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Declassified per Executive Order 13526, Section 3.3 
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V.B Justification of the War (1 1 Vols.) 

Internal Documents (9 Vols.) 

3. The Eisenhower Administration: (4 Vols.) 

a. Volume I: 1953 

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- 1967 






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V. B. 3. 



The Eisenhower Administration, 1953 - I960 

BOOK I - 1953 

■ ■ ■ ■ I H I i' . ' H 

Sec De£ Coat Er 

. JJL2S5 


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The Eisenhower Admin i str at ion , 1953 - 19&0 


This portion of the study consists of a collection of 
U. S. Government documents which set forth the rationale of 
U. S. policy toward Vietnam. The collection represents the 
internal commitment of t the U. S. as expressed in. classified 
documents circulated at the highest levels in the Government, 
The documents are organized chronologically within each Presi- 
dential administration. This volume covers the Eisenhower 
years, 1953 - i960. 






I95I* « £he Geneva Accords 

I'he Geneva Accords - 1956 French Withdrawal 

1956 French Withdrawal ~ i960 


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The Elsenhower Admin i s tr at ion , 1953 - i960 

Contents and 

Chronological List of Documents 

BOOK I 1953 Page 

1. General Collins sends ISA a letter from General Trapnell, 
MAAGj Indochina j who indicates that the "most important 
and immediate need to the successful conclusion of the war 
in Indochina was more troops." Army General Staff memoran- 
dum for ISA, 15 January 1953- - - . * 1 

2. The Joint Chiefs of Staff are requested to undertake a 
re -examination of U.S. participation in the Indochina 
operation giving special consideration to training indige- 
nous forces. Deputy Secretary of Defense memorandum for 

JCS, 19 January 1953 > , h 

3. President Eisenhower links the Korean war with the Indochina 
conflict. State of the Union Message, 2 February 1953 5 

k. The State Department proposes an exchange of military 
training missions between French , Vietnamese, Cambodian, 
Laotian and ROK's. Dulles l6kh to Saigon, 10 February 
1953 6 

5. Dulles and Bidault conversations reveal that the French 
are relieved over Eisenhower's Indochina position. fl I 
thank God and General Eisenhower that it took only six 
years to have France's contribution there recognized for 

what it is . " A-117 to Saigon, 5 March 1953 8 

6. In reply to the Secretary of Defense request to 're-examine 
the Indochina problem, the JCS recomnend that France be 
"encouraged" to augment the Vietnamese forces, that the 
ports and . airfields in Tonkin be improved y that the U. S. 
support the troop augmentation and port improvement with 
money and materials, and that France be pressured to grant 
greater responsibility and autonomy to the Associated 

States. JCS Memorandum for Secretary of Defense, 13 March I 
1953 11 

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7. Dulles outlines U.S. policy on Indochina to Bidault. The 
U.S.: (l) is fully aware of the importance of the French 
struggle; (2) sees the situation with "real sense of 
urgency" ;(3) shares concern regarding "adequacy of the 
financial contribution" by Indochinese ana French residents 
there; (h) desires agreement that Viet Minh defeat would 
deter CHICOM intervention; and (5) appreciates French views 

. on participation by Associated States in discussing policy 
and receiving U.S. military and economic aid. Dulles k^QJ 
to Paris, 19 March 1953 . . 15 

8. President Eisenhower stresses the importance of EDC as a 
means for European viability to Mayer and LeTourneau. The 
"President declared that EDC is so important in American 
eyes that the American people would not support aid to 

' France if they were given the impression that France is 

resorting to dilatory tactics in order to postpone ratifi- 
cation " Dulles U992 to Paris, 26 March 1953 • . • 17 

9. Secretary Dulles reassures the French that a "Chinese 
Coinmimist attack is unlikely" in Indochina and that any 
Korean armistice would have "automatically failed /its/ 

purpose . " Dulles 5001 to Paris , 27 March 1953 .♦•••... 19 

10. The French plan to create, "strong free states, in Indochina" 
* is to be studied even though Eisenhower feels that the time- 
table Is too slow. The U. S. is intent on doing nothing 
to increase France 1 s difficulties. Dulles 50U0 to Paris, 
30 March 1953. 21 

11. Cost deficits of the French "strategic concept" are $231 
million and $299.3 million for CY 195 1 * and 1955- Ko formal 
request for the U.S. to assume the deficits is made but 
"French intent is clear that is their plan." Dulles 1967 
to Saigon, 7 April 1953- * 22 

12. President Eisenhower indicates publicly that an armistice 
in Korea should mean "an end to the direct and indirect 
attacks upon the security of Indochina and Malaya." The 
warning is clear to Red China that armies released l>y the 
armistice to attack elsewhere would make the armistice 
"a fraud." White House Press Release, 16 April 1953- .... 

13. The JCS summarize the weaknesses of the Fiench Plan pre- 
sented by LeTournea,u and Allard* Briefly, the plan is not 
aggressive, insufficient consideration is given to cutting 
the enemy supply lines, insufficient emphasis is given to 
placing responsibility on the Vietnamese, and the plan 
I relies extensively on small unit operations. See also 

documents numbered 35* 36 and 37 5 below. JCS memorandum 

for Secretary of Defense ; 21 April 1953- .......... ..... 2k 

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lk. The U. S. urges the French to come forward -with a program 
■which can sensibly be sold to Congress as holding promise 
of a satisfactory outcome, "perhaps in a couple of years." 
Dulles indicates that the President "would favor as much 
as $525 million and possibly more this year if Congress 
could be told "this program has enough chance of success 
..../thatj it will largely -clear up the situation." 
Bi-Fartite US-French Conversations , 22 April 1953 27 

15. The JCS at a meeting with State informally indicates 
reservations on the feasibility of the French plan. The 
JCS feel that the French must appoint an "aggressive 
French military leader" to Indochina, revise the strategy 
toward more offensive action, and use Vietnamese forces 
in large rather than small units — otherwise "U.S. aid 
would be wasted" in Indochina, State TOSEC 9 to Paris, 

2k April 1953 . . 31 

16. The U. S. position is clearly that "armies released in 
Korea" will not strike elsewhere. Since the Indochina 
war does not have the "status of an international war," 
the U. S. suggests that perhaps the French should bring 
the current Laos problem before the Security Council. 

Extract of Tripartite US-UK-French Meeting, 25 April 1953.... 32 

17. France is told that the U. S. proposes to recommend an 
FY 195^ Mutual Security Program (MSP) for France of 
$100 million for equipment of French units in SACEUR, 
ik60 million in funds as 1+0$ of Indochina war expendi- 
ture rate, and an additional unspecified amount involv- 
ing trained Associated States forces. Memorandum on Aid, 

Paris 5673 to Secretary of State, 26 April 1953 3^ 

18. The French are reluctant to bring the Laos aggression 
before the Security Council because it "might precipitate 
a colonial debate." Dulles Memorandum of Conversation, 

27 April 1953 < - * 37 

19. The French request for C-119 aircraft reaches Eisenhower 
and raises the question of sending U- S. personnel on coin- 
bat missions in Indochina, Such a decision is seen as 
having "repercussions" and raising many problems. 

Douglas Mac Arthur, II, memorandum, 27 Ap^il 1953 38 

20. The JCS approves the loan of six C-119 aircraft to the 
French for use in Indochina provided they are flown by 
civilian pilots. The CIA is to complete the transactions. 

State Far East Memorandum to Dulles, 28 April 1953 39 



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21* The Department of Defense accepts the French proposal to 
send a U. S. military mission to Indochina. State 5655 
to Paris, 18 May 1953 


22. The U. S. is prepared to support a French request to NATO 
to permit diversion of French Air Force manpower to Indo- 
china in view of the fact that "the near collapse of the 
maintenance and pilot capabilities of the French Air Force 
in Indochina is close at hand/ 1 State 5693 to Paris, 

21 May 1953 ♦ • 

23. The U. S. backs down on its intent to have Thailand submit 
the "Laos invasion" case to the Security Council. "French 
attitude regarding Thai appeal has been emphatic almost to 
the point of hysteria." Dulles 2297 to Bangkok, 1 June 
1953 . • 

2^. The Intelligence Advisory Committee concludes that Commu- 
nist China will not invade Indochina even though hostili- 
ties conclude in Korea. The French situation, however, is 
expected to continue to deteriorate while the Viet Minh 
prestige increases. National Intelligence Estimate, 
NIE-91* b June 1953 ■ 

25. The Joint Chiefs of Staff propose "Teims of 'Reference" for 
the 'Daniel Military Mission to Indochina. JCS Memoran- 
dum for Secretary of Defense, 10 June 1953 - 






26. The 'Daniel mission arrives in Saigon to pursue discus- 
sions with General Henri Navarre on the manner in which 
U. S. aid may best contribute to the French war effort. 
State Press Release 329, 20 June 1953. , . 


General 'Daniel recommends to the JCS that a capability 
for. small Industry in Indochina be established, that an 
increase in artillery units be approved for Indochina, and 
that the U. S. "think in tex-ms of the 'Navarre Concept 1 in 
association with the war in Indochina," 'Daniel Report 
to JCS, Ik July 1953- - . ■ 

a . 


The U. S* expresses gratification at announced French 
political plans and indicates that the Navarre Plan "had 
impressed as favorably." Stress Is placed on having other 
alternatives available if negotiations were to start, e.g., 
the Navarre Plan. Assurance is given the French that 
Communist China will not intervene in Indochina. US -France 
Bilateral Talks, 15 July 1953 - * . . 



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29. The French circulate a memorandum which outlines the 
"direction" in which an effort should be made, i.e., 
possible consideration of an Indochina cease-fire by 
the political conference which follows the Korean truce 
talks. French Memorandum, undated (15 July 1953 Con- 
ference) . . .\ o 101 


30. Dulles reports to the American people on the principal 
results of the foreign ministers talks. He indicates 
that the aid to Indochina is the second largest cost 
item in our Mutual Security Program (MSP) . State 

Press Release 387, 17 July 1953 . 1°5 

31. The French are reported as "prepared to adopt the^ general 
principles of the Navarre Plan" but must have additional 
U.S. funding in CY 195*+ J however , according to Dulles, 
"there was no hope of getting any additional funds what- 
soever from the U.S. for Indochina" and if funds are not 
available, the only alternative for France is withdrawal. 

Paris 370 to Dulles, 29 July 1953 - 107 

32. The French request that "the interdependence of the dif- 
ferent theaters," i.e., Indochina and Korea, not be lost 
sight of by the Allied negotiators on the Korean armis- 
tice.- French Aide-Memolre, 31 July 1953* •• • * •• 1°9 

33- The NSC receives the first progress report on NSC 12l|/2. 
This report reviews developments and considerations 
relating to specific elements of policy. Memorandum for 
NSC, 5 August 1953 112 

3U. The State Department recoromends to -the NSC an increase 
in aid to France of fpUOO million in the current fiscal 
year . Memorandum for NSC , 5 August 1 953* 125 

35- The Joint Chiefs of Staff, after pointing out weaknesses 
of the French plan, consider Navarre's concepts on con- 
duct of the Indochina war as a "marked improvement in 
French military thinking" and state that if "vigorously 
pursued," the plan offers a promise of success sufficient 
to warrant additional U.S. aid. The Navarre concept is 
enclosed with JCE. Memorandum for Secretary of Defense, 
11 August -953- (See also documents numbered 13, 36, and 
37) ■ « * . * . 13^ 

36. The JCS learn that Secretary of Defense plans to forward 
their 11 August memorandum to Secretary of State so a 
new memorandum is drafted which makes changes to certain 

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"overly optimistic" statements "with respect to "promises 
of success offered by the Navarre Concept." See docu- 
ments numbered 13, 35 > &n& 37 also. JCS Memorandum for 
Secretary of Defense, 28 August 1953 . . . . . 138 

37. The JCS position is changed from 11 August to include 

"the basic requirement for military success in Indochina" 
as one of creating a political climate to provide incen- 
tive for the natives to support the French and supply 
them with intelligence. The Joint Chiefs of Staff, in 
considering the Navarre Concept, continue to believe that 
additional U.S. support should be conditioned on continued 
French support, demonstration of French performance, and 
acceptance of U.S. military advice. Radford Memorandum 
for Secretary of Defense, 28 August 1953. (See documents 
numbered 13 , 35 > and 36 also) 1^0 

j - 38c Secretary Dulles identifies the Korean war with the war 

in Indochina. "A single Chinese Communist aggressive 
front extends from Korea on the north to Indochina on 
the south. State Press Release U69* 1 September 1953* ••••*•« !^ 2 

39* £he National Security Council, at the l6lst meeting, 

approves additional U.S. aid ($385 million) for France. 
The State Department view is that the Laniel government, 
if not supported by the U.S., may be the last French 
government to try to win in Indochina. NSC l6lst Meet- 
ing, 9 September 1953. - JM 

kO. The U.S. informs France of the approval of additional 
aid and requests assurances from the French relating to 
conduct of the war, pursuit of independence for the 
Associated States, acceptance of military advice, and 
no alteration of their NATO cacMitment. Dulles 868 to 
Paris, 9 September 1953 - 150 

111. The President approves the NSC -re commended $385 million 
additional aid for French Indochina. Memorandum for 
the HBC, 11 September 1953. 153 

1+2 • The US-French supplementary aid agreement consists of 
six letters exchanged between Bidault and Dillon. 
Three of the letters spell out French political and 
military undert akings, the U.S. terms and conditions, 
and ;bhe procedures to verify expenditures. US-France 
letters, 29 September 1953 . * . . 156 

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The U.S. and France publicly announce the French resolve 
to carry out the declaration of independence for the 
Associated States and the approval of additional U. S. 
aid. State Press Release 529, 30 September 1953 


The U. S. is concerned at the "ill-considered action of 
the Vietnamese National Congress" and deplores the at- 
mosphere of the National Congress which jeopardizes the 
>rar effort. Dulles 695 to Saigon, 21 October 1953 


President Eisenhower approves the statement of NSC 162/2 
as basic national security policy -which addresses the 
Soviet threat to U. S. security. NSC 162/2, 30 October 

1953. • • 

The U. S. informs France that their urgent request for 
early delivery of 25 additional C-Vf aircraft for Indo- 
china has received Presidential approval. Dulles 1930 
to Paris , 23 November 1953- • • - ................ 



France reassures the U. S. that the Ho Chi Minh interview , 
which is considered by Laniel as 98 percent propaganda, 
will not affect Indochina policy in any way. Laniel has 
"flatly refused" President Auriol's instructions to seek 
the earliest possible negotiations with Ho CM Minh. 
Paris 2110 to Dulles, 30 November 1953. • • • 


General Navarre, CinC French Forces, Indochina, complains 
to General Trapnell that the aid requests prepared by the 
French have been modified by the MAAG before reaching 
Washington. "I cannot accept having my potential whittled 
away in such a manner.*.." Navarre letter to Trapnell, 
7 December 1Q53 * 


The CIA estimates the Chinese and Soviet reactions to U. 
intervention in Indochina with ground, air, and naval 
forces. It is anticipated that the Communist Bloc would 
not overtly intervene even though decisive defeat of the 
Viet Minh would result but would support and augment the 
Viet Minh to prolong the resistance. Special CIA Esti- 
mate, SE-53 5 18 December 1953* , 




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The Joint Chiefs of Staff recommend steps which the U. S. 
might take to assist in achieving success of the Navarre 
Plan. Among these steps are: a renewed emphasis "by France 
on support of the Navarre Plan; an assignment of addi- 
tional specialists to MAAG, Indochina; an increase in un- 
conventional warfare activities; a re-examination of 
current national strategy; and an interim revision of 
French NATO commitments. JCS Memorandum for Secretary 
of Defense* 15 January 195^ • • • • • 


The President approves the statement of policy in NSC 177 » 
"United States Objectives and Courses of Action with Re- 
spect to Southeast Asia," which views the loss of Indo- 
china as having "most serious repercussions on U.S. and 
free world interests...." (NSC 177 was renumbered as 
NSC 5^05) NSC 5^05, 16 January 195^ • *■•••« 


Senator Stennis informs Secretary Wilson that the U. S. 
should stop short of sending troops or airmen to Indo- 
china. "I do not think we can at all afford to take 
chances on becoming participants in Indochina." Stennis 
letter to Secretary of Defense. 29 January 19?^- ........ 

The President's Special Committee decides to recommend 
action on certain urgent French requests for twnety-two 
B-26 aircraft and two hundred Air Force mechanics for 
Indochina, and to await General f Daniel's return before 
deciding on other requests. It is generally agreed that 
the importance to the U.S. of winning in Indochina could 
lead to intervention by U. S # air and naval forces -- but 
"not ground forces," ISA Memorandum for the Record, 

30 January 195U. 


The President approves, and the CJCS notifies France of 
U. S. transfer to Indochina of ten B-26 type aircraft 
and two hundred USAF mechanics. This brings to twenty- 
two the total of B-26 aircraft slated for delivery to 
Indochina. Admiral Radford (Anderson) Memorandum to 
General Valluy, 30 January 195^* * * - * 




General 'Daniel reports on General Navarre's lack of 
enthusiasm on having a U. S. "liaison officer" and his 
disinterest in U. S. participation in psychological 
warfare. 'Daniel recommends that a small Joint Staff 
be approved, additional funds to STEM be approved, and 
the employment of liaison officers be approved. He 
comments that Dien Bien Phu can withstand any kind of 
Viet Minh attack, but would be untenable to a force that 
had several battalions of artillery with air observation 
'Daniel Report to JCS, 5 February 195^ 



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56. Korean President Syngman Rhee proposes sending a ROKA 
Division to Indochina, but the Joint Chiefs of Staff 
recommend that the transfer would not he in the best 
interests of the Free World. JCS Memorandum for 
Secretary of Defense, 1 March 195*+- • ■ « • •♦••••••**••.♦*.• 2 59 

57- The JCS express concern over developments in the status 
of the MAAG Chief to Indochina relative to a considerable 
increase in personnel and scope of training responsibili- 
ties* The French feel that "it should be clearly under- 
stood that neither 'Daniel nor MAAG was to have any 
powers , advisory or otherwise" in planning operations or 
training the national armies. The JCS feels a demotion 
of 'Daniel in deference to Navarre is detrimental to 
U. S. prestige. JCS Memorandum for Secretary of Defense, 
5 March 1954 \ 264 

58. In the preparation of Defense Department views regarding 
negotiations on Indochina for the Geneva Conference, the 
JCS reaffirm their position concerning the strategic 
importance of Indochina to the security interests of the 
United States as reflected in NSC 5405* JCS Memorandum 
for Secretary of Defense, 12 March 1954 

59* General Erskine submits the President's Special Committee 
recommendations on the military implications of the U. S. 
position on Indochina at Geneva. The analysis concludes 
that "no solution to the Indochina problem short of 
victory is acceptable." The conclusions expressed arc- 
felt to merit consideration by the NSC and the President. 
Erskine Memorandum for the Special Committee, NSC, 
17 March 1954 . ■ " 2? 1 

60. Secretary of Defense, Charles E. Wilson, is fully in 
accord with the JCS views (Document No, I43) and General 
Erskine f s recommendations (Document No. 44), and recom- 
mends to Secretary Dulles that they be carefully con- 
sidered in preparation for the Geneva Conference. 
Wilson letter to Dulles , 23 March 1954 2?6 

61. General Ely feels that any air intervention at Dien Bien 
Phu would have to come from Chinese territory and would 
carry grave consequences. "Can direct intervention by 
U. S. aircraft be envisaged and, if such is the case, 

f how would it take place?" See Annex A of Document 63, 
page 277, General Ely Memorandum to Admiral Radford, 
; 23 March 1954 ......... .......... 286 

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62. Admiral Radford shares doubts of other JCS members on the 
adequacy of measures taken by General Navarre at Dien Bien 
Phu. General Ely predicts the outcome at Dien Bien Phu as 
"50- 50" anci emphasizes the great political importance of 
the battle. Radford is "gravely fearful" that French 
measures will be* inadequate, the consequences could lead 
to loss of Southeast Asia, and to avoid this, the U. S. 
must be "prepared to act promptly and in force" to a be- 
lated French request for intervention. See Annex B to 
Document 63, page 277. JCS Memorandum for the President, 
2k March 195^ ,.-..,. * 288 

63. General Ely, Chairman of the French Chief s of Staff, is 
"unsympathetic" to the JCS view to expand MAAG, Indochina ' 
to assist in training Vietnamese. Ely feels it would . 1 
encroach on French responsibilities, would affect "prestige" 

and shows lack of confidence in French leadership- 1 
(Annex A, Ely Memorandum for Radford; Annex B, JCS Memo- 
randum for the President) JCS Memorandum for President's ' 
Committee, 29 March 195^ 277 j 

6k* The U. S. reiterates to the U. K. the following assumed 
position: (l) that Britain supports our agreement to 
discuss Indochina at Geneva provided France would not 
turn over the area to the Communists; and (2) "we shall 
not, however, be disposed to give Communist China what 
it wants fron us merely to .buy its promises of future 
good behavior." Dulles 5090 to London, 1 April 195 1 *. . . . . .... 2 91 

65* The U. So proposes a coalition of U. S., France, Associ- 
ated States, U. K e , Australia, New Zealand, Thailand, and 
the Philippines, which would fight* in Indochina as an 
alternative to French Union surrender and as a position 
of strength going to Geneva. Dulles 3*1-76 to Paris, 
' 3 April 195^ • 2 93 

66. The British consider partition the "least undesirable 

settlement" for Indochina and had not developed thoughts 

on a confrontation with a French sell-out. Dulles 5177 

to London, k April I95U , . . fl !••*•• 

67. The French request "irjnediate armed intervention of U. S. 
carrier aircraft at Dien Bien Phu" to sa/e the situation. 
Admiral Radford had previously assured Ely that he would 
"do his best" to obtain the U. S. support, Paris 3710 to 
Dulles, k April 195U , ##a 296 

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NSC Action No. IO7U-A considers the problem of determining 
the circumstances, conditions, and extent to which the U.S. 
should commit its resources to save Indochina. The prob- 
lem involves four issues: (l) the prospect of loss of 
Indochina; (2) the risks, requirements, and consequences 
of intervention;. (3) desirability and form of U. S. inter- 
vention; and (h) the timing and circumstances of inter- 
vention. NSC Action 107U-A, 5 April 195^ 


The U. S. Army position on intervention in Indochina cites 
the military disadvantages of such action. Specifically, 
the Army views are that air and naval forces alone cannot 
assure victory; that atomic weapons do not reduce the num- 
ber of ground troops required; that at least seven U. S. 
divisions with air and naval support are required to win 
if the French withdraw and the Chinese do not intervene ; 
and that the equivalent of twelve U. S* divisions are re- 
quired if the Chinese intervene. Army Position on NSC 
Action No. IO7U-A (undated) 


The President's Special Committee studies the problem to 
secure the defeat of Communism and establish a "Western 
oriented complex" in Southeast Asia without resort to 
overt combat operations by U. S. forces. The report 
recommends implementation of courses of action previously 
recommended by the JCS (i.e., augaent the French Air 
Force, assign CIA officials to Indochina, and allocate 
additional funds to Indochina) ; and that selective poli- 
tical, military, and psychological steps be taken as a 
matter of priority (i.e., expand MAAG, expand use of U.S. 
covert assets in unconventional warfare field, develop 
foreign information campaign, etc,)- Part I, "Indochina" 
to the President's Special Committee Report on Southeast 
Asia (undated) * 

The President's Special Committee submits recommendations 
concerning longer range policy and courses of action for 
possible future contingencies In Southeast Asia not 
covered by NSC 5H05. It is recommended that the U. S. 
accept nothing short of military victory, oppose a nego- 
tiated settlement at Geneva, pressure the Associated 
States to continue the war with U. S. support even if 
negotiations succeed, and seek participation of other 
nations. Regardless of the outcome of current operations 
in Indochina, the U. S. in all prudence should develop a 
regional defense pes ture incorporating all the Southeast 
Asian states. Part II, Special Committee Report ori 
Southeast Asia, 5 April 195^ 




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72. "U. S. is doing everything possible, . . .to prepare public, 
Congressional , and constitutional basis for united action 
in Indochina, " However, such action is considered 
"impossible" except on a coalition basis with British 
Commonwealth participation- Dulles 3^82 to Paris, 
5 April I95U \ 

73* France feels that the time for formulating coalitions has 
passed as the fate of Indochina will be decided in the next 
ten days at Dien Bien Phu. Dillon (Paris) 37^9 to Dulles, 
5 April I95U 

7^-. The National Security Council receives recommendations of 
the Planning Board on NSC Action 107^-A. The Board recom- 
mends that the U. S. intervene if necessary but continue 
to pressure the French 'and to support a regional defense 
grouping in Southeast Asia with maximum Asian participa- 
tion. The NSC also receives an assessment of risks in 
intervention and alternative policies, NSC 192d Meeting 
(item 1) , 6 April 195^ • • 






Eden feels the seriousness of the French military situa- 
tion is exaggerated — "French cannot lose the war between 
now and the coming of the rainy season however badly they 
may conduct it." London U382 to Dulles, 6 April 195U 366 

Dulles emphasizes that unless a new element is interjected 
into Indochina situation, such as an ad hoc coalition of 
nations prepared to fight, the French will "sell-out" at 
Geneva. The U. K., Australia, and New Zealand attitude is 
the key to "united action" and it is believed that Red 
China would not intervene. Dulles 163 to Canberra, 
6 April 195U ... . 





The Maloney mission, which reviewed the Indochina cost 
study with the U. S. Country Team in Saigon, concludes 
that "it is not possible, , .to arrive at any reasonable 
estimate of cost" to the U, S. of materials for the Indo- 
china war. The "crash requirements" and the French im- 
pression (from visiting U. S. officials) that all request 
will be granted has kept the MDAP program in a "constant 
state of flux." Maloney Memorandum to Deputy Defense 
Comptroller, 7 April I95U 


Should Communist China intervene in Indochina with com- 
bat aircraft, the Joint Chiefs of Staff recoromend that 
talks should be initiated to provide for implementation 
of military actions as outlined in NSC 5^05. JCS Memo- 
randum for Secretary of Defense, 8 April 195^ ....< 




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It is noted by the NSC Planning Board that France has had 
the loan of U. S. carrier "Belleau Wood" for nearly a 
year "without use in the Indochina war. Further, the French* 
"urgent requests" for U. S. aircraft appear contradictory 
in light of the sale of "Ouragon" jets to India and use of 
the "Belleau Wood" as a "delivery wagon." General Bonesteel 
Memorandum for Robert Cutler, Presidential Assistant , 
10 April 195^ - 

In view of the NSC actions on 6 April (l92d Meeting) and 
subsequent Presidential approval, the Secretary of Defense 
directs the JCS to "promptly prepare the military plans" 
for the contingency of intervention at Dien Bien Phu. He 
also notes that the Presidential directed the State Depart- 
ment to concentrate its- efforts prior to Geneva on organiz- 
ing a regional grouping for the defense of Southeast Asia. 
Secretary of Defense Memorandum to the Secretaries and JCS, 
15 April 195^ 

The Department of Defense indicates concern over the lack 
of U. S . policy and pressures the State Department to 
come up with a U. S. position for the Indochina phase of 
the Geneva Conference. The Defense version of a draft 
position recommends a positive and definite stance that 
U* S 6 objectives in Southeast Asia not be compromised and 
that if France does not accept this position the U. S. 
should not participate at Geneva. Defense Foreign Mili- 
tary Affairs Letter to U. Alexis Johnson, Coordinator of 
U. S. Delegation to Geneva, 15 April l$$k 

Eden informs Dulles that Britain is strongly opposed to 
intervention at Dien Bien Phu and intends to lend only 
diplomatic support to France at Geneva in search of a 
settlement. DULTE 5 (Geneva) to Washington, 25 April 

195U » . . . 

Dulles expresses "dismay that the British are apparently 
encouraging the French in a direction of surrender which 
is in conflict not only with our interest but what I 
/pullesj conceive theirs to be." DULTE 9, 26 April I95U. 

• * # 

The Joint Chiefs of Staff reject a French proposal for 
additional aid because of the major military consequences 
of involving U. S e planes and crews In the Indochina 
action as well as the little value of the project to 
relief of Dien Bien Phu. JCS Memorandum for Secretary 
of Defense, 27 April 19$^. . * . • - 







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85* Dulles and Eden exchange frank and heated words over the 
British pressuring France for a cease-fire. The U. S. 
indicates that the tripartite position is poor, i.e., 
not tr very i-apressive or cohesive" and that "the other 
side" was worried -- but not about Britain, The U. S. 
is also concerned over the affects on IIATO, EDC and the 
entire defense structure in Europe. DULTE 13* 27 April 


86. Dulles makes an estimate of rapidly moving developments: 
(l) when Dien Bien Phu falls, the French Government will 
change, probably to the left, committed to liquidate 
China, A withdrawal of forces to defensible enclaves 
under U.S. protection with subsequent U.S. training of 
native armies is considered. Open intervention at this 
point would be answered by Chinese intervention, (2) U.K. 
attitude is one of increasing weakness, (3) "the decline 
of France, the great weakness of Italy, and the consider- 
able weakness of England create a situation where... we 
must be prepared to take the leadership...." DUIffE 21, 
29 April 195I* 



87. In the event of a cease-fire in Indochina, the JCS 
recommend that shipment of U, S. military aid under 
2©AF be immediately suspended and the entire program 
of aid to Indochina be re-examined. JCS Memorandum 
for the Secretary of Defense, 30 April 195^- - 399 


The Intelligence Advisory Committee concludes that the 
fall of Dien Bien Phu would have far-reaching and ad- 
verse repercussions, but would not signal the collapse 
of the French Union political and military situation in 
Indochina, nor would it substantially alter relative 
military capabilities of French and Viet Minh forces. 
The French Union could retain control of the cities 
though there would be a serious decline in the Viet- 
namese will to continue the war. HIE 63-5*1-, 30 April 

195 ] ) 

If 00 

89- Major General Thomas J. H. Trapnell, foimer Chief of 

MAAG, Indochina comments in his debriefing on the French 
situation in Indochina. His comments cover in detail 
the strategic position of Indocl , the government and 
its prosecution of the war, the performance of AP sup- 
ported forces, the objectives of the opposing forces, 
the organization and tactics of both the French and 
Viet Kinh forces. In Trapnell f s view, few of the aims 
of the Navarre concept are progressing satisfactorily, 
"Dien Bien Phu is not only another Ka San, but a grave 


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tactical and strategic error." On the political aspects 
of the "war, Trapnell feels that ff a strictly military 
solution to the war in Indochina is not possible. . .It is 
doubtful if the ordinary people understand the issues at 
stake between the rebel and Associated Spates objectives." 
The solution in Indochina requires a strong French assault 
on the Viet Mintf, training of National armies , a defensive 
alliance of Asian nations, and a guarantee of the Associated 
States borders. Trapnell recommends a U.S. training mission 
for Indochina, and concludes that victory in Indochina is 
international rather than local and essentially political as 
well as military. Major General Trapnell Debriefing, 
3 May 195^. , 


90. Indochina is the only nation that has the highest M)AP 
priority and thus has precedence over every other 
nation for allocation of critical military equipment. 
The JCS have completed a plan for military intervention 
in Indochina and, as well, planned for resumption of 
hostilities in Korea, CXHCPAC has directed that other 
plans be prepared, i.e., blockade of China coast, evacu- 
ation of French forces from Tonkin, etc. Joint Subsidiary 
Plans Memorandum for OCB , 5 May 195 ! 4 



91. General Smith reviews the French proposal which has been 
sent to the Cabinet for approval. France proposes a 
cease-fire take place when "international" control 
machinery, based on Laniel*s 5 March conditions, is in 
place. Regular troops would be regrouped into delimited 
areas and all other forces disarmed. France assumes that 
the Russians would propose a follow-on political settle- 
ment (coalition) and immediate elections. SSCTO 106, 
5 May 195^ V 



3— * 

The KSC 195th Meeting considers Secretary Dulles pessi- 
mistic retjcrt on Geneva to the President : (l) there is 
no responsible French Government to deal with, (2) the 
British reject the "regional grouping/' (3) the British 
want secret talks on Southeast Asia, (h) the expected 
communist proposal is for foreign troop withdrawal and 
elections ? (5) and the U.K. wants a settlement based on 
partition. HSC 195th Meeting, 6 May 195k , 



Dulles briefs Congressional leaders on tae Geneva Con- 
ference and reviews the weaknesses of Britain's position 
Congress members comments are adverse. Dulles states 
three conclusions: (l)" U.S. should not intervene mili- 
tarily, (2) U«Sc must push rapidly for a Southeast Asia 
community j (3) and the U.S. should not "write off" the 
British arid French in spite of their weakness in Asia. 
TEDTJL 37> 6 May 195U 





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9^-- The JCS forward their views on negotiations with respect 
to Indochina to the Secretary of Defense for transmittal 
to the Department of State in regard to SECTO 106. The 
JCS feel that, based on the Korean experiences and as a 
minimum, the U.S. should not "associate itself with any 
French proposal directed toward a cease-fire in advance 
of a satisfactory political settlement." JCS Memorandum 
to Secretary of Defense, 7 May 195^. ^30 

95» President Eisenhower makes it clear that the precondi- 
tions for U.S. intervention in Indochina are that the 
"U.S. would never intervene alone , that the indigenous 
people must invite intervention, and that there must be 
regional or collective action. The IISC action of the 
meeting on 5 April as pertains to paragraph. l.b. of the 
record (organizing a regional grouping) is approved by 
the President. Memorandum by R. Cutler, Special Assis- 
tant, for Secretary of Defense and CJCS and Meeting 
Minutes, 7 May 195I+ . ^35 

96. May 8 - July 21: Geneva Conference on Indochina. The 1st 
Plenary Session convenes on 8 May and hears proposals by 
France and the Viet Minh for cessation of hostilities and 
participation in the conference. (Excerpts) The delegates 
to the conference axe from Great Britain and the USSR 
(joint chairmen), France, the United States, Communist 
China, Cambodia, Laos, and Vietnam, and the Viet I-Iinh 
regime. (Final agreements are signed on July 20 and 21, 
I and the main provisions concerning Vietnam are that; (l) 

Vietnam is to be partitioned along the 17th parallel into 
North and South Vietnam, (2) regulations are imposed on 
foreign military bases and personnel and on increased 
armaments, (3) countrywide elections, leading to the 
reunification of North and South Vietnam, are to be held 
by July 20, 1956, and (k) an International Control Com- 
mission (ICC) is to be established to supervise the im- 
plementation of the agreements. The United States and 
Vietnam are not signatories to the agreements. The 
United States issues a unilateral declaration stating 
that it (l) "will refrain from the threat or the use of 
force to disturb" the Geneva agreements, (2) "would view 
any renewal of the aggression in violation of the afore- 
said agreements with grave concern and ar seriously 
threatening international peace and security," and (3) 

: f "shall continue to seek to achieve unity through free 

elections, supervised by the UN to insure that they are 
conducted fairly.") Excerpts from 1st Plenary Session 

I " of the Geneva Conference, 8 May 195^ - ^39 

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The Defense member of the NSC Planning Board indicates 
the options available to the U.S. "with regard to the 
Geneva results. General Bonesteel suggests that the in- 
creased risis associated with pressuring France to con- 
tinue the war and possible U.S. intervention to stop the 
communist advance can "more surely and safely be accepted 
now than ever again." On the other hand, a compromise at 
Geneva would lead to communist subversion at a late date 
and U.S. involvement then might be inhibited by an in- 
creased Soviet nuclear capability. "Asia could thus be 
lost." General Bonesteel Memorandum for Secretary of 
Defense, 9 May 195 1 *. - 


The draft instructions for the Geneva Delegation, which 
have been approved by the President are sent to the 
Defense Department for "comment. According to the in- 
struct ions , the U a S. is "an interested nation which, 
however, is neither a belligerent nor a principal in 
the negotiation." State Department Letter to R. B. 
Anderson, Deputy Secretary of Defense, 10 May 195^- ^ *3 

Prance is convinced it is facing Communist China at 

Dien Bien Phu not Viet Minh rebels. The French request 

the aid of competent U.S. military advice, i.e., a U.S. 

