The White House is the official residence and workplace of the President of the United States. It is located at 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue NW in Washington, D. C. and has been the residence of every U. S. President since John Adams in 1800; the term "White House" is used as a metonym for the president and his advisers. The residence was designed by Irish-born architect James Hoban in the neoclassical style. Hoban modelled the building on Leinster House in Dublin, a building which today houses the Oireachtas, the Irish legislature. Construction took place between 1800 using Aquia Creek sandstone painted white; when Thomas Jefferson moved into the house in 1801, he added low colonnades on each wing that concealed stables and storage. In 1814, during the War of 1812, the mansion was set ablaze by the British Army in the Burning of Washington, destroying the interior and charring much of the exterior. Reconstruction began immediately, President James Monroe moved into the reconstructed Executive Residence in October 1817.
Exterior construction continued with the addition of the semi-circular South portico in 1824 and the North portico in 1829. Because of crowding within the executive mansion itself, President Theodore Roosevelt had all work offices relocated to the newly constructed West Wing in 1901. Eight years in 1909, President William Howard Taft expanded the West Wing and created the first Oval Office, moved as the section was expanded. In the main mansion, the third-floor attic was converted to living quarters in 1927 by augmenting the existing hip roof with long shed dormers. A newly constructed East Wing was used as a reception area for social events. East Wing alterations were completed in 1946. By 1948, the residence's load-bearing exterior walls and internal wood beams were found to be close to failure. Under Harry S. Truman, the interior rooms were dismantled and a new internal load-bearing steel frame constructed inside the walls. Once this work was completed, the interior rooms were rebuilt; the modern-day White House complex includes the Executive Residence, West Wing, East Wing, the Eisenhower Executive Office Building—the former State Department, which now houses offices for the President's staff and the Vice President—and Blair House, a guest residence.
The Executive Residence is made up of six stories—the Ground Floor, State Floor, Second Floor, Third Floor, as well as a two-story basement. The property is a National Heritage Site owned by the National Park Service and is part of the President's Park. In 2007, it was ranked second on the American Institute of Architects list of "America's Favorite Architecture". Following his April 1789 inauguration, President George Washington occupied two executive mansions in New York City: the Samuel Osgood House at 3 Cherry Street, the Alexander Macomb House at 39–41 Broadway. In May 1790, New York began construction of Government House for his official residence, but he never occupied it; the national capital moved to Philadelphia in December 1790. The July 1790 Residence Act named Philadelphia, Pennsylvania the temporary national capital for a 10-year period while the Federal City was under construction; the City of Philadelphia rented Robert Morris's city house at 190 High Street for Washington's presidential residence.
The first U. S. President occupied the Market Street mansion from November 1790 to March 1797 and altered it in ways that may have influenced the design of the White House; as part of a futile effort to have Philadelphia named the permanent national capital, Pennsylvania built a much grander presidential mansion several blocks away, but Washington declined to occupy it. President John Adams occupied the Market Street mansion from March 1797 to May 1800. On Saturday, November 1, 1800, he became the first president to occupy the White House; the President's House in Philadelphia became a hotel and was demolished in 1832, while the unused presidential mansion became home to the University of Pennsylvania. The President's House was a major feature of Pierre Charles L'Enfant's' plan for the newly established federal city, Washington, D. C.. The architect of the White House was chosen in a design competition which received nine proposals, including one submitted anonymously by Thomas Jefferson. President Washington visited Charleston, South Carolina in May 1791 on his "Southern Tour", saw the under-construction Charleston County Courthouse designed by Irish architect James Hoban.
