Safe for Kids



December 8 At the Washington Summit, President Reagan and General Secretary Gorbachev signed the Treaty Between the United States of America and the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics on the Elimination of Their Intermediate-Range and Shorter-Range Missiles, commonly called the Intermediate-Range Nuclear Forces Treaty, or INF. The treaty called for the elimination of all United States and Soviet ground-launched ballistic and cruise missiles with ranges between 500 and 5,500 kilometers.


January 15 President Reagan directed the Department of Defense to establish the On-Site Inspection Agency to meet the on-site inspection requirements of the INF Treaty.

January 26 The Department of Defense officially established the On-Site Inspection Agency as a separate operating agency reporting to the Under Secretary of Defense for Acquisition.

February 1 Brigadier General Roland Lajoie, U.S. Army, appointed as the first Director of the On-Site Inspection Agency.

February 8 Initial cadre of 40 military and civilian personnel joined the OSIA, moving into temporary office space at Buzzard Point, Washington D.C.

April Inspection and escort teams from OSIA began conducting mock INF inspections in the United States and Europe to develop procedures to be used when the INF Treaty entered into force and actual INF inspections and escort duties began.

June 1 President Reagan and General Secretary Gorbachev exchanged the articles of ratification for the INF Treaty, which put the treaty into effect and started a 30-day countdown until the first inspection could begin.

July 1 The United States and the Soviet Union began continuous portal monitoring under the INF Treaty, with U.S. inspectors monitoring a Soviet missile plant at Votkinsk, Russia, and Soviet inspectors monitoring a missile factory at Magna, Utah.

July 1 A U.S. inspection team led by OSIA, with General Lajoie as a team member, conducted the first baseline inspection at Rechitsa, USSR, of Soviet INF facilities.

July 22 The Soviet Union conducted the first elimination of treaty-limited missiles under the INF Treaty, destroying an SS-20 missile at Kapustin Yar. Inspectors from OSIA observed the elimination.

September 8 The United States held its first INF elimination, at the Longhorn Army Ammunition Plant in Texas, with an inspection team from the USSR observing the destruction of Pershing missiles.


February 25 The On-Site Inspection Agency relocated to facilities at Dulles International Airport outside Washington D.C.

July 6 The United States completed the elimination of the shorter-range missiles covered by the INF Treaty, with the elimination of the last Pershing 1A missile.

July 12 The On-Site Inspection Agency received its first Joint Meritorious Unit Award, covering the period from January 15, 1988 through December 31, 1988.

July 26 The Soviet Union eliminated its final SS-12 missile, one of the shorter- range systems covered by INF.

August 16 The Soviet Union completed elimination of the SS-5 intermediate- range missile banned by the INF Treaty.

September 23 Secretary of State James Baker and Soviet Foreign Minister Eduard Shevardnadze signed the Wyoming Memorandum of Understanding (MOU), which called for a bilateral exchange of information and verification inspections for chemical weapons.

October 27 The Soviet Union completed the elimination of its shorter- range missiles with the destruction of the last SS-23 missile.


January At the continuous portal monitoring site in Votkinsk, Russia, the United States began installing the non-damaging Radiographic Imaging System (RIS, or CargoScan), which would image ICBMs exiting the factory to verify that they were not SS-20 missiles prohibited by the treaty.

February Soviet officials objected to various operating procedures for the new CargoScan X-ray system, voicing concerns over safety precautions, magnetic tape storage, and joint operating procedures.

March 1 With the CargoScan system installed and operational, the American monitoring team at Votkinsk requested to use the new system to image a railcar leaving the factory. The Soviets still had objections to some CargoScan operating procedures and denied the request, placing the railcar in a building near the plant to await a ruling.

March 9 At Votkinsk, Soviet plant officials removed the railcar which had been set aside, along with two other railcars, without allowing the American portal monitoring team to image them with the CargoScan system. The U.S. inspectors were instead allowed to visually inspect the cars. United States inspectors declared an ambiguity and the issue was elevated to senior levels within the U.S. government. United States Secretary of State James Baker lodged an official protest with the Soviet government, leading the two countries to send delegations to Votkinsk to resolve the dispute and agree on new operating procedures. By the end of the month, the issue had been resolved to both countries' satisfaction and the U.S. portal monitoring team began imaging railcars with the CargoScan system.