General to confer with General Ely on regrouping forces 

in Indochina. Paris ^287 to Dulles, 10 May 195^ ^> 

The United States "posture" at Geneva is interpreted as 
"to cheer the players" rather than "to pitch." The 
draft instructions to the Geneva delegation imply a 
"profound point 11 — will the U.S. admit diplomatic 
defeat and cease to use the conference toward its ends 
if the conference appears to go against the U.S.? 
General Bonesteel Memorandum for Deputy Secretary of 
Defense, 10 May 195^ 


The President approves informing the French of his con- 
ditions for U.S. intervention in Indochina. Even though 
premature, the decision to internationalize the war must 
be made. President Eisenhower would ask Congressional 
authority to commit U.S. forces provided; (l) there was 
a French request, (2) that other nations would be re- 
quested and would accept, (3) that the UT would be noti- 
fied, (h) that France guarantees independenc e in the 
French Union to the Associated States, including the 
option to withdraw at any time, (5) that France would 
not withdraw its forces after the intervention, and 
(6) that an agreed on structure for united action is 
reached. Dulles 14023 to Paris , 11 May 195U , . . 



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102. The President approves NSC Action No, 1111 recommended 
by the Joint Chiefs of Staff which immediately suspends 
"shipment of military end- items under U.S. MDAP Tf to 
Indochina, NSC Memorandum for Secretary of Defense, 

11 May 195H . . . . ^56 

103. Secretary Dulles forwards the basic instructions 
approved by the President for the head of the U.S. 
Delegation to Geneva. "The United States is not pre- 
pared to give its express or implied approval to any 
cease-fire, armistice, or other settlement, . . ." which 
would subvert the local governments, impair territorial 
integrity, or jeopardize forces of the French Union. 

Dulles TOSEC 138 to Geneva, 12 May 195^, ^57 

104. A proposal tabled at the Planning Board meeting on 
13 May 195^ > suggests that "the U.S. is endeavoring 
to avoid the loss of Indochina and to resolve the 
colonialism problem by the creation of a regional 
grouping," General Bonesteel Memorandum to NSC, 

13 May I95I4 ^60 

105- Laniel and Schuman appear well pleased with the U.S. 
position, especially that U.K. participation is no 
longer a prerequisite to U,S, intervention. The one 
serious objection to Eisenhower's conditions, however, 
is that "France publicly accord to the Associated 
States the right of withdrawal from the French Union 
at any time." Unless some way can be found around 
this, "the French will never ask for outside assis- 
tance . " Paris 14383 to Dulles , ik May I95J1 H62 

106. In referring to the French objection to Eisenhower's 
conditions for intervention, Dulles indicates the U.S. 
might be flexible but "there cannot be any equivocation 
on the completeness of independence if we are to get 
the Philippines and Thailand to associate themselves." 
Without them the whole arrangement would collapse and 
the U.S. is not prepared to intervene "as part of a 
white Western coalition which is s banned by all Asian 
states." Dulles U09U (TEDUL 73) to Paris, 15 May 195^ ... ^65 

107, The "right' of withdrawal" from the French Union is 
unacceptable to France because it reflects on French 
honor and questions the concept of the French Union. 
It is proposed that existence of a powerful Vietnamese 
National Army would clarify the independence status to ( 
other Asian states and therefore the U.S. should assume 
"primary responsibility for the training and equipping 
of a Vietnamese National Army." Dillon ^02 to Dulles, 
17 May 195 ! i -* . .'. . hGQ 

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The present acute crisis prevents successful debate on 
the European Defense Community (EDC) proposal in the 
French Parliament. Any attempt to force a vote would 
lead to postponement or defeat of EDC. If the Laniel 
government falls because of Indochina, EDC will likely 
get buried for good. Paris U^1*0 to Dulles , 19 May I95U 

Secretary Stevens emphasizes the Army's concern over 
high-level official views that "air and sea forces 
alone could solve our problems in Indochina 11 and that 
the complex nature of these problems would require a 
major logistical effort — » "it explodes the myth that 
air and sea forces could solve the Indochina problems." 
Secretary of the Army Memorandum for Secretary of 
Defense, 19 May I95U. .......... , 



110- The Joint Chiefs of Staff recommend that U.S. military 
participation in Indochina be limited primarily to 
naval and air forces. JCS Memorandum for Secretary 
of Defense, 21 May 195*f. * 


The JCS recommend against a "Korea-type" defense of 
Southeast Asia as unsound. Accordingly, the U.S. 
"should adopt the concept of offensive actions 
against the 'military power of the aggressor, 1 (in 
this instance, Communist China) rather than local 
reaction to the attack. JCS Memorandum for Secretary 
of Defense, 21 May 195^. * 


General Smith cannot understand why the JCS down- 
graded U.S. military representation on the five- 
power staff conference because the Russians and 
Chinese must have known "we really intended serious 
business . " DULTE 100, 23 May 195^ 


The U.S. feels, as a- minimum, France and Vietnam should 
^'ga draft Treaty of Independence, France should indi- 
cate "equal and sovereign" status of French Union 
states, and declare withdrawal of French Expeditionary 
Forces as soon as possible. Dulles to Paris k 272, 
26 May 195^ 

The JCS point out their belief that, from the U.S. point 
of view with reference to the Far East, "Indochina is 
devoid of decisive military objectives and allocation of 
more than token U.S. armed forces in Indochina would be 
a serious diversion of limited U.S. capabilities." 
JCS Memorandum for Secretary of Defense, 2b May 195U..... 




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The White House views the JCS position on intervention 
in Indochina as not involving any new policy issue 
relative to NSC 5^05- However, a pencilled Secretary 
of Defense marginal note indicates that the White House 
"misses the point" — the JCS was considering the 
"regional grouping" and others in the grouping, i«e«g 
U.K. may object to NSC 5^05 policy. Hence the JCS is 
warning "not to get involved in such a grouping" unless 
all parties accept direct action. White House Memo- 
randum for Secretary of Defense, 26 May 195^* 


Ely emphasizes particular points to Trapnell and Dillon: 

(1) Ely was not in accord with 'Daniel* s proposal to 
reorganize the Vietnamese army on a divisional basis, 

(2) 'Daniel's operational war plan was unrealistic, 

(3) the increasing frequency of American criticism of 
French conduct of the war was not appreciated, (h) Ely 
was regrouping his forces for defense of the Delta, and 
(5) one or two U.S. Marine divisions could assure 
defense of the Delta. Paris I+566 to Dulles, 27 May 195I1- 

The U.S. Delegation to Geneva clearly sees a forthcoming 
settlement which the U.S., under NSC, cannot associate 
itself with. Both the dangers of partition and impossi- 
bility of armistice supervision in Indochina are recog- 
nized. "There is very little that the Defense Depart- 
ment can do to influence the negotiations, since a 
political decision has been made that the U.S. will 
continue to participate" even though partition will 
ultimately result in loss of Indochina to communism. 
Geneva Delegate Letter to Admiral Davis, 28 May 195^ • 



The French suggest that the U.S. "take over responsi- 
bility for training the Vietnamese National Army and 
provide assistance toward improving airfields for jet 
aircraft- use in Indochina. Paris U58O to Dulles, 
28 May 1954. , , 

Dillon clarifies apparent misunderstanding in Washington 
on French understanding of U.S. intervention if Red China 
attacks Indochina, Paris U607 to Dulles, 30 May 195^.... 



Schuman, E-^y, and Laniel inform Dillon and Trapnell that 
France regards the present bilateral negotiations as a 
"prelude to U.S. intervention should Geneva fail" or 
should the communists drag negotiations to uotain a 
military decision in the Delta. The French pursue re- 
assurance of U.S. intervention if Red China launches an 
all-out air attack. Paris 1+612 to Dulles, 31 May 195U... 

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There is no misunderstanding between U.S. and France if 
UoS. policy on a Chinese intervention would be "judged 
under the circumstances of the moment," Dillon cites 
three courses of action open to the U. S B in such an 
event: (l) President "will request Congress to act, (2) 
President would request authority to use forces , or (3) 
U.S. would act only as part of a collective action. 
Paris ^625 to Dulles , 1 June 195^ 


NSC Action 5^421 incloses summaries of studies prepared 
by various departments and agencies with respect to 
"possible U.S* action regarding Indochina." Summaries 
included here are of studies prepared by Departments of 
State, Justice, Defense and CIA, Office of Defense 
Mobilization, Bureau of the Budget, Foreign Operations 
Administration and Operations Coordinating Board. 
NSC 5^21, 1 June 195^ 



Disagreement exists that the U.S. and France have "now 
reached accord in principal on the political side" on 
conditions for U.S. participation in Indochina, The 
U.S. needs a precise statement of France's commitments 
to meet the preconditions for intervention. Dulles Wl21 
to Paris , k June 195*1 • • 


Saigon suggests that in order to make a French declara- 
tion more palatable, the U*S. announce its intention to 
withdraw technical and military assistance as soon as 
practicable. In "neutralist Asian eyes, the U.S. is the 
principal threat to Eastern Asia. ...and not decadent 
France." A review of terms of reference which limit MAAG to 
a logistical function is now essential. Saigon 2656 to 
illes , k June 195^ • • 

• o 


The U.S. seeks to avoid formal identification with open 
partition or the creation of two states. While U.S. 
military authorities take a "gloomy view" of the mili- 
tary situation 5 France has failed to decide to "inter- 
nationalize" the war on the conditions laid down in 
Paris. The French are not treating the U.S. proposal 
seriously but "toying with it just enough to use it a; 
a talking point at Geneva." TEDUL 169, 7 June I95I+ 



General Valluy evaluates the Tonkin Delta military 
situation: (l) If Tonkin is lost, a military line will 
not be re-established, (2) in this connection, there 
are no South Vietnamese who could oppose North Viet- 
namese, (3) Ho Chi Minh's objective is Tonkin and the 
political capital Hanoi, to be gained either by 



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negotiation or military force as necessary, (k) if Tonkin 

is lost, France will not fight in the South , (5) nor would 

Vietnamese fight against other Vietnamese and sooner or 

later the \ hole of Vietnam will "become communist. TEDUL 

171, 7 June 195^ 535 

127. Dulles feels that it is of "overriding importance" to 
push on with action on Thailand's appeal to the United 
Nations Security Council, TOSEC 368, 7 June 195^ 538 

128. The U.S. will seek firm views of others once the "French 
authoritively tell us they want to internationalize the 
Indochina war." Further, when France decides to request 
U.S. intervention, the U.S. must have the opportunity to 
make its own decision based on prevailing circumstances. 
"We cannot grant the French an indefinite option on us 
without regard to intervening deterioration," TEDUL 175* 

8 June 195^ * * 5^0 

129- Because of Thailand's strong feeling the scope of appeal 
should not be limited to Thailand. The Thai government 
has a negative attitude on limiting the scope and they 
object to Czechoslovakia or other Soviet satellite mem- 
bership on the Peace Observation Commission (PQC). 
United Nations 810 to Dulles, 8 June 195^. . . 5^2 

130. Bidault replies to a conversation reported in DULTE 156 

(not printed here) in which "agreement in principle" with 

the U.S. had been reached. No major differences are 

noted, however 3 French military believe any JCS war plan 

would show the necessity of at least one Marine division 

for the Delta, General V-:~.lluy f s conversations at the 

Pentagon are seen as most crucial. "Thus if we want 

French military assistance. . .in Southeast Asia. is 

vital. . .JCS. . .approve a joint war plan justifying the 

use of Marines." Paris k'JoG to Dulles, 9 June 195 1 * 5*A 

131- Eden cites three major issues emerging on which "we cannot 
compromise": (l) separate treatment of Laos and Cambodia 
problem, (2) status and powers of international super- 
visory authority and (3) composition of the international 
supervisory authority. Britain feels negotiations have 
failed and little can be salvaged in Vietnam. DULTE 16^, 

9 June 195^. • • 5^7 

132, The French are upset because Admiral Radford had said 
there was "no question of utilisation of Marines in 
Indochina." The U.S. position, according to Dulles, 

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13 ^ 




had been clear from the start that "we "were not willing 
to make a- commitment ahead of time which the French could 
use for internal political maneuvering or negotiating at 
Geneva " TEDUL 178, 9 June 195^ 


"General Ely has* twice in my presence stated that his 
keenest desire is for the United States to enter this 
war." The purpose of General Valluy ! s statement (war 
assessment) is either to bring the U.S. and five other 
powers into the conflict or to prepare an "excuse before 
history" for an armistice. Saigon 271*+ to Dulles, 
10 June 195U. 

The French military feel that a Tonkin decision will rest 
on U.S. intentions. The French are reluctant to request 
"internationalization" which would result in new talks 
and provoke new "hopes." The U.S., on the other hand, 
does not want to consider a U.S. training mission separate 
from the "overall operational plan" on the assumption the 
conditions are fulfilled for U.S. participation in Indo- 
china. Murphy (Acting SecState) ^508 to Paris, 10 June 
195^ . , 

The French impression is that even after all conditions 
are met, the chances of U.S. participation are "nil." 
With this attitude it is only a matter of time until the 
French come to terms with the Viet Minh. The result 
would be disastrous to French public opinion and the 
"U.S. would be blamed" for having failed in the crisis. 
Therefore, it is recommended that the French be informed 
that "the President is no longer prepared to request 

Llitary intervention" even if France fulfills all con- 
ditions. France should strive for an armistice and thus 
avoid a military disaster. A few months delay in commu- 
nist takeover in Indochina is not commensurate with 
"possible collapse of the defense of Western Europe." 
Paris ii8Ul to Dulles, Ik June 195U 


* . 



136. The French want, and "in effect have, an option on our 
intervention, but they do not want to exercise it and 
the date of expiry of our option is fast running out." 
EDUL 197, lU June 195^ 

• . 


Secretary Dulles emphasises that events have shown that 
predictions he has made all along on the lack of any 
real French desire for U.S. intervention but "as a card 
to play at Geneva." The U.S. does not see that France's 
bitterness is justified considering "prolonged' French 
and U.K. indecision." Dulles 1+579 to Paris, ik June 195'+ 



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lh o. 




lh k. 



It is in the best interests of the U.S. that final ad- 
journment of the Conference take place unless France 
wants to keep it alive. Eden's departure on a recess 
is seen as evidence of no reason to dela; r "collective 
talks on SEA defense." TEDUL 196, Ik June 195*+. ....... 


The CIA estimates consnunist reactions to the participa- 
tion of U.S. air and naval forces at various levels of 
intensity and on various targets in conjunction with 
French Union forces in Indochina. Special National 
Intelligence Estimate, SNIE IO-U-5U, 15 June I95U , 


Dulles cites an alternative that "if and when" a French 
Government which had the confidence of the Assembly- 
should decide to continue the war, as opposed to an 
unacceptable armistice, the U.S. would be prepared to 
respond promptly. TEDUL 208, 16 June I95H. , 


Viet Minh demand all of Tonkin area including Hanoi 
and Haiphong in secret talks with France. The U.S. 
informs France that "we did not wish to be. .. .abruptly 
confronted with agreement..." as a result of secret 
negotiations and suggest a U.S. liaison officer. 

DULTE 187, Id June 195^ - 


China and the Soviet Union are "greatly concerned" 
over any break-up of the Indochina conference. Eden 
expresses the view that China wants a settlement but 
doubts their degree of control over the Viet Minh. 
DULTE 193, 17 June 195 1 ^ . • . - 

57 [ ! 

The "underground military talks" at Geneva are point- 
ing toward a de facto partition of Indochina- "There 

question of U.S. parti- 
a partition to non- 

can of course be no repeat no 

cipation in any attempt to 'sell' 

communist Vietnamese. TEDUL 212, 17 June 195U 


U.S. re-examines possible de facto partition of 
Vietnam in light of five-power staff report suggest- 
ing Thskhek-Donghoi line. TEDUL 222, 18 June l$$k*. 


The French feel that partition is the best settlement 
they could have worked for under the conditions laid 
down by U.S. for intervention which "no French 
Parliament would approve." Partition should come 
as no surprise to the Vietnamese since the Viet Minh 
had made it clear to them — "coalition government 
or partition." DULTE 195* 18 June 195 1 * 



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111 6. 


Ill 8. 


3 51. 




General Smith and Molotov conduct lengthy conversations 
on "making positions clear," The Soviet tactics were 
probably to forestall U.S. intervention in the Delta by 
a compromise formula if intervention appeared imminent. 
When intervention became improbable, the "ante" in 
negotiations was raised. DULTE 202, 19 June 195U....... 


In conversations with the French, China recognizes that 
"two governments" exist in Vietnam and Chou En-lai 
regards that the final political settlement should be 
reached by direct negotiations between the two govern- 
ments. Paris 5035 to Dulles, 2 k June I95U 



Dulles thinks our present role at Geneva should "soon be 
restricted to that of observer...." TOSEC Vf8, 2k June 



1^9* A French aide-memoire indicates the French objective to 
seek a de facto division which leaves a solid territory 
for the State of Vietnam and further requests that the 
U.S. do nothing to encourage an anticipated "violent 
and unreasoning" reaction on the part of Vietnamese 
patriots who object to an indefinite period of division 
. of the country. Dulles U852 to Paris, 28 June 195I+..... 


French negotiations with Viet Minh are stalled and Mendes- 
France is perplexed by reference to the "Dong Hoi" line 
since France was holding out for the 18th parallel. Paris 
5117 to Dulles-, 30 June 195I+ * ... - 


Dulles warns that H go Dinh Diem has been "kept in the 
dark" on French negotiations and fears that if revealed 
as a fait accompli the reaction French wish to avoid 
will result. Dulles 39 to Paris, 2 July 195^.... 


France apologises for not keeping the U.S. fully informed 
of French military withdrawals in the Delta. In addition, 
while France is holding out for an eighteen-month period 
before elections, Diem, to the contrary, has suggested 
elections within a year. Paris 32 to Dulles, 2 July I95U. 

The French speak most firmly to the Viet Minh that the 
proposal for demarcation along the thirteenth parallel 
is unacceptable. On Soviet interest in the line, the 
French threaten that the line they propose is acceptable 
to the rest of the conference and thus averts the "risk 
of internationalization of the conflict." SECTO 557, 
3 July 195I* 

* » 




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3 60. 

The U. S. does not want to be associated with a settlement 
which falls short of the seven-point memorandum on which 
Britain agreed and now appear to be less than firm. TI If 
either or both the French and Communists are operating 
on the assumption we will adhere to any settlement they 
agree to, then we may be headed for serious trouble." 
Dulles 52 to Paris, 3 July 195^ 


Dillon recommends that if the U*S. attempts to get the 
best possible settlement, we should (l) maintain a 
Geneva delegation, (2) have Dulles return to head the 
delegation, (3) offer French support to sell a settlement 
to Vietnam if it is satisfactory, and (k) pressure Britain 
to stick to the seven points of US-UK agreement. Paris 1+1 
to Dulles, 1+ July 195^ . , 


The French welcome the US -UK 7-point agreement except 
that clarification was suggested on the conflict be- 
tween provisions for elections and the position that 
no political provisions should risk loss of the area 
to communism. The French felt that the elections could 
"go wrong." Paris 50 to Dulles, 6 July 195 1 *.. ....:«.. 


The French indicate they attach no great military im- 
portance to retention of Haiphong and that they were 
"avoiding contact" with the Vietnamese in order not 
to have to answer their questions. SECTO 560, 6 July 


Mendes-France will announce to the National Assembly 
that if a cease-fire is not agreed to prior to 21 July, 
it will be necessary for the Assembly to approve the 
sending of conscripts to Indochina. Paris 66 to Dulles, 
6 July 195*4 . . . . 

Dulles informs Eden that it is "better if neither Bedell 
nor I went back" to Geneva since the French will probably 
settle for worse than the 7 -point agreement, hence it 
would be embarrrassing to all concerned. Dulles NIACT 
101 to London, 7 July 195U , . . . 




The U.S. feels that elections mean eventual unification 
of Vietnam under Ho Chi Minh and therefoi e should be 
held "as long after a cease-fire agreement as possible 
and in conditions free from intimidation...." Farther, 
the U.S. believes no date should be set now and that no 
conditions be accepted which would affect international 
supervision of elections. The U.S. would not oppose a 
settlement based on the 7-points nor would we seek to 
upset a settlement by force. Dulles 77 to Paris, 
7 July J95^ - • • • : , 



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161 . Dillon discovers that the U.S. complaints of not being 
informed are proved unjustified on the French withdrawal 
in Tonkin, Both State and Defense were notified via 
Trapnell's hand-carried plans and diplomatic cables. 
Public statements thus "can only serve tc make our 
position here vis-a-vis Mendes and his government in- 
creasingly difficult and undermine the confidence of 
both the French Government and people in our candor..." 

* Paris 81 to Dulles, 7 July 195 1 ! 6l8 

162. "I have never harbored any thought of wilful conceal- 
ment... there is a certain lack of intimacy..." in re- 
lations with the present government. The U.S. intends 
to leave representation at Geneva but not Bedell Smith 
nor Dulles will return. The U.S. should avoid a 
"position at Geneva..." Dulles 85 to Paris, 8 July 
195^ ■ 


163* The Chinese inform Ambassador Johnson that Chou En-lai 
had a "very good meeting" with Ho Chi Minh and that 
"results would be helpful to the French." The French 
believe that the Sino-Soviet positions have been 
coordinated with the Chinese views on Asian problems 
being given major weight. SECTO 578, 9 July 195^ 622 

l£k. The Defense Department queries the State Department 
regarding equipping three French light infantry 
divisions for Indochina in view of (l) the Premier's 
promise to end the war by 20 July and (2) the con- 
siderable impact of equipment removal on NATO. 
Defense Letter to State, 9 July 195^ ♦ 62U 

165* President Eisenhower and Secretary Dulles indicate 
firmly to President Mendes -France the rationale 
behind not sending Dulles or General Smith back to 
Geneva. Essentially, the rationale is based on fail- 
ure of the U.S., U.K. and France to agree on a joint 
position at Geneva and lack of agreement on a 
"united action" proposal if the position is not 
accepted by the communists. Dulles sees France and 
U.K. enhancing a communist "whittling-away" process 
by readily accepting less than the seven points, 
Dulles 127 to Paris, 10 July 195^ 625 

166. France views the Dulles decision as (l) making the 

French bargaining position weaker and (2) that Europe 

would interpret U.S. absence from Geneva as a step 

in the "return to a policy of isolationism." 

Paris 13k to Dulles, 11 July 195U 6 31 

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France indicates the "necessity for a clear-cut U.S. 
guarantee that would protect the Associated States" 
if the communists did not honor a Geneva settlement. 
Mendes-Franoe will resign if no cease-fire is reached 
Paris 133 to Dulles, 11 July 195^ 



Views of the U.K. on collective security of Southeast 
Asia are summarized: (l) the British prefer a generalized 
collective arrangement with as many states involved as 
possible; (2) the preferred organization would have a 
general council, a political/economic council, and a 
military organization; (3) in. the event of no Indochina 
agreement, the British would move ahead with a military 
arrangement to meet the threat. Admiral Davis Memoran- 
dum for Secretary of Defense, 13 July 195 J +****- • •• 

Secretary Dulles reports on the Paris meeting: (l) an 
agreed French-United States position paper on Indochina 
which has the United States respecting terms conforming 
to a 7"P°i n "t agreement; (2) the 7 points along the lines 
which were agreed during the Churchill-Eisenhower con- 
versations; (3) a Mendes -France to Dulles letter which 
tells Dulles that his absence from. Geneva would produce 
an effect opposite to his intention; (k) a Dulles to 
Mendes-France letter which informs him of General Smith's 
return to Geneva; (5) and a letter from Eden to Mendes- 
France reassuring him of Britain's support. Paris 179 
to Dulles , lk .July l$^k 

Secretary Dulles reports on his trip to Paris at the 
NSC meeting. Dulles had told Mendes that France's 
troubles stemmed from lack of a decision on EDC and 
the Soviets were successful in splitting France and 
Germany. If the U.S. cannot guarantee the Geneva 
Conference results or influence France to reject any 
settlement, the U.S. will be blamed and put a major 
strain on Franco-United States relations. NSC Minutes, 
15 July 195^ 

Mendes -France is firm In a cocktail conversation with 
Molotov on Vietnam election dates. The French, how- 
ever, conceive the military demarcation line and 
regroupment" of forces to be the major outstanding 
issues. SECTO 626, l6 July 195U 

At a meeting of Mendes, Eden, and Molotov, the out stand- 
ing issues are summarised: (l) demarcation line foi? 
Vietnam; (2) elections; (3) control arrangements; (k) 






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regroupment time; (5) prevention of arms importation, and 
(6) Laotian regroupment areas, France strongly opposes 
Molotov on holding elections in 1955 and placing the 
demarcation line at the l6th parallel. SECTO 632, 
17 July 195 1 * .»..,.*• 

The Vietnamese delegation to the Geneva Conference 
secretly passes the U.S. delegate a note of protest 
which had been handed to the French, The note complains 
that the "National Government of Vietnam has been left 
in complete ignorance" of proposals made by the French 
to other nations on Vietnam's fate. Vietnam rejects the 
de facto partition proposal, a cease-fire, and requests 
that United Nations control be established over all 
Vietnam territory. SECTO 633, 17 July 195k 



The Chinese Communists inform the U.S. of their position 
via Seymour Topping, Associated Press. The despatch 
reflects the views of Chou En-lai and demands that the 

■ * 

U.S. guarantee a "partition peace plan." Further, 
China is hopeful of a cease-fire but did not rule out 
the chance for one even if the U.S. refuses to accept 
the armistice. SECTO 639, 18 July l$5k , 


The U.S. fears Britain will push France into an agree- 
ment short of the 7 points resulting in a situation 
which had been previously discussed in Paris. TOSEC 565, 
18 July 195^ * 

At the 23rd Indochina restricted session, Tran Van Do 
(Vietnam) states that Vietnam cannot associate itself 
with the final declaration of the Conference which is 
to be reviewed. Vietnam does not agree to conditions 
for cease-fire nor have they as yet advanced proposal 



for a solution 'based on peace, independence, and unity. . 

SECTO 65U, 18 July 195^ - * 658 

The Vietnamese delegation requests a plenary session to 

put forward their position (Document 171, preceding) , 

The U.S. replies that the Vietnamese position is "not 

practicable" and, in indicating that time is short, 

suggests that the Vietnamese "speak directly with the 

French." SECTO 655, 18 July 195H. 662 

Seymour Topping again supplies confidential information 
from a Chinese Communist contact, Huang Hua. "Ivhen 
Huang Hua spoke of the possibility of American bases in 
Indochina, or ant i -Communist pact in Southeast Asia, he 
became very agitated, his hands shook, and his usually 

excellent English broke down*. 


Chinese are convinced 

that France and the U.S. have made -a deal. SECTO 66l, 
19 July*195 J 4 



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179- International control commission is to be composed of 
Poland, India, Canada, or Belgium. The U.S. is satis- 
fied that this is better than Korea and is "within the 
spirit of Point ?•" SECTO 666, 19 July 195^ 







General Smith makes it clear to France that the U.S. 
could, under no circumstance, associate itself with the 
conference declaration and recommends authorization to 
amend the proposed U.S. declaration of position. 
SECTO 669, 19 July 195^ * 


Dulles has no objection on Smith's proposal to amend 
the declaration, but is concerned about including part 
of paragraph 9 of the Conference declaration, which 
seems to imply a "multilateral engagement with the 
Communists" which is inconsistent with the U.S. basic 
approach. TOSEC 576 NIACT, 19 July 195^ • 


The Vietnamese delegation proposes: (l) a cease-fire 
on present positions; (2) regroupment into two small 
zones; (3) disarmament of irregular troops j (k) dis- 
armament and withdrawal of foreign troops; and (5) 
control by the United Nations. It is noted that there 
is no provision for demarcation line or partition. 
SECTO 673, 19 July 195^ 


The United States, not prepared to sign the Accords, 
maXes a unilateral declaration of its position on the 
Conference conclusions. The United States declares 
that it will refrain from the threat or use of force 
to disturb the agreements and would view any renewal 
of the aggression with grave concern and as a threat 
to international peace and security. Unilateral 
Declaration of the United States , 21 July 195^ 

Final Declaration of the Geneva Conference, 21 July 





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BOOK TTT The Geneva Accords - i960 Page 

185. The State Department explains the rationale of why the 
United States issued a unilateral declaration instead 
of signing the 195^ Accords on Indochina, Secretary 
Dulles was unwilling to even consider signing accords 
on Indochina of the type concluded at Geneva, and hence 
was not an alternative to issuing a unilateral declara- 
tion hut was a substitute suggested by the French 
leaders a The declaration was based on the understandings 
of the ik July Franco -American Six Point position paper. 

State Department Analysis - Geneva Declaration. * * • . „ 676 

186. The NSC adopts the JCS recommendation that the possible 
use of EOK forces in Indochina be kept under review. 

Secretary of Defense Memorandum to JCS, 30 July l$3k . • 679 

187* Dulles reviews the occasions when French officials sug- 
gested U.S. armed intervention in Indochina and the 
parallel U.S. efforts to organize "united action, n 
The possibility of "united action" lapsed in mid* June 
195^ with the French decision to obtain a cease-fire 
at Geneva, Dulles 689 to London, 3 August 195U 680 

188. The CIA assesses the probable outlook in Indochina in 
the light of agreements at the Geneva Conference. The 
conclusions are;(l)that the communists will continue to 
pursue their objectives in South Vietnam "oj political, 
psychological and paramilitary means ; (2) that if 
elections are held in 1956, the Viet Minh will win; 
(3) and that the events in Laos and Cambodia depend 
on the developments in Vietnam. National Intelligence 
Estimate, NIE 63-5-5^ 3 August 195^. ••••*••«••••«•••••• ^91 

189- The French view of Diem Government is that it does not 

qualify on three major points: (l) fully representative 

of the population: (2) prepared to carry out land reform; 

&&& (3) prepared to depose 3ao Dai. Die 1 is seen as 

valuable foi* his high moral character but his mandarin 

background precludes his qualifications on the three 

points . Paris U8l to Dulles, h August 19$k. . * .* * . . 699 

190. The Joint Chiefs of Staff recommend that before the U.S. 
assuire rr sibility for training the V: etnamese Army 
that four preconditions be met': (l) "it is absolutely 
essential that there be a reasonably strong, stable 
civil government in control"; (2) each government con- 
cerned should formally request the U.S. to assume the 
responsibility; (3) arrangements should be made for 

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granting full independence and provide for phased with- 
drawal of French forces; and (k) the force structure 
should be dictated by local military requirements, 
JCS Memorandum for Secretary of Defense, k August 195^ 701 

191. The Chief MAAG outlines his point of view of the U.S. 
part in the future of Vietnam. His mission is twofold: 
establish U S. courses of action to insure survival of 
Free Vietnam as a nation and develop Vietnam as an 
effective barrier to Communist expansion. Saigon 302^A, 

8 August 195^ - 703 

192. The French have been lead to believe that Dulles made 
an offer of the use of atomic bombs at Dien Bien Phu 
and that Bidault was "much upset" by the offer and felt 
that they would have done no good tactically. There is 
concern that Bidault — "ill, nervous, hypersensitive 
and bitter 11 might attempt to publicise his version and 
take credit for preventing the use of atom bombs as 
"suggested by the U.S." Paris 558 to Dulles, 9 August 
195^. . • 


193 p Dulles has "no recollection whatever of the alleged 
offer" of atomic bombs to the French and indicates 
"it is incredible that I should have made the offer 

" Dulles 501 to Paris, 9 August 195U . . 706 

* * • • 

19^. On the offer of atomic bombs, the French agree that 
there has been a complete misunderstanding, possibly 
based on language difficulties. On the day of Dulles 
"alleged" offer, Bidault had been "ill, jittery, 
overwrought" and, even to the French staff, "incoherent." 
Paris 576 to Dulles, 10 August 195!+ . , . * . *....,,, 708 

195 o The JCS review U.S. policy in the Far East - NSC 5*129 . 

They recommend that NSC 5^-29 be returned to the Planning 
Board for "exposition of U.S. objectives" and "delinea- 
tion of broad courses of action" in the Far East. Ex- 
tensive comments by the Army Chief of Staff on NSC 5*129 
("It is not a comprehensive review of the entire prob- 
! OR TO DEST3QY IT.") are included. JCS Memorandum for 

Secretary of Defense, 11 August I95U <».... t . . 7°9 

196. The JCS comment on a draft State Department message for 
the French Prime Minister regarding U.S. policy toward 
Indochina. They feel the message should state clearly 
that the assumption of training responsibility in Viet- 
nam by the U.S.* is contingent on the preconditions stated 
in their h August memorandum (see Document I85) . JCS . 

