more As these latter mi

ssiles wereg tested, evidence began to suggest a new test rangeng developar Novokazalinsk and Dzhusaly in theSSR with an impact area at Klyucn the Kamchatka Peninsula On 5 August 1957, a CiA U-2 reconnaissance aircrae distance-yura lamle testge head It was 21 days later when the Soviets announced they had successfullydirectly over the site providing definitive photography of all its featuresse Dawn of Satellite Reconnaissancely provided important photography of theSoviet missile test centers at Tyura Tam and Kapustin Yar but it did not provideh the cia and the usafhe wide expanse of the USSR The Presidentpproved the CIa prograary 1958 and, in August 1960, the firstall 24 U-2 flights together A new era in intelligence collection and analylissance: the U-2 and OXCART Programs, 1954-1974 by gregary VE Welzenbach, HistoryIntelligence Agency, Washington,

ot recognized at the time, the real problem to be solved for US intelligence waot to prove a positive, ie, where were the Soviet ICBMs, but to try to provenegative-that there was no widespread Soviet ICBM deployment Onlyoverage of all potential launch sites would suffice as proof Those intelligencepostulating a large, widely-dispersed force continued to press theieven as the increasingly successful satellitethe USsReSovietbeing

This situation changed rapidly as theage and photo interpdicatedBMstatenstruction Although a clandestine report from Soviet Colonel Oleg Penkovskrym28eception and only a very small number of ICBer in the summer that the true reduced status of the Soviet ICBM program becameorce levels between the June 1961 estimate and the September edition '2 reflectede now cleare USSRAs late asin the Kennedy Administration, the full picture of what happenedabout thegated The documents attacheddy Presidential Library clearly show the President wanted theAdvisorac Bundywith the Soviets making the first, highly public, successful ICBM launch in augu:957, and the United States deploying the first unit of ICBMs in 1959 followed by ateady stream of new US deploymentsefore meaningful Soviet deploymentbegan Yet this clear outcome only became evident following years of thoughtfule-dark, and then was only partially helped by U-2holographic coverage, and finally saw a full resolution to the missile gap questiongh HUMINT [Penkovskiy and USSR-wide satellite reconnaissanceThe missile gap controversy enjoyed the fortunate good timing ofpproximations of the earlier NIEs into the realm of reliable, solid evidence suitabled in all the side issues that often surround matters of alarmingd internal national anxieties There are many takehome lessons" in the attached documentay America's quick and cautiousand overstated soviet icBM955-1964dSee Document 92

PENETRATING THE IRON CURTAINRESOLVINGTHEMISSILEGAPWITHTECHNOLOGYABLE OF CONTENTSechnology, an OverviewBird and Joan Birdbylong the Missile Ga" The Missile Gap,Chapter 10 freThe Wizards of Armageddonby Fred KaAll the documents andare contained on the DVD enclosed in the envelope attachedto the back cover of this document

HISTORICAlCOllectIonshe Historical Collections Division(HCD)of CIAs Information Management Servicesgoals include increasing the usability and accessibility of historical collections

HCDso develops release events and partnerships to highlight each collection and malmission of HCD is toPromote an accurate, objective understanding of the information andprove cutcilitating reflection on theblic with valuable insight into the workings of its governmentDemonstrate the ClAs commitment to the Open Government Initiative antthree core values: Transparency, Participation, and Collaboration

JOHN F KENNEDYPRESIDENTIAL LIBRARY AND MUSEUMof our nations thirty-fifth president and to all those who through the art of politicsseek a new and better world Thomas J

Putnam serves as the Director of the John FKennedy Presidential Library and Museumich he lived, and to promote a greater appreciationWepromoting open discourse on critical issues of our own time, andeducating and encouraging citizens to contribute, through public and communityservice, to shaping our nation's futureAs an organization dedicated to public service, we affirm that our understanding ofpublic: is truly inclusive -that people of all backgrounds, ages, and viewpointsare made to feel welcome, and that the Library actively makes its resources,ly to those who remain under-served Weed to creating full access and opportunity in theof recruitmentphentWe serve the public as we would wish to be served: With a sense of pride, withRealizing that communicating openly, honestly, and with integrity is vital to fulfillingour mission, we readily share knowledge with constituents and co-workers, andthe reoT eaAs a relatively small institution with a wide-ranging agenda, the Library's succesfows directly froality of each staff member's contribution, and from agenuine spirit of cooperation and teamwork based on courtesy and mutual respect

AGENDAWELCOME AND OPENING REMARKSTHE CIAS HISTORICAL REVIEW PROGRAMDirector, Information Management Services, CIA5pm-2:45pmLLIGENCE PANELSDrafter of the NaIntelligence Estimate, and Chief of ClAs Guided Missileask Force during the Missile GaROBLEMS OF INTELLIGENCE ANALYSISRobert jervisAuthor of Why / ntelligence Fails

Lessons from the iranian Revolution and theUS POLICY IMPLICATIONSONTEXT OF THE MISAP CONTrOVERSYMISSILE GAP FROM A HISTORIAN'S VANTAGNaftali Author with aleksandrOne hell of a Gamble" Khrushchev Castro andKennedy1958-1964NTELLIGENCE UNCERTAINTIES FROM THSecretary of Defense Representative to New STAR445pmCLOSING REMARKS AND INTRODUCTION TO THE FORUM5:30pm-700pm50th Anniversary: The Missile Gap Controversyyears ago this month, President Kennedy receivedstomates that the gap between thehistorians Timothy Naftali, Fred Kaplan and John Prados for a discussion of730pm-9:00Reception for Invited Guests

