Published 15 November 1950



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1. This copy of this publication is for the information and use of the recipient „ designated on the front cover and of individuals under the jurisdiction of the recipient's office who require the information for the performance of their official duties. Further dissemination elsewhere in the department to other offices which require the information for the performance of official duties may be authorized by the following:

a. Special Assistant to the Secretary of State for Intelligence, for the Department of State
b. Assistant Chief of Staff, G-2, for the Department of the Army
c. Director of Naval Intelligence, for the Department of the Navy
d. Director of Intelligence, USAF, for the Department of the Air Force
e. Director of Intelligence, AEC, for the Atomic Energy Commission
f. Deputy Director for Intelligence, Joint Staff, for the Joint Staff
g. Assistant Director for Collection and Dissemination, CIA, for any other Department or Agency

2. This copy may be either retained or destroyed by burning in accordance with applicable security regulations, or returned to the Central Intelligence Agency by arrangement with the Office of Collection and Dissemination, CIA.

Office of the President
National Security Council
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Department of State
Office of Secretary of Defense
Department of the Army
Department of the Navy
Department of the Air Force
Atomic Energy Commission
Joint Chiefs of Staff
Federal Bureau of Investigation
Research and Development Board
Munitions Board


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The present estimate is an editorial adaptation of JIC 531/10 with certain modifications and additions to bring it up to date. The intelligence organizations of the Departments of State, the Army, the Navy, and the Air Force participated in the preparation of this estimate and concur in it. This paper is based on information available on 11 November 1950.


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1. To estimate Soviet capabilities and intentions with particular reference to the date at which the USSR might be prepared to engage in a general war.


2. The Soviet rulers are simultaneously motivated by Marxist-Leninist-Stalinist doctrine and by considerations related to the position of the Soviet Union as a world power. Their ultimate objective is to establish a Communist, world controlled by themselves or their successors. However, their immediate concerns, all consistent with that objective, are:

a. To maintain the control of the Kremlin over the peoples of the Soviet Union.
b. To strengthen the economic and military position and defend the territory of the Soviet Union.
c. To consolidate control over the European and Asian satellites (including Communist China).
d. To make secure the strategic approaches to the Soviet Union, and to prevent the establishment, in Europe and Asia, of forces capable of threatening the Soviet position.
e. To eliminate US influence in Europe and Asia.
f. To establish Soviet domination over Europe and Asia.
g. To weaken and disintegrate the non-Soviet world generally, especially to undermine the power and influence of the US.

The Soviet Union will try to pursue these immediate objectives simultaneously. In case of conflict between one and another of these objectives, however, it may be expected that the Soviet rulers will attach greater importance to the first four listed, and in that order.

3. Inasmuch as the Soviet ultimate objective is immutable and dynamic, the Soviet Union will continue relentlessly its aggressive pressures on the non-Soviet world, particularly on the power position of the Western nations. Consequently there is, and will continue to be, grave danger of war between the USSR and its satellites, on the one hand, and the US and its allies on the other.

4. The Soviet rulers could achieve and are achieving the first three of their immediate objectives (para. 2 a, b, and c) without risk of involvement in armed conflict with the United States.

5. Their remaining immediate objectives (para. 2 d, e, f, and g) are improbable of achievement without resort to armed force, although there are still factors in the situation which might well lead the Soviet rulers to suppose that, in favorable circumstances, they might eventually achieve these objectives without the use of Soviet forces.

6. In pressing to achieve these latter objectives the Soviet rulers will inevitably impinge upon vital interests of the Western Powers and thus incur the risk of involvement in a general war through Western reaction.

7. In the belief that their object cannot be fully attained without a general war with the Western Powers, the Soviet rulers may deliberately provoke such a war at the time when,-in their opinion, the relative strength of the USSR is at its maximum. It is estimated that such a period will exist from now through 1954,1 with the peak of Soviet strength relative to the Western Powers being reached about 1952.2

1/ 1954 is assumed to be the date by which North Atlantic Treaty forces in Europe will have been built up to such strength that they could withstand the initial shock of Soviet attack and by which the gap between the military strength of the Western Powers and that of the USSR will have begun to close.

2/ After the USSR has made good certain important deficiencies in atomic bomb stockpile and in certain types of aircraft and before the Western economy has been fully geared for a war effort.]

8. From the point of view of military forces and economic potential, the Soviet Union is in a position to conduct a general war now (i.e., at least to conduct the campaigns listed in paragraphs 66-68, p. 10), if the Soviet rulers should consider it desirable or expedient to do so.

9. Intelligence is lacking to permit a valid prediction as to whether or when the USSR would actually resort deliberately to a general« war. It must be recognized, however, that a grave danger of general war exists now, and will exist hereafter whenever the Soviet rulers may elect to take action which threatens the vital interests of the Western Powers.

10. Specifically with respect to the Korean situation, to date there is insufficient evidence to indicate that the USSR intends to commit Soviet forces overtly in Korea. However, the commitment of Chinese Communist forces, with Soviet material aid, indicates that the USSR considers the Korean situation of sufficient importance to warrant the risk of general war. The probability is that the Soviet Union considers that the US will not launch a general war over Chinese Communist intervention in North Korea and the reaction thereto. The principal risk of general war is through the exercise of Soviet initiative which the Kremlin continues to hold. The probability is that the Soviet Government has not yet made a decision directly to launch a general war over the Korean-Chinese situation. There is a good chance that they will not in the immediate future take such a decision. At what point they will take a decision to launch a general war is not now determinable by Intelligence.


Note: The foregoing paragraphs (7-10) represent the best conclusions that can be reached on the basis of the information available at this time. The problem of whether and when the USSR may resort deliberately to general war is under continuing consideration and will be the subject of future reports as pertinent information is developed.


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1. The Soviet rulers are simultaneously motivated by Marxist-Leninist-Stalinist doctrine and by considerations related to the position of the Soviet Union as a world power. Their ultimate objective is to establish a Communist world controlled by themselves or their successors. However, their immediate concerns, all consistent with that objective, are:

a. To maintain the control of the Kremlin over the peoples of the Soviet Union.
b. To strengthen the economic and military position and defend the territory of the Soviet Union.
c. To consolidate control over the European and Asian satellites (including Communist China).
d. To make secure the strategic approaches to the Soviet Union, and to prevent the establishment, in Europe and Asia, of forces capable of threatening the Soviet position.
e. To eliminate US influence in Europe and Asia.
f. To establish Soviet domination over Europe and Asia.
g. To weaken and disintegrate the non-Soviet world generally, especially to undermine the power and influence of the US.

The Soviet Union will try to pursue these immediate objectives simultaneously. In case of conflict between one and another of these objectives, however, it may be expected that the Soviet rulers will attach greater importance to the first four listed, and in that order.



[1 - See also Appendix A for a discussion of political alignments and morale factors in the event,of war, Appendix B for a discussion of Soviet objectives and prospects in particular countries.]

2. There is nothing in Soviet ideology, or in the internal situation of the Soviet Union, which requires or precludes either deliberate resort to war or the achievement of any particular objective by any given date.

3. The Soviet rulers appear to believe that, provided the security of the Soviet Union can be assured, time will be on their side in the achievement of their long-term objective of world communization under Kremlin, domination.

4. The Soviet rulers have shown, however, that they are more immediately concerned with the power position of the Soviet Union than with their long-term objective. In addition, they have made it clear that they will not rely solely on the operation of historical processes, but will actively and aggressively press for the realization of their aims, using armed force, if necessary, even though serious risks may be involved.

5. A Soviet decision to risk general war by the use of armed force in any particular situation, and, even more, a deliberate resort to general war, would depend on:

a. The Soviet rulers' estimate of the importance of the particular situation in relation to their over-all security.
b. The prospects of accomplishing the objectives involved by other means.
c. Their estimate of their chances of improving their over-all power position in a general war.


[ 2 - Excludes consideration of Soviet capabilities in nuclear energy production capacities.]

6. The Soviet Union has already largely mobilized its industry for war. It now has, through manufacturing and stockpiling of war materiel and equipment, a great preponderance of military stocks, which enables it not only to maintain superior military strength in being but also to have at its disposal a readily realizable additional strength. The West, on the other hand, except for a few specialized arms, is only beginning to mobilize its industry for war.