He is reputed to have met with Hoban then. The following year, he summoned the architect to Philadelphia and met with him in June 1792. On July 16, 1792, the President met with the commissioners of the federal city to make his judgment in the architectural competition, his review is recorded as being brief, he selected Hoban's submission. The building has classical inspiration sources, that could be found directly or indirectly in the Roman architect Vitruvius or in Andrea Palladio styles; the building Hoban designed is verifiably influenced by the upper floors of Leinster House, in Dublin, which became the seat of the Oireachtas. Several other Georgian-era Irish country houses have been suggested as sources of inspiration for the overall floor plan, details like the bow-fronted south front, interior details like the former niches in the present Blue Room; these influences, though undocumented, are cited in the official White House guide, in White
The Middle East is a transcontinental region centered on Western Asia and Egypt. Saudi Arabia is geographically the largest Middle Eastern nation; the corresponding adjective is Middle Eastern and the derived noun is Middle Easterner. The term has come into wider usage as a replacement of the term Near East beginning in the early 20th century. Arabs, Persians and Azeris constitute the largest ethnic groups in the region by population. Arabs constitute the largest ethnic group in the region by a clear margin. Indigenous minorities of the Middle East include Jews, Assyrians, Copts, Lurs, Samaritans, Shabaks and Zazas. European ethnic groups that form a diaspora in the region include Albanians, Circassians, Crimean Tatars, Franco-Levantines, Italo-Levantines. Among other migrant populations are Chinese, Indians, Pakistanis, Pashtuns and sub-Saharan Africans; the history of the Middle East dates back to ancient times, with the importance of the region being recognized for millennia. Several major religions have their origins in the Middle East, including Judaism and Islam.
The Middle East has a hot, arid climate, with several major rivers providing irrigation to support agriculture in limited areas such as the Nile Delta in Egypt, the Tigris and Euphrates watersheds of Mesopotamia, most of what is known as the Fertile Crescent. Most of the countries that border the Persian Gulf have vast reserves of crude oil, with monarchs of the Arabian Peninsula in particular benefiting economically from petroleum exports; the term "Middle East" may have originated in the 1850s in the British India Office. However, it became more known when American naval strategist Alfred Thayer Mahan used the term in 1902 to "designate the area between Arabia and India". During this time the British and Russian Empires were vying for influence in Central Asia, a rivalry which would become known as The Great Game. Mahan realized not only the strategic importance of the region, but of its center, the Persian Gulf, he labeled the area surrounding the Persian Gulf as the Middle East, said that after Egypt's Suez Canal, it was the most important passage for Britain to control in order to keep the Russians from advancing towards British India.
Mahan first used the term in his article "The Persian Gulf and International Relations", published in September 1902 in the National Review, a British journal. The Middle East, if I may adopt a term which I have not seen, will some day need its Malta, as well as its Gibraltar. Naval force has the quality of mobility; the British Navy should have the facility to concentrate in force if occasion arise, about Aden and the Persian Gulf. Mahan's article was reprinted in The Times and followed in October by a 20-article series entitled "The Middle Eastern Question," written by Sir Ignatius Valentine Chirol. During this series, Sir Ignatius expanded the definition of Middle East to include "those regions of Asia which extend to the borders of India or command the approaches to India." After the series ended in 1903, The Times removed quotation marks from subsequent uses of the term. Until World War II, it was customary to refer to areas centered around Turkey and the eastern shore of the Mediterranean as the "Near East", while the "Far East" centered on China, the Middle East meant the area from Mesopotamia to Burma, namely the area between the Near East and the Far East.
In the late 1930s, the British established the Middle East Command, based in Cairo, for its military forces in the region. After that time, the term "Middle East" gained broader usage in Europe and the United States, with the Middle East Institute founded in Washington, D. C. in 1946, among other usage. The description Middle has led to some confusion over changing definitions. Before the First World War, "Near East" was used in English to refer to the Balkans and the Ottoman Empire, while "Middle East" referred to Iran, the Caucasus, Central Asia, Turkestan. In contrast, "Far East" referred to the countries of East Asia With the disappearance of the Ottoman Empire in 1918, "Near East" fell out of common use in English, while "Middle East" came to be applied to the re-emerging countries of the Islamic world. However, the usage "Near East" was retained by a variety of academic disciplines, including archaeology and ancient history, where it describes an area identical to the term Middle East, not used by these disciplines.