[emorandum for Secretary of Defense, 12 August 195^»**» •*• •• ■ ' 

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197. Regarding, . .the assumption by the U.S. of the responsi- 
bility for training the Vietnamese Army, Secretary Wilson 
forwards the JCS view as representing the Defense Depart- 
ment position to Secretary Dulles, Secretary of Defense 

Letter to Secretary of State, 12 August l$$k * 717 



198. The JCS concur in the view that a statement of intent 
to conclude a treaty establishing a collective security 
arrangement in the Far East should be issued by the 
countries which intend to be treaty members. The JCS 

1 * * list the provisions which the treaty should incorporate. 

j JCS Memorandum for Secretary of Defense, 13 August 195^ 719 

j 199* Secretary Wilson expresses the Defense views on the draft 

I - "Southeast Asia Collective Security Treaty" which include 

\ , the JCS position. In his view, the recent developments 

j in Geneva and Indochina increases the urgency for a 

j "' : "comprehensive United States policy with respect to the 

Far East region as a whole." Secretary of Defense .Letter 

i ■ to Secretary of State, 17 August 195^ * - - • ^25 

200. Secretary Dulles replies to the JCS: k preconditions with 
the assertion that "one of the most efficient means of 
enabling the Vietnamese Government to become strong is to 
assist it in reorganizing the National army and in train- 
ing that army." Even though Vietnam could not meet the 
U.S. prerequisites, Dulles believes that strengthening the 
army was a prerequisite to political stability. Secretary 
of State Memorandum to Secretary of Defense, 18 August 

195 ! < 

« • • • « 


201o The U*S. policy with respect to Southeast Asia provides 
for negotiating ;-. collective security treaty, considers 
appropriate action in the event of local subversion, and 
outlines political and covert action. NSC 5^29/2* 

■ * ' * r 7Q "1 

£-\J i~i-U.UjU.v3 O .L^y^Hr • 1 1 1 t t • 1 ■ t 1 ■ « 1 1 1 • • 1 1 1 • t 1 1 1 « 1 1 1 ■ t 1 t 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 • 1 1 • ■ < 1 -wJ 1 •- 

202. The President has approved the policy that henceforth 
aid to Indochina would be direct rather than through 
the medium of the French Government. Further, State 
feels the Government should respond affirmatively to 
Cambodia's request for assistance in training the Royal 
Cambodian Army. Secretary of State Letter to Secretary 
of Defense , 26 August 195*4 7^2 

203 • Australia welcomes establishment of SEATO and is pre- 
pared to make an increased military contribution to 
the defense of the area. Australian Aide-Memoire , 

31 August 195H. . «... 777777 7^-3 

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204. The Manila Conference delegate submits comment on the 
SEATO treaty articles of special concern to Defense. 
Among these are: "Article IV is the heart of the 
treaty" — and provides that aggression against any 
member 5 or, by agreement , any nation in the area, would 
be met by action in accordance with "constitutional 
" processes"; Article V establishes a council which pro- 
vides for "machinery" to achieve Treaty objectives; 
and Article VII provides that other nations may be 
invited to accede to the Treaty- ISA Memorandum for 
Secretary of Defense, Ik September 195^ 7^6 

205* Diem has not demonstrated the necessary ability to deal 
with practical politics and administration, France > 
apparently with no policy toward South Vietnam, has 
failed to support Diem. Trends indicate enhanced 
prospects of Communist control over the area. SNIE 
63-6-5^, 15 September 195^ ».••«... *. 751 

206. Ambassador Heath goes on record with a strong criti- 
cism of General 'Daniel's "impetuous action" in 
contacting General Hinh concerning the political 
crisis in Saigon. 'Daniel prefers Hinh to Diem and 
rejects the exiling of Hinh to the United States as 
requested by Diem* Ambassador Heath Letter to State, 
16 September 195*1 ....... i 753 

207- The JCS see the Geneva cease-fire agreement as a major 
obstacle to the introduction of adequate U.S. MAAG per- 
sonnel and of additional arms and equipment. Further, 
because of "uncertain capabilities of the French and 
Vietnamese to retrieve, retain, and reorganize the 
dispersed forces of Vietnam," U.S. support to the area 
should be accomplished at "low priority." JCS Memoran- 
dum for Secretary of Defense , 22 September 195*1- • .•»•■•• * 75*=> 


208. The JCS re contend against the assignment of a training 
mission to MAAG, Saigon in view of the unstable politi- 
cal situation in South Vietnam. JCS Memorandum to 
Secretary of Defense, 22 September 195^. *• . * 759 

209. Total tonnage of KDAP material delivered to Indochina 
since December, 1950, is 737,000 tons. Prior to termi- 
nation of hostilities, there were 500,000 tons of equip- 
ment and 20,000 vehicles in North Vietnam. As of 
13 September, there are ^50,000 tons of equipment to 
be evacuated from North Vietnam. Military Assistance 
Memorandum for ISA, 2*1 September 195^* •••-*•«• * . 7&1 

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210* The U.S. and France agree to support Diem in the estab- 
lishment of a strong, anti-Communist nationalist govern- 
ment. The five key elements recognized which can provide 
a chance of success are: Bao Dai, General Hinh and the 
national army, and the three sects. The Binh Xuyen sect, 
which controls tfre police and is tied to Bao Dai, is to 
"be isolated from Bao Dai and their strength minimized. 
TOSEC 9> 30 September 195^* 7^5 

211. Secretary Dulles feels that U.S. policy on the magnitude 
of force levels and costs for Vietnam should be based on 
NSC 5^29/2 which provides for internal security forces 

* under SEATO: "•• is imperative that the United 
States Government prepare a firm position on the size 
of forces we consider a minimum level to assure the 
internal security of Indochina." Dulles Letter to 
Wilson, 11 October 195U. ?68 

212. Defense forwards Secretary Dulles letter (Document 20^, 
page 7^-6 ) to JCS and requests the JCS to reconsider their 
previous estimates (Document 202, page 7^2) in light of 
the more recent views of Dulles, ISA Memorandum for JCS, 
Xk October 195k 770 

213. The JCS, in reply to the Secretary of State's letter cf 
11 October (Document 210, page 765) , persist in their 
view that the U.S. should not participate in the train- 
ing cf Vietnamese forces. However, if "political con- 
siderations are overriding," then the JCS agree to 
assignment of a training mission to KAAG Saigon "with 
safeguards against French interference...." JCS Memo- 
randum for Secretary of Defense, 19 October 195^ 771 

2lH. Dulles reports on a conversation with Mendes-France on 
the critical situation in Vietnam. The French position 
is that plans should be laid for another government 
structure in the event of a Diem failure. They stress 
the importance of utilising the "thread of legitimacy 
deriving from Bao Dai....." Dulles requests the State 
Department estimate on the political situation. 
DULTE 5 j 20 October 195I*. » . . . . 775 

215* A new approach to leadership training and "cross- 

ferti ligation between Western and Asiatic ideas" is 
proposed in a psychological operations concept en- 
titled "Militant Liberty." The implementation of 
"Militant Liberty" — a concept which "motivates indi- 
genous people to work toward a common goal of indivi- 
dual freedom" -■- is ijroposed on a test basis in Indo- 
china as a joint military-CIA venture. Defense Memo 
for the CIA (Draft) , 20 October I95U ^ 6 

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216. The State Department's estimate of the political situa- 
tion is that Hinh holds a veto power over Diem; "jockey- 
ing for power and struggle for cabinet positions is 
resulting in paralyzing impasse"; French reference to 
"another structure of government" implies a "hankering 
to reestablish a % political system" which might involve 
direct colonial-type controls by France; and, unless 
Diem receives U.S. -French support, his chances of 
success appear slight. Paris TEDUL 11 HIACT, 21 Octo- 
ber 195U ?80 

217. This message contains the policy of the U.S. Government 
and instructions to the Ambassador and Chief of MAAG in 
Saigon necessary to carry out the provisions of NSC 5^29/2 
pertaining to training of Vietnamese armed forces. 

Draft Joint State-Defense Message, 21 October 195I+ 783 

218. The OCB draft recommendations on training in Vietnam 
outline the U.S. role in assisting the reorganization 
and training of the Vietnamese armed forces and 
specifies the coordination required between the Am- 
bassador and Chief, MAAG. The question of ultimate 
size of the Vietnamese forces and U.S. support is left 
for "later determination." HSC 2l8th Meeting, 22 Octo- 
ber I95U. , 789 

219. The Report of the Van Fleet Mission to the Far East is 
discussed with President Eisenhower. General Van Fleet's 
views are "somewhat different from present policies." 

A,s Van Fleet states the problem: "The problem before us 

is the failure of U.S. leadership in the Far East.... the 

future will reveal other prices we must pay for the free 

world defeat in Indochina." White House Memorandum for 

General Bonesteel, 25 October IJgft * 792 

220. Diem is insisting on getting rid of General Hinh. 

■ Eisenhower's letter to Diem is being interpreted as 
superseding Washington agreements, that Diem has "full 
rein" without meeting the precondition of "forming a 
strong and stable government." The President's letter 
can also be exploited by the Viet Minh and is causing 
the French concern. State Memorandum of Conversation, 
26 October %$5k . . , , 798 

221. Secretary Dulles forwards the main points of General 
Collins f reccmj-ndations regarding force levels in 
Vietnam. In su ry, the points are: (l) it would 
be disastrous if the French Expeditionary Corps (FEC) 
were withdrawn prematurely; (2) the U.S. should continue 

subsidise the FEC; (3) the Vietnamese Army should be 

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down to 77*000 and under Vietnamese command "by July 1955; 

(k) the U.S. should assume training responsibility by 

1 January 1955; &&d (5) the French are agreeable to a slow 

build-up of MAG. Dulles Memorandum for the President, 

17 November 195 1 * . . 800 

222. The French Ambassador is informed by the FOA that, sub- 
ject to agreement, the U.S. contemplates $100 million 
support for the FEC in Indochina for CY 1955* The 
Defense Department has "never agreed to the original 
position paper ," which is based on General Collins 1 
recommendations, without details of his calculations. 
ISA Memorandum for Record, 2k Eovember 195^* &02 

223* Senator Mansfield states his conclusions based on 
General Collins 1 analysis of the Vietnam situation: 
(l) prospects for Diem "look very dim," elections in 
1956 would probably favor the communists; (2) the U.S. 
should continue to support Vietnam as long as possible; 
(3) he sees no alternative to Diem; (1+) he is certain 
refugees, Catholic bishops and church officials would 
oppose replacement of Diem; (5) Paris should urge 
Bao Dai cease his interference and support Diem; (6) 
and Diem should be encouraged to compromise on issues. 
State Memcr anduin of Conversation, 7 December 195^ ^06 

22l+. The French Government is considering the decision to 
accelerate withdrawal of the FEC and evacuation of 
civilians as a direct result of the U.S. decision to 
provide only one -third the amount requested for 
maintenance of the FEC in 1955* Paris 2kk8 to Dulles, 
9 December 195^. . • . 809 

225* Diem "passes the buck" of convincing the sect leaders 
not to oppose the appointment of Dr. Quat as Defense 
Minister to the U,S, Collins is convinced that Diem 
and his brothers, Luyen and Tfhu, are afraid of Quat 
or any strong men In control of the armed forces 
since with "spineless General Ty u as Chief of Staff, 
Diem has effectively seized control of the army. 
Further, Collins corr ruts on the alternatives to Diem 
Government; though the alternative of gradual with- 
drawal from Vietnam "is least desirable, in all honesty, 
and in view of what I have ob served here to date it is 
« possible this may be the only sound solution/' Collins 

(Saigon) 2250 to Dulles, 13 December 195^ ( 8H 

226. The Defense Department reviews the military aid situ- 
ation in Indochina, including the value of KDAP ship- 
ments ($1,035 million) and losses of equipment at Dien 

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Bien Phu ($1.2 million) which included 8 tanks, Zk 

howitzers, and 15,000 small arms. Defense Letter to 

Senate Foreign Relations Committee, Ik December 195^ 8l8 

227. Collins is convinced that "Diem does not have the 
capacity to unify divided factions in Vietnam" and 
unless decisive action or dramatic leadership gal- 
vanizes the country into unified action "this 
country will be lost to communism, "Apparently, the 
only Vietnamese who might be competent. . .is Bao Dai." 
It is recommended that the U.S. not assume responsi- 
bility for training on 1 January 1955* or give direct 
military aid. Collins 2303 for Dulles, 16 December 
195^ - • • 

228. Ambassador Heath suggests that General Collins 1 recom- 
mendations ignore the basic factor that withholding aid 
from Diem would assist a communist takeover. Dulles 
has analyzed our situation in Vietnam as a "time buying 
operation" and Heath recommends continued support of 
Diem in spite of a "Bao Dai solution." The fear that 
$300 million plus our national prestige would be lost 
in a gamble" is a legitimate one, but withholding our 
support would "have a far worse effect." Heath Memo- 
randum to FE , 17 December " 195k 



229. Tripartite discussions on Indochina are summarized. 
To Secretary Dulles desire to continue strong support 
of Diem, Ely indicates that he and Collins have ex- 
erted pressure without result and "were now convinced 
that it was hopeless to expect anything of Diem." 
Ely feels that he and Collins must decide now "whether 
Diem was really the man capable of national union." 
Four points are agreed upon: (l) support Diem, (2) 
study alternatives, (3) investigate timing of replace- 
ment, and (k) (added by Dulles) how much more U.S. 
investment should be made in Indochina if it is de- 
cided there is no good alternative to Diem? Paris 
2601 to State ? 19 December 195I4- 826 

230. The President approves NSC 5^l29A as amended and 
adopted by the Council as NSC 5^29/5. This statement 
on wrrent U.S. policy in the Far East deals with the 
primary problem of the threat to U.S. security re- 
sulting from communist expansion in China, Korea, 

and North Vietnam. NSC 5^29/5 > 2 2 December l$$h 8 35 

231. Dulles spells out guidelines for future U.S. actions 
in Indochina: (l) we must create such a situation 

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that the Viet Minh can take over only by internal 
violence; (2) investment in Vietnam is justified 
even if only to "buy time, we must he flexible and 
proceed carefully by stages; (3) "we havt; no choice 
but to continue our aid to Vietnam and support of 
Diem"; (k) Bao Dtei's return would not solve the prob- 
lem; (5) revitalization of National army is hope for 
an improved security condition; (5) and "something 
should be done on our side" to exploit land reform 
issue. Dulles 2535 to Collins (Saigon), 2k December 


232, Collins refutes most of the comments of Ely and Mendes 
made at the tripartite discussion and is disturbed over 
some of the suggestions and attitudes of Mendes and 
Eden. He feels that he should be in Washington in Jan- 
uary if the NSC is to re-evaluate U.S. policy to avoid 
misunderstandings. Collins 2^55 to Dulles, 25 December 
195^ a 



233. Secretary Dulles decides that the U.S. should proceed as 
scheduled and "take the plunge" and begin direct aid to 
Vietnam on 1 January and move ahead on MAAG negotiations 
in Cambodia. Dulles feels that the JCS prerequisite on 
eliminating the French from Cambodia is "too legalistic 
and unrealistic." State Memorandum for the Kecord, 
29 December 195U. 859 

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23^. In light of the unstable situation in South Vietnam and 
conflicting views between General Collins and the State 
Department, Secretary Wilson requests the JCS to 
"reconsider" U.S. military programs in Southeast Asia- 
Secretary of Defense Memorandum for JCS, 5 January 1955 860 

235- The JCS provide additional courses of action in Vietnam 
to the Secretary of Defense. Specifically, (l) to con- 
tinue aid; (2) to unilaterally institute an "advisory 
system" j (3) if (l) and (2) fail, to deploy unilaterally 
or with SEATO; (k) or to withdraw all U.S. support from 
South Vietnam and "concentrate on saving the remainder 
of Southeast Asia." JCS Memorandum for Secretary of 
Defense, 21 January 1955 862 

236. General J. Lawton Collins reports on the situation in 

South Vietnam. The major factors which will affect the 
outcome of U.S. efforts are: (l) Viet Minh strength and 
intentions; (2) French attitude and intentions; (3) sects 
attitudes and intentions; (k) Vietnamese armed forces 
loyalties; (5) free Vietnam economy, and (6) Diem's 
popular support. There is no guarantee that Vietnam 
will remain free with U.S. aid — but without it, 
"Vietnam will surely be lost to communism." Memorandum 
for the National Security Council, 2U January 1955 


237* The Planning Board recommends approval of the Collins 

Eeport . NSC 23^th Meeting, 27 January 1955 • • • - 88 3 

238. The JCS recommend a concept and plans for the implemen- 
tation, if necessary, of Article IV. 1., of the Manila 
Pact (SEACDT). The primary objective is deterrence of 
"overt aggression by China or other Communist nations." 
The concept relies on development of indigenous forces 
and readiness to retaliate with U.S. power on the ag- 
gressor. JCS Memorandum for Secretary of Defense, 
11 February 1955 . B ,, , 885 

239- This memorandum describes the Department of Defense con- 
tribution to and participation in the Bangkok Conference 
on SSACDT. DOD Memorandum, forwarded 29 March 1955- 888 

2*40. The U.S. proposal, on elections is based on Eden's plan 
at Berlin, i.e., Free Vietnam will insist to the Viet 
Minh that no discussions on the type, issues, or other 
factors of elections are possible unless the Viet Minh 
accept the safeguards spelled out. Dulles l*36l "to 
Saigon, 6 April 1955- . * * « . - 892 

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2^1. General Collins submits a seven step recommendation -which 
centers on getting rid of Diem and reorganizing the govern- 
ment structure. Collins W+8 to Dulles, 9 April 1955... 89^ 

2^2. Diem exists "by reason of U.S. support despite French reluc- 
tance. If the French view prevails, "removal of Diem... 
may well be interpreted in Vietnam and Asia as an example 
of U.S. paying lip service to nationalist cause, and then 
forsaking a true nationalist leader when 'colonial interests' 
put enough pressure on us." Dulles M*38 to Saigon, 9 Apr 55.. 90? 

• 2^3- Bao Dai recommends that the U.S. agree with the French to 

create a "Supreme Council" or "Council of Elders" to govern 

in place of Diem. The Binh Xuyen could have been used in 

the common effort if "Diem had not bungled matters." Bao 

Dai cannot rule for Diem by decree and considers Diem's 

strength as a "mockery." Paris U396 to Dulles, 9 Apr 55 910 

2kk* Ely disagrees with the U.S. on maintaining Diem in office. 
The worsening situation is attributed to Diem by the 
French and "only by surgery, that is renoval of Diem, 
can the country be saved." Ely feels that if Diem is 
retained, he could not be the responsible French repre- 
sentative or remain in Saigon. Saigon ^66 1 to Dulles 
(Excerpts) 19 Apr 55 • 912 

2^5 • Diem is seen as a barrier to forming an interim govern- 
ment and the .gap between him and other elements in the 
society is becoming wider. The U.S., however 3 warns 
Vietnamese leaders that if Diem is removed as a "sect 
victory" it would be "difficult to obtain popular support 
in the U.S. for continuation of U.S. aid." Saigon 4662 
to Dulles, 20 Apr 55 . . . . . 915 

2U6. Diem announces to the U.S. his willingness to accept a 
coalition in the government but on his terms. This 
uncompromising attitude leads Collins to remerli: "I see 
no alternative to the early replacement of Diem." Saigon 
kG63 to Dulles, 20 Apr 55. . . . /. 9l8 

2H7. Conclusions and recommendations are offered as a basis 
for future Department of Defense positions on the sub- 
ject of South Vietnam. Key recommendations made are; 
to determine U.S. military action within the scope of 
SEACDI to prevent the loss of Southeast Asia as a 
result of the loss of South Vietnam, and to postpone 
indefinitely the elections proposed by Geneva Accords 
for Vietnam. ISA Letter to State Department, 22 Apr 55...... 9^3 

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2^8. In a debriefing, General Collins is firmly convinced that 
it will "be to the detriment of U„S. interests to continue 
to support Diem- ISA Memorandum, 25 April 1955 • 937 


2U9. The U.S. tentatively proposes to maintain full support to 

Diem until an alternative supported "by Bao Dai is developed. 
Dulles U757 to Saigon, 27 April 1955- ........... 9^1 


250. The State Department is "being forced to take a strong stand 
for Diem* Senator Mansfield is a strong "backer of Diem 
and if Diem is forced out, there will "be "real difficulties 
on the Hill." K.T. Young Memorandum for Robertson, 30 April 

1955. • • • - 

251» Bao Dai registers strong complaints against U.S. support of 
Diem, U.S. inaction which allowed the present civil strife, 
and against U.S. failure to urge Diem to go to France. 
Diem, in Bao Dai's opinion, is a "psychopath who wishes 
to martyrize himself." Paris U7U6 to Dulles, 30 April 
1955- • • . 


252. It is predicted that the success of Diem against the Binh 

Xuyen, Bao Dai., the French and General Vy has created a 

potentially revolutionary situation in Vietnam and, given 

U.S. support and French acquiescence, Diem is expected to 

stabilise the situation in Saigon. SHIE 63.1-2/1-55* 
2 May I955 


... » 


253* Tripartite discussions again reveal basic disagreement. 

The French conclude: "Diem is a bad choice . . .without him 
some solution might be possible but with him there is 
none... What would you say if we /France/ were to retire- 
entirely from Indochina. . ." SECT'O 8, £ May 1955— 959 

25^. • The French are increasingly bitter toward Diem and con- 
vinced he must go. Steps are suggested to reconstitute 
a joint Franco -American approach to the situation. 
Among these are steps to reduce the French garrison 
in. Saigon, replace Ely, and form a course of action 
after the crisis is over which persuades Diem to reor- 
ganize his government or else get rid of him. Saigon 
507U to Dulles, 8 I : g 1955 . • • 9&7 

255* The JCS reject both alternatives suggested by Dulles 
as solutions to the Vietnam problem. The JCS recom- 
mend that Dulles be advised that Diem shows the most 
promise for achieving internal stability, that the 
U.S. cannot guarantee security of French nationals, 
and that U.S. actions under SEAIO could possibly re- 
place FEC presence. JCS Memorandum for Secretary of 
Defense, 9 May 1955- . . ■ .....-• . * . „ , . . . 971 

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256. A move to deal with Diem to protect French civilians 
in order to get the French to withdraw "would clearly 
disengage us from the taint of colonialism,,/ 1 
General Bonesteel Memorandum, 9 May 195! 

257, The recommendations of the report of the Military Staff 
Planners Conference, SEACDT and the recommended JCS 
actions are summarized. The "basic report is omitted. 
See Document 258, page 93^-- 
JCS Memorandum for Secretary of Defense, 2 June 1955..., 




258- The NSC recommends and President Eisenhower approves 
that NSC recommendations as to U.S. policy on all 
Vietnam elections are not required and that in the 
event of renewal of Communist hostilities, U.S. policy 
would be governed by NSC 5^29/5* Memorandum for the 
NSC (NSC 1U15) , 13 June 1955- - - • ■ - ■ • 9o4 

259. A summary of those portions of the Report of the Staff 
Planners Conference which have political significance 
are forwarded to the Secretary of State. The parts 
summarized concern terms of reference for military 
advisors organization to SEACDT, measures for improv- 
ing defensive effectiveness through mutual aid and 
self-help, signal cooiuni cat ions, end future organi- 
zational structure. JCS Memorandum for Secretary of 
Defense, 1 July 1955 • 


260. In probable developments before July 1956, North 
Vietnam (DRV), though confronted by serious economic 
problems, will consolidate its control north of the 
17th parallel. The DRV army has increased in strength 
but will probably not attack Laos before mid-1956* 
Tactics are likely to include activation of guerrilla 
units in South Vietnam and their reinforcement by 
infiltration from the North. N1E 63.1-55, 3-9 J^ly 1955-..- 993 

261. The consequences of selected U.S. courses of action 
are estimated in the event of Viet Mirth aggression 
against South Vietnam, While overt aggression is 
unlikely, U.S. efforts at undertaking other steps 
to convince the Viet Minh that aggression will be 
met with intervention are expected to render overt 
aggression even Ipss likely. Failure to intervene 
however, could signal an expanded Com 1st Chinese 

effort in Asia. SHE 63. 1-4-55, 13 September 1955.... 997 


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262. The JCS assess the implications of U.S. military opera- 
tions to repulse and punish overt Viet Mirth aggression 
or to destroy Viet Minh forces and take control of 
North Vietnam in the event of renewed hostilities . 
Secretary of Defense Memorandum for NSC, 15 September 

19 5 5 • • • - • * * ■ .......... 

263- The State Department relates the political actions 

necessary under a deterrent strategy and in a situa- 
tion of overt Viet Minh aggression. In either situa- 
tion, the U.S. has to provide substantial economic 
assistance. State Department Draft Study, 6 October 

o . 




26k* The Staff Planners conclude that the successful defense 
of South Vietnam, Laos and Cambodia is wholly dependent 
on timely deployment of SEATO forces, an unlikely event, 
or on the use of nuclear weapons to reduce force require- 
ments. Other conclusions' and recommendations are made 
which deal with overt attacks, combating subversion, 
logistics, and psychological warfare. SEACDT Military 
Staff Planners Conference, l£ November 1955 102 ° 

26 5. Asian members of SEATO are pressuring for a "permanent 
SEATO Council and Military Staff organization." The 
U.S. position to avoid such a commitment is rapidly 
becoming untenable . The Asian signatories to SEACDT 
are losing faith in SEATO as a deterrent for communist 
expansion. ISA Memorandum, for Secretary of Navy, 
16 December 1955 . . . fl 10^3 

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266. ISA proposes a letter be sent to Secretary Dulles re- 
questing additional U.S. personnel be sent to Vietnam 
to protect against vast losses of MDAP equipment and 
to arrange x;ith the French for implementing the 
Collins-Ely agreement. Secretary of Defense Letter 

to Secretary of State, 31 January 1956. ••••••-•••••.•••« - 10h6 

267. The position of the government of South Vietnam is 
appreciably stronger than it was a year, or even six 
months ago. Hew crises are expected in 1956, in view 
of the CHICCM request for reconvening Geneva-, the 
absence of election prospects, and increased opposi- 
tion to Diem. Intelligence Brief No. I876, 7 February 
I956. . . . 

. . 


268. The President approves the statement on basic national 
security policy which has as its objective the preser- 
vation of U.S. security. The basic threat is posed by 
hostile policies and power of the Soviet -Communist 
Bloc; and the basic problem is to meet and reduce the 
threat without undermining the fundamental U.S. insti- 
tutions or economy, NSC 5602/1, 15 March 1956 ................ 1051 


26 9- The State Department informs Defense of the understand- 
ing that TERM personnel will perform functions of train- 
ing which are inseparable from tasks of recovering and 
maintaining KDAP equipment. Only formal approval by 
the ICC is necessary for the TE to arrive in Vietnam. 
State Letter to Secretary of Defense, 1 Kay 1956 1057 

2?0. The Army states its position on the Southeast Asia issue. 
Specifically, the U.S e should qualify its position with 
neutral nations, should allocate the major proportion of 
U.S. resources into economical and technical assistance, 
should assist indigenous forces to provide internal 
security, should prepare to intervene against aggression, 
and should oppose continuance of colonialism. Army 
Memorandum for NSC Planning Board, 20 June 1956. . • • . 1060 

271- The President approves U.S. military action to encourage 
Vietnamese military planning for defense against exter- 
nal aggression and to manifest other way£' to assist 
Vietnam to defend itself in accordance with the Manila 
Pact. Secretary of Defense Memorandum for JCS, 

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The intelligence estimate of the political, economic , 
and military situation in Vietnam through mld-1957 
concludes that: (l) DRV will not attempt an invasion 
of South Vietnam; (2) the trend toward stability in 
South Vietnam will continue barring invasion, guerrilla 
action, or death* of Diem; (3) basic economic progress 
will be slow; and (k) significant sect resistance has 
been eliminated, but 8-10,000 armed communists pose a 
serious internal security problem. WIE 63-56* 17 July 

The President approves NSC 5612 statement of U.S. policy 
In mainland Southeast Asia. This policy treats the Viet 
MInh as not constituting a legitimate government and 
sets forth actions to prevent the Viet Minh ,from expand- 
ing their political influence and territorial control 
in Free Vietnam and Southeast Asia. NSC 56l2/l, 
5 September 1956 . . . * 



The JCS recommend that the United States make no specific 

force commitments to the SEAT0, but that the Military 

Advisor inform SEAT0 nations of the U.S. forces deployed 

and available to the Pacific for contingency planning. 

JCS Memorandum for Secretary of Defense, 16 November 1956.... IO96 


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- — ■■- 

1957^1958 Page 


275- Defense urges the State Department to seek international 
concurrence in the abolition of the ceiling on KAAG per- 
sonnel in Vietnam in order to fulfill increased training 
requirements resulting from withdrawal of French train- 
ing missions. ISA Memorandum to State, 15 April 1957........ IO98 

276. Vietnam seems clfearly persuaded that its interests lie 
. in stronger affiliation with the Free World. The Army 
in Vietnam is now capable of insuring internal security. 
321st NSC Meeting, 12 May 1957 • * 1100 

277» The prospects for North Vietnam for the next year are 
estimated. Essentially, it is concluded that the DRV 
remains in firm control even though thez^e have been out- 
breaks of sporadic violence, that the DRV would attack 
only if Moscow and Peiping were sure that the U.S. would 
not intervene, and that the DRV will continue its tactics 
of "peaceful competition." NIE 63*2-57* ^ Kay 1957 HOI 

278. President Diem discusses his plans and programs with 
Deputy Secretary Donald Quarles. Among these are the 
resettlement programs, road building, the SEATO plan, 
and reorganizing the Army structure to include an in- 
crease in strength to 170,000. ISA Memorandum for 

Record, 15 May 1957 , 1103 

279. Progress is reported in developing a representative 
government in Vietnam, Executive leadership is strong 
but effective counter measures against non-violent 
Communist subversion remains a priority requirement. 

NSC Planning Board Meeting, 26 II ov ember 1957 1108 

280. The FSC considers a progress report on U.S. policy on 
mainland Southeast Asia (NSC 5612/1) which is essen- 
tially the sGme as the Planning Board report. 

3&7th NSC Meeting, 5 December 1957 • • I 111 

281. ftSC 5809 reaffirms that the national independence of 
Southeast Asia is important to the security interests 
of the United States. 1ZSC 5809 contains draft revi- 
sions of NSC p6l2/l. A statement of policy on the 
special situation in North Vietnam is included which 
continues to treat the Viet Minh as not constituting 

a legitimate government. ESC 5809, 2 Apiil 1958. . ." . . . . . 1113 

282* In general j the U.S. is achieving its objectives in 
Vietnam. Major problems which exist consist of the 
continued dependence on foreign aid, political and 
security problems of the Diem Government. Both mili- 
tary and economic assistance will be reduced in FY 58 
and FY 59; compared to FY 57- 0CB Report on Southeast 
Asia, 28 May 1958 . . . ' H3 1 * 


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Ml, - _ -- -■ 

1959 Page 

283- Draft editorial amendments of NSC 5^29/5 are forwarded 
to the National Security Council for consideration. 
Substantive change in U.S. policy is not intended but 
elimination of ambiguity in use of the term "hot pur- 
suit" where doctrinal meaning in international law 
conflicts with use in NSC 5^29/5- JCS study on "hot 
pursuit y " 23 October 1958, is included. Memorandum 
for the HSC , 5 January 1959 »•■•■•••• • • •. • * 11^8 

28!l-. Vietnam displays serious concern about developments in 

Laos 5 Cambodians recognition of Communist China , and the 
U.S. position in the Taiwan straits. Major problems 
facing the U.S. are Diem's internal political position, 
internal security, and economic development . CIA analy- 
sis and financial summaries of assistance programs to 
Southeast Asia are included. OCB Report on Southeast 
Asia, 7 January 1959 II56 

285. Defense (ISA) suggests that it is advisable to withhold 
the replacement of F-8F aircraft in VNAF with AD- 1 * type 
aircraft. Defense Memorandum for JCS, 22 January 1959 II83 

286. The JCS recommends imorovement of Tan Son Nhut Airfield 
and Tourane Airfield be improved for jet aircraft 
"under the guise of commercial aviation." JCS Memoran- 
dum for Secretary of Defense, 19 March 1959 • • * 1184 

28 7- Responsibilities within the Defense Department are 

assigned for the twenty courses of action in the OCB 
"Operation Plan for Vietnam." Among the courses of 
action are; popularize the image of Vietnam among 
neutralists, probe weaknesses of the Viet Cong, develop 
maximum combat, capabilities of RVNAF, and encourage GVH 
to maintain an effective Self-Defense Corps. ISA Memo- 
randum for JCSj 20 May 1959 • .•••••?••■•••••. « »• « II85 

288. An intelligence analysis of the situation in Vietnam and 
estimates of probable developments conclude that (l) the 
prospect of reunification of DEV and GV35 is remote, 
(2) Diera will be President for many years by repressing 
opposition via the Can Lao political apparatus, (3) in- 
ternal security forces will not be able to defeat DRV 
suppoi-ted guerrilla and subversive forces, (k) GVM will 
continue to rely heavily on U.S. aid, (5) and DRV is in 
full control of North Vietnam and likely to continue 
harassment of GVH and Laos. HIE 63-59 > 26 May 1959 . 1190 


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289. The Department of State submits a draft revision of NSC 
5^29/5, U.S. policy in the Far East. The principle 
objectives of U.S. policy- should be; (l) preservation 
of territorial and political integrity of Asian nations 
against communist expansion , (2) deterrence of local or 
general war, (3) bring about desirable changes in the 
Communist Bloc, (h) strengthen the economic, political 
and military position of the Free Far East, (5) promote 
Free World unity, and (6) identify the U.S. with Asian 
aspirations. NSC Memorandum for the Planning Board, 

29 June 1959 • • • • - ,...-..... . . . . 1196 

290. The JCS submits their and the Services 1 views on U.S. 
policy in the Far East. "The U.S. faces a delicate 
problem in presenting its Far Eastern policy to the 
world. A U.S. policy will not be very sympathetically 
received if it is presented in the purely negative 
terms of preventing communist expansion or the reduc- 
tion of its power." JCS Memorandum for NSC Staff, 

14 July 1959 *..* 1211 

291 . A resurgence of tensions between Vietnam and Cambodia 
threatens to frustrate U.S. objectives in Cambodia. 
In Vietnam the Diem Government continues its strong 
controls which antagonise the Vietnamese elite. 
"Vietnamese military forces have Improved under the 
MAAG training program." OCB Report on Southeast Asia, 

12 August 1959 ........". • 1236 

29 2. An intelligence analysis of Communist capabilities and 
intentions in Laos concludes that the Communist resump- 
tion of guerrilla warfare in Laos is a reaction to 
initiatives of U.S. support of Laos. The chances of 
Communist success are high at a low risk, II on-Asian 
forces Intervening in Laos increase the likelihood of 
Communist invasion, but preference would be to diplo- 
macy, propaganda, and guerrilla action to cause the 
West to back clown. SHIE 68-2-59> 18 September 1959 12^2 

293. The U.S. seeks to Increase the MAAG ceiling on per- 
sonnel before furnishing the ICC with plans for with- 
drawal or jhase-out of TERM. ISA lfemora*\dum for Joint 
Staff, 20 October I959. .... ..•,....,« * . 12^8 

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I960 Page 

29I+* The evolution of political conditions necessitates that 
policy guidance should be directed at the problem of 
dealing "with Sihanouk: of Cambodia, "by all odds the 
major single factor in Cambodia and the principal target 
of U.S. policy." . Further, the guidance of HSC 5809 is 
not adequate to cope with the situation in Laos. OCB 
Special Report on Southeast Asia, 10 February i960. . ». • . 12^9 

295* The Vietnam Country Team prepares a special report on 
the current security situation in Vietnam, "...the 
rural population is generally apathetic towards the Diem 
Government and there are signs of considerable dissatis- 
faction and silent opposition." Without support of the 
rural population, no final solution can be found to the 
internal security problem. Militarily, the GVN organi- 
zation lacks unity of command. The situation is summed 
up. "..the government has tended to treat the population 
with suspicion or to coerce it and has been rewarded 
with an attitude of apathy or resentment." Saigon 278 
to State, 7 March i960. . . 125^ 

296. Williams testified that he was working "MAAG out of a 
job" and this is impressive to Senator Mansfield and 
the Foreign Relations Committee. Mansfield requests 
information on the situation which now requires "the 
addition of 350 men to the MAAG." Mansfield Letter to 
Lt General Williams, 5 May i960 ....*•• 1276 

2$7* Williams replies that the 350 spaces referred to are the 
TERM personnel now in deactivation. The turnover of 
TERM spaces to MAAG ends the "subterfuge as actually 
TERM has had the undercover mission as logistical advi- 
sers since activation," Williams MAGCH-CH91 to OSD 
(for Mansfield) , 20 May i960. ■■• « • . 1279 

298* The President a oves changes in IISC 5809 and directs 
implementation as NSC 6012, "U.S. Policy in Mainland 
Southeast -Asia." Policies toward Vietnam are essen- 
tially unchanged. IISC 6012, 2p July i960 t . 128l 

299- Developments in South Vietnam indicate an adverse trend 
and if they remain unchecked will almost cert-i inly cause 
the collapse of President Diem's regime. SKIE 63-1-60, 
23 August i960 . , < . ...... . 1293 

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300. The U.S. assesses the possible coup groups in Saigon (e.g. 
peasants , communists, labor, students, Catholic refugees, 
sects, police and Army) and concludes that long term 
effects of iny demonstration depends on the attitude of 

the Army* Saigon 538 to State, 5 September i960. . . 1302 


301. Lansdale offers several proposals to meet the threat to 
security posed by the Viet Cong in Vietnam. Specifically, 
he recommends shifting the MAAG function emphasis to 
assistance on tactical operations, increasing the MAAG 
staff, priority be given to furnishing selective equipment, 
more emphasis on counter -guerrilla intelligence training, 
and certain actions on activities of the Civil Guard, 
civic action., and MAP requiring interagency coordination. 
Lansdale Memorandum for ISA, 13 September i960. ...... 1307 

302. The Diem regime is confronted by two separate, but related 
dangers -- a non- communistic coup attempt in Saigon and 
gradual Viet Cong extension of control in the countryside. 
U.S. objectives rest on a strongly anti-communist but 
popularly supported government: continued failures by 
Diem is cause to seek alternative leaders. Saigon 62^ to 

State, 16 September i960 1311 

303. The U.S. suggests numerous political actions to President 
Diern, among them are Cabinet changes, more responsibility 
for Cabinet members, alteration of the Can Lao Party from 
a secret organisation to a normal political party, in- 
vestigation of Government departments by the National 
Assembly, freer press functions, and measures to enhance 
the Government's support in rural areas. In addition, it 
is suggested that Ngo Dinh Nhu, the President's brother, 
be given an a2?*basssdorial post outside the country. 