7. The over-all economic war potential of the Western Powers is now, and for an indeterminate number of years will continue to be, superior to that of the Soviet Union and its satellites. However, the Western Powers cannot immediately assert their greatly superior economic war potential, since it will require several years to mobilize their strength.

8. Under these circumstances, the present move among the North Atlantic Treaty countries for gearing part of their industries to production of armaments is a most important consideration, because from 1951 onward, the great preponderance of Soviet military strength, derived from its large holdings of war equipment, will begin to decline, and after 1953 may have ceased to be a significant factor.

9. There are, however, other considerations which might well induce the Soviet rulers to interpret their own economic preparedness for war in a different light. In undertaking a war against the Western Powers at an early date the Soviet rulers could look forward to sweeping initial successes. They must, nevertheless, take into account that such a war would probably be prolonged and become one of attrition, and that the industrial and economic structure of the Soviet Union would be exposed to severe losses, although some of these could be at least partially offset by Soviet control over the resources of Western Europe and other areas obtained as a result of Soviet conquests in the early stage of the war.

10. There are, moreover, indications that in the next and succeeding Five-Year Plans special attention will be given to the strategic problems of bringing the manufacturing industries into better balance with the basic industries, improving the transportation system, and obtaining better results in the planned dispersal of industry.

11. The Soviet rulers may hesitate to risk a global war if they consider that the future economic military strength of the West outweighs the immediate military advantage they hold over the Western Powers. However, the date at which the Soviet rulers might be prepared to take the risks of a major war against the Western Powers is unknown since there is no intelligence available concerning what evaluation the Soviet rulers are making of this factor. Consideration of the known factors indicates that from the point of view of output and stockpiles of war materiel, the period when the Soviet Union could assert its military strength most advantageously against the Western Powers is between now and the end of 1953.

Weapons of Mass Destruction and Scientific Development.

12. The atomic bomb is the only weapon of mass destruction which would be a major factor in a Soviet decision to assume the risk of a major war.

13. The current estimate regarding the Soviet atomic bomb stockpile is as follows:

Mid-1950     22
Mid-1951     50
Mid-1952     95
Mid-1953     165
Mid-1954     235

14. The Soviet Union has and will have sufficient aircraft, trained crews, and bases of operation to warrant an attempt to deliver in the United States and in the United Kingdom the full stockpile of atomic bombs that are now and will become available. Should local conditions require the dropping of bombs by other than visual means, the efficiency of Soviet bomb placement may be adversely affected. In addition, the Soviet Union has the capability for clandestine atomic explosions in ports and in selected inland areas, and may be able to launch guided missiles with atomic warheads from submarines within the period under consideration.

15. In view of present and future Soviet atomic capability, it is apparent that the total power of the Soviet Union has been and is being increased rapidly.

16. The United States now enjoys a wide margin of superiority in numbers of bombs in stockpile over the Soviet Union. However, it would be illusory to conclude that the United States and Western Europe will remain safe from atomic attack so long as the United States maintains this numerical superiority. When the Soviet rulers believe that they have produced a sufficient quantity of atomic bombs to be seriously crippling or decisive against the Western Powers, the danger of Soviet attack will be greatly increased. When the Soviets have attained this atomic capability, the US superiority in total numbers of atomic bombs will no longer be a deterrent to the Soviet decision for war, in the same relative degree as before. The extent of Soviet vulnerability to a retaliatory US attack will, however, affect Soviet calculation.

17. It is impossible to state when the Soviets may estimate they have reached this capability. This may occur at any time and the situation may become critical at any time within the next two years.

18. As regards other items of scientific development, it is considered that the Soviet rulers would probably be willing to assume the risk of a major war at any time after the end of 1950.

Ground Forces.

19. The military effectiveness of the Soviet Union is being steadily increased. At present the Soviet Army comprises about 175 line divisions and could rapidly mobilize about 145 more, and subsequently increase this number if required. By about 1954 indicated reorganization, training, and equipment programs will have been completed. By that date the Soviet rulers should be able to place reliance on the satellites to the extent that an increasing proportion can be expected to fight well against hereditary enemies. The Soviet Union possesses the advantage of a concentration of force on interior lines and potentially of exercising the initiative.

20. The state of readiness in the North Atlantic Treaty Organization countries is far below that of the Soviet Union. Reaction to the Korean conflict caused many of these nations to plan increases in national armed forces. Even by 1954, however, North Atlantic Treaty Organization countries cannot achieve parity with the Soviet Union in numbers of men under arms or in quantities of certain items of equipment.

21. Under the impetus of expected increased aid from the United States, coupled with an increase in appropriations at home, the forces which should be available to North Atlantic Treaty Organization countries for the midyears commencing 1951 to 1954 are estimated to be 63, 72, 83, and 93 divisions respectively.

22. At present the Soviet Union possesses the capability of initiating hostilities in Western Europe without any additional warning and invading Western Europe with an initial force of about 25 divisions at present located in East Germany and Poland, and of rapidly building this force to about 75 to 90 divisions. In such event the North Atlantic Treaty Organization countries are not at present capable of preventing the overrunning of Western Europe, excluding the United Kingdom.

23. It is accepted that it will be found possible progressively to build up the North Atlantic Treaty Organization forces in Europe so that, by 1954, they will be capable of withstanding the initial shock of such a surprise attack.

24. In the Near and Middle East area, the planned improvements in the armies of Turkey, Greece and Iran are largely a matter of modernization rather than expansion. There is, therefore, little military advantage from the viewpoint of the Soviet Union in opening hostilities in this area in any particular year between now and 1954.

25. From purely an army viewpoint, if the Soviet rulers are willing to initiate, to provoke, or to accept the risk of a general war, it would be in their best interests to do so at some time between now and 1954, with the optimum date probably being about the middle of the period.

Air Forces.

26. The authorized military aircraft strength in operational units of the Soviet Air Forces is estimated to be 20,000 aircraft at the present time. While definite information is lacking, it is believed that the actual aircraft strength of the operational units may be ten to fifteen percent below the authorized strength. In addition to the aircraft in operational units it is estimated that there are some 20,000 combat aircraft in stored reserve. Besides the stored reserve, the combat units would be supported by the semi-military Civil Air Fleet with an operating strength of 1,500 major transports, and an unknown number of concealed aircraft, for example those of the MVD, plus combat aircraft in the training establishment, command support aircraft, and those assigned for test, research, and development. No significant change is expected in the organization of the Soviet Air Forces over the next few years nor is there evidence to suggest that the front line strength will change materially over the same period. However, it is estimated that the proportion of high performance aircraft will increase considerably and advances in bomber interception and strategic bombing capabilities can be expected.

27. The Soviet Military Air Force is numerically superior to Western tactical air forces and is adequate to support all land campaigns which the Soviet Union might be expected to undertake in event of war in the next few years. Its combat value is being increased steadily by re-equipment of fighter and bomber units with high performance jet aircraft.

28. The Soviet Naval Air Force is an effective coastal adjunct to the Soviet Air Force and could be used in direct support of the Soviet Army. It is anticipated that as in the case of the Military Air Force, the combat value of the Naval Air Force will increase as the result of re-equipment in the next year or two and as the result of further training.

29. The Soviet Union possesses in quantity excellent day interceptors for fighter defense, but at present is handicapped in the bomber interception field by the lack of efficient all-weather interceptors and effective ground control interceptor radars. It is anticipated that a good all-weather interceptor will probably be introduced in 1952, and that difficulties with ground control interception radars will have been largely overcome by the time this interceptor appears in service. In 1952, the Soviet Union should have reached a state of training and re-equipment sufficient to provide a relatively effective fighter defense system.

30. The Soviet Union has and will have the capability in aircraft and trained crews to enable it to attempt to deliver in the United Kingdom and North America the full stockpile of atomic bombs that are and will become available. In the next few years the strategic bombing capability of the Soviet Air Forces will increase substantially, particularly in view of the increasing atomic bomb stockpile. The introduction of jet medium bombers in 1952 and heavy bombers in 1953 in the strategic bombing force will increase the effectiveness of this force, although the problems connected with high-speed bombing and navigation may not be fully solved by that time. 31. Based on the above considerations, the Soviet Union may assess its present air capabilities as adequate for the conduct of a major war. It is expected that Soviet air capabilities will be improved steadily and probably reach optimum relative to the Western Powers in 1952. Therefore, a state of readiness which the Soviet Union considers favorable for the conduct of major operations may be reached at any time from the present to 1952.