SYMPOSIUM SPEAKERS AND EDITORSof thers of this study had a 32 year career as an analystCIAassignments within the CiA, he served as Deputy National IntelligenceOfficer for General Purpose forces as director of the strategic Warning staffndal Intelligence Officer for Warning He was chief of the Intelligencele also served as the intelligence Community's Senior Intelligence Representativeto the Conference on Disarmament during the negotiations that resultedwith the Naval War College designing and assessing war games, and for the Armyaining and Doctrine Command designing and assessing their Army After Nextthe intelligencCommunity during the last several yearsRobertRobert Jervis(PCalifornia at berkeley, 1968) is the Adlai EPolitics and Deputy Chae PoliticalScience Department at Columbia University, and has been a member of the faculty980 He has also held professoriLos Angeles and Harvard University

In 2000-2001, he served as the Presidentember of numerous editorial review boards for scholarly journanclude Perception and Misperception in Intemational Politics(PrincetoeSS,1976), The Meaning of the Nuclear RevolutionUniversity Press, 1989)Systems Effects: Complexity in Political and Social Life9971 American Foreign P(New Era Routledge, 2005) and Why ntelligenceFails: Lessons from the Fall of the Shah and iraqi wD, Cornell University Pressous articles in scholarly journalFred Ked KaplaSlate andft982-911 Moscow Bureau Chief (1992-95), and New York Bureau Chief (1995-2002)983, he was a leading member of the team that wrote the Globes Pulitzer Prize-winning Sunday magazine on the nuclear arms raceKaplan is the author of the prize-winning book about the history of nuclear strategyThe Wizards of Armageddon (Simon Schuster, 1983; reprinted by stanfoiversity Presdaydream Believers: How a Few Grand ldeas Wreckedmerican Power(Wiley Sons, 2008) and 1959: The Year Everything Change(Wiley Sons, 2009limes, The Atlantic Monthly, The New Yorker, The Washington Post, Newsweekhe Washington Monthly, Nature, Scientific American, The Bulletin of the AtomicScientists, The New York Magazine, Architectura/ Digest, and other publications

From 1978-80 Kaplan workedas the natonAspin in the US House of Representatives He graduated from Oberlin College, arpart of the National Archives and Records Adtali tavirginia, where he also served as director of the Presidecordm at the Miller Center of public affaific writer for bothd scholarly audiences His work haspeared on Slate com, The New York Times, the Washington Posand he has appearednal Public Radannel, and C-span He is theof four books, including Blind Sport: Theecret History of American Counterterrorism and, with Aleksander Fursenko, " Oneell of A Gamble" Khrushchev, Castro, and Kennedy, 1958-1964

His second booksenko, Khrushchev's Cold War: The inside Story of an American Adversamost recent book, George H W Bush, appeared in December 2007 as part of Tlgeceived the Duke of Westminster's Medal for Military Literature in June 200American Presidents Series, edited by the late Arthur M Schlesinger, Jr, and SeatDr, Proctor had a 27 year career with the CiA, where he played a key roleUniversity and a PhD in economics from Harvard University He began his career atCIa as an analyst of Soviet military-economic issues and was described as the USgovernment's senior foreign intelligence analysDirectorate of Intelligence where he developed integrated analysis of the SovietC weapom led the clas guided mlayed the key role in the successful determination by the United States of the truetate of Soviet strategic capabilities, thereby resolving thethe model for rigorous and relevant intelligence analysis He served on the boardof National Estimates As Director of the Directorate of Intelligence, he brought award (Ted)Warnerdvisor to thePolicy) for Arms Control and Stratetability He served as a deputy head of the us delegation that successfullyncluded the New sTART Treaty with the Russian Federation in April 2010 TheNew START Treaty was ratified by the United States Senate on December 22, 2010Assistant Secretarye for Strategy and Requirements fromnd Threat Reduction from November 1997 until October 2000 Warner was alsofor countering the proliferweapons of mass destruction, policy issues associated with US nuclear forcestic missile defense, arms control, and cooperative threat reduction; as well asind the other newly independent statesfollowing the collapse of the Soviet Union

foyears His assignments included head of theaff Group, Office of the Air Force Chief of Staff, assistant air attache at the USbassy, Moscow, analyst of Soviet military affairs with the Central IntelligenceAgency; and an assistant professortical science at the Us Air Force Academy1962marine engineering

He completed a masters and a doctoral degree in politics aJoan birdJoan Bird, one of the co-editors of this study, had a 29 year career at CIAior analyst of Soviet issding soviactivities, Soviet policim∽巴=∽aduate of West Virginia University and spent three years at the Center for NayWar Studies of Naval War College developing ways to incorporate intelligenceddition to 25 years as an analyst, she spent 3 years as a member of the Defensend Space negotiating team and a year suppotUS delegatiConference on disarmament on altrol for space Since retirement in 199the has worked for the Naval War College working with the players and assessorsof Informe navaWaGames and for the aaining and Doctrine Command assessing the information operations play of theiArmy after Next Series of war games She is a co-author of several historical stior the Historical Collections Division of c