Saigon 157 to State, 15 October i960 1317 

30.H. Diem's responses to the suggestions for political action 
and removal of IThu outwardly shovr no resentment. Saigon 
802 to Statej 15 October i960 . • . . ....... c e 1323 

305- The U.S. urges preparation of an over-all plan, accep- 
table to GVI7, for integration and centralized direction 
of maximum resources to combat the insurgency, BOD -State 
658 to Saigon, 19 October i960 .....< . . . . , 1325 

306. U.S. urges Diem and the coup leaders to reach a quick 
agreement and avoid further bloodshed. Herter 775 to 
Saigon, 11 Kovember i960 «, . . * . ...... . . , 1327 

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3O7. Lans&ale suggests that, in light of the abortive coup 
against Diem, General McGarr's role should be expanded 
to permit freer contact with President Diem.. Ambassa- 
dor Durbrow has apparently lost "personal stature" with 
Diem and should be removed. Lansdale Memorandum for 
Secretary of Defense, 11 November i960. . . .......... 1328 

308. Diem may react firmly toward the coup leaders since 

there are similarities to the circumstances of the 195^* 
attempt. Also Diem is probably now very suspicious of 
Ambassador Durbrow. State Cable 775 invited Durbrow to 
engage in this "demoralising meddling in Vietnam 1 s 
affairs." Lansdale Memorandum for Douglas, 15 November 


309- The JCS consider that there is a valid requirement to 
increase the helicopter lift capability of the Viet- I 
namese armed forces at this time, in view of the 

deteriorating internal security situation in Vietnam. 

JCS Memorandum for Secretary of Defense, 1 December i960...... 1332 ! 

310- Nhu and Diem are rankled by American press stories on 
"autocratic regime." There is below the surface taBc 
of another coup. The coup has increased chances of 
neutralism and anti-Americanism among GVB critics. 
It is recommended to continue to urge Diem to adopt 
effective programs even though the situation in Viet- 
nam is highly dangerous to U. S. interests. Saigon U51 
to State , 5 December i960 «..-.• . . , . . * . . ... . 133)4 

311. The U.S. assessment of the Laotian situation is that, 
if present trends continue, It will remain one of 
"confusion, drift, and disintegration. .. .Laos is head- 
ing toward civil war." SSIE 68-60, 6 December i960. ......... 13^0 

312. The Bon Ouin Government is in control, but faces criti- 
cal problems in the continuing Laos situation. iTcmied- 
iate matters of concern are to bolster Phoural forces, 
forestall Nehru on reconstituting the ICC, and assump- 
tion by the U.S. of primary advisor status. k'JOth NSC 
Meeting, 20 December i960. . . . » e . X3^6 

313. Diem stresses his need for 20,000 additicnal troops. 
Diem states also that corvee labor is the only way to 
collect "equivalent taxes" from peasants. Durbrow 
urges adoption of liberalizing programs. Saigon 1216 
to State, 2l* December i960. . . . * * ■ 13^8 

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3lA. Ambassador Durbrow hands a memorandum on liberalization 
to President Diem. Specif ically, suggestions are made 
to: (l) publicize budget heavings 3 (2) authorize the 
Assembly to conduct investigations, (3) v.ork out an effec< 
tive press code, (k) and grant broader credit to the pea- 

6^4- to State , 27 December i960 

sants. Saigon 




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Defense reviews its files to determine the actions taken 
with. State concerning Defense requirements for facilities 
in Vietnam, Laos, and Thailand, Ho requests for facili- 
ties in Laos or Vietnam have been made to State except for 
correspondence orf improvement of two airfields in Vietnam. 
ISA Memorandum for NSC, h January 1961. . . 

o • 

■ O fl 



The Counter Insurgency Plan (CIP) for South Vietnam is sub- 
mitted for approval to Washington, MAAG prepared most of 
the CIP which is based on State and DOD guidance* Some of 
the recommendations set forth have already been communi- 
cated to GVN. The Country Team is not unanimous, however, 
on the recommended 20,000-man increase in RVHAF — Durbrow 
maintains reservations. The CIP, which is an enclosure to 
Tele 276, is not reproduced here. Saigon 276 to State, 
1* January 1961 1357 

President Eisenhower meets with President-elect John F. 
Kennedy on the subject of Laos, Attendees are Dean Rusk, 
Robert McNamara, Douglas Dillon, and Clark M. Clifford. 
Eisenhower gives the impression that if Laos applies for 
SEATO aid, the obligation of the U.S. and other signa- 
tories is binding. Eisenhower says that "Laos is the key 
to the entire area of Southeast Asia" — if Laos falls, 
then all the area is written off. Kennedy asks "how long 
it would take to put a U.S. division into Laos." Memoran- 
dum of Eisenhower -Kennedy Conference, 19 January 1961... 

B ' • • « 



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* ■ 




uffiET : 





15 January 1953 




SUBJECT: Military Aid to Indo China 

Reference General Collins 1 remarks concerning military aid to 
Indo China at the Armed Forces Policy Council on 13 January 1953 * 
General Collins asked me to send you the attached copy of a letter 
villi ch he received on this subject from General Trapnell. 

1 Incl 

Cy Itr to Gen Collins 
fm Gen Trapnell dtd 
20 Dec 52 

<7)r, A 

Brigadier General, OS 
Secretary of the General Staff 








ft * 

i \ 






/ /.."/ 

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• ■ 


scfiUBiTi ia?3; aATiaa 


SAICOI! (V ictus t) 

20 Dec? bsr 1952 


* - 



Dear General Coll ins : % 

It became increasingly ev3 nt tcr my arrival in Inclo China and seeing 
the terrain j visiting the troops j and knowing the type of combat, that the most 
important and immediate need to the successful oorlclusion of the war in Indo 
China was more troops. Duri: the past year, the Viotj ssc Army has been 
organized as scheduled. ncr, most of these units have been activated by 

merely transferring; a&d re: ■■...! ng units in the Vietnamese Army which were already 
in being in the French Colonial Army. I am convinced that additional Vietnamese 
battalions, over and above the units approved for support by the Joint Chiefs of 
Staff, should be activated. 

In an informal conversation, the matter was discussed with General Salan 

who agreed to the need but felt that the cost of many additional battalions and 
the cadre require -s were beyond the capacity of France to support, but that 
a realistic number should be set up to be supported and trained. In order to 

have a clear picture of the requirements ., a study was made on the basis of an 
additional forty (40) battalions. 

In a short confercn writh General Alessandri, Military Advisor to His 
Majesty 3ao Dai, he stated that he recognised tl e immediate need for additional 
Vietnamese troops, emd lie explained to me his concept for the organisation of 
additional ba lions. Thcvse troops would be armed only with shoulder weapons, 
light machine guns* and B0-13M mortars and would be trained in maneuvers over 
mountai: s terrain, capable of finding and destroying the enemy in his own 
territory. Each battalion woul be carired with a minimum of seven (?) French 
officers and thirty (30) French non-commis officers. French cadres would 

be furnished as far as possible fro the Vietnamese battalia i already in being, 
but which y.rc at present '■ in V -- on r tie guard-duty basis, hilitary 

schools would bo expanded in order to permit the battalions ! e ready for a 
combat a: : t in her 3 ift. 

This is n ambitious program, but one which (if implemented) will most 
surely bring this war j "o ?. quicker end* There is no problem as to manpower 
availability. The e.quij nt required can be ntet by substitution of it al- 

ready scheduled for prog-ri u VY 1954 UDk Program) hov/cv-r, the big 

■ problem is ths moi ' i eessary for the pay, rations, and ii lividual equipTnent 
The French stp that this is bej r ond _: \ financial capacity of the Vietn 10 
Government cr Prance. ' ; rtimate for tl Iditional forty ('40) batta- 

lions i: ire (l£) billion Crane ent and seventy (70) billion 

froiics a j i r for i a tl : ;e. T' ; re ' i high in co | prison with our 

estimate, I ; it includes the construction cost for schools and barracks, 

as Well as pay, rations, a uniti'on, PCL, gird clothing. The French staff i 
now 6. ring up plans for this proposed expansion. 

■j . 

















saufftn !;:. 

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j k " r 

/ r Q \ 


The French Air Force in l"do China has been hampered by (l) a late delivery 
of KDAP prograinmed items and (-) a personnel ceiling imposed by Metropolitan 
France, which is well belov; that required to do an efficient job. The types and 
number of aircraft assigned are* in \ ineral, Satisfactory for support of ground 
actions. In the oi' airborne operations involving considerable number of 
troops, addition*!! airlift and personnel must be brought in for temporary periods. 
Since greater emphasis m.s been placed upon this theatre and a high supply priority 
established, the supply picture has improved considerably in the past three (3) 
months and shows every indication of being completely relieved in another three 
to six months. The personnel shortage, however, will remain and will continue 
to adversely affect operations. The French hove placed an arbitrary ceiling of 
10,000 air-force personnel for FIG and we believe this figure is about 5,000 short 
of that needed for efficient operations of the total number of aircraft currently 
assigned and employed* A conservative estimate indicates that the French Air 
Force could double its sortie rate with even a 33$ increase in personnel. 

In addition to the military problem there arc political, economic, and 
social considerations which must be solved* An extensive psychological v/ar 
program con and must be implemented. Also the French must change their tactical 
thinking from defensive action to one of vigorous offense. 

The Viet Minn laui i their winter offensive in Tonkin on 15 October 195?,, 

taking the French by surprise not only as to time (three weeks earlier than anti- 
cipated), but also as to the direction and objective. The cncir.y has consequently 
retail I the initiative ever since. However, operation LORRAINE (combined air* 
borne-ground maneuver), initiated by the French-Vietnamese forces on 10 Hovember, 
successfully cut off the Vict ilinh" divisions from ■ ir Chinese supply routes and 
overran substantial for, 1 supply dumps. On 26 November, the French withdrew 
their forces lack into th perimeter in order to rclrrse several Groups Mobile 
for action te cc teraot Vict Ninh infiltration in the southern part of the" 
Delta, Am convinced if the Fr h could have r hi in the PHU DCAII area and 
extended their operation to YJ22T BAY, the Viet Minh reaction would of necessity 
have he. to reverse the : Lneetior of their operations, engi the French in 
that area to clear their supply routes, v/it] the result that a decisive action 
would have resulted under e'oi favorable to '■'■• French-Vietnamese forces. 

General de Linares iiS 1-Lil to msJw o trip to Kord&j but both h 

and General Salan feel i * should ot 1: c at this tine* 


/s/ T J 3 TRARE] L 

T. J. E. * . ILL 

Br I ; ".lor Qz:< jral , USA 


General J. Lawtbn Colli 

Chief of 3 ' "United •' tcs An f 

Room 3-E-6G3 


Washington 25 , D. C. 





sceaum \\\\ a iuci 


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19 JAW 1953 


SUBJECT: Broadening the Participation of the United States 

in the Indochina Operation 

In the memorandum of 1^ November 1952 to the Secretary of 
Defense, concerning the Report of the Five Power Conference on 
Southeast Asia, the Joint Chiefs of Staff advised that, from a 
military viewpoint, it was desirable to aid the French to speed 
development of indigenous combat forces and to improve the 
supporting logistical and operating facilities. 

Since an effective French- supported offensive in Indochina 
has failed to materialize and a continued stalemate is indicated, 
the Joint Secretaries have been requested, by memorandum, to con- 
sider United States support of a material augmentation of Vietnam 
Forces in Indochina, A copy of this memorandum is attached. 

It is requested that the Joint Chiefs of Staff also undertake 
a reexamination of United States participation in the Indochina 
operation, giving special consideration to training of indigenous 
forces and maintenance of United States supplied equipment by 
United States personnel. 

(signed) William C. Foster 
Deputy Secretary of Bsf eii3e 

1 Attachment 

Memo to Joint Secretaries 
(copy) dtd 19 Jan at bottom 
of page 

cc: OISA 


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STATE OF THE UillOM ffBSA&C, EBB,, 2, 1953 • 


In this, general discussion of our foreign nolicy, I 
must make special mention of the war in Korea • 

This vrar is, for Americans, the mo&t painful phase 
of Communist aggression throughout the world. It is clearly 
a part of the sane calculated assault that the aggressor 
is simultaneously pressing in Indochina and in Halaya, 
and of the strategic situation that manifestly embraces 
the island of Fornosa and the Chinese Nationalist forces 
there • The working out of any military solution to the 
Korean War will inevitably affect all these areas* 


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751G.55395B/2-1053- To P Secret File 


Sent to: Amembassy SAIGON l6Mf February 2(J y l9$k Z$*)2J 

7 • *? 8 P M 

Question of whether US could assist French in train- 
ing of Vietnamese national levies has been examined from 
time to time. Conclusion reached generally negative be- 
cause of language problem and also because of French 

Nevertheless , it seems to us that French, Viets, ROKS i 
and ourselves could profit from exchange of experience in \ 
this field. 

I should therefore appreciate your viev; as to the / 
possibility of arranging for exchange of missions between * 
Korea and IC. Mission from IC could consist of French 
officers engaged in training national armies plus Viet f 
Cambodian and Laotian officer. Mission from Korea could 
consist of US officers plus one or more ROK officers. 
Idea would be that mission could examine training practices 
in other country with view to taking advantage useful 
features of experience in that country. Possibly after 
visits completed, two missions might have conference for 
purpose comparing notes and perhaps reaching certain con- 
clusions or formulating recommendations, 

If you think this idea presents possibilities, sug- 
gest you discuss it on informal and personal basis with 
Letourneau, Salan and perhaps Allard, and if they concur, 
with appropriate Vietnamese officials* Similarly, explora- 
tion will probably be conducted simultaneously with US and 
ROK officials in Korea. 

We believe that carrying out of this exchange of : 
training missions might produce not only concrete advantages 



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in training field but would also from point of view of 
French and Vietnamese have political and psychological 
advantages. We are not now in a position to make com- 





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A-117 to Saigon, March 5, 1953. 

February 2, 1953. France* 

Foreign Minister Bidault stated that the French 
Government considers there is one single problem to contend 
with, essentially the same in Europe, Africa, Asia and 
elsewhere, namely the problem occasioned by ooviet pressure. 
The basic element of French foreign policy is the determi- 
nation to maintain and reinforce the operation of NATO as 
an expression of the common will of the free world. He 
expressed his personal gratitude to the Secretary for the 
latter f s statement on his arrival giving credit to France 
for their contribution to the common cause in Indochina. 


Bidault reviewed the French contribution and manpower 
losses in Asia, recalled the erstwhile misunderstanding 
of the Indochina war as colonialist in nature, and ex- 
pressed gratification at the present 'belated 1 recogni- 
tion of the "conflict as part of the world-wide struggle e 
He made indirect reference to the deneutralisation of 
Formosa: 'Initiatives on the entire Asiatic continent 
should in the French, view be subject to joint discussions' 
since any such initiative could have immediate conse- 
quences for the French. China has no manpower problem, 
whereas France, which must meet pressures in Europe, Africa 
and Asia, is severely strained. He insisted that any US 
decisions bearing on China should be discussed with the 
French In view of their bearing on Indochina. 

The Secretary said that President Eisenhower also 
feels that Korea and Indochina are parts of a single 
front, which was brought out in the State -of -the Union 
message. He is the first US President to recognize this 
publicly, and if the French government desires, we would 
be prepared to discuss at a later date the possibility of 

action which might make successful conclusion of the 




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Indochina struggle more likely. As the President has 
suggested, there is room for closer understanding between 
nations that have major interests in Asia. At present j 
French, UK and US policies in that part of the world are 
not fully coordinated. (The Secretary then went into a 
detailed exposition of the thoughts underlying the de- 
neutralization of Formosa along the lines of the Presi- 
dent's message.) 


Returning to the Indochina problem, Bidault observed 
with some asperity. r I thank God and General Eisenhower 
that it took only six years to have France's contribution 
there recognized for what it is. 1 He politely suggested 
that the recall of the seventh Fleet constituted a matter 
for more than unilateral decision, since Chinese reaction 
could very well come in Indochina. He reiterated the 
French determination to go forward with the common de- 
fense effort and stressed the will of the French people 
to fight aggression* 

February h 7 1953 • United Kingdom 

Mr. Dulles said that while in p aris, M. Mayer said 
that some agreement should be reached to relieve France of 
some of her burden in Indochina in order to enable her to 
nlatch Germany on the Continent* _ iir* Dalle's told him that 
we would be prepared to discuss "this matter possibly during 
Hayer's forthcoming visit to VJashington. 

The mention of Indochina gave rise to an extended 
discussion of the subject, llr. Dulles pointed out that 
we are already carrying about one -third of the financial 
burden of the Indochina operation, and that we think 
that fchepe 'Is a possibility that if the French take the 
necessary steps the war there could be reduced to manage- 
able proportions within perhaps a year and a half, perhaps 
similar to the Huk situation in the Philippines. Mr. Dulles 



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said that there were two principal steps that the French 
might take. On the military side they would have to study 
and adapt to conditions in Indochina tne training methods 
such as we have used in building up the South Korean army 
and which have been outstandingly successful. Secondly, 
there would probably have to be political efforts to get 
native Viet Kam support and cooperation. 

Mr. Eden made two points: 1) He agreed that the 
French must have more troops and this means that they 
must train more Vietnamese. Lord Alexander agreed, although 
he expressed some doubt whether, despite training, the 
Vietnamese would turn out to be as good fighters as the 
Koreans. 2) Mr, Eden said that he suspected that the 
financial burden is the basic problem for the French in 



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- "4 



• ■ - - 


-. . . « * ,. a y 

13 March 1953 



Subject: Broadening the Participation of the 

United States in the Indochina Operation. 

1. The Joint Chief 3 of Staff have re-examined the problems 
of United States participation in the Indochina operation as 
requested by your memorandum dated 19 January 1953 > subject 

as above, and submit herewith their comments and recommendations 

2. The Joint Chiefs of Staff have considered broadening U.S. 
participation In the Indochina operation both from within and 
without the framework of the Mutual Defense Assistance program 
(MDAP) with a view toward speeding and improving the develop- 
ment of indigenous combat forces and supporting logistical and 
operating facilities. Special consideration has been" given * 
requested by your office, to the braining of indigenous forces 
and maintenance of U.S. supplied equipment by U.S. personnel. 




• * 

3. NSC 124/ 2 vrLjth regard to Indochina states in part that 
.we should use our influence with France and Associated 
States to promote positive political, military, economic and 
social policies," and "Continued recognition and carrying out 
by France of its primary responsibility for the defense of 
Indochina. 1 ' NSC 124/2 also states that . . . "Our influence 

th the French and Associated States should be designed to 
further those constructive political, economic and social 
measures which will tend to increase the stability of the 
Associated States and thus make it possible for the French 
to reduce the degree of their participation in the military, 
economic and political affairs of the Associated States." In 
keeping with the foregoing policy, the Joint Chiefs of Staff 
consider that actions to broaden U.S. participation in Indo- 
china would require sensitive selection and application to 
avoid any semblance of usurpation, of Frerch responsibilities 
and prerogatives. It Is anticipated that any attempt by the 
United States to Intrude in the French military responsibili- 
ties in Indochina would be strongly resisted, but t the U.S. 








I '.,:i 

-, " 

■ ' i 

ity ir«?£aaiAnoN 

i 5 s ,: 

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'V r,***-'* 

2 ' i\ *'* i ' 

should seek bo Impress upon the French the necessity and desir- 
ability of granting the Associated States ever-increasing re- 
sponsibilities with respect to expansion of their economic , 
political and military potentialities. 

4. The U.S. Ambassador to Indochina has reported that the 
French and Vietnamese are in general agreement on the necessity 
of expanding the Vietnamese Army by some 57 light battalions 
Involving approximately 40,000 troops. The details on financing 
and the degree of autonomy and military responsibility to be 
allowed the Vietnamese Army have yet to be decided. It is en- 
visaged that these additional battalions will provide the 
Franco -Vietnamese forces with sufficient strength to under t alee 
effective offensive action in Vie tminh -held territory. It is the 
opinion of the Joint Chiefs of Staff that this augmentation of 
the Vietnamese Army 13 one of the most important and feasible 
actions that can be taken to Improve the situation in Indochina 
and that United States support of the program should be under- 
taken as necessary upon receipt of definite planning data from 
the French. 

5. The addition of another squadron of transport aircraft 
would materially aid offensive operations by providing increased 
troop-carrier and supply support capabilities. 

6. The report of the ad hoc committee, formed in accordance 
with your memorandum for the Joint Secretaries dated 19 January 
1953 and which considered the foregoing projects has a final 

"The final determination of the feasibility of imple- 
mentation of the augmentation of Vietnamese forces cannot 
be accomplished until receipt of a concrete proposal from 
the French Government. 11 

The Joint Chiefs of Staff consider that the French should be 
encouraged to expedite the submission of such proposals in order 
that the United S f *.es may take steps to provide such aid as may 
be deemed appropriate. In this connection the Joint Chiefs of 
Staff indicated in a memorandum for you, dated 11 February 
1953* that plans now under consideration to expand the Republic 
of Korea Army may introduce some competing requii tents, pri- 
marily In non -critical items. However, certain ammunition 
requirements cojld be both critical and competing. 

7. The Joint Chiefs of Staff consider that the augmentation 
mentioned above should be energetically prosecuted and finan- 
cially supported in order that the Franco-Vietnamese forces will 
be able to under talc e offensive operations during the 1953-54 



: - 

1 r " 1 



Declassified per Executive Order 13526, Section 33 
NND Project Number: NND 63316. By: NWD Date: 201 1 

Fran cpreno 

8. In view of their experience and the language difficulties 
involved j it is considered that the French are better qualified 
to conduct the training of the indigenous forces than United 
States personnel would be. However, It Is believed that the 
French ml^ht profit by applying some of the methods the United 
State3 fotxies In Korea are using in training Republics of Korea 
troops and officers. In this connection the Commander in Chief 
Far East (CIIJCFK)* and General Juin have agreed to exchange 
French arid Vietnam officers from Indochina to Korea, and Korean 
Military Advisory Group (KMAG) personnel to Indochina. Accord- 
ingly , there appears to be no need for further United States 
participation In the training of the Vietnamese forces unless 
specifically invited. 

9. The formation of effective Vietnamese forces is handicapped 
by deficient Vietnamese incentive and lack of qualified Indi- 
genous military leadership. Consequently the French should be 
given encouragement to grant Vietnamese forces more military 
autonomy and to train Indigenous officers to assume more respon- 
sibility for control of local forces. 

10. Although the U.S. Air Force has recently assigned some 
aircraft maintenance crews, on a temporary basis, to help the 
French overcome a critical period in their aircraft operations, 
it is considered that the French have the ability and can pro- 
vide the personnel which would permit maximum utilization of 
their aircraft. Current practice provides for Military Assist- 
ance Advisory Group (IIAAG) to obtain the aid of special technical 
croups from the U.S. Services whenever there Is a need to in- 
struct the French "in the maintenance and operation of United 
States supplied equipment. This type of as Lstance is deemed 
adequate to meet current maintenance requirements. 

11. In studying possible courses of action to be taken in the 
defense of Indochina, the inadequate port facilities at Haiphong 
and air facilities in the Hanoi area have been pointed up i g 
major items in restricting the support of military operations , 
The Chief, FiAAG, Indochina, has mentioned that the movement of 
supplies into the delta could be speeded by two or three months 
if Haiphong were able to receive and unload deep-draft vessels. 
The air depot at Bien Hoa is In particular need of expansion in 
order to accelerate air shipments. The improvement of the port 
and air facilities would not only provide impetus to military 
operations, but* would benefit the economic status of Vietnam. 
Such improvement could be mcAe with U.S. monetary and material 
aid, but Jn order to avoid possible Chinese reaction, signifi- 
cant numbers of U.S. personnel should not be utilised. 

, , f -i ■ , - - - • . -i 

f }h 



Declassified per Executive Order 13526, Section 3.3 
NND Project Number: NND 63316. By: NWD Date: 201 1 

12. In a letter to the Chief of Staff, U.S. Army, dated 20 
December 1952 , the Chief, MAAG, Indochina stated that the 
shortage of French Air Force personnel ha3 had considerable 
adverse effect on operations. He mentioned that, as a con- 
servative estimate, the sortie rate could be doubled if the 
personnel strength were increased by one-third. The U.S. 
Ambassador to Indochina and the U.S. Consul, Hanoi, have both 
reported that French" officials in Indochina will press for an 
increase in the air force personnel celling for Indochina. 

It is believed the French should be encouraged through diplo- 
matic channels to increase the Indochina air force ceiling. 

13. Active combat participation by the United States in the 
Indochina operation is not favored In view of the capability 
of France and the Associated States to provide adequate forces 
therefor, and present United States* world-wide military commit- 

14. However, in order to provide impetus and support to the 
military operations in Indochina, it Is recommended that: 

a. The French Government be encouraged to take early 
action to augment the Vietnamese forces and Increase their 
air force personnel strength in Indochina. 


b, Steps be taken to Improve the port and air facilities 
in the Tonkin Delta area as early as practicable. 

c_. The United States furnish material and financial 
support to assist in accomplishment of a. and b above upon 
receipt of a definite program from the French., vj 

d. The United States give serious consideration* to 
utilizing this Increased support to impress upon the French 
the necessity and desirability for granting the Associated 
States more responsibility with respect to expansion of 
their economic and political potentials, and to granting ■ 
more autonomy to Vietnamese military forces. J 

For the Joint Chiefs of Staff; 

:v •- 2 ■ - c - 

"" Chief of Staff j U.S. Army. 


i : ' ' ' 


Declassified per Executive Order 13526, Section 3.3 
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751G. 5/3-1953: Secret File 


SENT TO: Amemljassy PARIS 1*907 March 19, 1953 

Recent Paris working-level discissions added sub- 
stantially to our factual background on Indochina 4 
Please express to Foreign llinister my appreciation for 
cooperation all concerned • Also take early opportunity 
discuss informally on my behalf with Mayer or Bidault 
forthcoming conversations along following general lines: 

QTE Secretary Acheson in December 1952 and I last 
month have discussed with our French colleagues the 
Indochina situation. On both occasions we received indica 
tions French Government was planning to request US GOVT to 
increase already considerable share of financial burden 
of the struggle which it is now bearing. I assume that 
when Mayer, Bidault and Letourneau come to Washington 
they will furnish further particulars regarding French 
Government's plans and resulting requirements. It may 
be helpful to them in formulating their position to ex- 
press to them informally some of considerations involved 
not only in matter of additional aid but also in continu- 
ation American assistance at present substantial level* 
Considerations are: 

First, Government and people of US are fully aware 
of importance -to free world of war being waged in Indo- 
china by armies of France and Associated States. They 
appreciate sacrifices which have been and are being made 
and degree to which Communist plans have been thwarted by 
magnificent defense carried out in Indochina against 
Communist aggression. 

Second, we envisage Indochina situation with real 
sense of urgency. V/e believe continued military stale- 
mate will produce most undesirable political consequences 
in Indochina, France and U.S. Therefore, we heartily 
agree that -considerable increased effort having as its aim 
liquidation principal regular enemy forces within period 
of, say, twenty-four months is essential, ufe obviously 




Declassified per Executive Order 13526, Section 33 
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751G. 5/3-1953 

do not wish share Franco-Vietnamese responsibility for 
conduct operations. However, if interested Departments 
this Government are to urge Congress to make necessary- 
appropriations for Indochina for FY $k f those Departments 
must be convinced that necessarily top secret strategic 
plans for Indochina are sound and can be and will be 
aggressively and energetically prosecuted. 

Third, I share concern frequently expressed In French 
circles regarding adequacy of the financial contribution 
to prosecution of war derived from residents of the 
Associated States including French businessmen, Uhile I 
welcome increased Vietnamese Government contribution re- 
cently made, I believe there is ground for thoroughgoing 
re-examination this problem into which balance of payment 
and rate of exchange considerations enter and which of 
course is of interest to us in its bearing upon the need 
for US aid. 

Fourth, I look forward to opportunity talking with 
my French colleagues on question of free world policy in 
Far East as whole and particularly the policies which we 
should adopt in order to discourage further Chinese 
Communist aggression. I hope to reach agreement that 
speedy defeat of Viet Minh forces in Indochina would 
deter rather than provoke Chinese Communist aggression In 
Tonkin since it would be a clear indication of our joint 

determination to meet force with effective force. 


Fifth, I should appreciate receiving any views : 
which my French friends may care to convey regarding re- 
lations between the US and the Associated States of 
Indochina and particularly regarding participation by 
latter in discussions of military and economic policy 
and in reception of US aid. END QUOTE 

Please handle on strictly oral basis and let me have 
reaction. The specified points are designed to be explora- 
tory; I would welcome any ideas French may wish to convey 
on these or other topics prior to our conversations , 




Declassified per Executive Order 13526, Section 33 
NND Project Number: NND 63316. By: NWD Date: 201 1 



Outgoing Telegram 1953 Mar 26 

Department of State FM 7 39 

TO: Amembassjr PARIS U992 



Re EDO President stressed major importance attached thereto 
both by American people and himself. EDC vital not only because it 
provides best means obtain German contribution without which no 
real defense of Europe can be undertaken but also because it pro- 
vides means for eventual European viability, also impossible 
keep Germany much longer under occupation status* 

President declared that EDC so important in American eyes 
that American people would not support aid to France if they 
vere given impression that France resorting to dilatory tactics 
in order to postpone ratification this vital development. 
Therefore when setting forth any conditions precedent to 
ratification French must be very careful to point out why 
these conditions are in fact vital to France and not inconsequen- 
tial details or obstructionist moves. 

Concerning Indochina President expressed full American 
sympathy for valiant French struggle as part of over-all fight 
against Communist aggression. 

He recognized this struggle not just another colonial - 
var but advised French to make this very clear as many Ameri- 
cans still under misapprehension. President expressed great 
American interest in French program leading to solution of 
Indochina problem making clear that he was -»ot talking in terms 
of a complete victory. However requests fcr further American 
assistance could not be considered without full knowledge 
of French political and military plans permitting US Government 
to see why its assistance was required and how it would be used* 
President expressed great interest in measures being taken by 
French to obtain greatest possible support by local populations 
through convincing them they were fighting their own war for 
their own independence. 



Declassified per Executive Order 13526, Section 3.3 
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Re Indochlha %yer started by referring to NAC Resolution 
December 1952 re QTE continuing aid UNQTE from NATO Governments, 
He said French political and military plans would be communicated^ 
to us later during the talks . Meanwhile he stressed his full 
agreement with President that the task was two-fold: militarily. 
Associated Stages Armies had to be developed for victory and for 
internal pacification. Politically it was necessary to develop 
popular basis for national governments to protect them from 
eventual take-over by Vietrainh forces, Uhile expressing the 
greatest interest in Gen Clark's report following visit to 
Indochina Mayer was careful to point out differences between 
Korea find Indochina. 

Le Tourneau said that details of recent Dalat agreements 
would be given to us later but that in meanwhile he can say 
that these will permit presentation of a Franco-Vietnamese 
plan which should lead within two years to reduction of Vietminh 
to a negligible factor in Indochina if no material increase in - 
Chinese or Soviet aid in meanwhile. LeTourneau expressed confi- 
dence that popular support for local governments was increasing 
day by day, pointing to success of January elections in Vietnam, 
to fact that much more officer material is now available for 
National Armies and that all enlisted men needed under present 
financial limitations were available on volunteer basis m Fi- 
nally he expressed confidence that local populations supported 
local governments more vigorously now that Vietminh was clearly 
recognized as the agent not only of Communism but also of tradi- 
tional Chinese enemy. 





Declassified per Executive Order 13526, Section 3.3 
NND Project Number: NND 63316* By: NWD Date: 201 1 


1953 Mar 27 
FM 5 ^5 


Sent to Amembassy PARI3--5Q01 

French delegation met with Secretary, Secretary Of Treasury, 
Director Mutual Security (Defense represented by Assistant 
Secretary Nash) for three hours yesterday afternoon. Ambassadors 
Cambodia and Vietnam attended initial portion session devoted 
general expose Indochina situation. Following their departure 
further discussion Indochina problem took place and Secretary 
also replied to points made by Mayer to President during morning 
but which latter had not repeat not had time answer , . .« 


Mayer in introducing Letourneau made it clear Vietnam and 
Cambodia independent states and their peoples fighting maintain 
their freedom. Letourneau stressed French interest in creating 
strong free states Indochina that would later not repeat not 
looe through political weakness what they had gained militarily. 
He also highlighted importance recent "Dalat decisions" pro- 
viding increased Vietnamese financial effort and creation 5^ 
new Vietnamese battalions comprising i;0,000 men. .♦. While 
he could not repeat not promise complete victory he believed 
implementation this plan which is reasonable and practical 
would result in breaking back VietmirJi in 2h months. Finally 
he §tated his conviction true Vietnamese nationalism resided 
Bao Dai and his government and supporters and not repeat not 
Vietminh who were Soviet-controlled. 

Cambodian and Vietnamese Ambassadors m?.de brief remarks. 
Secretary concluded this portion meeting reiterating our realiza- 
tion this was common war which while now restricted Korea and 
Indochina, might break out anywhere. He expressed hope for 
program commensurate with peMl which we realized might call for 
additional assistance our part. He concluded such assistance 
depended on mapy factors most important was whether plan France 
and Associated States was practical. 



Declassified per Executive Order 13526, Section 3.3 
NND Project Number: NND 63316. By: NWD Date: 201 1 


After departure Associated States Ambassadors Secretary 
6tated we understood French feeling tiredness in Indochina 
after seven years warfare but expressed conviction feeling 
would evaporate in face of positive constructive program and 
concluded we must not repeat not be immobilized by fear, 

Mayer and let our near posed questions what we would do 
event Chinese Communist offensive Indochina and if we didn't 
think Korean armistice might cause considerable risk Chinese 
attack Indochina, Secretary said he thought Chinese Communist 
attack unlikely because they realize would start chain disasters 
far outweighing any possible gains and while there no repeat no 
question land invasion of China, vista of trouble through sea 
and air attack would be strong deterrent to them, Nash stated 
recent talks on five-power ccoperation Southeast Asia had made 
considerable progress and mentioned forthcoming meeting Honolulu 
where five-power talks would continue on invitation Admiral 
Radford, Secretary agreed might be necessary for military reasons 
talks about what we would do in event evacuation but concluded 
firmly he convinced there would be no repeat no evacuation. He 
also noted, in unlikely event Korean armistice, that if Chinese 
obviously simply concluded such arrangement order transport 
troops attack Indochina, armistice would have automatically 
failed purpose, Finally he referred to integral connection 
two ware as contained President's State Union Message, 





Declassified per Executive Order 13526, Section 3.3 
NND Project Number: NND 63316. By: NWD Date: 201 1 


Outgoing Telegram 

Department of State 1953 Iter 30 

FM 7 **5 

Sent to: Ambmbassy PARIS 50U0 

Reference to Indo-China, President said of course we 
were intent upon doing nothing which in any way might in- 
crease France f s difficulties there . Instead we wanted to 
help. As matter of fact, statement was now being prepared 
within US Government concerning Far East, and Indo-China and - 
Korea would "be linked therein* President added that US repre- 
sentatives had been somewhat disappointed in plan which had 
been outlined by Mr, Letourneau at Pentagon on March 27 a.m., 
particularly by slowness of its time-table. Ee wanted to make 
clear, however, that while there was no US commitment to support 
this plan likewise there had been no US JpsJc^al *° c ^° s0 * Plan 
required more careful study and president noted that this should 
be possible as Mr. Letourneau was planning to stay until March 31 

Re Indo-China plan, Mayer said concerning slowness of its tlasfc 
timetable that while raising forces takes time it might perhaps 
be possible to accelerate. this even if human factors involved 
might lead to somewhat lower quality of forces. However perhaps 
more difficult is fact that there exists as yet no agreement 
concerning military requirements. Mayer euggested that elabora- 
tion of this plan could be completed in Saigon with participation 
of Us officers which Pentagon might care to send there for this 
purpose atd that this aspect of problem could thus be covered 
by further discussions between military technicians. 