Naval Forces.

32. The surface naval forces of the Western Powers are so much stronger than those of the Soviet Union that the latter will not be able for many years at least to dispute by surface ' forces the control of the major ocean communications. The Soviet Submarine Fleet, however, is strong in comparison with the antisubmarine forces of the Western Powers, and Soviet minelaying potential is high in comparison with the minesweeping resources available to the Western Powers.

33. The Submarine Fleet is able now to exert a serious threat to Allied sea communications. This threat will become progressively more serious with the estimated increase in strength and improvement in performance of the Submarine Fleet during the next few years.

34. The Surface Fleets pose no serious threat to Allied control of the sea, but are probably ready now to accept the following roles:

a. Defense of sea frontiers of the Soviet Union.
b. Support of the seaward flanks of the Soviet Army.

35. The Naval Air Forces are capable now of supporting the surface fleets in the above roles.

36. The Soviet Merchant Fleet is capable of providing the lift for short range amphibious operations, and of sustaining the wartime economy of the Soviet Union, except, possibly, in the Far East.

Civil Defense.

37. The knowledge available indicates that neither the Soviet nor NATO blocs have yet taken effective measures of civil defense on a scale sufficient to cope with atomic attack.


General Review.

38. The basic problem here considered is to estimate the courses of action that may be followed by the Soviet rulers in pursuit of their objectives as stated in paragraph 1.

39. It must be recognized that a general war might occur as a result of some Soviet action undertaken without deliberate intention to precipitate a general war and even before the Soviet rulers considered themselves fully ready, for it.

40. The Soviet rulers, while so far eschewing the direct use of their own military forces, have shown themselves willing to employ every available means short of this. Further aggression in the face of Western counter-measures will carry with it an increasing danger of general war. Short of abandonment by the West of its policy of resisting Communist aggression, the only circumstance that could remove that danger would be the abandonment by the Soviet Union of its policy of aggression.

41. On the basis of Soviet conduct and declarations of policy since 1945, there is no indication that the Soviet rulers will modify their policy of aggression. In fact, during the last year their actions have shown an apparently increasing disregard of possible Western reactions. In particular, the North Korean attack appears to mark a significant step forward in the Kremlin's strategy, since, even though the Soviet rulers may have originally discounted the risk of US reaction to the North Korean move, they have persisted in their course despite actual US reactions.

42. The Soviet rulers can be expected to continue their aggressive pressures on the power position of the Western countries. In their choice of time, place, and method they will continue to follow a policy of expediency. They can be expected to continue to attempt to exploit every apparent soft spot, employing such weapons and tactics as seem best adapted to particular situations.

43. The Soviet rulers have shown that, while applying the rule of expediency in choosing among the possible courses of action, they will not necessarily reject such courses as carry the risk of armed conflict. Logically, they would prefer not to take action of this nature so long as they believed that they were attaining their immediate objectives without it. If, however, they came to the conclusion that they were failing to obtain these objectives by other means they would be willing to assume the risk of involving their own forces, dependent on their estimate of their chances of success both in attaining their immediate objectives and in coping with any resultant reaction by the Western Powers. Generally, the more closely they considered their objectives related to the security of the Soviet Union the more readily would they risk involving their own military forces.

44. In view of the above, an estimate of the danger and imminence of war can be based only on a review of the critical situations existing and impending, together with a calculation of Soviet aims and prospects in each case, the relative strength and state of over-all preparation of the powers involved, and the impact of likely Western counter-moves on Soviet planning.

45. In dealing with various critical situations existing and pending, Soviet rulers may attempt to achieve their objectives by either:

Course One—means short of deliberate resort to general war, or,
Course Two—deliberate resort to general war.

46. Course One would in turn cover several possible lines of action which might be followed separately or concurrently. These are:

a. To use means other than armed aggression- across a frontier.
b. To instigate local military aggression by satellite armed force.
c. To undertake local aggression by Soviet armed force.

47. Course Two could follow either of two alternative lines of action:

a. A direct attack on the United States and its allies; or,
b. A deliberate provocation involving the virtual certainty of general war, and intended to precipitate it.

48. Choice of Course One 5, or Course One c, would seem to depend, at least in large part, upon the urgency of Soviet preoccupation with the area in which such limited aggression were instigated or undertaken. Choice of Course Two, on the other hand, would amount to an attempt to destroy the power position of the Western countries either once and for all, or at least in Europe and Asia, and would depend upon global considerations. From the political standpoint, Course Two a is less likely than Course Two b.

Course One (Means Short of Deliberate Resort to General War).

49. On the basis of the discussion in Appendix B, and apart from possible long-term considerations such as economic crisis in the West which the Soviet rulers may think will work in their favor, they probably estimate their prospects somewhat as below:

Course One a (Means other than armed aggression across a frontier).

50. Tibet and Indochina appear to be the only countries in which the odds presently favor the establishment of Communist control. In Indochina, Chinese aid for indigenous Communist elements is essential and is being furnished. If Indochina were to come under Communist control, then Siam and Burma would probably quickly follow.

51. The state of public opinion in Western Europe, particularly in France, and in Western Germany may give the Soviet rulers reason to hope that their immediate aim of preventing the development of continental military strength can still be accomplished through agitation and internal pressures. Generally, however, the West European governments do not reflect this state of popular opinion, and public opinion is changing and will continue to change as Western defense measures become effective. From now on, apart from the possible effect of the above-mentioned long-term considerations, any hopes which the Kremlin may now retain for success in Western Europe and Western Germany will probably diminish.

52. The development of the situation in Iran is less predictable, but here again it can be expected that as Western support increases, the prospects for the achievement of Soviet domination of Iran without the use of external force will decline.

53. In Scandinavia, Turkey, the Arab States, Israel, Afghanistan, Pakistan, India, Indonesia, and Japan, the national authorities are apparently capable of coping with any outbreaks of violence designed to lead to Kremlin control of the country. On the other hand, the Kremlin could, by propaganda and other means, hope to influence, in some cases materially, the political attitude of the Arab States, India, Pakistan, Israel, and Indonesia.

54. In Yugoslavia the government is at present capable of coping with outbreaks of violence designed to lead to Soviet control. However, the economic situation might deteriorate substantially in the next year of two, in which case the authority of the government might be threatened.

55. In Malaya and the Philippines, current Communist guerrilla operations can probably be sustained indefinitely; and in Greece, the Soviet Union may attempt to revive large-scale guerrilla activities at any time. How-. ever, the authorities of these countries, supported by the United States or the United Kingdom, should be able to control the situation.

Course One b (Local military aggression by satellite armed forces).

56. General. The Soviet Union has already resorted to indirect aggression by means of satellite forces in the case of Korea. Similar employment of non-Soviet forces could be attempted in the following areas, although the Kremlin would have to recognize that indirect aggression in any of them (except Tibet) would in varying degree carry risk of general war:

In Europe: Greece, Turkey, Yugoslavia, Western Germany, and Berlin.

In Asia: Tibet, Formosa, Hong Kong, Macao, Indochina, and Burma.

57. Europe. Military success would be unlikely in the cases of Turkey and Greece, and questionable in the case of Yugoslavia. In Western Germany it would also be unlikely in the present state of development of the Polizei Bereitschaften. The incorporation of Berlin is an essential step towards the Soviet aim to secure a unified Germany subservient to the Kremlin. An attack by the Polizei Bereitschaften at Soviet instigation upon the Western occupying forces in Berlin might well appear to Soviet rulers to have prospects of local success, although the Soviet rulers would have difficulty in disavowing responsibility for such an attack unless Soviet occupation troops had been previously withdrawn from the Berlin area.

58. Asia. Tibet can be occupied at any time without any risk of extension of hostilities. Military success in Formosa is problematical but success could be assured against Burma, Indochina and Hong Kong, and Macao. Domination of Burma and Indochina would outflank Siam and control the major sources of rice to Asiatic countries at present outside the Soviet orbit. Siam could not then avoid coming under Communist domination, and Malaya would thus be directly threatened. Hong Kong would be a lesser strategic prize and the difficulty of localizing the war would be greater than in the case of Burma and Indochina.

