Orchestrating the Instruments of Power:

A Critical Examination of the
U.S. National Security System

National Security Council

As of 29 January 2017

Supplemental Material for Chapter 9


The material on the NSC was once a standalone product (glossy product 1.5MB, raw product 300KB) developed for the 2009 presidential transition team. In the earlier edition of Orchestrating the material was updated and presented as two separate chapters, the first generalizing over the second that covered each administration separately. The second chapter had to be sacrificed in the newer edition, but it is included here where it can be updated to keep up with future administrations.

NSCs across Administrations

         NSC histories

o   1960 NSC history of the NSC pdf

o   1997 DoS history of the NSC pdf

o   2006 an independent history of the NSC html

         Congressional Research Service studies on the NSC

o   2008,12,05 pdf

o   2009,03,31 pdf

o   2010,12,28 pdf

o   2011,12,28 pdf

         Brookings NSC Project with multiple useful links html

         Project on National Security Reform Study on NSC 2008 pdf (2.8MB)

Presidential Directives on NSC Organization

         NSC Directives Nomenclature by Administration pdf

         NSC Staff Size by Administration pdf

         National Security Assistants by Administration pdf

Truman (1945-1953)

         Memo on NSC org 1947,09,26 pdf

         Memo on NSC org 1950,11,08 pdf

         Memo on NSC org 1952,02,11 pdf

         Report on NS organization 1949 pdf

Eisenhower (1953-1961)

         Memo on NSC organization 1953,01,19 pdf

         Memo on NSC organization 1953,03,17 pdf

         Memo on NSC organization 1954,02,26 pdf

         Memo on NSC organization 1956,01,25 pdf

         Memo from president to national security assistant 1957,01,07 html

         Memo on NSC organization 1957,07,01 pdf

         Memo distributing paper (above) on NSC organization 1957,07,03 pdf

         Guiding Principles for Effective Procedures and Mechanisms for Formulating National Security Policy in the Executive Branch 1959,12,17 searching

Kennedy/Johnson (1961-1967)

         White House and Interdepartmental Coordination html

         FRUS introduction html

Nixon/Ford (1969-1977)

         Kissingerís intention to dismantle the Kennedy/Johnson SIG/IRG NSC system moving power from State to the NSC html

         NSDM 2 NSC Organization, 1969,01,20 pdf

         NSDM 326 NSC reorganization, 1976,04,21 pdf

Carter (1977-1981)

         NSC 2 NSC System, 1977,01,20 pdf

Reagan (1981-1989)

         NSDD 1 NSC Directive nomenclature, 1981,02,25 pdf

         NSDD 3 Crisis Management, 1981,12,14 pdf

         NSDD 2 NSC Organization, 1982,01,12 pdf

         NSDD 266 NSC Reorganization after Iran-Contra, 1987,03,31 pdf

         NSDD 276 NSC Process after Iran-Contra, 1987,06,09 pdf

         Tower Commission Report following Iran-Contra, 1987,11 (multiple formats)

Bush 41 (1989-1993)

         NSD 1 NSC Organization, 1989,01,30 pdf

         NSD 2 existing directives remain in effect, 1989,01,30 pdf

Clinton (1993-2001)

         PDD 1 NSC Directive nomenclature, 1993,01,20 pdf

         PDD 2 NSC Organization, 1993,01,20 pdf

         NEC 1 & 2 Establishing National Economic Council, 1993,01,25 pdf

Bush 43 (2001-2009)

         NSPD 1 NSC Organization, 2001,02,13 pdf

         NSPD 1a NSC Organization, 2001,02,13 pdf

         EO 13228 establishing Office of Homeland Security and Homeland Security Council, 2001,10,08, pdf

         HSPD-1 Organization of HSC, 2001,10,29, pdf

         Documentary History of DHS 2001-2008, pdf

Obama (2009-2017)

         PPD 1 NSC Organization, 2009,02,13 pdf

         PSD 1 Organizing for Homeland Security and Counterterrorism, 2009,02,23 pdf

         Air War College paper on NSC, 2009,03 pdf

         NSC memo-21 Interagency Process, 2009,03,18 pdf

         NSC roster by Leslie Gelb 2009,01 pdf

         Press Release announcing merger of NSC and HSC staffs pdf

         Building National Security Professionals 2007 pdf

         Proposed NSC Reform after NSC/HSC staff merger 2015 pdf

Trump (2017- )

         NSPM 1 NSC Organization, 2017,01,28 pdf


Return to Top of Page

Return to Orchestrating Home Page