The first official use of the term "Middle East" by the United States government was in the 1957 Eisenhower Doctrine, which pertained to the Suez Crisis. Secretary of State John Foster Dulles defined the Middle East as "the area lying between and including Libya on the west and Pakistan on the east and Iraq on the North and the Arabian peninsula to the south, plus the Sudan and Ethiopia." In 1958, the State Department explained that the terms "Near East" and "Middle East" were interchangeable, defined the region as including only Egypt, Israel, Jordan, Saudi Arabia, Kuwait and Qatar. The Associated Press Styleboo
David Dean Rusk was the United States Secretary of State from 1961 to 1969 under presidents John F. Kennedy and Lyndon B. Johnson. Rusk is one of the longest serving U. S. Secretaries of State, behind only Cordell Hull. Born in Cherokee County, Rusk taught at Mills College after graduating from Davidson College. During World War II, Rusk served as a staff officer in the China Burma India Theater, he was hired by the United States Department of State in 1945 and became Assistant Secretary of State for Far Eastern Affairs in 1950. In 1952, Rusk became president of the Rockefeller Foundation. After winning the 1960 presidential election, Kennedy asked Rusk to serve as Secretary of State, he supported diplomatic efforts during the Cuban Missile Crisis and, though he expressed doubts about the escalation of the U. S. role in the Vietnam War, became known as one of its strongest supporters. Rusk served for the duration of the Kennedy and Johnson administrations before retiring from public office in 1969.
After leaving office, he taught international relations at the University of Georgia School of Law. David Dean Rusk was born in a rural district of Cherokee County, Georgia, to Robert Hugh Rusk and Frances Elizabeth Rusk, he was educated in Atlanta's public schools, graduated from Boys High School in 1925, spent two years working for an Atlanta lawyer before working his way through Davidson College. Rusk was coached in football by William "Monk" Younger and was a member of the Kappa Alpha Order Sigma chapter, the national military honor society Scabbard and Blade becoming a Cadet Lieutenant Colonel commanding the Reserve Officers' Training Corps battalion, he graduated Phi Beta Kappa in 1931. While studying in England as a Rhodes Scholar at St. John's College, Oxford, he received the Cecil Peace Prize in 1933. Rusk married the former Virginia Foisie on June 9, 1937, they had three children: David and Peggy Rusk. Rusk taught at Mills College in Oakland, from 1934 to 1949, he earned an LL. B. degree at the University of California, Berkeley in 1940.
During World War II, Rusk joined the infantry as a reserve captain and served as a staff officer in the China Burma India Theater. At war's end he was a colonel, decorated with the Legion of Merit with Oak Leaf Cluster. Rusk returned to America to work for the War Department in Washington, he joined the Department of State in February 1945, worked for the office of United Nations Affairs. In the same year, he suggested splitting Korea into spheres of U. S. and of Soviet influence at the 38th parallel north. After Alger Hiss left State in January 1947, Rusk succeeded him, according to Max Lowenthal. In 1949, he was made Deputy Under Secretary of State. In 1950, Rusk was made Assistant Secretary of State for Far Eastern Affairs, he played an influential part in the US decision to become involved in the Korean War, in Japan's postwar compensation for victorious countries, such as the Rusk documents. Rusk always sought international support. Rusk and his family moved to Scarsdale, New York, while he served as a Rockefeller Foundation trustee from 1950 to 1961.
In 1952 he succeeded Chester L. Barnard as president of the foundation. On December 12, 1960, Democratic President-elect John F. Kennedy nominated Rusk to be Secretary of State. According to historian and former Special Assistant to President Kennedy Arthur Schlesinger Jr. Rusk was not Kennedy's first choice, but rather the "lowest common denominator", as Kennedy's first choice, J. William Fulbright, proved too controversial. David Halberstam described Rusk as "everybody's number two". Rusk was sworn in on January 21, 1961; as Secretary of State he believed in the use of military action to combat communism. Despite private misgivings about the Bay of Pigs invasion, he remained noncommittal during the Executive Council meetings leading up to the attack and never opposed it outright. During the Cuban Missile Crisis he supported diplomatic efforts. A careful review by Sheldon Stern, Head of the JFK Library, of Kennedy's audio recordings of the EXCOMM meetings suggests that Rusk's contributions to the discussions averted a nuclear war.
Early in his tenure, he had strong doubts about US intervention in Vietnam, but his vigorous public defense of US actions in the Vietnam War made him a frequent target of anti-war protests. Outside of his work against communism, he continued his Rockefeller Foundation ideas of aid to developing nations and supported low tariffs to encourage world trade. Rusk drew the ire of supporters of Israel after he let it be known that he believed the USS Liberty incident was a deliberate attack on the ship, rather than an accident. On March 24, 1961, Rusk released a brief statement saying his delegation was to travel to Bangkok and the SEATO nations' responsibility should be considered if peace settlements were not realized; as he recalled in his autobiography, As I Saw It, Rusk did not have a good relationship with President Kennedy. The president was irritated by Rusk's reticence in advisory sessions and felt that the State Department was "like a bowl of jelly" and that it "never comes up with any new ideas".