Course One c (Local aggression by Soviet armed forces).

59. The Soviet rulers may well consider that only against Finland and Yugoslavia could Soviet forces be used directly without grave danger of immediately precipitating general war, and would recognize that even in those cases their use would bring general war appreciably nearer.

On Balance.

60. The Soviet rulers may have reason to estimate that they can achieve some of their objectives, particularly in South and Southeast Asia, through measures short of armed aggression across a frontier. However, the existing situation, apart from the possible effects of long-term considerations, gives them little reason to hope for achievement, through these means alone, of their major objectives, particularly those related to the rearmament of the West including utilization of West German and Japanese military potential. Nevertheless, it can be assumed that they will continue to exploit every opportunity for the employment of such means in order to retard Western defensive preparations and to weaken and divide the non-Soviet world.

61. A decision to employ indirect or direct military aggression on a local scale will probably depend on developing circumstances, particularly on the progress of Western defensive measures. The Soviet rulers might accept serious risk of general war in order to prevent the actual development of hostile military power on the strategic approaches to the Soviet Union. They would be particularly concerned at the recreation of West German or Japanese military power. It must be emphasized that Soviet rulers may well regard the progressive development of the situation in Korea in the same light and may take local action accordingly.

Course Two (Deliberate Resort to General War).

62. The Soviet rulers might, under certain circumstances, consider that it was to their advantage deliberately to engage in war with the Western Powers. However, it is estimated that they would be unlikely to take this step deliberately unless they were convinced that their most important objectives were plainly jeopardized. In addition, they would have to be confident, either:

(a) of speedy neutralization of US offensive power; or,
(b) of their ability to establish a degree of control over the Eurasian land mass, including the neutralization of the United Kingdom by occupation or otherwise, that would give them the benefit of a considerable proportion of European industrial potential and would present the United States with a military task of such proportions that the United States would be unwilling or unable to make the effort necessary to carry it through. 63. A decision by the Soviet rulers to resort to war under assumption (a) above would presuppose their estimate that they had atomic or other capabilities to deal the United States a blow sufficiently crippling to enable the Soviet Union to attain their war objectives.

64. A decision by the Soviet rulers on the basis of assumption (b) above would presuppose their estimate that, either with or without a limited attack on the United States, the Soviet economy, strengthened by the acquisition of Western European industrial resources, would be capable of supporting a prolonged war, and also their estimate that Soviet defenses could prevent crippling attacks on the resultant Soviet economy.


65. In the event of global war between the Soviet Union and the Western Allies, it is considered that Soviet action would follow generally along the lines set forth below.

66. The Soviet plan would be to undertake the following operations:

a. Simultaneously
(1) A campaign against Western Europe including Italy.
(2) An aerial bombardment against the British Isles.
(3) Campaigns against the Near and Middle East including Greece and Turkey.
(4) Campaigns in the Far East.
(5) Attacks against Canada and the United States, including Alaska and the Aleutians.
(6) A sea and air offensive against Anglo-American sea communications.
(7) Subversive activities and sabotage against Anglo-American interests in all parts of the world.
(8) Defense of the Soviet Union against hostile attack.
b. As soon as possible, after the occupation of the Channel Port areas, a full-scale sea and air offensive against the British Isles including an attempted invasion.
c. As soon as feasible, campaigns against Scandinavia and the Iberian Peninsula.
d. As necessary, air attacks against Pakistan.

67. It is believed that the Soviet Union would have sufficient armed forces to undertake all the campaigns listed above and still have sufficient armed forces to form an adequate reserve.

68. Opportunist campaigns by Chinese Communist forces, which may or may not be directed by the Soviet Union, against neighbor-ing territories in Asia might be undertaken at any time.

69. If war occurs during the period under consideration, little or no warning will be received and, therefore, M-Day and D-Day should, for planning purposes, be considered the same. The Soviet armed forces are in an advanced enough state of preparation to achieve the objectives outlined in this estimate without requiring any appreciable period of notice.


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Soviet Bloc.

1. The following countries are likely to remain in alignment with the Soviet Union:

a. In Europe: Poland, Eastern Germany, Czechoslovakia, Hungary, Rumania, Bulgaria, and probably Albania. (There is a possibility that Albania may cease to be a Soviet satellite in the course of the next few years, provided Yugoslavia remains outside the Soviet bloc.)
b. In Asia: Communist China and Outer Mongolia.

2. In the event of a major war in Europe the European satellites may be expected to be belligerents.

3. In the event of a war between the Soviet Union and the Western Powers, Communist China is not likely to deny to the Soviet Union any facilities or resources, and is likely to pursue an opportunist policy of expansion. The Sino-Soviet Treaty of 1950 requires each party to render assistance to the other in the event of attack by Japan "or any other state which should unite with Japan directly or indirectly in acts of aggression." Communist China is unlikely to forfeit the advantages of this alliance in present circumstances.

4. The political alignment of Korea will depend on the outcome of the present United Nations action there.

Anti-Soviet Bloc.

5. In the event of any war between the Soviet Union on the one hand and the United Kingdom and the United States on the other, it is considered that the following countries (together with their overseas possessions) will be in alignment against the Soviet Union from the outbreak of the war:

United States, United Kingdom, Canada, Australia, New Zealand, South Africa, and Ceylon.

6. The following countries (with their overseas possessions) would probably also be aligned against the Soviet Union, but not necessarily unless the provisions of the North Atlantic Treaty were involved:

France, the Benelux countries, Italy, Norway, Denmark, Iceland, and Portugal.

Those countries not participating as belligerents would be at least benevolently neutral.

7. India and Pakistan. India and Pakistan may well decide to maintain non-belligerent status unless directly attacked, though their attitude would be sympathetic to the Western Powers.

8. Treaty commitments (all subject to the provisions of the United Nations Charter) also exist between the United Kingdom and Turkey, Egypt, Jordan, and Iraq.

a. Turkey. Under the Treaty of Mutual Assistance of 1939 (which expires in October 1954) the United Kingdom and France are obliged to go to the assistance of Turkey, if Turkey is attacked, but Turkey is not obliged to assist her allies in a war against the Soviet Union. Though the Turks are likely to fight rather than submit to any major Soviet demands, they would not otherwise necessarily join the Western Powers in war.
b. Egypt. The Anglo-Egyptian Treaty of 1936 (which expires in 1956) permits the United Kingdom to station limited land and air forces in the Suez Canal Zone. On present indications, the Egyptian Government, in the event of a war with the Soviet Union, although probably favoring the Allied cause, would not consent to the use of Egyptian armed forces except possibly in defense of Egyptian territory. This would not, however, affect Western use of bases in Egypt.
c. Iraq and Jordan. Under the United Kingdom treaties with Jordan and Iraq, the parties agree to offer one another mutual assistance. In the case of Iraq, assistance to the United Kingdom is limited to the provision of facilities in Iraq territory.

9. Apart from treaty obligations, all the Arab Governments will probably be disposed to favor the Western Powers and to make available to them their economic resources and territories, although they may be reluctant to assist in any active cooperation, particularly if this involves the dispatch of forces outside their own territories.

10. Philippines. The present Philippine Government is committed to alignment with the United States and to make Philippine bases available to the United States.

11. Latin America. The Latin American republics will support the United States in varying degrees of effective cooperation under the Rio Treaty. Active military assistance may be available in some cases (e.g. Brazil).

12. Japan. It is expected that, even after the conclusion of a Japanese Peace Treaty, at least base facilities in that country will continue to be available to the Western Powers.

13. Western Germany and Austria. The position of the governments of Western Germany and Austria will depend on the development of plans under the North Atlantic Treaty.

14. Greece. In the case of Greece the Government will be entirely sympathetic and may be expected to fall in with Western plans as far as it is able to do so.

Neutral States.

15. The following countries will attempt, initially at least, to remain neutral, though some of them may cooperate in action undertaken by the United Nations:

Iran, Sweden, Switzerland, Spain, the Irish Republic, Finland, Yugoslavia, Israel, Afghanistan, Burma, Siam, and Indonesia. Most of these countries would probably resist if attacked, particularly if given support.

