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National Archives

Public Papers - 1991

Letter to Congressional Leaders Transmitting the Report on Possible Effects of a Strategic Arms Reduction Agreement on the Trident Program

1991-10-07

Dear Mr. Speaker: (Dear Mr. President:)

Pursuant to section 1001 of the National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Years 1990 and 1991, I am forwarding herewith the classified version of the report to the Congress on Possible Effects of a Strategic Arms Reduction Agreement on the Trident Program. Also enclosed is the unclassified version of the report.

As we negotiated the START agreement, an important requirement for us was to ensure that the number and types of strategic forces we planned to retain under the Treaty would guarantee the Nation's defense. In that respect, the Trident submarine will provide a survivable and enduring element of the U.S. strategic Triad well into the next century. Maintaining its effectiveness and survivability will be one of our most fundamental tasks. For the reasons stated in the enclosed report, I remain confident that the planned number and configuration of Trident submarines represent the best deployment plan.

I also recognize that providing for the Nation's defense is a dynamic requirement, necessitating constant vigilance and adjustment. For this reason, I assure you that we will continue to examine the overall sufficiency of our strategic forces and will seek those changes necessary to maintain its effectiveness and survivability.

I value the important role the Congress must play in maintaining our Nation's defenses and look forward to working closely with the Congress to ensure the viability of our strategic nuclear deterrent.

Sincerely,

George Bush

Note: Identical letters were sent to Thomas S. Foley, Speaker of the House of Representatives, and Dan Quayle, President of the Senate.

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