Special Counsel to the President Ted Sorensen believed that Kennedy, being well versed and practiced in foreign affairs, acted as his own Secretary of State. Sorensen said that the president expressed impatience with Rusk and felt him under-prepared for emergency meetings and crises. Rusk offered his resignation, but it was never accepted. Rumors of Rusk's dismissal leading up to the 1964 election abounded prior to President Kennedy's trip to Dallas in 1963. Shortly after
United States Secretary of State
The Secretary of State is a senior official of the federal government of the United States of America, as head of the United States Department of State, is principally concerned with foreign policy and is considered to be the U. S. government's equivalent of a Minister for Foreign Affairs. The Secretary of State is nominated by the President of the United States and, following a confirmation hearing before the Senate Committee on Foreign Relations, is confirmed by the United States Senate; the Secretary of State, along with the Secretary of the Treasury, Secretary of Defense, Attorney General, are regarded as the four most important Cabinet members because of the importance of their respective departments. Secretary of State is a Level I position in the Executive Schedule and thus earns the salary prescribed for that level; the current Secretary of State is Mike Pompeo, who served as Director of the Central Intelligence Agency. Pompeo replaced Rex Tillerson whom President Trump dismissed on March 13, 2018.
Tillerson's last day at the State Department was March 31, 2018. Pompeo was confirmed by the Senate on April 26, 2018 and was sworn in that day; the stated duties of the Secretary of State are as follows: "Supervises the United States Foreign Service" and "administers the Department of State" Advises the President on matters relating to U. S. foreign policy including the appointment of diplomatic representatives to other nations and on the acceptance, recall, or dismissal of representatives from other nations "Negotiates, interprets, or terminates treaties and agreements" and "conducts negotiations relating to U. S. foreign affairs" "Personally participates in or directs U. S. representatives to international conferences and agencies" Provides information and services to U. S. citizens living or traveling abroad such as providing credentials in the form of passports Ensure the protection of the U. S. government to U. S. citizens and interests in foreign countries "Supervises the administration of the U.
S. immigration policy abroad" Communicates issues relating the U. S. foreign policy to Congress and to U. S. citizens "Promotes beneficial economic intercourse between the U. S. and other countries"The original duties of the Secretary of State include some domestic duties such as: Receipt, publication and preservation of the laws of the United States Preparation and recording of the commissions of Presidential appointees Preparation and authentication of copies of records and authentication of copies under the Department's seal Custody of the Great Seal of the United States Custody of the records of former Secretary of the Continental Congress except for those of the Treasury and War departmentsMost of the domestic functions of the Department of State have been transferred to other agencies. Those that remain include storage and use of the Great Seal of the United States, performance of protocol functions for the White House, the drafting of certain proclamations; the Secretary negotiates with the individual States over the extradition of fugitives to foreign countries.
Under Federal Law, the resignation of a president or of a vice president is only valid if declared in writing, in an instrument delivered to the office of the secretary of state. Accordingly, the resignations in disgrace of President Nixon and of Vice-President Spiro Agnew, domestic issues, were formalized in instruments delivered to the Secretary of State; as the highest-ranking member of the cabinet, the secretary of state is the third-highest official of the executive branch of the Federal Government of the United States, after the president and vice president, is fourth in line to succeed the presidency, coming after the vice president, the Speaker of the House of Representatives, the President pro tempore of the Senate. Six secretaries of state have gone on to be elected president. Others, including Henry Clay, William Seward, James Blaine, William Jennings Bryan, John Kerry, Hillary Clinton have been unsuccessful presidential candidates, either before or after their term of office as Secretary of State.