May President Bush ordered the expansion of the On-Site Inspection Agency and assigned the Agency responsibility for planning inspection procedures for several proposed treaties: the Conventional Armed Forces in Europe (CFE) Treaty, the Strategic Arms Reduction Treaty (START), the Threshold Test Ban Treaty (TTBT), the Peaceful Nuclear Explosions Treaty (PNET) and several chemical weapons agreements.
May 22 The Soviet Union completed the elimination of another system covered by INF, with the destruction of the final SS-4 missile.

June 1 President Bush and General Secretary Gorbachev signed protocols to the TTBT and PNET, clearing the way for ratification of these nuclear test treaties.

June 1 The U.S. and USSR signed the Destruction and Non-Production Agreement, a bilateral accord which called for the two nations to destroy part of their chemical stockpiles and prohibited the further manufacture of chemical weapons.

June The OSIA conducted its first inspection under chemical warfare agreements added to the Agency's responsibilities the previous month, inspecting Soviet chemical facilities under Phase I of the Wyoming Memorandum of Understanding.

November 19 Twenty-two nations signed the Conventional Armed Forces in Europe (CFE) Treaty, which limited the amount of military equipment in Europe. The later collapse of the Soviet Union caused the creation of several new republics and brought the number of nations participating in CFE to 29. Later, Czechoslovakia dissolved into two separate nations to raise the number of CFE participants to 30.

December 11 Following ratification by the United States Senate and the Supreme Soviet, the Threshold Test Ban Treaty and the Peaceful Nuclear Explosions Treaty entered into force.


January 25 Major General Robert W. Parker, U.S. Air Force, became the new Director of the On-Site Inspection Agency, replacing Major General Lajoie, who departed for a new assignment.

May The OSIA began conducting mock inspections of United States, NATO, and former Warsaw Pact countries' forces in Europe, preparing for the implementation of the CFE Treaty.

May 6 The United States conducted its final elimination under the INF Treaty at the Longhorn Army Ammunition Plant, destroying the last Pershing II missile in the U.S. inventory, and the last of the 846 U.S. missiles banned by the Treaty.

May 12 Inspectors from OSIA observed the final Soviet elimination, with destruction of the final SS-20 missile marking the last of 1,846 Soviet intermediate-range missiles eliminated.

June 7 The National Security Council tasked the OSIA with inspection duties for the Vienna Document of 1990, which called for on-site monitoring of large-scale military movements and exercises.

July 6 An OSIA inspection team conducted the first on-site event under the Vienna Document of 1990, an evaluation at Cherkassroye, in the Kiev Military District of the USSR.

July 11 The Under Secretary of Defense for Acquisition designated OSIA as the Department of Defense Executive Agent for the United Nations Special Commission on Iraq. This gave the Agency the mission of supporting inspections of Iraqi chemical, biological and nuclear facilities conducted by the United Nations Special Commission on Iraq, which was established by UN Resolution 687 with the task of ensuring the elimination of Iraqi ballistic missiles and weapons of mass destruction. The OSIA coordinated DOD support to the Commission, consisting mainly of linguists, weapons experts, surveillance flights, and staff personnel.

July 31 President Bush and President Gorbachev signed the START I Treaty, which called for the reduction of strategic nuclear arsenals in the United States and the Soviet Union.

August 19 Hard-line Communists staged a coup in the Soviet Union, ousting President Gorbachev. Democratic and reform elements, particularly those led by Russian President Boris Yeltsin, thwarted the coup and returned President Gorbachev to office.
September Although START had not yet entered into force, the United States and the Soviet Union began conducting exhibition inspections at each other's strategic sites.September 13 The first team of Soviet test monitors observed the U.S. underground nuclear test HOYA under the Threshold Test Ban Treaty. The On-Site Inspection Agency led the escort team.

November Russia declared a one-year moratorium on all underground nuclear testing. In the summer of 1992, following the nuclear test JUNCTION, the United States reciprocated, halting further scheduled nuclear tests. The moratoriums were later extended. While this moratorium did away with active monitoring of nuclear tests under TTBT and PNET, the treaties remain in effect and the OSIA remains ready to resume its nuclear test monitoring and escort duties.

