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NSDD 288: My Objectives at the Summit
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This directive written in the first person summarizes President Reagan’s expectations for the Washington summit, and perhaps most strikingly asserts that the summit “must in no way complicate our efforts to maintain a strong defense budget and key programs like SDI” and the Reagan doctrine support to anticommunist armed forces abroad.  Frances Fitzgerald commented in her book Way Out There in the Blue (p. 434) that “Both of these policies were history in the Hollywood sense of the word, yet administration officials followed the guidance quite faithfully” to the point of missing Gorbachev’s offer on Central America for both the U.S. and the USSR to stop shipping arms there if the peace plan proposed by Costa Rica’s Oscar Arias was accepted.  Since the U.S. Congress was not going to approve more arms anyway, given the Iran-contra scandal, Gorbachev’s offer amounted to exactly the cessation of Soviet arms that the U.S. claimed it sought.


From National Security Archive Electronic Briefing Book 238