16. Yugoslavia. So long as the present regime remains in power the Soviet Union will have to use force if it wants to make use of Yugoslav territory. There is at present no indication of the existence of an alternative Communist organization of sufficient strength to carry out a pro-Cominform rising, but a severe deterioration in the economic situation within the next year or two, which remains a definite possibility, could materially affect the situation.

17. Israel. In the event of a major war in the Middle East, Israel may be disposed to favor the Western Powers and, as a result of political or economic pressure, may assist them.


Soviet Union.

18. Soviet citizens in responsible positions from the age of 50 downwards have been brought up on Marxist-Leninist doctrines to the rigid exclusion of all others. The great majority, therefore, will always be ready to support strong central leadership by Communist leaders in defense of Soviet national" interest.

19. The Soviet people do not want war, but any war in which the Soviet Union became involved would be presented to them as essential to their national survival, and few would be able to question the official version of events. The vast majority would acquiesce in the decision of the Kremlin.

20. In war, the control exercised over every form of human activity by the police and propaganda systems of the Soviet Union would be a source of unity and strength, so long as the Soviet campaigns met with success. If, however, the assertions of Soviet propaganda were disproved by events, there is little doubt that evidence of Soviet inability to resist Allied strength would come as a shock to the people generally. So long as police control remained intact, this would not have any widespread result. Even if Allied counter-measures, including the use of atomic bombs, resulted in police control being severely strained or broken, the process of disintegration would probably be a slow one. The Russian people have in the past rallied magnificently to expel foreign invaders, and even in the event of large-scale Allied air attack, the majority of the population would fight on as best they could.

21. Although the Soviet rulers have to reckon with a degree of disloyalty (which might be increased in war) among the minorities in the Baltic States, the Ukraine, the Caucasus, and Central Asia, rebellion on the part of these ethnic groups could not be expected unless Soviet police control had collapsed or Western support and protection were at hand.

The European Satellites.

22. The majority of the populations in the satellite countries are intensely nationalistic, and large proportions resent the domination of the Kremlin and the present Communist Governments with which they are burdened. Although this attitude is a source of potential weakness to the Soviet bloc, there is no present evidence to indicate that it would give rise to further successful nationalist deviations on Titoist lines, nor would it produce effective resistance to the Soviet war effort unless the war were going badly for the Soviet Union and the disaffected elements were given guidance and support from the West.


23. In the event of major hostilities the Chinese Peoples' Government could maintain effective control over the general population in Manchuria, in North, Central, and East China, and in most of the large cities, through the existing political and police apparatus. In South and Southwest China, where the Communist apparatus is not yet fully developed and where some 400,000 guerrillas still remain in active opposition, the effective authority of the Chinese Peoples' Government would probably be limited to the principal cities and lines of communications and to the frontiers with Indochina and Burma, leaving millions of Chinese beyond its control. This situation, however, would not endanger the regime unless an organized, politically coherent opposition movement, with outside support, were to develop within the country. There is no present indication of such a development.

The Western World.

24. The chief elements of weakness in Western European morale are a general feeling of the inability to resist armed attack by the Soviet Union (combined with an unwillingness to become involved in another war) and the lack of unity of purpose on the part of the Western Allies. These weaknesses are enhanced by the intellectual and emotional appeals of theoretical Communism; the social and industrial unrest which Communism exploits; and by a general failure on the part of the rank and file of the Western Nations to appreciate the real conditions of life under a Communist dictatorship.

25. In Western Europe, the internal Communist threat is not serious except in France and Italy where the Communist parties have a considerable hold on the labor organizations, and, in Italy, also among the poorer peasants. The position of other Western European countries will be materially affected by that of France. In France, although the majority of Frenchmen are anti-Communist, there is a widespread feeling of defeatism. There is, under present circumstances, a considerable unwillingness to resist if war breaks out, or to risk being compromised in the eyes of the Communists under a Soviet occupation which is becoming accepted as inevitable. If Frenchmen, however, can be given real confidence in their ability, with the support of their allies, to withstand a Soviet invasion, this defeatism is likely to be dispelled. Defeatism has not gone so far as to affect the attitude of the French Government toward her allies. The Soviet Union is aware of a general-situation and appears in its propaganda to the West to devote more attention to exploiting the desire for peace and attracting those elements of the population most susceptible to peace appeals than directly to expanding the Communist parties in these countries.

26. In Western Germany there is general opposition to Communism and the Communist Party is unlikely to constitute a serious internal threat. Nevertheless, German morale is at present low and will deteriorate still further unless Western Germans can be given confidence that either they themselves, or the Western Powers, will be enabled to defend Western Germany from attack.

27. In the Middle East, although Communism is generally feared and disliked, the social structure is such that there is fertile ground for propaganda. The Arab Governments would, however, prefer to remain neutral in any conflict between the Soviet Union and the Western Powers. If they were directly attacked, token resistance might be expected, the strength and duration of which would depend on how the war went for the Allies. If it went badly, the early emergence of a pro-Soviet body of feeling might be expected. The Arab peoples themselves are largely indifferent but, though Communist ideas have made little progress, they are generally anti-Western, and no popular resistance to the Soviet Union can be expected. In the non-official intelligentsia there is considerable anti-Western feeling, chiefly on account of the present policy of the Western Powers toward Israel. In the event of a general conflict in which Israel were involved in support of the West, there might be a risk that anti-Israel feeling would induce the Arabs to come out on the other side.


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1. In the following discussion, possible Soviet actions under Course One (Means Short of Deliberate Resort to General War) are examined.

Northern Europe (Finland, Sweden, Norway, and Denmark).

2. The immediate Soviet aim in Northern Europe is to prevent the occupation and use of that area as a base of operations against the Soviet Union. If the Soviet rulers considered that a serious threat were developing they would accept a risk of global war if necessary to prevent such a development. The ultimate desideratum would be control of the entire area, thus acquiring not only its facilities and resources, but also complete control of the Baltic and free access to the North Atlantic.

3. With the exception of Finland, Soviet subversive capabilities in Northern Europe are extremely limited. Even in Finland the government appears capable of keeping internal pressure under control. The only effective means available for accomplishing either of the aims indicated above is the overwhelming local preponderance of Soviet military power.

4. The coercive threat inherent in the proximity of overwhelming Soviet power appears sufficient, in large part, to accomplish the immediate Soviet aim. It imposes on Finland a necessity to cooperate with the Soviet Union (so long as Soviet demands do not require national suicide) and is a main consideration causing Sweden to adhere to a fixed policy of neutrality. Although Norway and Denmark have adhered to the North Atlantic Treaty, they would be disinclined to permit developments in their territories which the Soviet Union could regard as an offensive threat.

5. Conversely, the local employment of Soviet armed force for the subjugation of Northern Europe is inhibited by regard for the broader consequences. Outright Soviet invasion of Finland would be resisted by the Finns to the best of their ability. This action, also, might well frustrate the immediate Soviet purpose in Northern Europe by driving Sweden into adherence to the North Atlantic Treaty and by stimulating offensive-defensive preparations in Norway, Denmark, and Sweden. An attack on Sweden would be resisted and would also stimulate the preparations in Norway and Denmark and would involve risk of a general war. An attack on Norway or Denmark would directly involve war with all the North Atlantic Treaty States.

6. The Soviet rulers will continue to maneuver toward the subversion of Finland by local Communists supported by the immanent power of the Soviet Union, but are unlikely to resort to local military action in Northern Europe unless convinced that such action is necessary to prevent the occupation and the use of the area as a base for operations against the Soviet Union or that global war is imminent.

Western Europe (France, Benelux, Italy, Portugal).

7. Immediate Soviet aims in Western Europe are:

a. To prevent the countries of Western Europe from becoming organized into a force capable of presenting effective military opposition to the Soviet Union, either as a bulwark or threat.
b. To destroy or impair Western European confidence in, and association with the United States and United Kingdom.
c. To foster conditions favorable to the growth of communist strength.