December 25 Weakening of the Soviet government and the Communist Party, accelerated by the aftermath of the failed coup and a collapsing economy, resulted in several republics declaring their independence in early December. This caused the dissolution of the Soviet Union on Christmas Day. The former Soviet Union broke into several republics, most of which became members of the Commonwealth of Independent States, a loose alliance which retained ties between these former Soviet states while having


January Secretary of State James Baker announced Operation Provide Hope. The near-collapse of the former Soviet Union's economy brought hunger to many of the newly independent republics, which led the United States to provide humanitarian relief through Operation Provide Hope. Provide Hope supplied food, medical supplies and other needed aid to the former Soviet republics. Due to its experience in the Soviet Union, the OSIA was tasked to assist with the delivery and distribution of aid.
February United States Forces, Korea requested OSIA assistance in training inspectors and escorts, and planning for on-site inspections, to prepare for possible implementation of an arms agreement between North and South Korea. The training and preparation began with deployment of small teams to Korea later in the month.

February 10-26 The On-Site Inspection Agency supported Phase I of Operation Provide Hope. The Agency deployed 12 teams, consisting of a total of 38 people, to the former Soviet Union to distribute 2,200 tons of food and medical supplies to 25 cities.

March 6 A team of Russian test monitors observed the United States underground nuclear test JUNCTION under the Threshold Test Ban Treaty.

March 24 The Vienna Document of 1992 was signed by 51 nations. This agreement replaced the Vienna Document of 1990, mandating more stringent requirements for exchange of information, inspections of armed forces and monitoring of military movements and exercises than those called for by the previous version.

March24 Twenty-four nations signed the Open Skies Treaty, which allowed information-gathering overflights of participating countries by other signatories.

April 15 - August 31 Phase II of Operation Provide Hope took place. This humanitarian aid effort distributed 25,000 tons of food and supplies to 28 cities in Russia and other republics of the Commonwealth of Independent States. The OSIA contribution to the effort involved 120 people.

May 13 The On-Site Inspection Agency hosted a State Department-sponsored Middle East Regional Security and Arms Control Seminar at OSIA Headquarters.

May 23 Belarus, Ukraine, Kazakhstan, and Russia signed the Lisbon Protocol, with the four former Soviet republics with nuclear weapons agreeing to abide by the terms of the START Treaty previously entered into by the Soviet Union.

June 25 The OSIA was made responsible for planning and executing the Defense Treaty Inspection Readiness Program (DTIRP), a program to ensure protection of sensitive non-treaty information while complying with on-site inspections of United States facilities by foreign inspection teams.

July 10 The CFE Treaty nations signed an ancillary agreement, called CFE 1A, which set limits on personnel strengths of military forces stationed in Europe.

July 17 The CFE Treaty began provisional application, and the 120-day baseline inspection period began.

July 19 The On-Site Inspection Agency conducted its first inspection for the CFE Treaty, a baseline inspection of Russian conventional forces at Buy, Russia.

August 8 OSIA inspectors conducted the first CFE reduction inspection at Zossen-Wuensdorf, Germany. The reduction involved former Warsaw Pact equipment which had remained in Germany following the reunification in October 1990.

August 14 The first CFE inspection of U.S. forces in Europe took place, with a Russian team inspecting forces stationed at Giebelstadt, Germany.

September 2-7 The OSIA took part in Open Skies trial flights from Shatalovo Air Base near Smolensk, Russia. Observers from several different countries

November 1992- March 1993 The OSIA deployed personnel to the former Soviet Union to assist the State Department in implementation of Phase III of Operation Provide Hope, coordinating the distribution of further aid to the former Soviet Union. Agency participation in Provide Hope III totalled 68 people in 25 teams, who helped distribute over 43,000 tons of aid within the Commonwealth of Independent States.

November 9 The Conventional Armed Forces in Europe Treaty officially entered into force.

November 14 The CFE baseline phase ended. In addition to the baseline inspections conducted during the period, OSIA also took part in five reduction inspections during the baseline phase.

November 24 The OSIA officially received tasking for Open Skies Treaty flights. The Air Force, through its 55th Reconnaissance Wing at Offutt AFB, Nebraska, would provide the aircraft and flight crew, but the OSIA would serve as overall manager for United States Open Skies missions.