The nature of the position means. The record for most countries visited in a secretary's tenure is 112 by Hillary Clinton. Second is Madeleine Albright with 96; the record for most air miles traveled in a secretary's tenure is 1,417,576 miles by John Kerry. Second is Condoleezza Rice's 1,059,247 miles, third is Clinton's 956,733 miles. Official website
History of the United States National Security Council 1974–77
President Ford assumed office at a tense time for both American foreign relations and domestic politics. America's credibility in the world was imperiled by its humiliating withdrawal from Vietnam, the war there was shortly to come to an end with the annexation of America's ally South Vietnam by the North. In domestic politics, the scandal of Watergate had rocked the American political system and left widespread cynicism in the press and among the public about Washington. Ford, a conservative by nature, set out to preserve both Washington's standing at home, America's abroad. Ford's room for maneuver in foreign policy was decidedly limited, given the constraints placed on him by domestic politics following the effective loss of the Vietnam War. Nor did Ford desire to bring about decisive change in this field, as he was not a man of Wilsonian vision. Hence, he kept Henry A. Kissinger as both Secretary of State and Assistant to the President for National Security Affairs.'I need you,' Ford told Kissinger.'The country needs you'.
This move was much criticized as Ford suffered from claims throughout his entire term that he was inexperienced in foreign affairs. Opponents of Kissinger claimed that the latter would be the dominant influence on Ford's foreign policy, his continuation in the dual roles was proof of this. In fact, Ford had accrued experience in foreign policy while serving on the Defence Appropriations Subcommittee of the House Appropriations Committee, had been a committed internationalist since his time serving in the Pacific in World War II, he was in agreement with Kissinger on the important issues of American foreign policy, in a reactive mode for most of Ford's tenure anyway. Ford felt Kissinger was essential to provide continuity following the constitutional crisis of Watergate. Himself untarnished by the scandal, Kissinger was able to continue to serve his dual roles on the National Security Council. However, when Ford began to think about re-election in 1975, Kissinger came to be seen as a political liability by the President Ford Committee, the group set up to seek Ford's re-election in 1976.
When Ford had taken power, it appeared that one key to his success would be building upon the foreign policy successes of President Nixon, his predecessor. But by mid-1975 these seemed to have unravelled, with South Vietnam annexed, the policy of détente with the Soviet Union undermined by the latter's interventions in the Angolan Civil War and relations with China at a stand-still. Ford's political advisors were clamouring for a change. Hence, there was a Cabinet shakeup on November 3, 1975, Ford named Lt. Gen. Brent Scowcroft, Kissinger's deputy at the NSC, as National Security Advisor; this was a move for show. Scowcroft was the perfect neutral manager of the National Security Council, as he would be under the first President Bush, he saw his job as to mediate between the various agencies represented at the Council and report the various policy options to the President. He managed a toned-down version of the Kissinger NSC system, compatible with the Secretary of State's role as the President's chief foreign policy adviser.
As such, this did not lead to any diminishing of Kissinger's importance in actual terms, as Ford continued to have faith in his abilities and opinions. The defining moment of crisis for the NSC during Ford's tenure came during the Mayagüez incident. On May 12, 1975, Khmer Rouge forces seized the merchant ship SS Mayagüez and the National Security Council met to consider the American response. Transcripts of the meetings show Kissinger arguing for a forceful response and winning out, claiming that the U. S. had to present a strong front to the new Communist regimes in Indochina. Vice President Nelson Rockefeller argued that if the U. S. did not respond forcefully to this event it risked being'nibbled to death' by a series of small affronts. There was no serious dissension within the NSC on this issue, a rescue attempt was duly launched by U. S. Marines; this article incorporates public domain material from documents of the White House. National Security Council Website
Nicholas deBelleville "Nick" Katzenbach was an American lawyer who served as United States Attorney General during the Lyndon B. Johnson administration. Katzenbach was raised in Trenton, his parents were Edward L. Katzenbach, who served as Attorney General of New Jersey, Marie Hilson Katzenbach, the first female president of the New Jersey State Board of Education, his uncle, Frank S. Katzenbach, served as Mayor of Trenton, New Jersey and as a Justice of the New Jersey Supreme Court, he was named after his mother's great-great-grandfather, Nicholas de Belleville, a French medical doctor who accompanied Kazimierz Pułaski to America and settled in Trenton in 1778. Katzenbach was raised an Episcopalian, was of German descent, he was accepted into Princeton University. Katzenbach was a junior at Princeton in 1941, enlisting right after Pearl Harbor, served in the United States Army Air Corps in World War II. Assigned as a navigator in the 381st Bomb Squadron, 310th Bomb Group in North Africa, his B-25 Mitchell Bomber was shot down February 23, 1943, over the Mediterranean Sea off North Africa.