President said that US technicians will he glad to cooperate 
with French along ahove lines. 




Declassified per Executive Order 13526, Section 3.3 
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751G.5A-753* Top Secret File 

SEFT TO: Amembassy SAIGON 1967 April 7, 1953 

During French talks V/ashington March 27-31 > Letourneau 
outlined strategic concept military operations Indochina 
looking toward substantial defeat of organized enemy forces 
by first half 1955* Basis is augmentation national Armies 
Associated States during calendar years 53-55 so as to 
relieve French Union and Vietnamese regulars now tied 
down in static defense duties and increase mobile reserves 
for offensive operations against enemy regular forces in 
North. Details will be pouched. 3rief resumd follows: 

Calenda r year f 5^ : No change over h 0,000 man increase 
already announced. End items from presently programmed 
FY 53 MDAP. 


Calend ar year ' *& ; Additional 57,000 Viet-Kam; 
Cambodia-Laos 6,650. Additional end item equipment 
US above regular program estimated cost $81 million. 
French and Associated States fiscal contribution at same 
rate calendar ? 53 would leave deficit approximately 
$231 million. 

Calen dar yea r !E > 5* Viet-Nam 23,000; Cambodia-Laos 
2,000, Equipment from US at cost $10 million. Fiscal 
deficit approximately $299*3 million. 

All above in addition QTE regular UIIQTE eight di- 
vision program for Viet-Nasi and comparable Cambodian-Laos 
programs. No formal request that US assume deficits for 
1 $h and '55 but French intent clear that is their plan. 
Program will be studied further by Department and Defense. 






Declassified per Executive Order 13526, Section 3.3 
NND Project Number: NND 63316. By: NWD Date: 201 1 

Address by the President 1 
White House press release dated April 16 

Now a new leadership has assumed power in the Soviet 
Union, Its links to the past, however strong, cannot 
bind it completely . Its future is, in great part, its 
own to make. 

..•a world that begins to witness the rebirth of 
trust among nations can find its way to a peace that is 
neither partial nor punitive. 

With all who will work in good faith toward such 
a peace, we are ready, with renewed resolve, to strive 
to redeem the near-lost hopes of our day. 

The first great step along this way must be the 
conclusion of an honorable armistice in Korea. 

This means the immediate cessation of hostilities 
and the prompt initiation of political discussions 
leading tc the holding of free elections in a united Korea 

It should mean, no less importantly, an end to the 
direct and indirect attacks upon the security of Indo- 
china and Malaya- For any armistice in Korea that merely 
released aggressive armies to attack elsewhere would 
be a fraud* 

We seek, throughout Asia as throughout the world, 
a peace that is true and total. 

Out of this can grow a still wider task — the 
achieving of just political settlements for the other 
serious and specific issues between the free world 
and the Soviet Union. 

Hade before the American Society of Newspaper Edi- 
tors and broadcast to the Nation over radio and television 
networks on Apr. 16. . . . /Department of State Bulletin , 
Apr* 27, 1953, pp. 599*and~ToT77 " 


Declassified per Executive Order 13526, Section 3.3 
NND Project Number; NND 633 16. By: NWD Date: 201 1 


* -:, 

: ;?. 

^ w 





.1 April 1953 

-vt. S] J. HAS StiiM 


Subject: Proposed French Strategic Plan for the 

Successful Conclusion of he far in Indochina. 

1. With reference bo your nteffiorandum, dated 2 April 1953 3 
subject- as above, the Joint Chiefs .of Staff have considered the 
proposed French plan for concluding the war in Indochina and 
submit herewith their comments (Appendix) and recommendations. 
The Joint Chiefs of Staff point out that "the French plan was 
not presented in writing. The present knowledge of this plan 
is limited to that obtained through the minutes of oral presen- 
tations by M, Lefcourneau and General Allard, supplemented by 
questions related thereto during subsequent discussions. 

2, While the French plan as presentee was lacking in detail 3 
certain weaknesses are indicated which are summarized briefly 
as follows: 



a. It does not appear 1 to be sufficiently aggressive, 

b. Excessive effort appears to be devoted to cleaning 

up Vict Minh pockets without sufficient consideration being 
given to cut tin;; the enemy's supply lines,, particularly in 
Northern Indochina, 

c_. It ar rs that insufficient smphacis is given to 
placing of responsibility in the hands of the Vietnamese 
and the training of 1 tir: ror. 

dL The plan 
operations . 

appears to rely extensively on small-unit 

While the Joint Chiefs of Staff const* ■ thai French plan 
could be improved in li/ht of the fore ;ou-r; c nt.s f tie 
feel that th< plan Is wqrkabl . Further, th - Joint Chiefs 
of Staff a;;ree that an mentation of Vietnamese forces will 
be necessary in ord to bring the conflict in Indochina to 
a successful conclusion. 


D *,/* 
















Co:. 1 ., $0. 

6~*X± u 

Declassified per Executive Order 13526, Section 3.3 
NND Project Number: NND 63316, By: NWD Date: 2011 


3. In connection with fchc foregoing and the comments set 
forth in paragraphs 8 and 9 of the Appendix hereto, attention is 
Invited to the followinj pertinent documents which are attached 
as Anne: -s hereto : 

a. A dispatch received front the CI Lef, Military Assistance 
Advisory Group (.Indochina) (DA III 257701) (Annex "A"}; 

b. Dispatches requesting; General Clark's views on the 

strategic situation in tdoehina 
his initial views (DA li: 251110) 
views (DA IN 2 r 11) (Anne:-: n D i: ); 
felons (DA IK 250870) (Annex ,r E n ). 

DA 93^587) (Annex l! B M )j 
Annex "C' : ); his modified 
and his final re commend a 

c_. A dispatch received from Admiral Radford expressing 
his views on the strategic situation in Indochina (260315Z) 


P M )q 

It will he noted that General Clark's views are somewhat more 
optimistic than those expressed in this memorandum. This may 
be due in part to the fact that General Clark's views are 
probably based almost entirely on Information acquired during 
his brief visit to Indochina. 

k. While reserving further opinion as to the merits of the 
French plan, the Joint Chiefs of Staff recommend that the pro- 
posed augmentation of forces in Indochina be supported subject 
to the following-: 


a. There will be no compensating reduction \n over-all 
U.S. armed forces because of fiscal limitations. 

b. Thcr specific requests for IKS. support uill be processed 
throu h nor 1 c aim Is for screening of force requirements 
and scale and t;e i of equipment. 

c. France and the Associated States will contribute 
the maximum extent of their capabilities. 



d. The additional financial support beyond that for MDAP 
requirements necessary to assure the successful execution of 
the plan will be made available by the United States from 
other than Ik 8. military or IEDAI funds. 

o. Ko financial c mitment will be made to France until: 

> i - •♦ ft ■ li 


Declassified per Executive Order 13526, Section 3.3 
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(1) The cost of the program can be considered in rc- 
lat m to all other MDA needs; and 

(2) A elects:] n lias been made fc a >plze addin 3 w 
r»c<ii Lrements goj irat >y the Fi^eneh plan to the regular 
HD&] for FX 3 ►*! (as - t senJ fch3 militate depa oieht 
to the Office _i the Secretary of Defense and the Bureau 
of the Budget* In the PY 195*f Special Bud jet Review)., and 



MDA Programs subsequent to FY 195^. 

5. The Joint Chiefs of Staff feel that as much pressure* as is 
feasible should be placed on the French from a political point 

of viev; to obtain a clear-cat commitment to: 

a. Modernize training methods; 

b. Prosecute 
and vigor; 

the proposed plan with redoubled determination 

£. Exp " the transfer of res] Dnsibilitj to the Covorn- 
mont of the Associated States and accelerate the rate of 
training of indJ nous forces with smphasis en leadership 

d. Intensify efforts to cut enemy supply lines ; 

effect ! ve steps 

U;-~. - a V- e km : : sSC 

initiative from the Viet hh:h and take more 
insure that recaptured ar s are retained 
. mfcrol; and 

f. Utilize mor itensivclj^ 
] ar:*;er than battc J Lens. 

V J 

aher p] v -' c, units 

In connection * h th reqt Lr mi fat" im ?ov .at in trail 
methods, She Unit 1 Jtafc a • uid 1 i LlliJ ; to furnish such 
specialized assistance as ma; .-.■ lesired by the French^ ^ 


For Joint Chi ?fs of Staff: 





Hear /id: tiral, U.3. ] ' (Rot. ), 

Sec; ,r; . , 


-•are; and Annexe : A : tu i' : 


Declassified per Executive Order 13526, Section 3.3 
NND Project Number: NND 633 16. By: NWD Date: 201 1 

Security Information 

First Session— April 22, 19337TO0" pVmT^uai d ! 0rsay 

Present: French --.MM. Bidault, Pleven, Bourges-Maunoury, 

Letourneau, Maurice Schumann, Alphand 
and adviser 

* » 


Messrs. Dulles, Wilson, Humphrey, 
Stassen, Dillon, Draper and advisers. 

The Secretary believed continuance of substantial 
economic aid to France will have to take the form of 
assistance to the prosecution of the Indochina war 
under some kind of program which our military people can 
tell our Congress seems to make sense and holds promise 
of a satisfactory outcome, perhaps in a couple of years. 

The JCS had reported that the reaction from French 
visits to Korea was not very satisfactory, that nothing 
vie were doing there could be used. We were not surprised 
about that initial reaction because it took our own 
people in Korea a very long time to realize the capabilities 
of the South Koreans. There is a tendency to minimize 
those capabilities. The problem is to some extent politi- 
cal as well as military. For Instance, while decisions 
at a high level are taken in Paris regarding the Associated 
States, implementation or interpretation in the local 
light may be in a different spirit, in a community which 
has so 'long been in colonial status and where certain 
relations have been established between white and 
colored people. For instance, social relations may 
be lacking and some people not admitted to certain clubs. 
As far as implementating those decisions in the field 
is concerned, and the relations with the local people, 
we realize that we have a similar problem in our south 
for which we h3ve not always found a solution. 

Copy held in 3/S-R 

Security Information 


Declassified per Executive Order 13526, Section 3.3 
NND Project Number: NND 63316. By: NWD Date: 2011 


Security Information 

It is not easy, but before the U.S., can give any 
commitment even as far as the Executive is concerned, 
♦ we would like to feel that we have answers, or at least 
observations a) allowing us to picture our help honorably 
and fairly as not merely economic aid but as aid which 
has a particular purpose, and b) constituting a program 
which we could say from the political standpoint is one 
which has a fair chance of success in changing the rather 
gloomy aspect of the affair at the present time. With 
a program for Indochina on a joint political-military 
basis it is possible to get our Congress to make a sub- 
stantial contribution. Our ov/n Congress is desperately 
anxious to reduce taxes. Taxes are being cut in Britain 
and in Canada and everybody says we should do the same. 
Cutting down governmental income means a still larger 
deficit. Any further aid must therefore be presented in 
an extremely effective and appealing way to get it 
through. There is a realization of the critically important 
role that the French play. "You help us to help you." 
We have explained ways in which that could be done. 

MR. WILSON said that we notice in Korea that by 
training the Koreans we give them confidence and faith, 
a feeling of unity and competence that they can go on 
their own, that really gets the people together. Also, 
he was sure the French look forward to the day when it 
will not be necessary to have so many troops from France 
over there. He thought the French wanted them to be 
strong enough to keep the country free and be part of 
the spirit of French influence but did not want to have 
French * troops there forever In large numbers. If those 
people can strengthen themselves they cannot only meet 
emergency but also take care of themselves. 

M. LETOURNEAU recalled the time he had spent at 
the Pentagon to explain the program and the conditions 
for its realization. He had said at that time that 
one cannot seriously doubt — even though It is being 
done -- the will of France as regards the freedom of 
Vietnam and the constitution of national armies since 
they had been doing it for three years. The plan has 

Security Information 

•-. — c. I 


Declassified per Executive Order 13526, Section 3,3 
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Security Information 

been pushed so that French troops can be reduced but 
also to get the states themselves to develop a national 
sentiment that will allow them to face local difficulties 
as soon as possible-. Complete withdrawal of the French 
is not involved. ' General Clark, when he came to Korea, 
was very proud of his Korean army but said that if the 
U.S. left Korea it would all disappear. Therefore, he 
wished to maintain the U.S. effort in Korea just like 
the French in Indochina. It is true that the Laotian 
affair involves a singular aggravation. An operational 
plan had been given to the Pentagon, including certain 
inevitable risks. Within 2-1/2 years, as President 
Eisenhower has said, it would allow us to arrive at 
a situation where the picture would be reversed al- 
though it would not mean complete victory. That plan is 
essentially based on the development of national armies* 
It requires for its solution finances, cadres and rapid 
training of units. 

The French missions which have been received in Korea 
were very useful. Marshal Juin himself has brought back 
information that the French propose to use in the formation 
of the Vietnam army. But the problem is not the same 
in Indochina as in Korea. The problems facing the two 
armies are not comparable, but some lessons can be 

M. LETOURNEAU did not believe that Saigon head- 
quarters can be fairly accused of not entirely applying 
the political policies of Paris. The French have no 
reason *to fear that the Vietnam government would be more 
demanding when they have an army. Their exigencies are 
not worrisome since the Vietnam government cannot pursue 
any other policy. He said he had not many ways of 
showing good faith and the good faith of his subordinates 
except perhaps to submit to a lie detector, whiclP'would 
not be customary. As to racial discrimination, the 
question of clubs, the problem has never arisen In Indo- 
china as in other colonies because there has always 
been close touch between local and French families. The 
problem arises even less now that there is a Vietnamese 


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"Security Information 

government. There may be individual cases, but one can- 
not draw conclusions from them about the good faith of 
the French. The French generals are not more stupid 
than other generals, and they want victories and know 
that their only hope are the native armies, and the key 
to that is confidence in and fairness to the Vietnamese, 

He had the feeling that the operational plan discussed 
in Washington seemed convincing to the people he saw 
there and that not much else could be done. The solution 
seemed reasonable and if the plan were put into effect 
the only problem would be financial. It was felt that 
Congress would find it acceptable. It remains capable 
of execution even today, The Laos affair is unpleasant 
but it should not interfere with the development of the 
Vietnamese forces. 


SECRETARY DULLES replying to M. Pleven's second 
question, said it would be the hope of the Executive 
Branch of the U.S. government -- we can at the present 
time speak only of recommendations to Congress ~- that 
if there is a program for Indochina which has the endorse- 
ment of our military advisers, which has a chance of 
success, would propose a figure comparable to $525 million 
for this year and there are circumstances where we might 
possibly increase that a little bit. Hoover, that 
would have to be a program where we could in effect say 
to Congress; This program has enough chance of success 
that if you invest a certain amount for a certain time* 
it will largely clear up the situation -~ not, as 
M. Letoumeau has pointed out, in terms of actual victory 
but by reducing the dimensions similar to those in Malaya 
or with the Huks In the Philippines, Then there was the 
question whether we do that if the French reduce their 
over-all military expenditure. That would mean that 
we assume a larger percentage of the total rather than 
an increase. Some slight adjustment may not be Impossible 
but we felt that It would not be very practicable to do 
that on a scale that our people felt the French had 
run out and we were holding the bag. 

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Avvll 2^, 1953 
7'M p.m. 


At State-JCS meeting April 2h JCS 
it clear they attach great weight to r 
to feasibilltv and -orospects of succes 
China presented by French in lashingto 
that plan night be "workable" but only 
action which would in effect remove ba 
described this course of action as inc 
ment bold and aggressive French milita 
revision French strategy in direction 
offensive action, use Vietnamese force 
units etc. 

in informal discussion mado 
eservations thsy have EBde no 
s of allitary plan for Indo- 
n. It is apparent Chiefs feel 

if French pursue course of 
sis for JCS reservations. JCS 
luding such things as appoint- 
ry leader to Indo-China Command, 
more immediate and telling 
s in large rather than email 

1 JCS informally stated belief it was imperative US should force- 
fully present such ideas to French and that unless French would 
follow such advice it was possible US aid to French for Indo-China 
would in fact be wasted. 

JCS felt US Government -oosition could only be developed after 
Secretary's return from !*AT0 meeting and that -oronrotly thereafter it 
might be wise have joint military and "oolitical discussions with 
French in Paris, 

Above JCS views suggest caution in indicating to French now that 
US amrbves French military plan. 

S?- T ITH 




Declassified per Executive Order 13526, Section 3.3 
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Security Information 

Paris, April 25, 1953 

, * 

Present: U.S. -- Messrs* Dulles, Wilson, Humphrey, Stassen, 

Aldrich, Dillon, Draper. 

U.K. — Messrs. Butler, Lloyd, Alexander, Harvey. 
French -- MM. Bidault, Pleven, Letourneau, Parodl. 

[Secretary Dulles said that President Eisenhower in his 
recent speech] mentioned the end of direct and indirect 
attacks on Indochina, so that the armies released in Korea 
will not strike elsewhere. We must recognize that here 
we are dealing with a more complicated situation, be- 
cause the conflict In Indochina has not yet fully received 
the status of an International war or an International 
act of aggression. In this connection, the Secretary- 
thought It wise If at some appropriate time the French 
government were to give consideration to the possibility 
of a complaint being made by Laos or by France, or jointly 
by both, In the Security Council, about the invasion of 
Laos. This would give the conflict more International 
standing and would make It more readily a subject for 
international negotiation and settlement, which it is 
not today. 

With respect to a complaint to the Security Council 
by Laos or by France or by both, the British government | 

would follow the wishes of the French government. As j 

regards a Korean armistice, Mr. Lloyd felt his govern- 
ment would be completely in agreement with the line the 
U.S. Government or the UN Command were taking, namely 
that we cannot have an indeflnitive proloncation of 
those talks. However, if there is a possibility of the 

1 Copy held in S/S-R. 


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meetings being broken up, we should have a lot of discussiori 
so that the public relations can be properly prepared. 
We would also get the benefit from the Indian resolution. 
Mr. Lloyd hoped there would not be an instruction of the 
U.S. Government to the UN Command of which others would 
be given very little advance notice. If the talks are 
going badly, then x^e want to be very careful how they 
are broken up. 

In conclusion, Mr- Lloyd summarized his position by 
saying that in his view disarmament should wait, Gernany 
should wait, and that Austria might well be tried. He 
was most worried, he said, about how Indochina fitted 
into the picture. It would be very helpful for us to 
discuss how we see the Indochina campaign developing 
and what action In the political field we can take to 
help the French government. He did not quite see how 
it fits into the picture of how we are to deal with the 
Soviet Union. 

As regards the question whether Germany or dis- 
armament should first be discussed, let It be supposed 
that It were Germany. In that case, M. Bidault was not 
sure whether the influence of public opinion in Germany 
an'd In France would not become very strong, There are 
those who think the German danger os big as the Russian 
danger. If Germany were then neutralized, we would have 
a vacuum at the center of the Continent, There would 
be great difficulty in refusing a proposal which would 
keep Germany disarmed. On the other hand, if we moke 
disarmament the positive test this difficulty would not 
exist. M. Bidault was not against other tests, as in 
the case of Austria. It is not a French expert who has 
said that Russia might accept the western proposal for 
free elections. Germany would in effect be put up for 
auction with both sides bidding for her, and we would be 
caught in our own trap. 

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SECRET - Security Information 

• * 

From: Paris 

Apr 26, 1953 
9 PM 
Reed SRE Apr 27 0607 

STATE pass DM3, MSA, Treasury, Defense ... .limit distribution 

Following Is text or memorandum on aid, dated Apr 26, 
referred to in immediately preceding telegram: 

Begin text 

1. The U.S. Delegation has given further study to 
the question of aid to Fr from the MSP, and related 
matters . 

It Is understood that the Fr govt will present Its 
financial plans to the Fr Parliament in May of this 
year- It is understood from the Fr govt that these 
financial plans as prepared by the Fr govt will include 
certain reductions in the current 1953 budget, which 
may entail certain unavoidable reductions in defense 
expenditures; certain tax reforms designed to bring in 
some additional revenue; and arrangements for Internal 
financing adequate for the remainder of 1953. It is 
understood that there is also a need for additional 
dollar resources to be made available at an early date. 

2. In light of the extension of the war in Indo- 
china by the new aggression in Laos, the US is now 
prepared to make this one immediate unconditioned 
commitments to make available to Fr the sum of $60 million 
as a grant from the MSP as an advance payment In 
illation to US FY 195^ aid to Fr. This $60 million, 

or such portion as may be required } raay be used as a 
special resource to pay any balances needed in the EPU 
settlements , 

3. Subject to substantial achievement of the 
financial program contemplated by the Fr govt and 
described in para 1 above, the US will give favorable 

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SECRET - Security Information 

consideration to a proposal for an Ex-Im Bank loan 
in the amount of one-half ($100 million) of the existing 
$200 million of offshore procurement contracts , to be 
repaid by means of one-half of the receipts as they are 
earned under the contracts , and will give favorable 
consideration to a request for the use of the franc 
counterpart of the $60 million after June 30, 1953 > 
at any time during US FY 195^ and as a part of the US 
FY 195^ aid program for France. 

k. The further FY 195^ MSP Is dependent upon: 

(a) Congressional action: 

(b) a Fr defense contribution from their ovm 
resources in CY 195^ in line with NATO discussions as to 
France's political-economic capabilities; and (c) a Fr 
mil program for CYs 1953 and 195*1 for its NATO forces in 
line with NATO recommendations , it being understood 
that the 195^ goals at this time are provisional only 
and that, as the Fr Min of Def reported to NATO, the 
air goals would need to be adjusted especially. 

5. Subject to the conditions set forth In paras 3 
and 4 above, the US will recommend to Congress a FY 195^ 
MSP for Fr as follows: 


(a) The US to provide the funds for a special 
Fr artillery, automatic weapons, and munitions payment 
program for Fr metropolitan forces assigned to SACEUR, 
in the amount of $100 million • 

(b) The US to provide funds up to a maximum 

of %hSO million, vihlcln Is estimated to bo approximately 

kO percent of the current rate of expenditure on the 
Indo-Chinese war, of which $60 million will be advanced 
under para 2 hereof. 

■ (c) Subject further to the adoption by the Fr 
govt of a satisfactory military program which In all its 
aspects holds the promise of success in I-C, the US is 
prepared to provide a portion of a mutually agreed 

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SECRET - Security Information 

additional Fr effort In I-C, involving especially 
additional trained forces of the Assoc States. This 
I portion would be of a moderate amount of dollars and 

subject to specific subsequent agreement before it is 
to be considered a commitment. 

6. The US makes these substantial proposals with 
confidence In the fundamental strength of the Fr economy , 
and with the belief that If the Fr govt takes the 
necessary and desirable decisions, Fr will have both 
economic and military success in these matters. 

7- These proposals are apart from the anticipated 
delivery of certain military end-Items and the probable 
award on a competitive basis of certain offshore pro- 
curement contracts, both of which will proceed under 
normal procedures and conditions. 




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Security Information 

April 27, 1953 


I discussed with Foreign Minister Bidault on 
Saturday April 25 and with Prime Minister Mayer on 
Sunday April 26, the question of raising in the Security 
Council the question of the Communist aggression from 
Viet Nam against Laos. Both indicated a reluctance to 
take this step, a reluctance born out of fear that this 
might precipitate a colonial debate. 

I expressed the view that the danger of this In 
the Security Council might not be as great as In the 
General Assembly and that it would probably be possible 
to find out in advance what the result would be In the 
Security Council, recognizing that Soviet Russia would, . 
presumably, Interpose a veto. 

I pointed out that It was difficult to treat this 
Indochinese war as an International matter, perhaps to 
be discussed between the Soviet Union and the Western 
Powers, if the French and the Associated States them- 
selves treated it as a purely civil war matter. 

I said I had not come to any definitive conclusion 
but thqt I felt the matter should be explored. 

Both Mayer and Bidault agreed to such exploration 
and to further exchange of views through diplomatic 
channels . 

John Foster Dulles 

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•* ■ .I 

April 27, 1953 


At a meeting with the President at the Uhite House this after* 
noon for the purpose of briefing the President on the recent NATO 
Paris meeting and bilateral talks with the British and the French, 
the President asked Secretary Dulles what the French views were on 
the situation in Laos, 

The Secretary replied that the French were very gravely concerned 
about the situation there. He said that when he had net with 
Prime Minister Rene Mayer last cveniftg just prior to departure fron 
Paris , M. Mayer had stated that the French needed more urgently the 
loan of some C-119 aircraft to help them get tanks and heavy equip- 
ment into Laos to assist in its defense. Having such equipment 
might mean the difference between holding and losing Laos. M. Mayer 
had envisaged U,S. Air Force personnel operating the aircraft during 
the period of the loan. 

The Secretary said to the President that such a procedure would 
moan the sending of U.S. personnel on combat missions in Indochina # 
This, obviously, was a decision which would have repercussions and 
would raise many problems. However, there was an alternative, 
which would be to lean the French the C-119* s, which he understood 
the Department of Defense was willing to do, and have civilian pilots 
fly them. Following his return to Washington this morning, the 
Secretary had made inquiry and had ascertained that there were 
pilots in Formosa who were not members of the U.S. armed forces 
and who might well be able to carry out these missions. This 
possibility was being explored on an urgent basis to see whether it 
would not be possible to have the aircraft loaned and the above- 
mentioned personnel in Formosa operate them. 

Dourtlas MacArthur II 


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APRIL 28, 1953 

TO: The Secretary 

FROM; FE - Halter S. Robertson 

SUBJECT: Flying Boxcars (C-119 f s) for Indochina 

The JCS today approved the immediate loan of up to six 
C-119 f s to the French for use in Indochina to be flown by civilian 

Mr* Johnson has informed Allen Dulles and put the CIA in 
touch with the proper people in the Pentagon to complete this 

The Pentagon desires to have General Trapnell (Chief of the 
MAAG in Indochina) inform General Salan of this in order to 
strengthen General Trapnell f s position there « 

We have agreed and therefore suggest that we do not inform 
the French Embassy, which has been making inquiry of us, for a day 
or two. 

FE:UA Johns on 


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Sent to: Amembassy PARIS PRIORITY 5655 May 18, 1953 

* 8 pin 

You will recall that at the final meeting with Mayer 
at White House on March 28, President made certain general 
comments regarding Letourneau plan for brings, hostilities 
in Indochina to successful conclusion. In reply Mayer In 
name of French GOVT said that he would welcome our sending 
US military officers to Indochina in order to pursue evalua- 
tion of nlan, and President expressed willingness to cv/ ; 
arrange ito Defense has now completed its study of material 
furnished by Letourneau and Allard and wishes to take ad- 
vantage of Mayer's suggestion to send high level military 
mission to Indochina in order to study situation with 
General Navarre and explore ways and means through which 
American assistance can best be fitted into workable plans 
for aggressive pursuit of hostilities under present cir- 
cumstances* A principal objective of mission will be to 
ascertain what military plans and capabilities PAREN 
manpower, equipment and particularly air force END PAREN 
will be required so that there will be firm prospect of re- 
versing current military trend by beginning of next 
fighting season, i.e., OCT 1953* Proposed agenda will 
of course be submitted in due course. 

Please Inform Mayer of the above as soon as possible 
requesting him to indicate (a) his continued readiness to 
have , such a mission visit Indochina and (b) approximate 
date at which mission could proceed to Indochina * 

Department understands General Navarre arrives Saigon 
about May 19; he will obviously wish to become familiar 
with the details of the situation before receiving proposod 
/oner lean mission. We have in mind for the arrival of the 
latter a date such as June 10. The mission, would probably 
stay in Indochina for not more than a month. It will 
probably include a State Department representative in an 

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observer-advisory capacity although the leadership and ob- 
jectives will be military. 


Department believes this mission can represent impor- 
tant forward step -so far as Indochina situation is concerned 
and hopes that Mayer and Navarre will agree. For your 
information such military evaluation would presumably lead 
later to talks at political level and to determination of 
additional American aid for Indochina t 



GrFENolting, Jr. 





Declassified per Executive Order 13526, Section 3,3 
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Sent to: Amembassy PARIS 5693 May 21, 1953 

■ * 

Secretary Defense has written Department to following 

QTE The present situation in Laos has drained the last 
bit of reserve out of the French Air Force in Indochina, 
and the near collapse of the maintenance and pilot capa- 
bilities of the French Air Force in Indochina is close at 
hand « 

QTE The Department of Defense has repeatedly advised 
the French that the current manpower ceiling of teh thousand 
personnel PAREN including approximately two thousand five 
hundred guards and ordinary laborers END PAREN was totally 
inadequate to support the number of aircraft operating in 
French Indochina, and that more French personnel were needed 
to effectively employ, efficiently utilize and properly 
maintain the aircraft on hand. END QUOTE 

Secretary's letter concludes with request that De- 
partment QTE make appropriate representation to French 
Government to induce them to provide needed Air Force 
supply, maintenance and operational personnel* END QUOTE 

Further details this whole situation are contained 
MAAG Saigon telegram 72S-A May first passed MAAG Paris 
and DSPTEL $6k7* 

Approach Pleven earliest opportunity indicating to 
him primary importance attached by US GOVT remedying this 
situation which is understood fc3 tt&ler study by French Air 
Ministry. It would be appropriate recall to Pleven that 
we have on several occasions and at considerable sacrifice 
to ourselves made planes available on priority basis for 
use in Indochina but that our air experts consider problem 
not primarily need for additional planes particularly 

Copy held in S/S-R* 


, ...* 


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transport types blit heed fot* personnel to maintain and 
operate planes already available. 

This might well be one of topics proposed military 
mission to Indochina will wish discuss but there would 
be advantage' in pursuing problem at technical level earliest 
since it appears obvious additional allocation French air 
force manpower in Indochina is required if maximum effects 
ive use this all-important weapon is to be made. 

If French Government says it requires prior NATO 
approval to a diversion of personnel from Europe ; US would 
be prepared support such request. You should comment on 
this only RPT oaly if French raise issue of NATO approval. 
Department understands I AT0 Annual Review indicates sur- 
plus French Air Force personnel in Europe in relation 
available modern aircraft. You may inform Pleven that US 
Air Force experts available to discuss details this serious 
situation in Paris, Washington or Saigon, Defenae com- 
municating Ridgway this subjecte 







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751 J -00/6-153 

37 CRT T 

srci'Ri^ T itor:a?iof 

June l f 1953 
6:59 P. m m 

TO: 4-iembassy 3A" T GyO T ' 2297 

D"?7TL i'62 to US^T " T ew ^ork t BPtO) P*ris 5720, Banfkok 2261. 

Secretary today asked Thai Ambassador postpone submission case 
re laos invasion to ^C this time. Thai Ambassador said he would 
refer natter to his rovemment hut v-oulcl in any case -oostoone action 
| vhich he had planned take tomorrow. 

I French attitude refnrdin^ n hai appeal hrs heen emphatic almost 

i to "ooint of hysteria. In vi^v delicate -Dolitic^l situation Paris 

| surrounding formation nev: fovernraent, Secretary felt it desirable 

• avoid any -ction vhich mifht "orovokr ill-considered Trench statement. 

^e has therefore deferred to Ambassador Bonnet's urgent request that 

i ' he ask Thai Government Postpone action for present. There are rfter 

j all some months bad weather before danger to laos and hence to Thailand 

! can afaln become acute. 

Soon as nav Trench Government formed Secretary intends resume 
e^chanfe vie^s this subject and will keep close touch with Thai Govern- 
ment vhose attitude and cooperation are deeply aryoreciated >ere. Thai 
A^assador replying: to press queries to effect case continues under 





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copy no. 














Published 4 June 1953 
(Supersedes NIE-35, 35/1, 35/2) 


The following member organizations of the Intelligence 
Advisory Committee participated with i'ne Central Intelli- 
gence Agency in the preparation of this estimate: The 
intelligence organizations of the Departments of State, 
the Army, the Navy, the Air Force, and the Joint Staff. 

The Intelligence Advisory Committee concurred iji this 
estimate o?i 25 May 1953. The FBI abstained, the subject 

being outside of its jurisdiction. 



rue bopy 








Declassified per Executive Order 13526, Section 33 
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' . THROUGH MID-1954 



To estimate French Union and Communist capabilities and probable courses of 
action with respect to Indochina and the internal situation throughout Indochina 
through mid-1954 



There is no major expansion of the Korean war. 


1. Unless there is a marked improvement 
in the French Union military position in 
Indochina, political stability in the Asso- 
ciated States and popular support of the 
French Union effort against the Viet 
Minh will decline. We believe that such 
marked improvement in the military sit- 
uation is not likely, though a moderate 
improvement is possible. The over-all 
French Union position in Indochina 
therefore will probably deteriorate during 
the period of this estimate, 

2. The lack of French Union military suc- 
cesses, continuing Indochinese distrust 
of ultimate French political intentions, 

\ and popular apathy will probably con- 
tinue to prevent a significant increase in 
Indochinese will and ability to resist the 

I Viet Minh, 

3. We cannot estimate the impact of the 
new French military leadership. How- 
ever, we believe that the Viet Minh will 

retain the military initiative and will con- 
tinue to attack territory in the Tonkin 
delta and to make incursions into areas 
outside the delta. The Viet Minh will 
attempt to consolidate Communist con- 
trol in "Free Laos" and will build up sup- 
plies in northern Laos to support further 
penetrations and consolidation in that 
country. The Viet Minh will almost cer- 
tainly intensify political warfare, ijiclud- 
ing guerrilla activities, in Cambodia, 

4. Viet Minh prestige has been increased 
by the military successes of the past year, 
and the organizational and administra- 
tive effectiveness of the regime will prob- 
ably continue to grow. 

5. The French Government will remain 
under strong and increasing domestic 
pressure to reduce* the French military 
commitment in Indochina, and the pos- 
sibility cannot be excluded that this pres- 
sure will be successful. However, we be- 



Declassified per Executive Order ! 3526, Section 3.3 
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lieve that the French will continue 
without enthusiasm to maintain their 
present levels of troop strength through 
mici-1954 and will support the planned 
development of the national armies of the 
Associated States. • 

6. We believe that the Chinese Commu- 
nists will continue and possibly increase 
their present support of the Viet Minh. 
However, we believe that whether or not 
hostilities are concluded in Korea, the 
Chinese Communists will not invade In- 
dochina during this period. 1 The Chi- 
nese Communists will almost certainly 
retain the capability to intervene so 
forcefully in Indochina as to overrun 
most of the Tonkin delta area before ef- 

fective assistance could be brought to 

7. We believe that the Communist objec- 
tive to secure control of all Indochina will 
not be altered by an armistice in Korea or 
by Communist "peace" tactics. How- 
ever, the Communists may decide that 
"peace" maneuvers in Indochina would 
contribute to the attainment of Commu- 
nist global objectives, and to the objective 
of the Viet Minh. 

8, If present trends in the Indochinese 
situation continue through mid-1954, the 
French Union political and military posi- 
tion may subsequently deteriorate very 



9, Military Situation? The Viet Minh occu- 
pation of the mountainous Thai country of 
northwestern Tonkin in late 1952 and the 
follow-up thrust into northern Laos in April 
1953 demonstrate that the Viet Minh have 
retained the military initiative in Indochina, 
Although the Viet Minh did not defeat any 
large French Union forces in these operations, 
they did force the French to withdraw the 
bulk of their offensive striking power from 
the Tonkin delta and disperse it in isolated 
strong points, dependent on air transport for 
logistic support At the same time, strong 
Viet Minh guerrilla elements plus two regular 

l The Deputy Director for Intelligence, The Joint 
Staff, believes that the intelligence available 
is insufficient to permit a conclusion at this 
time that the Chinese Communists will or will 
not invade Indochina prior to mid- 1954, 

'See Annex A for Estimated French Union 

Strengths and Dispositions; 
See Annex B for Estimated Viet Minh Strengths 

and Dispositions; 
See Annex C for French Far Eastern Air Force 

Strengths and Dispositions; and 
See Annex D for French Far Eastern Naval 

Strengths and Dispositions. 