December 7-10 A group of South Korean Army personnel visited OSIA headquarters for orientation to help prepare the Republic of Korea for on-site inspection duties should North and South Korea reach an arms control agreement.


January 3 President George Bush and Russian President Boris Yeltsin signed the START II Treaty, mandating further reductions in the nuclear arsenals of the United States and former Soviet Union.

January 13 Over 120 nations signed the United Nations Chemical Weapons Convention.

April A United States CFE inspection team for the first time included a member from a former Warsaw Pact nation. The team included one member from the Czech Republic, and inspected a site in Hungary.

June 30 The first Open Skies aircraft, a modified WC-135B redesignated as an OC-135B, was delivered to the U.S. Air Force.
July 30 Brigadier General Gregory G. Govan, U.S. Army, replaced Major General Parker as Director of the On-Site Inspection Agency.

August 6 The United States Senate ratified the Open Skies Treaty.

October 4 The OSIA received its second Joint Meritorious Unit Award, covering the period from January 1, 1989, to July 30, 1993.

November 13 The first reduction year under the CFE Treaty ended with all signatories meeting reduction liabilities for the period. United States-led teams conducted 54 reduction inspections from treaty entry into force through the completion of the first reduction year.


August 21-27 Team Morris of the OSIA conducted a trial inspection of the Pochep chemical weapons storage facility in Russia. This inspection was the first United States (or Blue-on-Red) inspection of a Russian chemical warfare facility under Phase II of the Wyoming Memorandum of Understanding.

September 19 Russian inspectors joined on a U.S. on-site inspection team for the first time. Lieutenant Colonel Fred E. Busing, USAF lead a successful CFE declared site inspection in Oradea, Romania.

September 25-30 A Russian Team inspected U.S. chemical weapons facilities at the Pine Bluffs Arsenal in Arkansas. This was the first Red-on-Blue inspection under Phase II of the Wyoming MOU.

October 8-November 21 Team Shaffer, consisting of four OSIA members, participated in Project Sapphire, the removal of 600 kilograms of enriched uranium from Kazakhstan for safekeeping in the United States. Team Shaffer provided linguistic support to the 31-member United States team, which consisted of personnel from the Department of Energy and the DOE contractor, Martin Marietta Energy Systems, who accomplished the actual handling and packaging of enriched uranium. Transportation of the uranium from Kazakhstan to the United States was provided by the United States Air Force's Air Mobility Command.

November 13 The CFE Treaty's second reduction year ended, and with minor exceptions, all parties had reached the 60 percent reduction goal set out in the treaty. The exceptions involved two countries being behind schedule in reducing certain types of equipment, while being far ahead of the reduction schedule in other types of equipment.

November 15-17 The United States hosted a large START mock inspection at Minot Air Force Base, North Dakota. Informally called a "megamock", the inspection involved an OSIA inspection team and an OSIA escort team, and included inspecting both heavy bombers and intercontinental ballistic missiles. Senior on-site inspectors, including the agency directors, from Russia, Ukraine, Kazakhstan, and Belarus, observed the mock inspection, along with representatives from the United States Joint Staff, Air Staff, and Air Combat Command.

November 28-December 2 A Russian chemical inspection team, escorted by OSIA personnel, conducted an inspection at a declared United States chemical weapons development facility, located at Dugway Proving Ground, Utah. This was the fifth and last Russian inspection under Phase II of the Wyoming MOU.

November 29-December 15 The last of the five United States inspections of Russian chemical facilities allowed under Phase II of the Wyoming MOU took place, with Team Kilgore conducting a challenge inspection at Cheboksary.

December 5 President Clinton, President Yeltsin, President Kuchma (Ukraine), President Nazabaev (Kazakhstan), and Prime Minister Kebish (Belarus) met in Budapest, Hungary for a CSCE Summit Meeting. They exchanged the instruments of ratification for the START I Treaty. On that day the treaty entered into force.

((Note: OSIA became an activity of the Defense Threat Reduction Agency (DTRA) in 1998.

Continue with Seal of the On-Site Inspection Agency

Return to Table of Contents 

Last update 08 September 2018

Copyright © 2007-2023 - All Rights Reserved.