He spent over two years as a prisoner of war in Italian and German POW camps, including Stalag Luft III, the site of the "Great Escape", which Katzenbach assisted in. He read extensively as a prisoner, ran an informal class based on Principles of Common Law, he received his B. A. cum laude from Princeton University in 1945. He received an LL. B. cum laude from Yale Law School in 1947, where he served as Articles Editor of the Yale Law Journal. From 1947 to 1949, he was a Rhodes Scholar at Oxford. On June 8, 1946, Katzenbach married Lydia King Phelps Stokes, in a ceremony officiated by her uncle, Anson Phelps Stokes, former canon of the Washington National Cathedral, her father was a newspaper correspondent and secretary to Herbert Hoover. Katzenbach was admitted to the New Jersey bar in 1950 and the Connecticut bar in 1955, he was an associate in the law firm of Katzenbach and Rudner in 1950. From 1950 to 1952, he was attorney-advisor in the Office of General Counsel to the Secretary of the Air Force.
Katzenbach was on the faculty of Rutgers Law School from 1950 to 1951. He served in the U. S. Department of Justice as Assistant Attorney General of the Office of Legal Counsel in 1961–1962 and as Deputy Attorney General appointed by President John F. Kennedy in 1962. After the assassination of President Kennedy Katzenbach continued to serve with the Johnson administration On February 11th, 1965 President Johnson appointed Katzenbach the 65th Attorney General of the United States, he held the office until October 2, 1966, he served as Under Secretary of State from 1966 to 1969. In September 2008, Katzenbach published Some of It Was Fun: Working with RFK and LBJ, a memoir of his years in Government service. On June 11, 1963, Katzenbach was a primary participant in one of the most famous incidents of the Civil Rights struggle. Alabama Governor George Wallace stood in front of Foster Auditorium at the University of Alabama in an attempt to stop desegregation of that institution by the enrollment of two black students, Vivian Malone and James Hood.
This became known as the "Stand in the Schoolhouse Door". Wallace stood aside only after being confronted by Katzenbach, accompanied by federal marshals and the Alabama National Guard. Katzenbach has been credited with providing advice after the assassination of John F. Kennedy that led to the creation of the Warren Commission. On November 25, 1963, he sent a memo to Johnson's White House aide Bill Moyers recommending the creation of a Presidential Commission to investigate the assassination. To combat speculation of a conspiracy, Katzenbach said the results of the FBI's investigation should be made public, he wrote, in part: "The public must be satisfied that Oswald was the assassin. Four days after Katzenbach's memo, Johnson appointed some of the nation's most prominent figures, including the Chief Justice of the United States, to the Commission. Conspiracy theorists called the memo, one of thousands of files released by the National Archives in 1994, the first sign of a cover-up by the government.
Katzenbach left government service to work for IBM in 1969, where he served as general counsel during the lengthy antitrust case filed by the Department of Justice seeking the break-up of IBM. He and Cravath, Swaine & Moore attorney Thomas Barr led the case for the computer giant for 13 years until the government decided to drop it in 1982. Katzenbach led the opposition against the case filed by the European Economic Community, he retired from IBM in 1986 and became a partner at the firm of Riker, Scherer, Hyland & Perretti in New Jersey. He was named chairman of the failing Bank of Credit and Commerce International in 1991. In 1980, Katzenbach testified in the United States District Court for the District of Columbia for the defense of W. Mark Felt revealed to be the "Deep Throat" of the Watergate scandal and Deputy Director of the FBI. In December 1996, Katzenbach was one of New Jersey's fifteen members of the Electoral College, who cast their votes for the Clinton/Gore ticket. Katzenbach testified on behalf of President Clinton on December 8, 1998, before the House Judiciary Committee hearing, considering whether to impeach President Clinton.