Viet Minh divisions sufficed to contain the 
114,000 regular French Union forces remain- 
ing in the Tonkin delta. The Viet Minh now 
appear to have withdrawn the bulk of their 
regular forces from Laos. They probably 
have left behind political cadres, some regu- 
lar forces, and well-supplied guerrilla units 
in the areas which they overran in order to 
consolidate Communist political and military 
control, to prepare bases for future opera- 
tions, and to pin down French Union gar- 

10. The invasion of Laos may have been un- 
dertaken as part of a long-range Communist 
design to develop unrest in Thailand and 
ultimately gain control of all Southeast Asia. 
Viewed solely in terms of the Viet Minh ob- 
jective to win all of Indochina, however, the 
Viet Minh offensive in Laos is an extension of 
the 1952 winter's offensive in northwestern 
Tonkin, and represents a shift in Viet Minh 
military tactics. This shift in tactics is 
probably largely explained by the inability to 
defeat the main French Union forces in the 
Tonkin delta by direct assault Faced with 
this position of strength, the Viet Minh began 



Declassified per Executive Order 13526, Section 33 
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during 1952 to turn the bulk of their regular 
forces toward the conquest of northwestern 
Tonkin and northern Laos, areas lightly held 
by isolated French Union garrisons. 

11. In this manner, the Viet Minh probably 
■ hope to retain the military and political in- 
itiative and, by dispersing French Union 
forces, to prevent either a clean-up by the 
French Union in the Tonkin delta or offensive 
operations by the French Union against Viet 
Mirih troop concentrations and supply in- 
stallations outside the delta, The Viet Minh 
may well believe that by gradually extending 
their base areas in lightly defended regions 
of Laos, Cambodia, and central Vietnam they 
can keep French Union forces dispersed and 
pinned down indefinitely. In time, they 
probably expect to sap the morale of the 
Vietnamese and the French and finally so 
alter the balance of power as to make possible 
successful Viet Minh attacks against the key 
areas of Tonkin and south Vietnam. 

12. The deployment of four divisions into 
Laos by the Viet Minh and the fact that the 
French did not attack their long and exposed 
lines of communication typify the over-all 

"situation in Indochina. ^ French Union forces 
still outweigh the Viet Minh in numbers, fire- 
power, and materiel. French ability to air 
lift troops and equipment, although strained 
at the present time, provides the French 
Union with tactical flexibility in planning 
defensive and offensive operations. The Viet 
Minh, however, by their skill in guerrilla war, 
their ability to move rapidly and to infiltrate 
and control areas under nominal French 
occupation, have caused the French to com- 
mit large forces throughout Indochina to 
static defense, thus seriously reducing French 
ability to take the offensive. 

13. Viet Minh regular forces in northern In- 
dochina have continued their gradual evolu- 
tion from lightly armed guerrilla bands to a 
regularly organized military force. They 
have made noticeable advances in the devel- 
opment of field communications, land , unit 
firepower has increased although they still 
possess only limited amounts of artillery. 
Viet Minh combat effectiveness is still limited 

by a lack of medical supplies and an inability 
to sustain major military operations. 

14. Military aid from the US has enabled the 
French Union to equip adequately their reg- 
ular ground forces. The French air forces, 
with US logistical support, and with no air 
opposition, have maintained a fair degree of 
effectiveness in paratroop operations, supply 
by air drops, and daylight attacks on enemy 
supply dumps. French naval forces have 
improved in combat effectiveness and have 
maintained control of the seacoasts and in- 
land waterways. However, the Viet Minh 
have the continuing capability to threaten 
control of the inland waterways by a mining 
campaign. Some Vietnamese National Army 
units have performed creditably in combat, 
but desertion and "missing in action" figures 
remain high. For the most part, Vietnamese 
National Guard and other local security 
forces lack the firepower, discipline, and lead- 
ership to hold positions alone against regular 
Viet Minh units which infiltrate tlie Tonkin 

15. Although French Union military capabili- 
ties have improved slightly, the French 
Union military effort has been inhibited by 
considerations of domestic French politics, 
French security in Europe, and fear of in- 
volvement in a war with Communist China. 
These considerations have caused French 
commanders in Indochina to forego aggres- 
sive military operations that would entail 
heavy casualties and have prevented them 
from obtaining reinforcements on a scale that 
might make possible the defeat of the Viet 

16. The development of the Vietnamese Na- 
tional Army, promised by the French in 1949, 
has been retarded by a shortage of officers 
and non-commissioned officers, by French 
lack of faith in the Vietnamese and by French 
fiscal pi oblems. There has also been an un- 
willingness among many Vietnamese leaders, 
not including Premier Tarn, to undertake a 
major mobilization effort until the French 
▼rant further political concessions and until 
che Vietnamese character of the new army 
is fully guaranteed. 



Declassified per Executive Order 13526, Section 3.3 
NND Project Number: NND 63316. By: NWD Date: 20! 1 


17. Political . Some political progress has 
been made in Vietnam during the past year. 
Premier Tarn's administration has enlisted 
the cooperation of the strongly nationalist 
Dai Viet leader Nguyen Huu Tri, and nation- 
alist concern over Tarn's francophilia has to 
some extent dissipated. Tarn has also added 
. to the political vitality, of Vietnam by holding 
local elections in secure areas of Vietnam. 
Another Vietnamese program, undertaken 
with US economic assistance, which involves 
the relocation of scattered ^villages in the 
delta into.centralized and defensible' sites may 
be an important step toward the eventual 
"pacification" of heavily infiltrated areas/' 
The decisions of March 1953 to increase the 
size of the Vietnamese National Army while 
expanding the area of Vietnamese strategic 
and operational responsibility, could also be 
of major political significance. 

18.' Despite these advances, Vietnam still 
.acks the degree of political strength essential 
for the mobilization of the country's resources. 
Tarn's "action" program remains more shad- 
ow than substance. Elected local councils 
have no real power, promised land reform 
and other social and economic reforms which 
might generate popular support have not left 
the planning stage, and the Vietnamese gov- 
ernment is handicapped by incompetent cab- 
inet ministers and the lack of competent 
administrators. While Bao Dai refuses to 
assume active direction of the affairs of state, 
he remains hostile toward new leadership and 
democratic activities. 

19. Of more basic importance in the failure 
of Vietnamese to rally to the Vietnamese gov- 
ernment following the French grant of inde- 
pendence within the French Union in 1949 
have been the following: 

A fU Many Vietnamese doubt the ability of 
French Union forces to defeat the Viet Minh 
and prefer to remain apart from the struggle. 

6. The French Government has not dared 
to promise complete national independence at 
some future date, as demanded by the Viet- 
namese, because of the fear that the French 
national assembly would then refuse to sup- 
. port a war in a "lost" portion of the French 

c. The Vietnamese, despite many evolu- 
tionary steps toward complete independence 
since 1949, are generally inclined to believe 
that the French intend to retairi effective con- 
trol over the affairs of Vietnam. 

d. The nationalist appeal and military 
prestige of the Viet Minh remains strong 
among significant numbers of the Vietnamese. * 

20. In Cambodia, internal political strife has 
weakened the government, dissident nation- 
alist elements have continued to sap popular 
loyalty to the throne, and the King is de- 
manding greater independence from the 
French in order to strengthen his political 
position at home. Meanwhile, the 9,000 Viet 
Minh combatants in Cambodia, while under 
fairly constant attack by French and Cam- 
bodian forces, are capable of exploiting dis- 
orders which may develop. 

21. Laotian stability has been upset by the 
recent Viet Minh incursion. The Laotians 
are generally hostile to the Viet Minh but are 
unable to contribute a great deal to the de- 
fense of their homeland. A small group of 
pro-Communist Laotians returned to Laos 
with the Viet Minh during the recent incur- 
sion. It is led by a disaffected Laotian noble- 
man, Prince Souphanouvong, and calls itself 
the "Free Government of Pathet Lao" (Laos). 

22. Meanwhile, the Viet Minh leadership, with 
Chinese Communist material and advisory 
assistance since 1949, has demonstrated the 
necessary zeal, ruthlessness, and tenacity to 
exploit to the maximum the limited resources 
at their command. The Viet Minh have ex- 
panded the area under their complete control 
and their prestige has probably increased 
throughout Indochina as a result of military 
successes in northwest Tonkin and Laos, 

23. In the areas of Viet Minh occupation, 
Viet Minh control is believed to be effective, 
and minimum food requirements are being 
met. Tne Viet Minh have taken on increas- 
ingly the conventional characteristics of a 
"Peoples Republic" and are now engaged in 
programs to confiscate and redistribute land 
and to eliminate "traitors" and "reaction- ' 
aries." Although this departure from na- 
tional front tactics has increased realization 



Declassified per Executive Order I M* c .• -, 


that the Viet Minh are under complete Com- 
munist domination, the Viet Minh control 
many villages within areas of nominal French 
Union occupation through terror, compulsion, 
and their continued nationalist appeal. 

24. The Viet Minh and the Chinese Commu- 
nists continue to maintain close relations. 
It is estimated that there are less than a 
thousand Chinese Communist advisers and 
technicians with the Viet Minh in Indochina. 
The Chinese Communists are providing the 
Viet Minh with military supplies at an esti- 
mated average level of 400 to 500 tons per 
month, and some Viet Minh troops are sent 
to Communist China for training. Small 
Chinese Communist units reportedly have 
entered the mountainous northwest section 
of Tonkin on several occasions to assist the 
Viet Minh against French-supported native 
guerrillas, but no Chinese Communist troops 
have been identified in forward areas. There 
was some evidence during the past year that 
Viet Minh policy statements may be "cleared," 
if not written, in Peiping. Close Viet Minh 
relations with Communist China are com- 
plemented, superficially at least, by equally 
warm relations with the Soviet Union, but we 
are unable to determine whether Peiping or 
Moscow has ultimate responsibility for Viet 
Minh policy, 


25. French plans for dealing with the war in 
Indochina now revolve around the develop- 
ment of national armies in the Associated 
States, particularly in Vietnam. In March 
1953, the Franco- Vietnamese High Military 
Council approved a new program calling for 
an increase in Vietnamese strength during 
the current year of 40,000 men, organised in 
54 "commando" battalions. 1 * A further ex- 
pansion of 57,000 men has been proposed for 

• The 40,000 are to be recruited and will represent 
a net increase In French Union strength. 
Planned transfers of native units from the 
French Army to the Vietnamese Army will also 
strengthen the Vietnamese Army but will not 
represent any net increase in French Union 

1954 and will probably be undertaken if the 
initial reinforcement is successful and if 
equipment is made available by the US. With 
these additional Vietnamese forces, the 
French hope to undertake widespread clear- 
ing operations and subsequently to organize 
sufficient mobile groups to begin by early 1955 
the destruction of the Viet Minh regular 
forces in Tonkin. 

26. Progress has been made in carrying out 
the troop reinforcement program thus far, 
and the Vietnamese may have close to 40,000 
reinforcements recruited, trained, and avail- 
able for combat by early 1954. However, the 
Viet Minh invasion of Laos and the threat of 
similar operations will probably keep French 
mobile reserves deployed outside the Tonkin 
delta in isolated strong points. The addition 
of 40,000 untested and lightly armed Viet- 
namese will not offset the absence of these 
regular French forces, and effective clearing 
or offensive operations cannot be undertaken 
until French Union forces are regrouped. 
Moreover, the French military leadership has 
been so dominated by concepts of static de- 
fense as to be unable to conduct the planned 
operations with the vigor necessary for their 
success. How the new military leadership 
may alter this we cannot estimate. Finally, S 
unless the French Union forces prove strong 
enough to provide security for the Vietnamese 
population, it will not be possible to sweep the 
guerrillas out of the areas as planned. Not 
only will the populace fail generally to pro- 
vide the intelligence required to rout the 
guerrillas but, as in the past, they will fre- 
quently give warning of the presence of the 
French Union forces, thus permitting the 
guerrillas to take cover and later to emerge 
when the danger is past. 

27. The French are fearful that they cannot ' 
achieve a military decision in Indochina. 
Unless the French Union military plans 
achieve great/ success during the period of 
this estimate, the conviction will grow in 
France that the Indochina problem can only 
be solved through some over-all East-West 
settlement in the Far East. The difficulties 
of the French financial position impel the 
French to seek relief from the mounting costs 



Declassified per Executive Order 13526, Section 33 
NND Project Number: NND 63316. By: NWD Date; 201 1 



of the Indochina war, and French apprehen- 
sions concerning eventual German rearma- 
ment not only make them reluctant to in- 
crease the military establishment in Indo- 
china but impel them to seek the early return 
of French troops to Europe. The French 
Government will therefore remain under 
strong and increasing domestic pressure to 
reduce its military commitment in Indo- 
china. On the other hand, the French Gov- 
ernment is under strong pressure to main- 

' tain its position in Indochina, There is still 
considerable sentiment against abandoning 
the heavy investment which France has 
poured into Indochina. More important, 
there is great reluctance to accept the ad- 
verse effects on the cohesion of the French 
Union and on French prestige as a world 
power which would accompany the loss of 
France's position in Indochina. In these cir- 
cumstances, we believe that the French will 
continue without enthusiasm to maintain 
their present levels of troop strength through 
mid-1954 and will support the planned devel- 
opment of the National Armies of the Asso- 
ciated States. At the same time, France will 

■ probably continue to seek maximum financial 
and material assistance for the French Union 
effort while resisting any measures which 
would impair French pre-eminence among 
the Associated States, including the making 
of any commitments concerning the eventual 
political status of the Associated States. 

28. Political strength in Vietnam may grow 
slightly during 1953 as progress is made 
toward a stronger national army, as the Viet- 
namese assume increasing governmental re- 
sponsibilities, and as Premier Tarn's social 
and political programs serve to decrease dis- 
trust of French intentions. There will prob- 
ably also be a growing understanding, and 
fear, of the true Communist nature and pur- 
pose of the Viet Minh, However, these de- 
velopments will not bring about a significant 
increase in Vietnamese will and ability to 
resist the Viet Minh during the period of 
this estimate because the Vietnam leadership 
cannot in this brief period overcome popular 
apathy and mobilize the energy and resources 
of the people. Moreover, if events should 

persuade Vietnam leaders that no progress 
toward national independence is possible un- 
der the French or that French Union forces 
cannot defeat the Viet Minh, it is probable 
that the political strength of Vietnam would 
decline rapidly. Substantial Viet Minh mili- 
tary victories in the Tonkin delta or else- 
where in Indochina would also produce such a 

29. In Cambodia, political stability is likely 
to decline as the result of tension between the 
monarchy, the politically divided people, and 
the French colonial administration. Even if 
French concessions to the King insure his 
adherence to the French Union, unrest in 
Cambodia or a Viet Minh penetration into 
southern Laos might force the deployment of 
strong French forces to Cambodia. 

30. In Laos, political attitudes will be de- 
termined almost entirely by military develop- 
ments. The Laotians will probably remain 
loyal to the French Union if the^ are de- 
fended aggressively. They will not, however, 
offer effective resistance to Communist efforts 
to consolidate political control if French 
Union forces retreat from the country or if 
the French Union forces defend only a few 
strong points. 


31. Viet Minh Capabilities and Probable 
Courses of Action. Barring serious Viet Minh 
military reverses, which could occur if Viet 
Minh forces should overextend themselves or 
make frontal attacks on French Union strong 
points, the Viet Minh regime will probably in- 
crease its total strength slightly during the 
period of this estimate. Viet Minh prestige 
will be increased by their recent gains in Laos. 
The organizational and administrative effec- 
tiveness of the regime will probably continue 
to increase with experience and Chinese Com- 
munist guidance. The program of expropria- 
tion and distribution of lands to tenants now 
being carried out probably weakens the Viet 
Minh appeal among some classes, but will 



Declassified per Executive Order 13526, Section 33 
NISTD Project Number: NND 63316. By: NWD Date: 201 1 


probably strengthen Viet Minh controls at the 
village level and thus facilitate the collection 
of rice. 

32. Militarily, the Viet Minh are unlikely to 
expand greatly their armed forces because 
they are already experiencing manpower diffi- 
culties. Their combat efficiency probably will 
increase, however, as the result of a modest 
augmentation of their unit firepower and a 
steady improvement in staff planning and co- 
ordination of forces. The Viet Minh probably 
will continue to receive a steady flow of mate- 
rial assistance from the Chinese Communists, 
and the amount may increase at any time. 
The Viet Minh do not have, and probably can- 
not develop within the period of this estimate, 
the capability to make such effective use of 
heavy equipment — artillery, armor, and air- 
craft — from the Chinese Communists as to 
permit successful attacks against strong con- 
centrations of regular French forces. Over a 
longer period, however, a great increase in 
Viet Minh capabilities, including the develop- 
ment of an air force, is possible. 

33. We believe that during the period of this 
estimate the Communists in Indochina will 
probably attempt to avoid combat except 
where they can achieve surprise or great supe- 
riority in numbers. They will attempt to con- 
solidate Communist controls in 'Tree Laos" 
and will build up supplies in northern Laos to 
support further penetrations and consolida- 
tion in that country. If they reach the Thai 
border, they probably will attempt to organize 
guerrilla forces among the Vietnamese in 
northeastern Thailand, but we do not believe 
they will have the capability to provide much 
material assistance to such forces through 
mid-1954. The Viet Minh forces in Laos may 
hope to receive assistance from the Viet- 
namese population in Thailand. The Viet 
Minh will almost certainly intensify political 
warfare, including guerrilla activities in 

34. We believe that neither the French Union 
nor the Viet Minh will be able to win a final 
military decision in Indochina through mid- 
1954. The Viet Minh, with their principal 
striking forces operating from the Tonkin 
base area, will probably retain the initiative 

during the period of this estimate by main- 
taining attacks against lightly defended 
French Union territory. The French Union 
can hold key positions in Laos and may at- 
tempt by attacks against Viet Minh lines of 
communication, to prevent the Viet Minh 
from moving southward in force towards 
southern Laos and Cambodia. We believe, 
however, that Viet Minh guerrillas in south- 
ern Laos will develop sufficient strength to 
control much of the countryside and that 
guerrilla activities in Cambodia will be inten- 
sified, The French Union probably will re- 
duce, but not eliminate, Viet Minh strength in 
south Vietnam. Viet Minh infiltration of the 
Tonkin delta will probably be maintained at a 
high level and the Viet Minh may undertake 
major attacks against the delta if they can 
weaken French defenses by drawing French 
. strength elsewhere. 

35. Unless there is a marked improvement in 
the French Union military position in Indo- 
china, political stability in the Associated 
States and popular support of the French 
Union effort against the Viet Minh will de- 
cline. We believe that such marked improve- 
ment in the military situation is not likely, 
though a moderate improvement is possible. 
The over-all French Union position in Indo- 
china therefore will probably deteriorate dur- 
ing the period of this estimate. 

36. Chinese CoTnmimist Capabilities and Prob- 
able Courses of Action. The Chinese Com* 
munists will have the capability during the 
period of this estimate to improve airfields in 
south China, to train Viet Minh pilots, to con- 
tinue improvement of transportation facilities, 
and to increase their present level of logistic 
support for the Viet Minh. The Chinese Com- 
munists will probably retain their present 
capability to commit and support logistically 
150,000 Chinese Communist troops for an in- 
vasion of Indochina. The combat efficiency 
of this potential invasion force could probably 
be increased considerably by the use of com- 
bat-seasoned troops who have been rotated 
from Korea in the past year. The ability of 
Chinese Communist forces to sustain offensive 
operations in Indochina would probably be in- 
creased should logistic requirements in Korea 
remain at low levels for a prolonged period. 



Declassified per Executive Order 13526, Section 3.3 
NND Project Number: NND 63316. By: NWD Date: 201 1 


37 A Chinese Communist force of 150,000, 
added to Viet Minh forces, would probably be 
able to overrun the Tonkin delta area before 
effective assistance could be brought to bear. 
The Chinese Communists now have, and will 
probably continue to have during the period 
of this estimate, sufficient jet and piston air- 
craft, independent of operations in Korea, for 
small-scale but damaging attacks against 
French Union installations in Tonkin. With 
surprise, they probably could neutralize the 
French Air Forces in Tonkin. The Chinese 
Communist air forces do not appear, however, 
to possess the capability at present of conduct- 
ing sustained air operations in Indochina be- 
cause of a lack of improved airfields in south 
China and stockpiles of supplies. Such prep- 
arations would take several months. 

38. We believe that whether or not hostilities 
are concluded in Korea, the Chinese Commu- 
nists will not invade Indochina during the 
period of this estimate. 4 Although they pos- 
sess the capability, the following considera- 
tions militate against intervention by regular 
Chinese Communist forces or by large num- 
bers of Chinese Communist "volunteers": 

•The Deputy Director for Intelligence, The Joint 
Staff, believes that the intelligence available is 
insufficient to permit a conclusion at this time 
that the Chinese Communists will or will not 
invade Indochina prior to mid-1954. 

a. The Communists probably consider that 
their present strategy in Indochina promises 
success in a prolonged struggle and produces 
certain immediate advantages. It diverts 
badly needed French and US resources from 
Europe st relatively small cost to the Commu- 
nists. It provides opportunities to advance 
international Communist interests while pre- 
serving the fiction of "autonomous" national 
liberation movements, and it provides an in- 
strument, the Viet Minh, with which Commu- 
nist China and the USSR can indirectly exert 
military and psychological pressures on the 
peoples and governments of Laos, Cambodia, 
and Thailand. 

b. Communist leadership is aware that the 
West, and in particular the US, would prob- 
ably retaliate against Communist China if 
Chinese Communist forces should invade 
Indochina. We believe that fear of such re- 
taliation and of the major war which might 
result are important deterrents to open Chi- 
nese Communist intervention in Indochina. 

39. We believe that the Communist objective 
to secure control of all Indochina will not be 
altered by an armistice in Korea or by Com- 
munist "peace" tactics. However, the Com- 
munists may decide that "peace" maneuvers 
in Indochina would contribute to the attain- 
ment of Communist global objectives, and to 
the objective of the Viet Minh. 



Declassified per Executive Order 13526. Section 3.3 
NND Project Number: NND 63316. By; NWD Date: 201 1 










French Expeditionary 91,000 
Corps (CEF) 











Associated States 







Associated States 
National Guards 










CEF Auxiliaries 

Vietnam Auxiliaries 

Other Semi-Military 

















. . . . 





*■ These strengths and dispositions were effective before the Viet Minn invasion of Laos, Since that time 
French Expeditionary Corps (CEF) strength in Laos has been increased to 17,500 and CEF strength in 
Tonkin reduced to 81,000. " 

a French Union regular forces are organized into a total of 118 CEF battalions and 95 Associated States 
battalions. The CEF has 83 infantry, 7 parachute, 8 armored, and 19 artillery battalions and 1 AAA 
battalion. The Associated States have 87 infantry and 4 artillery battalions and 4 parachute battalions. 

'Does not include 8,000 French personnel detached for duty with the Associated States forces as cadres 
and advisers. Composition of the 172,000 is as follows: French — 51,000; Foreign Legion — 19,000; 
African — 17,000; North African — 30,000; native Iridochincse — 55,000. 

* .» 




Declassified per Executive Order 13526, Section 3 J 
NND Project Number; NND 633 16. By: NWD Date: 201 1 





Regional Forces 




People's Militia 













Regulars 7 ; , 




' 81,000 






* 123,000 

Regional Forces 












9,OG0 3 





1 These strengths and dispositions changed during the Viet Minh Incursion into Laos in AprIL An esti- 
mated 30,000 Viet Minn regulars moved from Tonkin into Laos and an estimated 10,000 moved from 
Annam, By mid-May, however, it is believed that all but 15,000 of the Viet Minh regulars had returned 
to their base areas in Tonkin and Annam. 

*The Vict Minh are organized into 6 infantry divisions, 1 artillery division, 14 independent regiments, 
and 15 independent battalions. Regional forces are organized in 44 battalions. 

•Some 3,000 dissident Khmer Issaraks are also active in Cambodia, 



% o 


Declassified per Executive Order 13526, Section 3.3 
NND Project Number: NND 63316. By: NWD Date: 201 1 






North Tactical Command 

lst/8 Fighter Squadron 
2nd/8 Fighter Squadron 
Detachment, lst/21 Fighter Squadron 
lst/25 Lt. Bomber Squadron 
Detachment, 1st/ 19 Lt. Bomber Squadron 
80th Photo Recon. Squadron 
Detachment, 2nd/62 Trans. Squadron 
Detachment, lst/64 Trans. Squadron 
Detachment, 2nd/64 Trans. Squadron 
2nd/62 Trans. Squadron 

Center Tactical Command 

lst/21 Fighter Squadron 
Detachment 2nd/9 Fighter Squadron 
Ist/19 Lt. Bomber Squadron 
Detachment, lst/G4 Trans. Squadron 
lst/64 Trans. Squadron 


South Tactical Command 


2nd/D Fighter Squadron 
2nd/64 Trans. Squadron 
Detachment, lst/64 Trans. Squadron 

Bach Mai, Hanoi 
Cat Bi, Haiphong 
Cat Bi, Haiphong 
Cat Bi, Haiphong 
Cat Bi, Haiphong 
Bach Mai, Hanoi 
Bach Mai, Hanoi 
Gia Lam, Hanoi 
Gia Lam, Hanoi 
Do Son, Haiphong 

Tourane Afld., Tourane 
Ban Me Thout Arid., Ban Me Thout 
Tourane Afld., Tourane 
Tourane Afld., Tourane 
Nhatrang Arid., Nhatranj 


Tan Son Nhut, Saigon 
Tan Son Nhut, Saigon 
Tan Son Nhut, Saigon 

Miscellaneous light aircraft and helicopters (used throughout the three tactical 
commands for liaison, reconnaissance, medical evacuation, and flight training) — 


Naval Air Arm 

Carrier based 

Miscellaneous other types 


Aircraft (all types) temporarily 
unoperational because of shortages 
in personnel and logistics — 

18 F8F 
20 F8F 

7 F8F 
15 B-26 

3 B-26, 1 RB-26 

11 F8F 

12 C-47 

5 C-47, 3 JU-52 

5 C-47 

6 C-47 

12 F8F 

5 F8F 
16 B-26, 3 RB-26 

2 JU-52 

5 C-47, 6 JU-52 

8 F6F, 10 F8F 
16 C-47 
4 JU-52 



22 F6F 
12 SB2C-5 








Declassified per Executive Order 13526, Section 3.3 
NND Project Number: NND 63316. By: NWD Date: 201 1 




j " • Small Aircraft Carrier (CVL) l 1 

Gunboat CPG) 2 

Escort (PCE) • 8 

Submarine Chaser (PC) H 

Submarine Chaser (SO - 5 

j . Motor Minesweeper (AMS) 6 

Amphibious Vessels: 

! LST * 

LSIL 13 


| LOT 19 

Miscellaneous small landing craft 211 


Auxiliary Vessels: 








FCF-5 ' 












Service Craft V, * 54 

French Navy Personnel * 9,760 

Vietnam Navy Personnel 277 

Mission Aircraft: 


SB2C-5 9 . 12 




Morane 500 "0** t> 


l The French have attempted to keep one of their two. carriers in Indochina 
waters, subject to overhaul and repair schedules. The ARROMANCHES (CVL) 
and the LAFAYETTE (CVL) departed for France in February and May 1953, 
respectively, for overhaul and repairs, 

s Carrier-based aircraft. 



Declassified per Executive Order 13526, Section 33 
NND Project Number: NND 63316. By: NWD Date: 201 1 

■ ' 












%» \ Lai Chau 

i ^ q 


fe, Lao Kay 

Cao Banfio 


o\n K I 

BURMA # * Huong Sing 

. • 

Nghia LoO 
\ Na San ; t* 



5 Luang Pro bang 

i Duong 

Haiphong % \J" la table 
V-^ ^_ j*^ -.. Tle cac 0* 

J if 

Non fi Et jf "^' V i 


Xieng Khouang \ & I 

< v v. V 

Pak Sane 


': ^ ! 



uang Tri 


tSavannakhet _ . w ^V: 

Tchepone \/\ H ^ 


Sara vane 





sr - 







Attopcu ' 

% v\ .,^*Kontum Q 
\ Pleiku^ 





15 MAY 1953 

Viet Minn- held area 
French Union strongpoint 
French Union air base 

French Union defense line 



/ A N N A M JV 

\ £ $ 

V c EtenMeTbuot #^ V 

•' ^ 0?njha"Trang 

Ra if road, bridges destroyed 
and some raits removed 


20 *o ao 

1 l 'l * > r»— 

w« SO l?0 I 


120 K«« 


mpong e** - 
Gharri ) a 

Pnnorn Penh' 

KA3 RON f, 5 

Kompong SpeuS 1 g^j ^ 

Takeo' % / Ricng \„ 

.£> ' /Kampot Chau OocivSv A C *3*Lon 

/ VA 

'on- *jy*n\^M^ho 

Rach Gia\Sade' 
k Can Tno^sJra 

Sec Tra.igO 


ii'j",- ■»_ 



&*$$ ■ 






." : 


12737 CIA, 5-53 


aea— — t*m n — a^ 



Declassified per Executive Order 13526, Section 33 
NND Project Number: NND 63316. By: NWD Date: 201 J 



i il V L fe» v d* a 



10 June 1953 






Terns of Kb Terence for Military Mission 
to Indochina 


y 1, 
an ovo 
re Te re 
aid in 
the v 
that L 
ap oo in 

A? .you are aware * the French Government has invited- the 
St&'fces to. send a Military Mission to Indochina to make 

r-all survey of the .tilitr situation* with particular 

aee to requirements for and utilisation of U.S. military 
relation fco French plans for successfully concluding 

v in Indochina. Sii jocfc to your concurrence^ the Joint 
of Staff propose that the Mission operate under the 

11 supervision of the C Lander In Chief* Pacific* and 

ieutanaat Gei ral John ,:". Q'panielj U.S. Army, be % 

feed as Chief of the Military Mission. 

2. Attached hereto are t: s of reference* prepared in 
collaboration with the State Department^ v;hich the Joint Chief 
of Staff propose to issue fco' General 'Daniel, 

: 2 




<j i 



■ s 

c S 

3, Your concurrenc 

is reruns ceo. 

v. •*- 



For the Joint Chiefs of Staff: 


P. F. I :T* 

Lieut. leralj, tJSAF; 

Director* Jo - " Staff. 







y* - rt ' ■*•■ * • »."; A " f* n 

* '-■ - - -. *.- *3 K*±i V s.l 

of- A. — pa$os \>.t^ 


■ : 



Declassified per Executive Order 13526, Section 3.3 
NND Project Number: NND 63316, By: NWD Date: 2011 

• • 

- 6 



10 June 1953 

. ^ 



I - 

















Declassified per Executive Order 13526, Section 3.3 
NND Project Number: NND 63316. By: NWD Date: 201 1 



proposed tkr;;g ci? r::j'^ : ':.;ck-for t.-:b c ; :. :.■' Q? 


r- ■ ' ■ -^fc^-WM* 

1..A3 Chief of a U.S. Joint Military Mission to Indochina. 

Lt. Gen. John W. 'Daniel will discuss with General Navarre 


Commander in Chief, French Armed Forces, Far Fast, requirements 
for and ut:l ligation of U.S. military aid in relation to French 
plans for successfully concluding the war in Indochina. 

2, Discussions will, as a point of departure s take up U.S W 
evaluation of the Lefcourneau-Allard concept for successfully 
concluding the war in Indochina, particularly in light of . 

developments since subject concept was formulated* and vrith a 

vie;; toward; 

a. Gaining sufficient information concerning tiie develop- 

ment of indigenous forces and strengthening of the French 
Expeditionary Forces in Indochina to, equate the expenditure 

of {*..&* litany aid with net return, both current and 

planned. . ■ . 


• b. Gaining sufficient detailed knowledge of French mill- 


tary piano to acquaint U.S. leaders thoroughly with the plan 


of future conduct of the war in Indoc na, the chances for 
ultimate victory and its timing, and the adequacy of 
coordination of programmed aid with military planning. 

c_ f Thorough discussion v;ith the French in order to 
' influence the. i to:jg 

• • ' 61 

Declassified per Executive Order 13526, Section 33 
NND Project Number: NND 63316. By: NWD Date: 201 1 






(1) Expedite revision and aggressive implementation 
• of French military plans for successfully concluding the 
war' in Indochina, including 'the early initiation of 



aggressive guerrilla warfare, aimed at knocking the 
enemy off balance, disrupting enemy supply lines, and 
gaining the initiative for antieommunist forces. 

(2} Expand training facilities and modernize French 
training methods with a view to more rapid development 
of loyal, aggressive, and capable indigenous forces. 

(3) Expedite the transfer of leadership responsibility 
to the Associated States and accelerate indigenous mili- 
tary leadership training. 

d. Devise ways and moans of promoting closer and continu- 
ing French-U.S« Military Assistance Advisory Group (MAAG) 
contact on the plans and operations level without, of course, 


impinging upon the responsibilities of France and the As so- 
ciated States for conduct of the war in Indochina. 

3. In the course of discussions the Chief of Mission will be 


guided by the following: 

a. The. approved U.S. National Policy as contained in 

NSC I2V2. 

b. The appropriate military views regarding Indochina 

previously expressed by the Joint Chiefs of Staff, 

jj., Approved Mutual Defense Assistance Programs (MDAP) 

for Indochina. ; - 

d. Views and instructions* of CINOPAG. 

o. NIE 91 - Probable events in Indochina through mid-195 J ; 

< ' - ■ ) % ■ ■ ■ ■> :- a 


Declassified per Executive Order 13526, Section 3.3 
NND Project Number: NND 63316. By: NWD Date: 201 1 

4. Although the invitation upon which tha mission is based was 

conveyed by the French Prime Minister acting unilaterally for 
Prance, it is essential that the military authorities of Vietnam, 
Laos, and Cambodia be given a maximum sense of participation con- 

sistent with security requirements. The Chief of Mission will 

T/Ish to take a very early opportunity of discussing this aspect 

of his task vith General Navarre. 

5. The Chief of Mission will be supported by a carefully 

selected group of military personnel representing all three 

Services and with special knowledge of the problems associated 

vrith Indochina. The delicate nature of the mission and the dif- 

ficulty of accommodating a large group in a war area dictates 


that the party be kept as small as possible consistent with 


th-s requirement. The mission will comprise approximately the 
following personnel, to be designated by their respective 


Services: Army - Chief of Mission plus two officers; Air Force- 
two officers; Navy - two officers; State Department - one repre- 


sentatlve. It is essential that all members of" the mission be 
aware that this is a highly Important military mission concerned 
" : witK reexamination of U.S.- military policy toward this area of 
critical significance to U.S. security, 

6. Prior to his departure from 'Washington , D.C*, the Chief 
of Mission will be briefed by both military and political 
officers with respect to the U.S. position regarding the situa- 
tipn in Indochina, Enroute to Indochina the Chief of Mission 


will obtain the views of the Commander in Chief, Pacific. 


Declassified per Executive Order 13526, Section 3.3 
NND Project Number: NND 633 16. By: NWD Date: 201 1 


. . 7, Coordination of ti4e a3 ^iss = ion f s activities will also be 

» 4 * * 

effected with Chief , MAAG, Indochina. Close collaboration with 
General Trapnell and his participation in the work of the 
Mission are essential. 