8. Short of deliberate resort to general war, the only means at the disposal of the Soviet Union for the pursuit of its aims in Western Europe consist of such communist-inspired activities as mass propaganda and agitation; parliamentary pressure; subversive infiltration of armed forces and government offices; industrial strikes and sabotage; and attempts to stir up internal violence and civil commotion. Since 1946 there has been a generally declining trend in the effectiveness of such measures, corresponding with a general increase in the stability of the governments and in their ability to maintain internal security, due in large part to external economic aid. Nevertheless, despite the substantial effect of the Economic Recovery Program, Western Europe has not yet achieved economic viability; and, despite the provisions made under the North Atlantic Treaty and the Mutual Defense Assistance Program, the defenses of Western Europe have not yet been translated from paper plans into actuality. Morale in certain cases is currently at a low level, the feeling of inability, under present circumstances, to resist Soviet military attack being particularly marked. The Soviet-inspired "peace campaign" has both appealed to and stimulated latent defeatism. Morale is unlikely to be rehabilitated without the establishment of real confidence that a Soviet invasion could be repulsed.

9. Under these circumstances, it would be premature to conclude that the Soviet rulers have given up hope of achieving their aims in Western Europe by continuing their present tactics. As the actual implementation of Western European defense plans proceeds, intensified efforts to obstruct it both psychologically, through further propaganda pressure upon morale, and physically, through strikes, sabotage, and civil commotion, may be expected. It is, nevertheless, estimated that the governments of Western Europe will be able to cope with such efforts and to carry out their defense commitments.


10. The long-term objective of the Soviet Union in Germany is clearly to secure a unified Germany completely subservient to the Kremlin. Pending achievement of this objective, the Soviet Union will seek to maintain absolute control over its own zone of Germany and to prevent the integration of Western Germany into the North Atlantic Community. It will especially seek to prevent the establishment of a West German armed force that could bolster effectively the Western military position.

11. The Soviet Union will continue to employ every indirect method available to undermine the Allied position in Western Germany and to interfere with the stability and efficient functioning of the West German Government. To this end, Soviet rulers will rely upon the West German Communist Party, the entire East German state and Party apparatus, certain extreme rightest groups in Western Germany, and the potential of all Eastern Europe for economic pressure on Western Germany. Their tactics will be infiltration of the West German Government and police, strikes, agitation, and probably increasing use of violence against both local and Allied authorities. They will, immediately, direct their attention toward creating economic chaos, building up popular pressure for Western troop withdrawal, crystalizing and extending current opposition toward rearmament, encouraging development of neutrality sentiment, and intensifying the almost universal desire for German unity. To strengthen their propaganda position, the Soviet rulers will make further paper concessions to the East Germans, including probably a separate peace treaty and a token withdrawal of Soviet troops. They will ndt, however, diminish in any way their actual control over the Eastern zone.

12. It is regarded as unlikely that the Soviet rulers will achieve their objectives in Germany through the above approach. There are no indications that the West Germans' dislike of communism in general and Soviet domination in particular is in any way diminishing or likely to diminish. Effective rearmament of Western Germany would compel the Soviet rulers either to take a new approach in the struggle for Western Germany or risk increasing Western utilization of West German military potential. The importance that Soviet rulers clearly attach to preventing the latter, as well as certain trends in Soviet policies and activities in East Germany, suggests that the Kremlin is considering the use of East German military forces to establish control over Western Germany. While the Polizei Bereitshaften is at present considered inadequate to undertake a conquest assignment, there is evidence that it is being steadily strengthened. In the near future the Kremlin may consider this force sufficiently strong to be used to attack the Western zones, and the possibility of such an attack cannot therefore be excluded. The Soviet rulers would have to recognize, however, that this would involve great risk of general war.


13. Apart from the aim of securing control of all Germany, an immediate Soviet objective is to secure the withdrawal of Western forces from Berlin. The importance of this to the Kremlin lies not only in the impetus that full possession of Berlin would be expected to give to efforts of the East German government to extend its rule over all Germany, but also in the exaggerated sensitiveness of the Soviet rulers to the presence of hostile forces in the heart of a Soviet province.

14. Without the use of forceful measures, however, there appears little possibility that the Western position in Berlin can be made untenable. Restitution of a full-scale blockade would under present circumstances be very embarrassing to Western authorities, but it appears doubtful that a second blockade would be risked unless the Kremlin were prepared to maintain it by force if necessary. The use of East German forces for this purpose or for direct attack on the Western Sectors of Berlin is a distinct possibility. The same great risk of general war would be involved here as in the case of West Germany.

15. For both Berlin and Western Germany, the Soviet rulers must realize that the employment of their own forces in any sort of attack on the Western Forces of Occupation would not be possible without precipitating a general conflict.


16. The Kremlin's policy with respect to Austria appears to be to continue the status quo until such time as the German problem is settled. It now appears highly unlikely that the Kremlin will agree to a peace treaty and a withdrawal of occupying forces. On the other hand, there are no indications that increased efforts are to be made to extend Soviet control over the whole of Austria immediately, or independently of German developments. If the German situation should develop favorably for the Soviet rulers, increasing external and internal pressures on Austria could be expected.


17. The defection of Yugoslavia from the Cominform, besides isolating Albania, deprived the Soviet Union of an important strategic position in Southeast Europe, giving direct access to the Mediterranean, and of an important base for exerting pressure on Italy, Greece, Trieste and Western Austria. Moreover, the Soviet rulers must realize that the continued existence of the Tito heresy makes it easier for dissident elements in the communist parties of other countries to question the Kremlin's leadership.

18. The Soviet aim must therefore be to bring about as soon as possible the fall of Tito. The Cominform will continue to try to promote economic collapse and to create a powerful pro-Cominform communist movement within the country.

19. Soviet policy in Yugoslavia might meet with greater success if the economic situation deteriorated far enough to lead to general discontent, but at present there is no sign that any alternative communist organization can be built up in sufficient strength to evict Tito and install a pro-Cominform government. The only means open to the Kremlin under present circumstances is the use of external force. If the Kremlin considers that satellite forces, with such Soviet material assistance as might be required, could overrun Yugoslavia, this possibility must be reckoned with, particularly as such an attack would not necessarily involve a direct clash with the Western Powers. However, the Soviet rulers are unlikely to consider that the satellite forces are powerful enough at present to overrun Yugoslavia without direct Soviet intervention. Consideration of the military factors shows that the military strength of the satellites is likely to increase relative to that of Yugoslavia, but it will remain questionable for some time whether this increase will be sufficient to ensure a successful invasion without direct Soviet intervention. A direct Soviet attack, except in the event of general war, is unlikely unless the Soviet rulers should see in Yugoslavia a considerably greater threat to the Soviet position than exists at present.


20. The establishment of Soviet influence in Greece would be a valuable step towards the isolation of Turkey, and the control of Crete and of the Greek islands in the Aegean which would be necessary for the effective control of the Straits. It would also enable the Soviet Union to mount air and limited naval operations against Allied sea communications in the Eastern Mediterranean from the outbreak of a general war.

21. For the present, it appears that the Soviet Union is content to support the Greek Communists chiefly with propaganda and money. The communists' objective is to gain control of the Trade Unions, exploit popular dissatisfaction with the present system of government, and ultimately to have the Communist Party legalized and able to participate in the government. They are concentrating, with some success, on the reorganization of their political activities.

22. The Soviet Union may attempt at any time to resuscitate large-scale guerrilla activity in Greece by using the former Greek guerrillas dispersed among the satellites, mainly in Bulgaria. The Greek Government, however, could cope with such an attempt. While the Soviet Union might instigate Bulgarian and Albanian aggression against Greece, probably accompanied by renewal of large-scale guerrilla activity, this is less likely since it would involve considerable risk of United Nations action. Furthermore, the chances are questionable whether the Bulgarian and Albanian armed forces without direct Soviet aid could defeat the Greeks now or in the future. The immediate objectives of the Soviet rulers in Greece are hardly of sufficient priority to justify the risk involved.

23. Should the Soviet Union succeed in regaining control of Yugoslavia, the potential threat to Greece would be greatly increased. It would then be far easier to support guerrilla operations against Greece and stir up trouble inside the country. In this event if the Western Powers did not greatly increase their support to the Greek Government, a Communist domination of Greece would probably ensue.


24. Russia has traditionally regarded the control of the Straits as one of its more important strategic objectives, and Soviet policy towards Turkey will continue to be directed towards it. Turkey would be of great strategic importance in a general war.

