Series NDAC - Nuclear Defence Affairs Committee

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Nuclear Defence Affairs Committee


  • 1966 - 1974 (Creation)

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Administrative history

The Nuclear Defence Affairs Committee (NDAC) chronological series contains the records of the NDAC. The NDAC was created in December 1966, as a forum in which the nations could discuss nuclear issues facing NATO. The NDAC was founded when the Defence Planning Committee in Ministerial Session accepted the recommendation of the Special Committee of Defence Ministers, chaired by Robert McNamara of the United States, to establish a consultative process on nuclear doctrine within NATO. Unlike the subordinate Nuclear Planning Group(1), membership in the NDAC was open to all NATO members . The NDAC was chaired by the Secretary General and had the responsibility of proposing policies on nuclear issues. It met at ministerial level, usually alongside ministerial-level meetings of the North Atlantic Council, and more frequently at the level of permanent representatives. The NDAC received all the documentation produced by the NPG, and discussed, reviewed and approved the NPG’s reports, before transmitting them to the North Atlantic Council for approval. The NDAC also established overall NATO guidelines for the deployment and use of NATO’s nuclear weapons. This included providing assessments of the Warsaw Pact’s military capabilities and its political and diplomatic intentions.

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Scope and content

The NDAC series records contain information about all aspects of nuclear issues that were of concern to NATO. Many of the records comment on or directly reflect the work of the NPG. This includes discussions about issues related to strategic and tactical nuclear forces, anti-ballistic missiles, atomic demolition munitions, the deployment of nuclear weapons and forces in Europe, and arrangements with host countries. The NDAC records also reflect the way that the subjects encompassed by the work of the NPG expanded over the years to include the deployment of nuclear weapons, their safety, security and survivability, communications and information systems as well as nuclear arms control and proliferation.

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The chronological document series stemming from the Nuclear Defence Affairs Committee is arranged by type - generally Note(N), Record/Summary Record (R), Working Paper (WP) - and then by year and number.

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Conditions governing access

NATO publicly disclosed information is available for research and education purposes. Any commercial use requires the written permission of NATO. Please credit the NATO Archives should any documents be used for publication. Guidelines for the proper citation of NATO publicly disclosed information can be found on the NATO Archives website (

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This chronological document series has been issued in each of the two official languages of NATO, English and French.

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(1) See series NPG.

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