* ■ * 

.8. Because of the unescapafcle and highly significant political 
aspects which cannot be divorced from military operations in 
Indochina j the mission will include a Department of State 


representative conversant with problems associated with Indo- 

china who will be available for consultation on political 

matters. In addition, the U.S. Ambassador in Saigon and his 

staff v/ill be available to the Chief of Mission. With respect 

to over-all political considerations closely associated with 
subject mission,, the Chief of Mission nay present the following 


as the general views of the U.S. Government: 

£. The a chic- vo none of en anti-Communist military victory 


in Indochina is largely dependent upon the availability of 

adequate military forces, to be obtained, at least in part., 


through the development of the National Armies of the 


Associated States. If the enemy continues to set the pace 

as he has done during the p£3t six-month dry season, it is 

not realistic to think that the Vietnamese Government will 

be able to raise v train and direct necessary reliable native 

levies at the sane time that the Viet Mxnh Army has the * 

initiative and is straining the resources of the French Union 
Army* Consequently, early aggressive military action against 
the V lot -Minh is © s sent ia 1 in :> rde r t o do ve loo an a tmo sphe re 
of military control and progress under which the Vietnamese 
: Government will be sble tr produce- nsxinua numbers of 
reliable troops. 6H |; J 


Declassified per Executive Order [3526. Section 3 3 
D Project Number: NNn ftW I a r„. m«/i^ ^ . ™ 

rojecl Number: NND 63316. By: NWD Dale: 201 1 



3 $1 -1 

b, Assuning that French aims in Indochina ore compatible 


with, or capable of compromise with, aspirations of the 

* a 

Associated States , the anti-Communist effort in Indochina 
. would gain immeasurably by ? clear and wall advertised 

enunciation, at the appropriate time, of the future position 
o.f the French in that country. This must of necessity be 
accompanied by sufficient fundamental detail to explain 

• ■ 

satisfactorily to the people of the Associated States how 


; that position is being accompli shed . 
. * c 9 Concessions in the military field to give a greater 
degree of local leadership involving, of course, appointment 
'-. of more high ranking indigenous military leaders would be of 


significant psychologic?! value in the poll tic:: 1 field, pro- 
vided local leadership were exercised under successful con- 
* ditions > 

9. Target date for conp lotion of the mission is approxina tely 
thirty days after arrival in Indochina. Prior to departure, the 
Chief of Mission should consider the' desirability of one or two 
nombors of the mission renaining in Indochina ta witness errly 


operations of the coning dry season and should nake recommenda- 
tions to the Joint Chief s of Staff accordingly; 



Declassified per Executive Order 13526, Section 33 
NND Project Number: NND 63316. By: NWD Date: 201 1 


10. Following 

TUP crraqr - 

completion oi nis survey 


departure from 

Indochina., the Chief of Mission will submit a written report to 

* ■ § 

the Joint Chiefs of Staff via CINCFAC containing consents and 

recommendations concerning: 


a_. The adequacy of present U.S. -French and Associated 
States efforts and plans to win the war in Indochina including 
the effectiveness with which the French utilize U.S. military 
assistance. This will cover changes., if any, in the French 


trategic concept resulting from the current change in 

military command in Indochina. 

b. The extent to which French military conduct of the 
war has been and is being hampered by political directives 

* ■ 

and considerations . 

£. The adequacy and scope oi U.S. end-use supervision of 


U.S. military assistance. 

j3. The desirability of direct United States participation 
in advising, "training and/or planning for the operation of 
the National Armies oi the Associated States, 

e.. Whether or not the indigenous military potential, 
including manpower zno leaders 3 is being effectively and 
sufficiently developed for National Armies of the Associated 
States. , 

f . whether Korean military training lessons may be 
utilized advantageously by the forces in Indochina. , 

a- Whether or not the scheduled build- up oi Associated 


States forces during 1953 and 195^ will take place as planned 
and, together with existing French forces will be sufficient 

to accomplish o decisive dofefet of the 

iet Kinh by 1955* .■ 


r i'hic will include, in particular, views cmceminfe 
deficit of force. ■ 66 


Declassified per Executive Order 13526, Section 3.3 
NND Project Number: NND 63316. By: NWD Date: 2011 



'to? secret 


h, Prospects for the French wresting the initiative fron 
the- Viet Kinh in the near future &nd retaining the initiative 

theres'f ter . 


jL; iih&t neasures should be taken to improve utilisation 
of air potential, particularly air transport potential. 

2_. What additional measures, if any, should bo taken by 
the French and the Vietnamese in order properly to administer 
and orotect liberated areas. 

- 11. Chief, MAAO, Indochina will be directed to furnish neoes- 


sary stenographic assistance to the Mission during its stay % in 
Indochina , 

8 CU 


Declassified per Executive Order 13526, Section 3 3 
NND Project Number: NND 63316. By: NWD Date: 201 i 

June 19 i 1953 FOR THE PRESS No. 529 

FOR RELEASE AT 7:00 A.1M. ,E.D.T. ,SATURDAY, JUNE 20, 1953 

In response to an invitation from the French 
Prime Minister, when he visited Washington last 
March, a United States Military Mission headed by 
Lt, General John W. 'Daniel presently commander 
United States Army Pacific will arrive Saigon 
June 20. Its purpose will be to pursue discussions 
with General Henri Navarre, Commander in Chief 
Indochina, on the manner in which United States 
material and financial support of the effort of the 
French and Associated States armed forces in 
Indochina may best contribute to the advancement 
of theoobjective of defeating the Communist forces 
there and of bringing peace and security to Viet- 
Nam, Cambodia and Laos, It is believed essential 
to insure an increasingly close integration of 
United States assistance with the plans developed 
by the authorities of France and of the Associated 
States . 

Arrangements are being made for the military 
leaders of the Associated States to participate 
in these discussions. The vital role of the national 
armies of Viet-Nam, Cambodia and Laos and the in- 
creasingly important assumption of 'high military 
responsibilities by the Associated States will make 
these discussions of particular interest. 

» » * 



Declassified per Executive Order 13526, Section 3.3 
NND Project Number: NND 63316. By; NWD Date: 2011 

- - i _v ■ 

• ■ " ■ ' • » 

Security Information 

2k July 1953 

SUBJECT: Report of U. S, Joint Military Mission to Indochina 

TO: -' The Joint Chiefs of Staff 

(Thru Commander-in-Chief, Pacific) 

1. The attached Report of the U. S. Joint Military Mission to Indochina 

• * 

is submitted as directed by paragraph 10 of the ^Terms of Reference for the 
Chief of the U. S. Military Mission to Indochina". (Appendix to JCS 

■ ■ . 

1922/22U, pago 1971). 

2* In summarizing the subject report I T7ish to emphasize the follow- 
ing: *' ' w 


a* General Navarre, Commander-in-Chief, French Forces, Far East, 
submitted to me in "writing a new aggressive concept for the conduct of 
operations in Indochina which, in brief, calls for (a) taking the initiative 


immediately rath local offensives, emphasizing guerrilla warfare, (b) 

initiating an offensive (utilizing the equivalent of three (3) divisions) 

in Tonkin by 15 September 195>3> (c) recovering a maximum number of units 

from areas not directly involved in the war, (d) reorganising battalions 

into regiments and regiments into divisions, with necessary support units 
and (e) developing the Armies of the Associated States and giving them 
greater leadership responsibility in the conduct of operations * 







Declassified per Executive Order 13526, Section 33 
NND Project Number: NND 63316, By: NWD Date: 201 1 


-- - b. General Gamtiez, Chief of Staff to General Navarre, presented 

■ *' 

.a discussion of operations to take place during the balance of the current 


■ rainy season. These operations. include four (k) offensive operations out- 
side the Tonkin perimeter aimed at destroying eneuy personnel and existent 
enemy supply dumps, a* clearing operation in North Annam, and an offensive 
operation in South Annam aimed at linking the Phan Thiet beachhead with 

Plateau forces and thus permanently severing the principal enemy supply line 


[ ■ , to Cochin China. These operations are to be followed by a large scale 

» * . . 

offensive in Tonkin on or about 15 September 1953* 

c* General Navarre agreed to establish a French HAAG organization 


to supervise all training of the jnilitai^Jr forces of the Associated States 

and to include three *(3) U« S„ officers. This will provide an excellent 

• opportunity for indirect U # S* participation in the training of indigenous 

forces and for exercising follow up action on matters already agreed upon 

. T/ith the French and the Associated States* 
> . ■ * ■ 

• d. General Navarre agreed to cooperate wholeheartedly in (l) pro- 
viding the U« S. with increased intelligence and (2) the stationing of one 
or two military attaches in Hanoi for this purpose* 

e« General Navarre agreed to keep the Chief, MAAG, Indochina 
informed of French plans and stated that he will invite MAAG officers to 
attend all operations » . 

■ * ■ 

f * General Lauzin, Commander-in-Chief, French Air Force, Indo- 
china agreed to (l) *the removal of the six (6) C-119 ! s from Indochina, 


(2) request C-119's in the future on a temporary basis only, (3 or 1| days) 
to support airborne operations requiring the simultaneous di*op of forces 

in excess of two battalions, (3) -step-up pilot and mechanic training and 

(U) organize a Vietnamese National Air Force 

■ I 


Declassified per Executive Order 13526, Section 3.3 
NND Project Number; NND 633 16. By: NWD Date: 201 1 

TOPPm ... 

g. Admiral Auboyneau agreed to a reorganization of French Naval 
Forces to include a Joint Amphibious Command for the purpose of (l) attain- 


ing increased amphibious effectiveness and (2) delegating increased 
responsibility to Vietnamese leaders and units© 

ho Once the French became convinced of the soundness of our 


initial proposals they became increasingly receptive to our subsequent 



' - i. As evidence of French sincerity in carrying out actions 
designed to improve the status of anti-communist military forces in Indo- 
china, General Navarre and other French officers repeatedly invited me 


to return in a few months "to witness the progress we will have made"o 


3. I recommend that the Joint Chiefs of Staff: 

a. Note the contents of the attached report and take appropriate 

action where required o 

1 b« Propose to the Secretary of Defense that he recommend to the 
Secretary of State the sending of a small group of qualified experts to 
Indochina to study the desirability of the U. S. assisting in the develop- 
ment of Associated States small industry capable of producing certain 
military items or military-support items such as small arms, batteries or 


recap tires o 

c. Approve an increase in artillery units in the force basis for 

Indochina if UAAG and Department • of the Army screening indicates such 
increase is necessary for a balance of forces in the nevr divisional organ- 



Declassified per Executive Order 13526, Section 33 
NND Project Number: NND 63316. By: NWD Date: 201 1 

♦ -IZ'i 


do Approve my return to Indochina in 3 or li months for a follow- 
up of the mission's activities, and 

B. Insure that the Chief, LUAG, Indochina, receives copies of the 
approved report for his guidance and that he be instracted to take follow- 



up action where appropriate « • • 


, > li. I recommend that the Chiefs of the individual Services approve 
necessary personnel augmentations of the 11AAG, Indochina to allow for 
three (3) U. S B officers (one from .each Service) for attachment to the 


French Training Command* and that the Chief of Staff, U. S. Army assign 
two (2) additional U. S„ Assistant Army Attaches to be used for collecting 
combat intelligence in conjunction with the French G-2 in the Hanoi area 

- if.— ir.riT'"^^fi 

^Vaw^flis^f •■ 

7 t" 

JOHN XI o o } r;^iEL 

Lieutenant General, U 
Chief of Mission 


r- y ' ' ' r 


Declassified per Executive Order ! 3526, Section 3.3 
NND Project Number: NND 63316. By; NWD Date: 2011 

Security Information 




1. General ; In furtherance of the desires of interested agencies 
of the Government of the United States (see Annex n A"-Background) and in 
conformance with the "Terms of Reference for the Chief of the U.S. Military 

* ■ * 

Mission to Indochina" (Appendix A to JCS 1992/224 j copy attached as 
• " Annex "B"), approved by the Secretary of Defense on 12 June 1953 , ®y party 
(see Annex "C") and I arrived in Saigon, Vietnam on 20 June 1953 to conduct 

* * ■ 

a survey of the military situation in Indochina. 

* r 

2. Throughout our stay in the Associated States we were most cordially 
received by officials of the French, Vietnamese, Cambodian and Laotian 
Governments. Our first two days were taken up in briefings by the 


American Embassy, MAAG, and French and Vietnamese military headquarters 
and by staff discussions. Thereafter we returned to Saigon from tins 
to time to conduct discussions with French headquarters, the American 


Embassy and MAAG, Indochina. 

3- In order to facilitate our mission n\y party split into three, 
and sometimes four, groups and traveled throughout Indochina. Ve were 


given complete freedom in selecting our itineraries arjd on all occasions 
were supplied with ample transportation and accommodations by cither 


Chief MAAG, Indochina, or the French Armed Forces. This allowed for 

"on the ground" familiarisation with all objects of military interest 
in those areas controlled by non-Communist forces. (See Annex "D 11 for 

detailed chronological presentation of the mission's activities in 



i %9i. 


Declassified per Executive Order ! 3526, Section 3.3 
NND Project Number: NND 63316. By; NWD Date; 2011 

4. . Oar discussions vdth the French and Associated States military 


authorities were on all occasions conducted in an atmosphere of frankness 
and military comradeship. I myself was particularly frank in my discus- 
slons v/ith General Navarre, and his deputy, General Bodet,- as well as 

the Commanding Generals of North, Central and South Vietnam and the 
French Naval and Air Commander, in which discussions I stressed the need 
for: (a) wresting the military initiative from the enemy now, (b) im- 
mediately initiating the reorganization of French and Associated States 
Armies on a divisional basis, (c) reorganizing and improving the training 
of the Armies of the Associated States, (d) hastening the turnover of 
leadership and staff responsibilities, particularly on the divisional 

a • 

and regimental levels, to officers of the Associated States, and 
■ (e) improving the utilisation of air and navy potential in Indochina, 
Prior to his departure from Paris {2 Jul 53) j General Navarre presented % 
iiB vdth a written plan of action, henceforth referred to as the "Navarre 

* ■ 

Plan" (see Annex n E n ;, and. expressed himself orally along lines which 


assured me that he intends to take conclusive action toward achieving 
his goal. 

a * 

t. f J$"m Adequ a cy of Present Efforts an d Plans to Wi n t he W ar in Indo- 
china: I feel confident that th3 anti-Communist military forces now in 

a « 

Indochina, v/ith competent/sand effective reorganisation into regiments 


and divisions, are capable of achieving military victory against the 
forces currently arrayed against them. (Sea Annex "F" for discussion 
of opposing military forces) However, this would require a complete 
change in French military psychology associated vdth Indochina and 
v;ould entail some risk, both military and political, in the redisposi- 
tion of forces, v;hich the French are unv/illin" to take. 


Declassified per Executive Order 13526, Section 3.3 
NND Project Number; NMD 63316. By: NWD Date: 201 1 

m £t; 

tSi OL'45iiiL 

6. Currently, I-rench and Associated otates cdlitary forces are not 
only scattered throughout the provinces of Tonkin, Annam, and Cochin-China, 
as well as in Cambodia and Laos, but within these areas anti-Communist 
forces are holed up in snail forts, tc.vers, and fortified areas. Host 

■ ■ 

of those forts have never been subjected to attack. The French have 
contended these forts are necessary to guard lines of communication and 

* ■ • 

control the countryside. I feel that a striking force of at least 5 

divisions could be mobilized from these forces and mobile reserves by 
1 October 1953 for employment as a striking force in the north, and so 
informed General Navarre in the nature of a suggested plan (see Annex "G") 
for offensive action in Tonkin during the coming dry season (Oct 53 - 
Hay 54) # This would not denudo any area. General Navarre is sonowhat 
cautious with respect to reducing troops in inactive areas but intends 
(and so stated in the Navarre Plan) to mobiliso a 3 division striking 
force for employment in Tonkin by 15 September 1953. 

7. Though the new French High Command is prepared to take certain 
essential and highly desirable steps in the right direction, they will 
not, and perhaps cannot in view of political considerations, consider 
undertaking military campaigns designed to achieve total victory with 
the forces now available. Consequently, complete nilitaxy victory will 

await the further development oJT the military forces of the Associated 

States or the addition of French divisions from outside Indochinao 






Declassified per Executive Order 13526, Section 3.3 
NND Project Number: NND 63316. By: NWD Date: 201 1 


8. General Navarre intends, during his current visit to France, 
to urgently request that the French Government authorize him the loan 


of the equivalent of at least 2 divisions from French forces outside 


Indochina. . In view of the French conviction that they do not have 
sufficient forces in Indochina to win an early victory there, and the 
fact that the shipment of French divisions to Indochina would go far 
toward convincing the fence-sitters that France can and will see this 
war through to victory, I believe that the United States should support 
General Navarre's request. m 

9. I can readily understand SHAPE'S initial concern over the ship- 
ment of • French divisions to Indochina. However, considering that these 
divisions would be on loan only, that they would be returned at an early 
date followed by the dividend of thousands of additional battle-hardened 
and victorious French military veterans, and the great strength which 
v/ould accrue to France from a successful settlement of the war in Indochina, 

* « 

I believe the action concerned would be to SHAPE'S groat advantage^ 

. 10. Though the addition of 2 divisions, endowed with a divisional 
concept of teamwork, continuity, impetus, and employment of artillery, 
could the mi.15.tary balance to assure an early victory, I feel 
that any addition other than in divisional organization would be in error 
since it is the divisional team, with its coi&at proven effectiveness, 


which is sorely needed, in Indochina. 







Declassified per Executive Order ! 3526, Section 3.3 
NND Project Number: NND 63316. By; NWD Date; 2011 


llo Effectiveness of French Utili zati on of U,S. Milit ary, As s istance : 
j Iriasmucii as U.S. military aid has prevented a Viet Minh victory in Indo- 


china, it may be said that this aid has been effectively used. To date, 
French "use differs from U,S, use because the overall war effort has been 
dominated by purely French military thinking By U.S. standards soma 

■ ~ 


equipment is not used in the most effective manner, such as the use of 

artillery by single gun or battery in fixed positions, the employment 

) - of equipment in static forts, and the dispersion of fire power among 

a number of small independent units rather than concentration in a pov/er- 

ful striking force* However, General Navarre has informed me orally, and 

■ ■ , * ■ 

so stated in writing (see paragraph 3 of Annex n E") that he intends the 

■ ■ 

■ * 

early recovery of a maximum number of units from areas not directly 
involved in the battle, and the reorganization of these units into 


} regiments and divisions for offensive employment in force. 

] 12, In the past, the military aid programs have filled screened 

deficiencies for units included in the Phased Force Basis, as approved 
by the Joint Chiefs of Staff, No activation of units has been delayed 

1 due to nondelivery of MDAP equipment. The aid program has been thorough- 

ly coordinated with so much of military planning as relates to the build-up 
of force. 



13. The Chief, KAAG Indochina has, in general, not received sufficient 

a ■ 

information on lo.ig range operational plans to determine whether the forces 
we are supporting are required for planned operations. The Chief, MAAG 

i ... 

i ■ 

" 77 

Declassified per Executive Order 13526, Section 33 
NND Project Number: NND 63316. By: NWD Date: 201 1 

, > - lUrotbntl 

stated the opinion that this was not because of any unwillingness of the 
. French to confide in him, but rather because long range operational plan- 
ning in general has not been done in the past* 

14. In my discussion with General Navarre, I emphasized the need 
for coordination of militaiy aid with operational plans as well as force 


* build-up plans. General Navarre informed me that henceforth General 


Trapnell Yfould be kept informed of operational plans and be invited to 
send observers on actual operations* As evidence of French intentions 
along this line, General Garobiez, Chief of Staff to General Navarre, 


disclosed French operational plans for the coming months in soma detail 
. (see Annex "H n ). General Trapnell has been informed, 


15* Political Considerations : General Navarre informed me that he 
has complete authority vdth respect to the conduct of military operations 
• in Indochina and is unhampered by political coins iderations. Statements 
to the same effect were made by his subordinates. However, it is realized 
that this is on oversimplification of the problem. It gees without say- 
ing that declarations made in France, reference the war in Indochina, 
affect the "will to win u of General Navarre's command, if not the actual 


conduct of the war. Furthermore, it is believed that certain French 
military operations in the past, such as the movement of large French 

* • 

. forces to Nasan and Luang Prabang, have responded more to political 



considerations than military requixeirents. These same political consi- 
derations may very probably continue to receive attention in the future. 



Declassified per Executive Order 13526, Section 3 3 
NND Project Number: NND 63316. By: NWD Date: 201 1 

... 3 

Tt is also pointed out that military forces in Indochina include the 

i w 

national arMes of 3 different Associated States in addition to the 
French Expeditionary Force. These units of the National Armies of the 
• Associated States cannot be moved between the states vdthout specific 
permission of the heads of the Associated States involved. (See Annex 
"I" on Political Considerations) 

16. Adequacy and Scope of U.S. End-Iteni Suoervision of U.S. Kilitary 
Assistance s 1IAAG end-item supervision includes receipt of equipment at 
ports, inspection of units in the field and schools,, observation of the 
use of equipment in operations and inspections of warehousing and higher 
echelon maintenance facilities. Until General Navarre took command, the 
number of field inspections was limited and excessive advance notice of 


intended visits was required. This problem has been resolved satis- 
factorily. For example, the Army Section is now authorised 30 visits a 

month to field units, representing a 100J6 increase over previous authori- 
zation. The present schedule allows approximately the maximum nuirber of 
inspections within the Army Section capabilities and permits adequate 
supervision under present circumstances. Similarly, supervision of Nayy 


and Air Force equipment is currently considered satisfactory. 

17. U.S . Pa rticipation in the Training of the Nation a l Armies of 


'...' .the Associated States I Hy staff and I visited a large nuirber of schools 

l m 


and training centers engaged in training officers, specialists, cadres, 
and basics for the National Armies of the Associated States. (Detailed 
discussion of training to include the school system is contained in 


3 v ^. &* 'A 



Declassified per Executive Order 13526, Section 33 
NND Project Number: NND 63316. By: NWD Date: 201 1 














tud qff 

Annex "I'O With 2 exceptions the training was good, with African 
methods such as the "committee system" frequently used. The training 


witnessed in several, training installations indicated out standing 
aggressiveness and imagination on the part of installation commanders. 


However , many training centers were operating at less than $0% capacity 

and suffered from lack of uniformity of instruction, lack of or failure 

to use necessary training aids, poor organization of instruction and 

lack of central command supervision* . 

18. Responsibility with respect to the training of the armies of 
the Associated States is poorly defined and I feel that the key to the 

* ■ 

training problem lies in reorganization to achieve real command supervi- 
sion* This can be accomplished throu^i the organization of a French iCAAG, 

to supervise all training — Army, Navy, and Air, for the military forces of 

the Associated States, along the lines of our KAMAG in Korea, General 


Navarre has agreed to this concept. Furthermore, General Navarre has 
agreed to the inclusion of 3 U. S. officers in the French MAAG, with 2 
French officers in turn working with General Trapnell's organization. 
This will allow for indirect U. S. participation in the training of the 

ational Armies of the Associated States. I do not believe that direct * 

U. S. participation in the training of the Armies of the Associated 


States is either desirable or feasible, primarily because it is un- 
necessary, manpower requirements would be very large and the French would 
object most strenuously* 

1 QCpB 











Declassified per Executive Order ! 3526, Section 3.3 
NND Project Number: NND 63316. By; NWD Date: 2011 

19* In discussions on all levels my party and I strongly urged the 
French to utilize their present school and training center plant facility 
to capacity for the training of indigenous personnel and establish ad- 

nditlonal facilities where necessary in order to expedite the development 

of the indigenous The French accepted this concept with the 

* reservation that inasmuch as no additional qualified students may be 

available , following utilization of the present large training plant 

facility to capacity, the need for further expansion may be eliminated. 

Furthermore, I strongly believe that U. S. schools should be utilized, - 

not only to train Vietnamese instructors^ but also to acquaint the Viet- 

namese with U, S. training methods. 

20. Employment of Associated States Milita ry Potential : Manpower 


resources available in the Associated States are capable of supporting 


considerable expansion beyond currently programmed increases in the 

j Armies of the Associated States. Bao Dai stated that Vietnamese forces 

alone arc capable of expansion to 500 .000 men. Other Vietnamese 

officials reiterated that their army could and should be expanded to at 
least double current plans. This Is a commendable attitude but pay. 

» t 
equipment and training are the limiting factors* 

21. Although a considerable increase in Vietnamese support of the 
war has been made during the past year (Vietnam has reportedly increased 

* a 

1 its defense budget by 300$ since President Tarn took office)., Vietnam 


remains capable of increased financial support of the war effort^ as does 
Cambodia. This does not hold true for Laos, with its primitive economy 
and present complete dependence on France for budgetary support. It is 

the opinion of Ambassador Heath and his staff that the Associated States 



Declassified per Executive Order 13526, Section 3.3 
NND Project Number: NND 63316. By: NWD Date: 201 1 



— f 











no (.«"« « 

should be able to increase military expenditures in view of additional 

financial contributions from outside Indochina (neasured in piasters), 

, • ", ■ ' ■ ■ ■ 

which should result in increased Incomes and permit increased tax re- 

ceipts. The amount *of taxes collected is also capable of expansion 

through improved tax collection. Doctor Sumberg, an Airerican financial 

expert, is currently in Indochina conducting a 3 month study of the tax 

systems of the Associated States prior to making appropriate recommen- 

dations. . ' '- - ' 


22, Currently, little or no industrial support of the war exists 
in Indochina, The adaptability of the indigenous population to specialist 
requirements and the existent support, with very little means, of a large 
and complex civilian transportation system in the larger cities of the 
Associated States, emphasize the existence of a technical knowhow, a 


fundamental requirement for any industrial base* Capital is either non- 

m * 

. existent or carries prohibitive interest rates. The advisability of 
* IJoSo support of a small arms industry, tire factories, battery factories, 
■ garment factories, etc* becomes one of weighing comparative costs of 
local production against outside procurement, ^n a short term basis 
importation appears most economical for the majority of items, but 

. detailed studies must and should be made by qualified experts to assure 


that tills is correct, Kith respect to certain ifc&ns of military support, 


such as battery production or tire recapping, local production appears 
most economical. Currently, a large proportion of batteries received 


1 3 







Declassified per Executive Order 13526, Section 3.3 
NND Project Number: NND 63316. By: NWD Date: 201 1 

; In the Associated States are unfit for use, and the remainder have a rela- 
. • tively short lif e# Raw rubber is available in Indochina for recapping of 

tires* Commercial control is in the hands of the French, who not only 

control the very little industry which now exists in the Associated States, 

! . but also make reportedly large profits through the importation of French 
j products. Any plans for the development of Vietnamese industry will 

encounter the opposition of these French commercial interests, 

23 * The French have been very tardy in the turnover of military 
leadership responsibility to officers of the Associated States, However, 
there has been some noteworthy progress recently, I was informed by the 
Vietnamese Chief of Staff that forty-odd battalions are nav commanded by 
Vietnamese officers. His Majesty, Bao Dai, has signed a decree establish- 
ing a "National War College", site not yet selected, to train division 

commanders and other general officers. In my discussions with General 
Navarre and his staff, I repeatedly emphasized the need for expansion, 
to include regimental and division commanders, of a system already 
. initiated on the battalion level in the Associated States and proven on 
all levels in Korea, that of attaching French advisers to indigenous 

1 commanded units of the National Armies of the Associated States, General 


J Navarre has agreed to expedite the turnover of command to native leaders 

"\ . of the Armies of the Associated States as well as giving those armies a 

"more and more eictensive place as well as more and more antonomy in the 

conduct of operations". 




Declassified per Executive Order 13526, Section 33 
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24« Utilisation of Korean Military Training Lessons in Indochina : 

. - 

Korean military training methods can be employed advantageously in the 

4 m 

training of the Armies of the Associated States, Although the French, 
naturally proud of their own military heritage and partially justified 


in their claims that the war in Indochina is different from that in 


Korea, have verbally minimised the benefits which may accrue to the 

Armies of the Associated States from training lessons learned in Korea, 
the Associated States have already benefited from Korean training. This 

■ * * 

-was- particularly evident at the Officers' Candidate School in Dalat. 
Here 11AAG officers emphasized the considerable improvement, not only in 
training methods but also in utilization of plant capacity, since the 

■ -m * ' 

f * ■ 

visit to Korea by members of the Dalat staff „ Shortly before our 



departure we noted increased interest on the part of senior French 
commanders in making visits to training centers in Korea, ilore visits 


to KAMAG training centers in Korea are planned. These visits should 
include visits by officers of the Hanoi Tactical School (which trains 
battalion and regimental commanders and staff officers; and the new 


"National War College", when established, to similar training centers 
in Korea* This is one of the most desirable means by which Korean 
military training methods may be applied to the training of the Annies 

of the Associated States, 


25* Developer nt of Associated States Military Forces ; V/ith respect 
to numbers, the indigenous forces of the Associated States are developing 
according to plan (see Annex l! J ,f ) fl Monsieur Quat, Vietnamese Minister 
of Defense, informed ma that 31 of the 54 Vietnamese commando battalions 
scheduled for organization this year will be operational by 1 Cctober 
1953* Ky observations at training camps confirmed Monsieur Quat's 

remark o 

■.ait orfiuwr 

t I^h %Jras*^fJ Baa a 






Declassified per Executive Order 13526, Section 3.3 
NND Project Number: NND 63316. By; NWD Date; 2011 

"OP Wpurr 

26. The priraiy deficiencies in the development of indigenous 
armies lies in the training of leaders, staff officers and. in a lesser 
degree, specialists (see Annex W K", Training and Schools in Indochina). 
The "Letourneau Plan" calls for the augmentation of an organization 


already overwhelmingly preponderant in independent battalions by acti- 
.vatins a large number of additional battalions. The "Navarre plan" will 

•i "build. up progressively a battle corps by grouping battalions into 

- , •" a » 

regiments and regiments into divisions and by giving units thus created 
the necessaiy support (artillery, engineers, armor ^ communications) 
taking into account the very special character of the war in Indochina". 


Organisation of regular forces along these lines will begin immediately 
(see Annex "1% Reorganization of French Union Forces), Commando 
battalions v/ill initially be employed as independent organizations in 
the pacification program wherein they will get sons battle indoctrination 

I and organized into regiments and divisions at a later date. General 

Navarre stated that he proposed to keep these battalions on pacification 

) duty 3 or 4 months. 

2?. Taking into account the current and planned development of 

Associated States Military Forces, there is no deficit of force in 
Indochina. The new command in Indochina v/ill, in my opinion, accomplish 

the decisive defeat of the Viet Kinh by 1955. The addition of 2 or more 


French divisions from outside Indochina would expedite the defeat of the 


Viet I-Hnh. Greatly increased participation of China in the war in Indo- 
^ china would require a reappraisal. 

8 W < 


Declassified per Executive Order 13526, Section 33 
NND Project Number: NND 63316. By: NWD Date: 201 J 

'^_ & - 

28. Prospects for Wresting the Kilitaiy Initiative from the Viet 
Hinh : General $avarre f s plan of action calls for "retaking the initi- 
■ ative immediately through the carrying out, beginning this summer, of 
local offensives and by pushing to the utmost coraniando and guerrilla 
actions" and "to take^ the offensive in the north beginning 3epten£>er 15, 
in order to forestall the enemy attack". These planned operations, 
previously discussed (and covered in greater detail in Annexes "E" and 
"H"), together with guerrilla action and the pacification program, 
should assure the wresting ano rotainiag of the militaiy initiative 
from the Viet Hinh. The timing of the major fall offensive is parti- 
cularly important. Last dry season's campaign was scheduled to begin 

fr 4 

about 1 November 1952. The Viet Kinh campaign against the Thai country, 
followed by their Laotian campaign, was initiated on 10 October 1952/ 


Thereafter, the French merely reacted to Viet Ilinh attacks, thus 
precluding the initiating of French planned dry-season operations. 


2 9 • Guerrilla Warfare : General Navarre has a strong memory of the 
French Resistance movement in W II, in which he was active, anl told 
me that he intended to expand guerrilla activities as one of his immediate 
means of retaking the initiative. At the present time, French-Associated 
States guerrilla operations are loosely organised at command levels and 


utilize minor tribal groups in Laos and in Northern ard CentraL Vietnam. 

■ m m 

They form a thin defensive harrassment line on the outer perimeter of 
Viet Hinh influence in the mountains, French estimates of their strength 
vary from 3,000 to 20,000. 





Declassified per Executive Order 13526, Section 3.3 
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A x m±L 

30 ♦ French ani Associated States forces are capable of expanding 
guerrilla forces immediately , as defenders of their bonis areas, by 
increasing the arming of tribal groups now useu as guerrillas, Trained 

- ' * " i 

*■? r i * * " 

cadres are in being in 'these areas and the tribal people will fight the 
Viet Hinh, Effective harrassment of Viet Hinh communications lines from 
the Chinese border and flanking the Delta perimeter vail require stronger 
and better trained guerrilla units than new exist, with political con- 
victions to at least match those of the Viet liinh so that these units 

can recruit local partisans in their area of operations, Concret 

suggestions for mounting guerrilla operations prior to 15 Sept sab er> 


particularly harrassing the Viet Minh communication line flanking the 
northern Delta perimeter, were made to General Navarre and General Cogny 
who expressed favorable reaction." 

31. Guerrilla training facilities were inspected and talks were 


held with commanders to encourage expansion of training and aggressive 
action. Present training facilities for guerrilla training will be 
expanded (see Annex l W on Guerrilla Warfare), 

32, Utilization of Air Potential 1 The air mission in Indochina 

is executed almost in its entirety by the French, The Vietnamss 


contribute a token participation by liaison-observer type aircraft, 
flown by Vietnamese pilots under French operational control. 

mm i 








Declassified per Executive Order 13526, Section 3.3 
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'33. The French Tactical Air Force, including F8F fighters and B-26 


J light bombers, appears well organized and employed. The problem — very 

much parallel with Korea — is lack of well defined targets. With an 
aggressive ground offensive this picture should change for the better. 
It is adequate in the absence of counter air (see Annex f, K")» 


34. The Air Transport and Troop Carrier Force is fairly well 

3 . 

• organized, but could employ more efficient techniques, which have been 
j - . agreed to by the French. The limiting factor, with one reservation, is 

the lack of sufficient maintenance personnel. This shortage of personnel 
limits operations of all types of aircraft employed in the theater. The 


exception referred to is lack of numbers of aircraft to airdrop more 


than two battalions at one time. This latter fact was the basis for 
the request by the French for a squadron of C-119 ! s« The French state, 
however, they are entirely in accord with our recommendation that C-119's 

1 are not feasible for continued operational use in Indochina and, according- 

j « . 

ly, are recommending the withdrawal of their request for the squadron, 
as well as agreeing to the immediate removal of the six presently on 

1 loan from FEAF. 

I r 35. The requirement still exists, however, for more aircraft if 

three infantry battalions are to be airdropped simultaneously. It 
was. recommended to the French, and they agreed, that in the event a 
three-battalion drop is projected, enough C-119's to make up the lift 

deficiency be loaned to them, subject to high level U.S. approval, for 
the three or four days necessary, and that French crews previously 

checked out in Germany or elsewhere be on hand in Indochina to make 
t the drop. These same pilots would supplement the present C-47 crews 


Declassified per Executive Order 13526, Section 33 
NND Project Number: NND 633 16, By: NWD Date: 201 1 







i^ xfPiB? 


when not otherwise engaged. The probable number of C-ll^s to be 
required is twenty-two (22). This plan would save the United *Stat 


. several million dollars, in LEAP aircraft ani at the same time give the 

.French the capability of launching a large-scale airborne offensive. 
■ (Sec* Annex "0" for detailed discussion of Air Transport and Troop 
Carrier Operations). 
36. The Air Logistics picture is the brightest air aspect in Vietnam 

from the standpoint of improvement shown during the past eight months 


Here again,, personnel are badly needed. The French have agreed to request 

Paris for additional mechanics and supply personnel as well as to train 


additional indigenous personnel to alleviate this condition (see Annex rr P f, )< 

37 o The Air Training School for the Vietnamese Air Force at Nha 
Trang is well set up but too limited in numbers of trainees- The French 
have promised to expand the training of Vietnamese air personnel (see 
Annex »Q"). 

38 In summary, the French Air Force can support an offensive 
operation with its present equipment ^ augmented by additional personnel* 
The loan of G-119 ! s for the limited period of a specific operation will 


give them the capability for a three-battalion airdrop. 