25. Communism has little appeal to the Turks, who are traditionally fearful of Russian intervention. The Soviet Union could achieve limited results in Turkey through continuing the war of nerves which imposes on Turkey the economic burden of continued maintenance of large military forces. The Soviet Union could also exert pressure on the Turkish Government by raising the question of the "historic Georgian and Armenian lands" in Eastern Turkey, or fostering the movement for Kurdish autonomy.

26. There is, however, no chance of a Communist government being established in Turkey without foreign invasion, nor of a Turkish submission to any major Soviet demands. A satellite invasion would be unsuccessful without the intervention of Soviet forces. The Soviet rulers must realize that a Soviet invasion of Turkey would probably mean general war. It is, therefore, likely that short of decision to resort to a general war, they will limit themselves to an intensification of propaganda and attempts at sabotage despite their appreciation of the limitations of this approach.

Arab States and Israel

27. In the Arab States the primary aim of the Soviet rulers is to eliminate Western influence; and to undermine the strategic position of the Western Allies in the Middle East. To this end, they will attempt to foster economic and social discontent against the Arab ruling classes; strengthen illegal Communist parties; nurture a Communist sabotage potential, particularly in oil field and pipeline areas; instill fear of Soviet armed strength; exploit anti-Israel feeling; extend the influence of the Soviet Union through the Orthodox Church; and exploit dissident minorities such as Armenians and Kurds.

28. Soviet policy toward Israel has appeared to be more directed toward embarrassing the United States and the United Kingdom in the Middle East and promoting political chaos than toward any immediate aggressive intention in Israel proper. The Soviet rulers undoubtedly will attempt to orient Israel away from the Western Powers, in particular the United States. However, for the present they will limit their efforts to propaganda and the strengthening of Communist influence in Israel.

29. In neither Israel nor the Arab States can the Soviet rulers expect the above tactics to establish Communist control, although they may succeed in influencing political attitudes. At present they probably do not consider the time is yet propitious to bring to bear any other type of pressures.


30. The primary concern of the Soviet Union with respect to Iran is to prevent the development in that country of a potential base of operations against the Soviet Union, with particular reference to the vulnerability of the vital Baku oil region. The Soviet Union's sensitivity on that point is reflected in its continued emphasis on the Soviet-Iranian Treaty of 1921, which contemplates the entry of Soviet forces in Iran if necessary to forestall a threat to Soviet security by a third power from Iranian territory. An additional interest would be the advantage to be derived from Soviet control of Iranian oil resources with particular reference to their denial to Western use. The bulk of this oil would not be immediately available for use within the Soviet Union unless its transportation by sea were feasible. Soviet domination of Iran would also permit direct access to the Indian Ocean and the Arab States, with a consequent increase in the ability of the Soviet Union to undermine Western interests in those areas.

31. Iran's proximity to the Soviet Union, its remoteness from potential support, and the political and economic conditions prevailing within the country all facilitate Soviet intimidation and subversion. The principal factor is the immediate presence of overwhelming Soviet military power. Subversive potentialities exist, locally, in Azerbaijan and Kurdish disaffection, and, nationally, in the Soviet-dominated Tudeh Party. Soviet employment of these means has met with successive checks: Soviet withdrawal from northern Iran under United Nations pressure, with the implication of United Nations support against any future Soviet incursion; the Azerbaijan debacle; the outlawing of the Tudeh Partyi and the emergence of the strong Razmara Government, which if given prompt economic and military aid, may succeed in stabilizing the internal situation. Nevertheless, dangerous subversive potentialities will remain, particularly if there should be a further deterioration of the economic situation.

32. A Soviet decision to solve the problem by direct military intervention is not prevented by any local power of resistance; furthermore, a plausible political justification for direct interference in Iran could probably be engineered without much difficulty but the Soviets would have to reckon with longstanding UK and recently expressed US interest in Iran, the previous UN action, and the Korean precedent. It could be conceived as a local operation only on the calculation that it could be accomplished before any reaction could occur and that the United States, the United Kingdom and the United Nations would shrink from any dangerous counteraction after the fait accompli.

33. The threat of Soviet intervention under the 1921 Treaty is probably sufficient to prevent Iranian consent to the development of any real threat to Soviet security in Iran; furthermore, it might induce Iranian opposition to a defensive build-up of Western forces in Iran. That being the case, the Soviet Union, for the time being, will probably subject the Iranian Government to alternate intimidation and blandishment, while simultaneously exploiting every subversive opportunity with the minimum purpose of keeping the country weak and distracted and the maximum object of bringing a "friendly" government to power in Tehran. The Soviet Union would probably not invade Iran unless it were willing to risk a general war.


34. The immediate Soviet interest in Afghanistan is to prevent the establishment of any potentially hostile influence in that country, which borders on Soviet Central Asia, a particularly sensitive region. A secondary Soviet interest is in the potential utility of Afghanistan as a position from which to threaten Pakistan and India.

35. There is no apparent Communist activity in Afghanistan. The Soviet Union, however, has a means of meddling in Afghan affairs through professed solicitude for the inhabitants of the area north of the Hindu Kush, who are akin to the peoples of Soviet Central Asia. The southern (Pathan) tribesmen, moreover, are easily stirred up against the government in Kabul, even without this pretext.

36. The Soviet Union has shown no considerable interest in Afghanistan. To do so might well alarm and antagonize Pakistan and India. The immediate Soviet objective is sufficiently served by the existing isolation and backwardness of the country. In this connection, Soviet purposes are well served by Afghanistan's quarrel with Pakistan over "Pathanistan," which antagonizes the neighbor controlling Afghanistan's communications with the non-Soviet world, creates disappointment in the lack of Western sympathy with Afghanistan's position, and encourages a tendency to turn to the Soviet Union for support.

37. The Soviet Union has no reason to be dissatisfied with the present situation in Afghanistan and is unlikely to develop a more active policy in that country under present circumstances.


38. The primary Soviet concern with respect to Pakistan must be to prevent the use of West Pakistan as a base for Allied aerial operations.

39. West Pakistan affords a comparatively poor field for Communist agitation because of its Moslem character, .the relative absence of industrialization, and sheer difficulty of establishing suitable contacts. Since the establishment of a Soviet embassy at Karachi, however, some agitation has begun. The situation in East Pakistan in this respect resembles that in India and Communist activity there is controlled from India.

40. Meanwhile Pakistan's embroilments with India, e.g., the Kashmir question, and with Afghanistan tend to serve Soviet interests by keeping the country tense and distracted. The Soviet Union will endeavor to keep these issues alive, but is not likely to intervene openly unless Western military air bases, which may be considered a threat to the Soviet Union, are established there.


41. The immediate Soviet concern with respect to India must be to exploit Indian antipathy toward residual European colonialism in Asia and sympathy for any movement presenting itself as Asian nationalism, in order to prevent India's alignment with the West and to enlist its unwitting aid in bringing the rest of Asia under Soviet domination. The ultimate Soviet purpose is to effect Communist control over India.

42. India, and East Pakistan as well, afford fertile ground for both industrial and agrarian agitation. Aside from being peculiarly susceptible to pacifist and nonresistant movements, Indian intellectuals are receptive to the Communist interpretation of developments in Asia. There are present many of the elements out of which the Communist revolution in China was produced. Most important exceptions are lack of direct contact with the Soviet Union and the absence of a People's Liberation Army. Should Chinese Communism advance to the frontiers of India, effective substitutes for these missing elements might eventually be supplied.

43. Recent developments with respect to Korea have been somewhat prejudicial to Soviet exploitation of India's attitude, but Indian policy retains considerable ambivalence. With respect to the internal situation, the Indian Government has reacted strongly to Communist violence, but is disposed to tolerate nonviolent agitation and propaganda. Its efforts to control Communist activity have met with some success in industrial centers, but less in rural areas. Parts of Hyderabad, for example, are to all practical purposes under exclusive Communist control. In general, however, the previous Communist program has fallen short of expectations and the Party has been weakened by arrests, purges, and internal dissension. The Party is now following a new policy modeled on that of the Chinese Communist Party.

44. The Soviet Union will presumably continue to exploit Indian susceptibilities as best it may in the international field, while seeking to guide and promote Communist control in India as a long-term project.