On March 16
History of the United States National Security Council 1981–89
This article is about the history of the United States National Security Council during the Reagan Administration, 1981–1989. On inauguration day, Secretary of State-designate Alexander Haig presented a draft National Security Decision Directive on the organization of U. S. foreign policy to Presidential Counselor Edwin Meese III. The intent of Haig's draft was to place overall responsibility for the direction and implementation of U. S. foreign policy within the Department of State. Relying on his experience in the Richard Nixon administration, Haig wanted to ensure Department of State control of the interagency groups within the National Security Council because they were the "key the flow of options to the President," and thus to policy control. Haig's initiative, which he repeated on several occasions, was never responded to. Senior members of the White House staff including, Counselor Meese, Chief of Staff James A. Baker III, Michael Deaver were concerned that the proposed reorganization took too much power out of the President's hands and that an activist Secretary of State operating with wide powers could eclipse the President in his public role as the chief enunciator of U.
S. foreign policy. Although the Haig initiative failed, the Secretary of State appeared to achieve for a time broad authority over the formulation of foreign policy; the President placed National Security Advisor Richard Allen's office under the supervision of Meese, for the first time in the history of the NSC, the National Security Advisor lost direct access to the President. In subsequent public statements, the President underlined his belief that his Secretary of State was his "primary adviser on foreign affairs, in that capacity, he is the chief formulator and spokesman for foreign policy for this administration." Allen, who had less personal authority, undertook a role as National Security Advisor that emphasized the "integration" of the proposed policies and views of the foreign affairs agencies. Nor did he take on any of the articulation of administration foreign policy. Changes were made in the NSC from the outset of the Reagan presidency. At a February 25, 1981, meeting chaired by Meese, Cabinet-level heads of the major foreign affairs agencies agreed on a plan to establish three Senior Interdepartmental Groups on foreign and intelligence problems, chaired by the Secretaries of State and Secretary of Defense and the Director of Central Intelligence.
Under the SIGs, a series of Assistant Secretary-level Interdepartmental Groups, each chaired by the agency with particular responsibility, dealt with specific issues. The NSC staff was responsible for the assignment of issues to the groups. One example of a failed effort to create a new NSC organ in the hopes of improving interagency coordination and reducing friction among the Departments of State and Defense, the CIA, the NSC, was President Reagan's order on March 24, 1981, naming Vice President George Bush as chair of a proposed administration crisis management team; the NSC was charged with providing staff support for this effort. The crisis group, referred to as the Special Situation Group received a formal charter on December 14, 1981, but in fact only met once. Secretary Haig and forcefully complained that the SSG would remove coordinating responsibility from him. In another effort to improve policy coordination during the summer of 1981, the President authorized the creation of a National Security Planning Group composed of the Vice President, the Secretaries of State and Defense, the Director of Central Intelligence, the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, the National Security Advisor.
This group met weekly with the President and shaped policy prior to formal meetings of the NSC. In January 1982, following the resignation of National Security Advisor Allen, the President appointed a close personal friend, Deputy Secretary of State William Clark, as his new advisor; the brief episode of the weakened National Security Advisor was over. Clark would report directly to the President and not through Meese or the other two members of the triumvirate of Baker and Deaver as Allen had done. President Reagan issued a written directive in January 1982 outlining the structure and functions of the National Security Council; the directive placed responsibility for developing and monitoring national security policy with the National Security Advisor in consultation with the NSC members. It assigned to the Secretary of State "authority and responsibility" for the "overall direction and supervision of the interdepartmental activities incident to foreign policy formulation, the activities of executive departments and agencies overseas," except for military activities.
NSDD delineated the functions of the three SIGs. It designated the Secretary of State as chairman of the Senior Interdepartmental Group for Foreign Policy, established a "permanent secretariat, composed of personnel of the State Department," augmented "as necessary" by other agency personnel requested by the Secretary of State, to deal with foreign affairs matters. To assist the SIG, the Secretary of State set up Interagency Groups for each geographic region, politico-military affairs, international economic affairs; the IGs, in turn, created full-time working groups. The two other SIGs followed a similar structure under the leadership of the Secretary of Defense and the Director of Central Intelligence. Over the next 5 years, the Reagan administration established an additional 22 SIGs and 55 IGs within the NSC system; some committees met only once. Observers pointed out the overuse of SIGs and the increasing snarl of r