The United States Section of the Military Co-Operation Committee has informed the Canadian Section that it considers that there is a military requirement for the deployment of four squadrons of fighter interceptors for the defence of the Northeast air approaches to the critical industrial areas in Canada and the United States and to protect important military and civil installations in Newfoundland and Labrador as follows:
(a) Two squadrons at Goose Bay;
(b) One squadron at Harmon Base; and
(c) One squadron in the Torbay-Argentia area.
2. As you are aware, one US fighter interceptor squadron was posted to Goose Bay last fall on a temporary basis -- this being taken to mean that the squadron might remain at Goose Bay until Canada was prepared to undertake the air defence of the base with Canadian forces. It now appears that the US are likely to ask formally for permission to station another squadron at Goose Bay.
3. The Chiefs of Staff Committee discussed this matter at a meeting on February 19 and agreed that the Canadian members of the MCC should ask their US colleagues to drop the proposal to station a second fighter squadron at Goose Bay at this time and, as an alternative, suggest the positioning of a fighter squadron at Limestone or Thule.
4. According to the draft Minutes of the Chiefs of Staff Committee, the Chairman, Chiefs of Staff, said that, although Canada had agreed to consider the positioning of a second US fighter squadron at Goose Bay at some future date, the US should be informed that politically the time was not right for such a move. If the US continued to press the matter, the Government might suggest that a Canadian squadron now scheduled for NATO be stationed at Goose Bay and the US undertake to provide a further squadron in Europe. He said that this would make political sense in some quarters, but internationally it would be a poor move. Accordingly, the US should be urged to drop the matter at this time.
5. The report of the Canadian Section of the MCC is likely to be discussed at the next meeting of the JPC and doubtless will come up at the next meeting of the Chiefs of Staff Committee. Our representative at the meeting of the JPC will endeavour to obtain full information on the proposal.
Note marginale:/Marginal note: Noted. W[ilgress]