45. It is the announced intention of the Chinese Communist regime to "liberate" Tibet, and military operations to this end are already reportedly under way. The issue may, however, be decided by direct negotiations, with only token use of military force. Any hostilities that might be undertaken would certainly be localized.


46. In Burma the general Soviet object is the spread of internal violence to prevent the establishment of a viable non-Communist Government, with a view eventually to securing Communist domination of the country.

47. The principal instruments of Communism are the threat of direct or indirect Chinese Communist intervention in support of the present activities of the Burma Communist Party.

48. In general, while Burma is one of the most disturbed of the Southeast Asian countries, it is not so favorable a field for Communist activity as some of its neighbors. There is no nationalist problem; nor is there a large Chinese minority. On the other hand, there is a certain amount of agrarian discontent, and this will leave the situation precarious unless the Government's plans for agrarian reform are successful.

49. Recently, the Burma Communist Party suffered a severe military and political setback, and as a result, it is unlikely that without substantial aid from China, it could endanger the stability of the legitimate Government, even though the latter is faced with many other resistance groups throughout the country.

50. With Chinese Communist assistance in the form of materiel and leadership (a likely eventuality), the strength of the Burmese Communist Party would be greatly increased, but against this must be placed the innate antagonism between Chinese and Burmese. This antagonism might result in the loss to the Communists of left-wing Socialist support, including the support of the trade union movement, which has been cooperating with the World Federation of Trade Unions) The stakes in Burma are probably not great enough to justify direct Chinese invasion. On balance, the prospects of Communist success in Burma probably seem sufficiently good to lead the Kremlin and Chinese People's Government not to go beyond their present policy there. Communist prospects in Burma would be materially improved by the establishment of Communist control over all of Indochina.


51. In Siam there is no agrarian discontent and little popular sympathy for Communism. The overseas Chinese community is the only considerable element subject to Communist exploitation. The situation in Siam, however, will be decisively influenced by developments in Indochina and Burma. If either of those countries were brought under Communist control, Siam would probably seek to accommodate itself to the new situation.


52. Both the Chinese People's Government and the Kremlin will wish to see the removal of UK influence and the substitution of Communist Party control in Malaya. The Malayan Communist Party is a small minority group which nevertheless enjoys sufficient support from the local Chinese to prolong military operations. Although the Soviets and Chinese Communists will aim at securing widespread popular support, it is difficult to see how this policy can succeed in view of the administrative and military measures now being taken by the UK authorities. Nevertheless, the Communists can be expected to continue their insurrection as long as possible for its nuisance value and in the hope that a change in the world situation may occur. No other means of pressure is open to the Communists so long as Communist power is not established in a contiguous country.


53. The immediate Soviet aim in Indonesia is the reestablishment of the influential position, the Communist Party held prior to the abortive 1948 rebellion. At the same time the Kremlin appears to wish to maintain a facade of good relations with a view to inducing the Indonesian Government to follow a policy of neutrality.

54. At present the World Federation of Trade Unions is attempting to gain control of the Indonesian Trade Union and the Communists are seeking to establish themselves as protectors of the Indonesian workers. There has as yet been no sign of pressure by the Chinese People's Government through the small Chinese minority.

55. The process of reestablishment of Communist influence is still in its early stages. The effect of the degree of success achieved elsewhere in Southeast Asia will doubtless be considerable, but the desire to avoid a second abortive attempt at seizing power will probably induce Soviet caution.


56. In Indochina the Soviet Union clearly aims at the exclusion of French influence and establishment of a puppet regime over the whole country under Ho Chi Minh. The present situation is politically and militarily favorable to Ho. Furthermore the Chinese Communists are providing Ho Chi Minn with equipment and training facilities. French forces are already experiencing serious military reverses at the hands of revitalized Viet Minh forces. The Communists can reasonably argue that their present chances are good, unless military supplies from external sources and increased efforts on the part of the French Government enable the French to establish a military ascendancy. In view of the importance of Ho Chi Minh to the Communist plan for Southeast Asia generally, and the fact that he has been recognized by both the Kremlin and the Chinese Peoples' Government, his defeat would be a major setback. If, therefore, there were signs of the tide turning in French favor, the Chinese Peoples' Government, backed by the Soviet Union, might well decide to undertake invasion by Chinese Communist forces. But so long as Ho Chi Minh maintains his position, the Soviet rulers and the Chinese Communists are likely to conclude that the present trend, which ties down large French forces indefinitely, is more desirable than incurring the political, logistical, racial, and other difficulties that a Chinese Communist invasion would involve.

Hong Kong

57. Recovery of Hong Kong is in accordance with both Soviet designs to expel UK influence from Asia and Chinese Communist policy to "liberate" all former Chinese territory. As the Communists have not so far tried to recover the colony they must have decided that it is not in their interests to incur the risk of UK retaliation at present. The possibility of an attempt, however, exists at any time, but, in the first instance, the Communists would probably rely on subversion.

The Philippines

58. In the Philippines, as in other newly independent countries of Southeast Asia, the Soviet aim is to prevent the development of internal stability with a view to eventual Communist domination of the country.

59. The principal instrument for achieving this aim is the insurgent Hukbalahap, which draws its strength from agrarian unrest and from a preference for guerrilla life acquired by some elements during the Japanese occupation, but which is definitely led by disciplined Communists. Other elements susceptible to Communist use are found among the overseas Chinese community, the radical labor movement, certain disgruntled veterans, and opportunistic politicians out of office. The Communist program is facilitated by a general lack of popular confidence in the competence or the integrity of the government.

60. By the means indicated the Communists can maintain a disturbed internal situation in the Philippines, but are not capable of seizing control of that country in present circumstances. Chinese Communist or Soviet armed intervention on their behalf will not be feasible, short of conditions of global warfare. Formosa

61. The Chinese Communists for their own purposes wish to recover Formosa and the denial of the island as a Western base must be the Soviet aim. Although the Chinese Communists have sufficient shipping to lift the troops, the invasion is bound to be hazardous owing to US air and sea patrols, and, at present, without Soviet naval and air assistance, the operation would be unlikely to succeed. Nevertheless, the intention to take Formosa eventually cannot be considered to have been abandoned.


62. The Soviet aim is to dominate Korea. The Soviet rulers probably consider control of the peninsula necessary to safeguard their Pacific provinces and their interests in Manchuria. At the same time they probably estimate that it is necessary if they are to succeed in their plan to neutralize and ultimately to gain control of Japan.

63. To date there is insufficient evidence to indicate that the USSR intends to commit Soviet forces overtly in Korea. However, the commitment of Chinese Communist forces, with Soviet material aid, indicates that the USSR considers the Korean situation of sufficient importance to warrant the risk of general war. The probability is that the Soviet Union considers that the US will not launch a general war over Chinese Communist intervention in North Korea and the reaction thereto. The principal risk of general war is through the exercise of Soviet initiative which the Kremlin continues to hold. The probability is that the Soviet leaders have not yet made a decision directly to launch a general war over the Korean-Chinese situation. There is a good chance that they will not in the immediate future take such a decision. At what point they will take a decision to launch a general war is not now determinable by Intelligence.


64. The immediate objective of the Soviet rulers in Japan will be to weaken the position of the US authorities there with a view to preventing its use as a base or as an area for the development of an effective indigenous military force. On a longer view, and more positively, the Soviet rulers must see that the islands would, under Soviet control, contribute materially to strategic, economic and political domination of the Far East.

65. The instruments at present available to the Soviet rulers are the Japanese Communist Party, elements of the Japanese Trade Unions, the peace campaign, and subversive tactics (including the possible formation of a government in exile). There appears no possibility that the Kremlin can hope to achieve its aims even by any combination of these factors. Without taking into account occupation forces, the Japanese Government, which is staunchly anti-Communist, is sufficiently strong to cope with any internal disorders that the Communists appear capable of mounting. Moreover, the Japanese population is generally both anti-Communist and anti-Soviet and subversive movements would receive little popular support.

66. There are accordingly no other methods open to the Soviet rulers save invasion of Japan.

67. If at any time the Soviet rulers decided that it was necessary to go beyond their present tactics, it is unlikely that they could do much in the way of securing a foothold in Japan save by direct attack by their own forces (with or without Chinese Communist assistance). They would presumably recognize that this would entail inevitable consequence of a general conflict.