39. Utilization of Naval Potentials Both the Tonkin Delta area in 
North Indochina and the Mekong River Delta area in South Indochina are 
interlaced with a series of canals and interconnecting rivers that form 
the country 1 s main transportation system. This river and canal system 


provides means for surprise amphibious assaults in both Delta areas. 
The enemy offers no resistance to French ships at sea. The French naval 
forces have sustained greatest damage frcm mines and ambushes in narrow 

r • - 
l r. I- 


Declassified per Executive Order 13526, Section 3 3 
NND Project Number: NND 63316. By: NWD Date: 201 1 


\M Mm 

"J inland waterways. Blockade running is on a small scale. Small arcs and' 

ammunition is seldom found; rice and salt are the usual articles confis- 
cated from Viet Kinh junks and sampans (for details of Naval Warfare see 

* ■ 

• Annex "R"). ' •' . • ; 


40-. ; . The training of Vietnamese naval officers and recraits was 



% initiated in 1952 and the National Vietnaxrase Rayy v/as officially 

■ • 

"I established in January 1953. Training of enlisted men is satisfactory 

and can be expanded but training of officers is lagging due to the <^ 
larger training cycle required. It was recommended that sore temporary 
1 officers be appointed from the group of several hundred enlisted men 

who have served in the French Navy. The French were not receptive. 
French naval officers appear to hold the Vietnamese in low esteem and 
are reluctant to turn over responsibility to them. The mission feels 
that the Associated States personnel car* be developed into satisfactory 
leaders (see Annex r, S ir for further details on Vietnamese Naval Tr&inir-g). 
41 • Amphibious Operations : French Union amphibious operations have 
heretofore amounted to little more than patrol operations on the inland 
waterways and coastal raids. Both the Army and the Kavy have river 
patrol forces which are not coordinated in the higher command structure. 


The French concept of amphibious operations makes an absolute distinction 
between operations conducted on the coastline and those conducted on the 


inland waterways. The U.S. concepts of the amphibious command structure; 
"tactical integrity; and observance of the principles of choice of the 
objective and concentration of forces; and the adaptability of these 
, ' concepts in Indochina were presented to the Comi^nder-in-Chief ^ Naval 

■ - 

Forces, Far East (Adoiral Auboyneau). These concepts, while not wholly 



Declassified per Executive Order 13526, Section 3.3 
NND Projeci Number: NND 63316. By: NWD Date: 20! 1 



OF dECHtl 

agreed to by lov/er echelons within the French ^avy, v^ere accepted by 

Admiral Auboyneau. In his concurrence with the presentations by 

the members of this Liission, Admiral Auboyneau stated that he intended 
to reorganise present French Union naval forces and to plan the develop- 
ment of expanded forces with the purpose of attaining increased amphibious 


effectiveness and at the same fciae delegating increased responsibility 


to Vietnamese leaders and units* (oee Annex "T") 



42 . Administration and Protection of Liberated Areas : One pressing 

aspect* of the war in Indochina is the current insecurity of rear areas. 
For example , the enerr^y holds or controls large areas inside the Delta 
i perimeter with military units up to regiments. Luch of the lack of a 
more aggressive spirit on the part of French coriander s appears to be 
based on their concern for security of rear areas. 

A3* In -orth Vietnara, particularly vdthin the Delta, political 

action is being coordinated vath military action to pacify the rear 


a. ^- 

areas. At French Headquarters, North Vietnam* a G-5 has been created 

• ■ * 

as a Bureau of Pacification, working closely with Governor Tri-s Civil 

* • 

Coiu&ittee for Pacification. In conjunction vdth military action, 
pacification teams establish village and provincial governments, as . 
veil as organize and ana village militia for defense against the 
Viet Minn. G-5 is new and small, there are political questions 
reference Governor Tri f s growing strength, and militia are poorly armed 
to resist Vict liinh attacks on villages. The French are capable of 

AC cess * r V +**'* • * f * *+ ' *<W?t * 

supply ing/A 

this -6 

* ^rar^qttip:.teirb fron reserve stccks. 





Declassified per Executive Order 13526, Section 3.3 
NND Project Number: NND 63316. By: NWD Date: 201 1 



i ) 





44« Success of the Dong Quan project (a plan for regrouping many* 
small villages into large fortified villages similar to the Templar 

" m m 

• Plan in Malaya in concepts is questionable in the opinion of the STEM 

* « » 

officials who are supporting this project. Dong Quan has been the 
'target of repeated Viet Minh attacks, which signifies enemy concern 

* ■ 

over this plan, and consequently villagers are currently quite unwilling 
to move into Dong Quan* Because of the tremendous scope of the village 
relocation project, if carried through to completion (even if restricted 
to the Tonkin Delta), and the existent static commitment of a great 
number of troops in Indochina, it is imperative that local militia 
only be ultimately employed in defense of this type village. The 
impression received was that the Dong Quan project was losing popularity, 
however the effort is a new one for Indochina ani furthor developments 
will be watched. 

45 # The mission of the 54 C optica ndo Battalions to be added to the 
Vietnamese Army by 1954 is primarily for pacification,, As of 30 June 


1953 9 battalions had been activated, with 3 operational, 31 battalions 
v/ill have been organized and trained by 1 October 1953* The 3 battalions 

1 operational are being employed near Eui Chu, in the southwestern part 

J ■ 

of the Tonkin Delta. Commando battalions are being trained for political 

i * propaganda, and counter-guerrilla warfare. 






Declassified per Executive Order 13526, Section 3.3 
NND Project Number: NND 63316. By: NWD Date: 201 1 

Illi OLUilLl 

f - 

46. " In pacifying areas the French and Associated States intend. 

m m 

j employing the following general plan. Units already stationed in a 

selected area will initiate clean-up operations in that area. As they 

progress in their clean-up operations^ commando battalions will move 
in behind the regular battalions, assuring the continued pacification 


of the area by countering guerrilla activities, screening occupant s, 
and employing psychological warfare to assure the political allegiance 

„ of, the inhabitants* As the area of operations expands,, regular troops 

| ■ 

) from. adjacent areas will join in the operation and additional commando 


„ battalions will likewise be utilized in a single unified operation* 
Gradually , as the operation expands with regular troops operating on 
the perimeter and commando battalions within, certain regular units 
will become excess and will be transferred to the battle corps in 
{ * Tonkin. In general, the French plan on utilising two to three commando 

-battalions to replace one regular battalion (see Annex "U" on Pacifica- 




| 47- Psychological Warfare ; General Navarre , General Hinh, and 

President Tam are in favor of waging more aggressive psychological 


warfare and are hopeful of obtaining a political answer to the Viet liinh 
propaganda theme of immediate and complete independence for Vietnam, 
Psych ological warfare is barely started in the Associated States. 
There is practically no combat psychological warfare, training is 
neither uniform nor effective, and enemy weaknesses are not being 
exploited. Behavior of French Union and Vietnamese forces in occupying 

villages is such that it negates much of the present psychological 
warfare effort, A further handicap is that President Tarn and General 
Hinh are both French citizens who 'could He accused of biased feelings 

t. IT) : 





Declassified per Executive Order 13526, Section 3.3 
NND Project Number: NND 63316. By: NWD Date: 201 1 


48. Suggestions xt ere given to psychological warfare officers on 
the adoption of combat techniques, exploitation of enemy weaknesses, 


and more uniform training. Both French Union and Vietnamese forces 

have ambitious plans for expansion of psychological warfare. General 
Navarre was receptive to my recommendation that the two French and three 

* k 

Vietnamese officers who completed the psychological warfare course at 
Ft. Bragg this June be used to organize and supervise a psychological 
warfare training program. The addition of a psychological warfare 
officer to the KAAG staff in the near futurex should benefit the 
initiation of a comprehensive program (see Annex u V ,r ) . 

; .. /f9.. Prisoners of 7/ar ; French officers estimated they held about 



30, COO Viet I'dnh Fw ! s in camps throughout Vietnam. French Union forces 
have the responsibility for holding KF f s since the Vietnamese government % 


has not signed the Geneva Convention. Separate camps have been establish- 

ed for v/hat the French term "de-intoxication" of selected FIVs, stating 
they obtained the idea from our "denazification 1 - camps in Germany. Ten 


"de-intoxicated rr Viet ilinh are ncx cadets at Dalat. 


| 50. Employment of a U.S. Intelligence Pei'sonnel in Tonkin : I 

discussed the' subject of employing a team of U.S. intelligence personnel, 

to work with the French G~2 in Northern Vietnam, v&ifa General Navarre 
at considerable length. In our conversation, I stressed the fact that 


cessation of the war in Korea would eliminate an existent source of 
U.S. intelligence on Chinese military forces and that so jib of the slack 
might be taken up by increased intelligence on these forces to be 
obtained from French sources in Indochina, particularly through the 








Declassified per Executive Order ! 3526, Section 3.3 
NND Project Number: NND 63316. By; NWD Date: 2011 



interrogation of Viet Kinh prisoners. .General ^avarre replied that he 
would cooperate wholeheartedly in this respect and,, although unreceptive 
to a large team of U.S. intelligence personnel in Hanoi, agreed to the 


stationing of one or two U.S. attaches in Hanoi to increase U.o. intel- 
ligence in that area. In view of the implications of U.S. participation 

in the war in Indochina associated with the employment of/corbat Intel- 


ligence team in Hanoi, I believe that the solution agreed to by General 


Navarre is best. The existent availability of a hotel room, eating 

facilities, and an automobile in Hanoi to accommodate U.S. attaches when 
visiting there, should preclude any major administrative problem associated 
with the stationing of U.S. attaches in Hanoi. 

51. On 12 July 1953 while at U5ARPAC, the mission received an infor 
mation copy of a cable (OEF 943670) requesting UAAG Indochina to provide 
-\ certain data for inclusion in an NSC report, and to develop this data 

as part of the iiAAG work for the mission. Based on information available 

to the mission and additional data provided by the UAAG, a report 

-j (Annex rr W fr ) furnishing the required data, was prepared. 

52. Participation of Associated States Reoresentatives in the Acti- 


vities of the Hiss ion ; It was disappointing that Associated States 
representatives were not present at all briefings by the French. However, 
officials of the Associated States appeared satisfied with their parti ci- 


pation in the activities of the mission. A lengthy briefing at Vietnamese 

y Army Headquarters in Saigon the third, day of our visit was followed by 

discussions between myself and the Vietnamese L'inister of Defense and 

lUr J 


Declassified per Executive Order 13526, Section 3.3 
NND Projeci Number: NND 63316. By: NWD Date: 201 J 





} - 

Chief of Staff as well as staff discussions between Vietnamese officers 

£35 and members of my mission* Discussions were also held with both 

political and military representatives of Cambodia and Laos. At training 
centers visited, representatives of the Associated States were playing a 
prominent part and participated extensively in the activities of my' 

53* Participation of KAAG Indochina in Activities of the Mission 

General Trapnell, in addition to supervising all administrative arrange- 

ments concerning our activities in Indochina^ vrorted in close coordination 

with the mission at all times. Members of HAAG accompanied the mission 

< • 

on all trips and briefings. General Trapnell was informed of his 
responsibilities in following up actions of the mission. 

54* Attitude of New French Command in Indochina : During my 
stay in Indochina I became kore and more impressed with the 


sincerity of General Navarre and his top commanders to see 
this war throu^i to success at an early date. Progress in offensive 

planning and increased aggressiveness in attitude and follow-through 


were noted even during our brief stay. Once the French became convinced 


of ths soundness of our original recommendations they were not only very 

• * 

receptive to all subsequent recommendations which we advanced but actually 


appeared to be groping for any new ideas which might contribute toward 


vanning the war in Indochina. Furthermore, their repeated invitations 
for me to come back in' a few months "to witness the progress we will 
have made" is, in my opinion, concrete evidence that the new command has 
brought. a new, aggressive psychology to the war in Indochina. As a 


closing thought I propose that henceforth we think in terms of the 
"Navarre concept" in association with the war in Indochina-, 


\ . : 



OHN V/. O'l^KIEL ^ 


lieutenant General, USA 
Chief of iHssion 

Declassified per Executive Order 13526, Section 3.3 
NND Project Number: NND 63316. By: NWD Date: 2011 

396.1-V/A/7-1J53: Top Secret File 

. > 


SENT TO: . imenbassy PAEIS 180 July 1?, 1953 

7:29 PH 

Franco-Uo Bilateral afternoon July 12 devoted ex- 
clusively Indochina. 

I. Political ; 

During lengthy prespntation Bidault it clear 
French intended interpret their Note July 3 to Associated 
States most liberally. Quote they coulc* write their own 
ticket Unquote concerning Agenda in all fields and they 
would obtain "hat they ask for. Only sine qua non is con- 
tinued monbership French TTnion as without this concept 
Bidault positive French Parliament and public would not 
continue supnort war 12,000 kilometers from hone. Negotia- 
tions will take fori three separate bilaterals presumably 
in Paris although this location not absolute condition, 

except perhaps case Cambodia where question prestige in- 
volved . 

Secretary expressed deep gratification these far- 
sighted liberal political plans, referring French Union 
concept he paid, he understood it was not precise juridical 
concept but rather broad idea and we favored such concepts 
which hold different people together in different parts of 
world in security and fellowship , as no nation can be 
totally independent under present conditions. 

II. Military.: 

Letourneau-Allard plan outlined to us in Harch nrc- 
gressing on schedule and only French desire is to accelerate 
its imnlenentation. Referring to TTavarre plan he defined 
it as : 

a) Structural reorganization to create units better 
adapted for local war conditions and for offensive opera 
tions ■ 



Declassified per Executive Order 13526, Section 3.3 
NND Project Number: NND 63316, By: NWD Date: 201 1 


396.1- , ./A/7-1553 


b) Increase in total forces available to create sub- 
stantial strategic reserve permit French initiative. These 
additional forces include 12 battalions from France with 
50 helicopters, * 3 TSTs and 2 Pocket (repeat Pocket) Liberty | 
ships, 30 C-^7S| and 6 Beavers (repeat Beavers )• 

Obviously most serious problem relates to 12 infantry 
battalions. Politically raises grave problem sending con- 
scripts to Indochina and this at very time when popular 
sentiment against war crystalizing in France. Militarily 
it would mean sharp reduction in French strength in Europe 
and North Africa. He estimated following units would have 
to be deactivated as result cadre and support requirements 
of 12 battalion force for Indochina: 8 or 9 artillery 
groups, 6 or 7 engineer battalions, h armored regiments, 
3 or h signal companies and 8 or 9 ordnance companies. 

.ill this has serious financial implications. Bidault 
stated that provisional French 195*+ budget now includes 
M?2 billion francs for Indochina and implementation 
Navarre plan would result in additional 20 billion francs. 
At same time 313-ault understood US requesting $+00 million 
to aid Indochina war and §k0 million for direct assistance 
to Associated States (Stassen corrected this last figure 
to $25 million and pointed out both $+00 million and $2? 
million amounts were only illustrative ) • While Bidault 
did not make any precise request of US he clearly indicated 
because France f s financial condition these amounts of aid 
would not adequate permit above French expenditures. 

Referring all aspects Indochina war in France Tidault 
pointed to basic and delicate political problem in Parlia- 
ment where generally speaking those who support Indo- 
Chinese war (i*e., more Quote national Unquote element) 
oppose T3DC and vice versa. This crisscross of political 
sentiment complicated hi* over-all task immeasurably. 

Secretary expressed understanding for French diffi- 
culties and said outline Navarre plan had impressed us 
favorably because of its offensive features. General 
! Daniel was now preparing his full report and unon com- 
pletion it would be given urgent and careful consideration 
with view determining what financial aid could be given, 
which of course would depend on Congress, 




Declassified per Executive Order 13526. Section 3.3 
NND Project Number: NND 63316. By: NWD Date: 201 1 



III. Negotiations: 

<^—» — «-^^-— — «— — I ii Mil 

This phase conversation tool£ up more time than any 
other* Decision not to mention this aspect to Press re- 
spected so far and obviously should continue be carefully 
observed in view possible rapid snowball effect, 

Bidauit at great length developed reasons why nego- 
tiating activity in "orea should be paralleled for Indo- 
china. Quote Peace is contagious Unquote, French people 
would never understand why negotiating ^ r as fit and honor- 
able for Korea and not so re Indochina . In particular ; 
should there be cease fire in Korea and nothing similar 
in prospect for Indochina present French Governments 
situation i/ould become absolutely impossible. Bidauit 
said of course he was not considering any kind negotiation 
which would result Quote stabbing in back Unquote 530,000 
French and Associated States 1 soldiers now fighting Indo- 
china and spoke vaguely terms of plebiscite after cease 
fire. In self-defense he said he had given little thought 
subject as his main preoccupation hap been counter 
who are advocating negotiations. 

t 1- ose 

While again expressing understanding for Trench prob- 
lem Secretary stressed negotiations with no other alterna- 
tive usually end in capitulation. If Korean negotiations 
succeed it villi probably be because Communists realize 
we have Quote other and/ unpleasant measures Uncuote avail- 
able. T T erefore he urged Trench adopt T: avarre plan not 
Qnly for military reasons but becaure it would improve 
French negotiating position. Te made clear for variety 
reasons inscription Indo-Chinese item on agenda of a 
post-Korean armistice political conference would be not 
only difficult but also Inadvisable. Secretary mrc-e point 
of referring fact Korean political talks would be under UN 
auspices and France had consistently and strongly opposed 
moves bring up Indochina in UN forum. Ke did say however 
if in course of such political talks ways and means develop 
to contribute toward, honorable political settlement Indo- 
china US would of course do so and we would that time keep 
In mind possibility negotiations re Indochina in some 
other form. Uowever Secretary Placed his emphasis extreme 
perils negotiating when no alternative available* 





Declassified per Executive Order 13526, Section 3.3 
NND Project Number: NND 63316, By: NWD Date: 201 1 



Secretary again assured French along lin^s D resident r s 
April 16 sneech and "aver Communique to effect ye would 
consider it a fraud should online war in Forea merely be 
means releasing assets for aggressive use elsewhere ♦ . 
French ^ere assured we would see 1 : UK concurrence include 
something this effect in final communiriue. Other signi- 
ficant statement by °ecretary connection Indochina nego- 
tiations problem was when he discounted French fears Chi- 
nese volunteers might openly intervene in Indochina and/or 
Chinese aviation * Secretary said seemed reasonable to him 
mal:e plans in Indochina basis there TT ould be no such de- 
velopments because probable and Communists know it possible 
such operation would lead to rather general uar Pacific 
area and sea and air force from US might be brought bear 
in areas other than Indochina* 







Declassified per Executive Order 13526, Section 33 
NND Project Number: NND 63316. By: NWD Date: 201 1 

Security Information 


Text of the French Memorandum 

* * 

1. One of the essential aims of the free world 
is the containment of Communist expansion in the Far 
East. France is not defending her own interests alone 

In Indo-China any more than the United States is defending 
solely its own interests in Korea . 

2. From the Juridicial point of view, there is no 
connection between the Korean War waged by the United 
Nations and the war in Indo-China waged by France and 
the Associated States. But on the Allied side it has 
often been ascertained by the highest military and 
political authorities, that the Far East, on a line 
stretching from Korea to Malaya through Indo-China, 
constitutes a single front, divided into several theatres 
of operations. 

>. It is therefore logical that nations which 
have waged or which continue to wage the same battle 
separately be united in the pursuit of peace, just as 
they have helped and still help one another in war. 

4. Conversely, it would be absurd that the con- 
clusion df an armistice in Korea, fervently desired by 
the French Government as well as by all other members 
of the United Nations, should have as a consequence an 
increase. in the support lent by Communist China to the 
Vietminh. The mission of the United Nations would not 
be fulfilled if the cease-fire in North Asia should 
result in an intensification of the war in South Asia. 

5. Without being in a position to state that the 
prospect of a truce in Korea is the cause, the French 
Government notes at this very moment, with great concern, 
that the supply of war material and articles of all sorts 
to the Vietminh by- Communist China has considerably in- 
creased during the past three months. It is to be 
feared that this state of affairs is going to deterio- 
rate further during the months to come. 

Security Information 


Declassified per Executive Order 13526, Section 3.3 
NND Project Number: NND 63316. By: NWD Date: 201 1 

Security Information 

6. In accordance with the decisions taken by 
the United Nations > a/political conference i-3 to 
convene within a maximum period of ninety days after 
the signing of the truce. It is clear that this confer- 
ence will consider primarily problems relating directly 
to Korea, which It is specifically Instructed to resolve. 
Nevertheless, the success of its mission, though 
greatly to be desired, should not result first of all 
in a worsening of the conflict in Indo-China . 


1 . As was found by the three Ministers of Foreign 

Affairs in Washington, It may be difficult, for proce- 
dural reasons, to place the Indo-Chinese question on the 
agenda of the political conference. It should surely 
not be impossible, however, to see to it that Indo-China 
profits, at least Indirectly, from a meeting which is 
intended to re-establish peace in an area of the Far 
East, should such an undertaking meet with success. 

8. We shall doubtless soon be In a position to 
sense the attitude of Communist China during the political 
conference, as the representatives of the United Nations 
certainly do not intend to allow the meeting to drag on 
Indefinitely without results. 

If this attitude, as is possible, is entirely 
negative, it would obviously be out of the question to 
expect the conference to have any beneficial effect 
upon the situation in Indo-China. 

If, on the contrary, the climate of the confer- 
ence becomes more favorable, the opportunity may arise- 
without jeopardizing in any way a successful solution 
of the Korean problem-- to explain to the Communist 
representative, unofficially as well as at the conference 
table itself perhaps, that his conciliatory attitude 

could not limit itself to regions lying north of the 
38th parallel, and that he would be assuming an un- 
deniable risk if he sought to localize his peaceful in- 
tentions in such a manner. 

Security Information 


Declassified per Executive Order 13526, Section 3.3 
NND Project Number: NND 63316. By: NWD Date: 201 1 

Security Information 

9- How could $uch a maneuver be undertaken? Once 
more It would be logical to see to It that the work 
of the conference progresses pari passu with a cease- 
fire In Indo-China. 

In any cose, it is only fair that the work 
of the political conference should, at the very least, 
be conducted in such a manner that Communist China: 

(a) can not consider any result as secured (in 
particular with regard to the evacuation of 
military forces) as long as she has not 
given tangible proof of her general goodwill 
in Southeast Asia. 

(b) receives the Impression that the situation 

in the Far East as a whole is kept constantly 
under review by the Three Powers jointly 
and therefore has a direct influence on 
negotiations which are limited to Korea 
in principle. 

(c) arrives gradually at the conclusion that her 
best Interest Is to cut down her support of 
the VIetminh, in order to enjoy the benefits 
which she might expect to derive from a 
prolonged or final cessation of hostilities 
on the 38th\ para lie. 

10/ At the same time, the French Government would 
continue its efforts to obtain a satisfactory adjustment 
of the situation in Indo-China, which has just been 
undertaken both on the political and on the military 
level. Such en adjustment should enable us to regain 
the Initiative in military operations just as we have 
regained it with respect to '"relations 'Between France 
and the Associated States, 

Security mf orma tlon 


Declassified per Executive Order 13526, Section 3.3 
NND Project Number: NND 63316. By: NWD Date: 201 1 

Security Information 

11. Such an effort by France and Vietnam coupled < 
with the political maneuver already outlined might lead 
the Government of Communist China to reflect whether 

the policy of supporting the Vietminh is still justified, 
and whether it would not be, in the last analysis, 
more costly to her than the abandoment of an ally who 
is unreliable except for a common Communist ideology. 

12. The French Government is fully aware that 
the foregoing observations are of necessity still 
indefinite and represent only a first attempt to find 
the best method of hastening the re-establishment of 
peace not only In Korea but also in the Far East as 

a whole. The intention of the French Government has 
been only to indicate the direction in which it 
believes that an effort should be made, in a spirit 
of equity justified by a war of seven years duration, 
the essential purpose of which is the defense of freedom 
as well as the protection of all of Southeast Asia. The 
French Government would be happy to obtain the views 
on this question 

of the Government of the United States 
and the Government of the United Kingdom 

Security Information 


Declassified per Executive Order 13526, Section 33 
NND Project Number: NND 63316. By: NWD Date: 201 i 



JULY 17, 1953 - NO. 387 

FRIDAY, JULY 17, 1953 

.•.Last Tuesday night we finished a five-day meeting 
of the Foreign Ministers of Britain, France, and the 
United States, . . . 

In the past, there has been some criticism of the 
French Republic for failing to promise liberty and 
independence to the three Associated States of Indo- 
china, — Vietnam, Laos and Cambodia. It was felt that 
the peoples of these countries needed something of their 
own for which to fight. The basis for that criticism 
should now be removed. The French Government has given 
assurance that it stands ready to grant complete sover- 
eignty and independence to the three Associated States. 
Negotiations on this matter will start in the near 

Last Monday, Mr. Bidault, the French Foreign 
Minister, and I invited the representatives of these 
three States to meet with us. We found that they looked 
forward eagerly to working out arrangements with the 
French Government to complete their sovereignty and 
independence. It seemed that they do not want to be 
wholly divorced from France. They have, with France, 
strong bonds of a cultural, economic and military nature. 
These can be preserved, consistent with full independence, 
within the French Union, which, like the British Common- 
wealth, offers a possibility of free association of 
wholly independent and sovereign nations. 

This action of the French Government makes clear 
the distinction between those who would grant inde- 
pendence and those who would destroy It, It should 
make it easier to stop Communist aggression in that 
part of the world. 


Declassified per Executive Order 13526, Section 3*3 
NND Project Number: NND 63316. By: NWD Date: 201 1 

We discussed plans for military operations in 
Indochina. These are being developed by the French 
General Navarre who has recently gone there. Our Govern 
ment sent General 'Daniel to confer with him. We 
beleive that the new French plans are vigorous and 
deserve to be implemented in that spirit. The United 
States has a large interest in the matters because our 
position in the Western Pacific could be put in jeopardy 
If Communists were allowed to overrun the Southeast 
Asian peninsula of which Indochina forms a major part. 
We are already helping there with material aid. This 
involves the second largest cost item of our Mutual 
Security Program, participation in the NATO Army being 
first. I believe we should help effective resistance 
to Communist aggressors everywhere, and in Indochina it 
may save us from having to spend much more money to 
protect our vital interests in the Pacific. 

We also agreed that an armistice in Korea must not 
result in jeopardizing the restoration of peace in 
other parts of Asia. In this connection we thought 
particularly of Indochina. 

As President Eisenhower said in his April 16 address, 
an armistice in Korea that merely released aggressive 
armies to attack elsewhere would be a fraud. We are 
on our guard against that. 

2, Our program for Europe and Asia is a program 
for peace and for the liberty and justice which are 
necessary if peace is to be durable. Repression can 
give *the illusion of peace, but it is only illusion, 
For sooner or later the repression becomes unbearable 
and human emotions explode with vlolance . . . .That is why 
we seek peace in Indochina on the basis of freedom and 
independence which the French Government now promises 
the peoples ' 


Declassified per Executive Order 13526, Section 3 3 
NND Project Number: NND 633 16. By: NWD Date: 201 1 




FROM: Paris . .Rec'd: July 29, 1953 

3:3'f p.m. 
TO: Secretary of State 

NO: 370, July 29, 6 p.m. 

It is also the nolicy of his government to v/in the war in 
Indochina; To do this, they are pfepared to adopt the 
general principles of the Favarre plan, including sending 
approximately nine battalions of additional troops to 
Indochina* However, the cost of sending and maintaining 
these additional trooos in Indochina, plus the cost of 
arming, training, ar.d equipping the necessary additional 
battalions of Vietnam troons, will be approximately 100 
billion francs for the French calendar year 195^ • There- 
fore, the Laniel government, in order to carry out its 
overall plan of winning the war in Indochina and balancing 
the French budget, needs an additional 150 billion francs 
for Indochina In calendar 19 5^ • Laniel said that the 100 
billion franc figure for tho extra cost In Indochina in 
195 1 *- was a maximum figure, and thst he had instructed 
General I avarre to do his best to reduce it somewhat. 

Laniel said that 3idault had reported, after his Washing- 
ton trip, that the Secretary of State and !r# Stassen had 
told him that there was no hope of getting any additional 
funds whatsoever from the T JS for Indochina, and that 3idault 
was very discouraged to have to make this report. Laniel 
added that there was no point in sending any additional 
French forces from France to Indochina unless the funds 
were also available to build up the Vietnam army for Its 
eventual assumption of responsibility. He pointed out that 
it would be impossible for him to make the economies which 
he plans to make in the civil areas of the budget unless 
he can make similar economies In the military side of the 
budget, including Indochina. If funds are not available 

1 Copy held in S/3~R # 



Declassified per Executive Order 13526, Section 3.3 
NND Project Number: NND 63316. By: NWD Date: 201 1 


to carry on in Indochina, the only alternative is eventual 
withdrawal, the only question being the exact method and 
date on which the withdrawal will take place • He has in- 
structed General l T avarre to prepare a new plan on the 
assumption that no funds will become available, and this 
plan will be ready^ shortly and will be available for our 

Thus, in conclusion, Laniel pointed out that not only the 
whole question of Indochina, but also the whole problem of 
balancing the French budget and putting France back into 
a position where she could make a strong contribution to 
the European and Atlantic communities, depended on whether 
or not approximately 150 billion francs additional could 
be made available for Indochina in calendar 195*K 







Declassified per Executive Order 13526, Section 3.3 
NND Project Number: NND 63316. By: NWD Date: 201 1 

FW 795.00/8-733= Confidential Pile 

[French Embassy] 
Washington, July 31, 1953 


1. The armistice in Korea having come Into force, 
it seems indispensable to the French Government to re- 
view at this time the exchange of views at Washington 
between the Foreign Minister, Mr. Foster Dulles and 
Lord Salisbury, concerning the raising of the question 
of Indochina in the course of political negotiations 
which are to follow the armistice. 

The Foreign Minister on July l l \ submitted to 
his American and British colleagues a memorandum on 
this question. The present aide-memoire is intended 
to spell out certain points contained in that memorandum 

2. The interdependence of the two cnnflicts in 
Korea and Indochina is acknowledged, since it has 
been emphasized at different times in the communiques 
of the three Powers, and has been affirmed by President 
Elsenhower and Mr. Foster Dulles. As is recalled in 
the Declaration of the Sixteen Powers, It will be In- 
conceivable that the armistice In Korea might result 
in preventing the establishment or the maintenance of 
peace in another part of Asia, in increasing the sup- 
port given by China to the Viet Minh, and In aiding 
in this manner the spread of Communism. It will be 
incomprehensible If anything is overlooked in trying 
to extend to Southeast Asia, and in particular to 
Indochina, the benefits of the relaxation that It Is 
hoped will arise from the end of hostilities in Korea. 

The question thus arises of knowing by what 
means and with what Immediate objectives one might 
associate a solution of the Indochina conflict with 
the settlement of problems with which the Political 
Conference, called for by the armistice agreement, will 

3. With regard to the means, Article 60 of the 
armistice agreement, by means of the phrase !l etc. TI does 
not rule out, in principle, that the Indochina question 
(a) might be formally included, as such, in the agenda 
of the Conference, (b) or might be taken up" In the 


Declassified per Executive Order 13526, Section 3.3 
NND Project Number: NND 63316. By: NWD Date: 201 1 

FW 795.00/8-75? 

examination of the general problem of Communist aggres- 
sion elsewhere than in Korea , (c) or might be included 
in a general discussion of Par Eastern questions. 

In any case, it t essential that the inter- 
dependence of the different theaters where Communist 
aggression is taking place not be lost sight of by 
the Allied negotiators and be clearly affirmed, 

4. On the assumption that it proves impossible 
for any of the three formulas, indicated above, to be 
carried out, the matter could be taken up on the fringes 
of the Political Conference. It could, in effect, be 
studied, after the appropriate contacts—of f icial and 
restricted—had been established with the Chinese repre- 
sentatives, in a parallel conference which might be 
held at the same time, but which need not be of the 
same nature or the same composition. 

This parallel conference could be limited to 
the question of Indochina alone, or deal equally with 
other Far Eastern problemscother than Korea. It would 
have the advantage of not having any tie, legally or 
otherwise, with the United Nations since the latter 
would have no part in the establishment or in the 
program of its work. It would allow for more flexibil- 
ity and for more possibilities in the conversations. 
The parties could, in tilts parallel conference consider 
themselves uninhibited by any previous positions 
taken at the time of the working out of the articles 
of the armistice regarding the calling of the Political 

5. In any event, the French Government considers 
it important that the following consideration guide 
the conduct of the Allies: that no non-Korean problems 
of interest particularly to China—viz., admission of 
its representative to the United Nations, raising the 
embargo, and the question of Formosa— will be thS 
object of discussions or of more or less long-range 
promises until the Indochina problem has been discussed. 
The French Government could not agree that the Political 
Conference take up the non-Korean questions if among 
them is not inclu*ded--in fact as a pricrity item—the 
question of Indochina. 

6. The objective we would wish to attain,. when 

this question in one way or another is seriously discussed, 


Declassified per Executive Order 13526, Section 3.3 
NND Project Number: NND 633 16. By: NWD Date: 201 1 

FW 795.00/0-753 

would be the end of all Chinese aid to the Viet Minh 
and the end of hostilities. 

The effective Implementation of 3uch mea-- 
sures would allow, after a certain interval and if the 
opposing side gives evidence of a true spirit of 
conciliation, for the preparation and the opening of 
negotiations' foV a political settlement of the problem. 


The French Government reserves the right to 
consider far more thoroughly this last aspect of the 
question, together with the Associated States, and in 
particular with VietnNam, when these exchanges of 
views with the American and British governments will 
have sufficiently established the ways and means most 
appropriate to the circumstances and to the purpose 
in mind. 

7- The foregoing views have also been brought 
to the attention of the British Government. 


Declassified per Executive Order 13526, Section 3.3 
NND Project Number: NND 63316. By: NWD Date: 201 1 

L W 

C -»v»rL' r»#ffc 

Security Information 

Cop;r Jt o: 




end Courses of Action irith ISespect to Southeast Asia* 

ESC 22v/2 and tbta % oy Sbceeativs Secretes? to the 
lktional SecasAt^ Goitnsil edited 25 Ju3# 1£52 i&icli 
instructed the Ssiionafc Sceorliy Council that the 
President had dirked J^plej^ii^tion of BSC 12V2 
ty r.ll appropriate Sjcecutiva D$piurfcr.onts end 
Agencies or the United States Governraent under tho 
coordination of iho £ocret~ri*3S ef State &nd Befeose't 

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t at ion or .'-- - : 12'//2 end the ^.":ovo reference r.^i^rri.:^, fh&ra te 
mfeiitted herewith a progress report on SSG 124/2* It if? revested 
that this 02 circulated to tha Council s&e^ifeere for their ii^OEFtatiexu 


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Declassified per Executive Order 13526, Section 3.3 
NND Project Number: NND 63316* By: NWD Date: 2011 

se&rltgr Information 

vVilUliAL i^OurUH Ouj^Ulir 

Eepcnrt en K3C 12 V* — halted states Cb^otiTos 
end ths Courses ox Action ^/Ith Saspsct to Southeast kviz.". 

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Declassified per Executive Order 13526, Section 33 
NND Project Number: NND 63316. By: NWD Date: 201 1 

Security Xafarn^tioa 




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tupport (ce<*- ra usd) ito^$« 

B^r^:a save riotice or a closlro to tssnina^e t*io toohniostl ttssistaaca 
a^ro: c^;t as o-T JunD 33,, !?^3» (!cr a diseus^ioa af this sltur^lMi 
pee bclo:r 1:1 k r l:nv:*:a« ) 

(7c) ?"<o pro Jl eta ^hieh mete up feha ecotic^ie aid projr-^G cf tlio 
United Ctct^s «■ ire adopted after cMi^rui. r^vIciiG^ pp^sibla corvc^rxneos 
c*nd fceiS9.£lts s*ad their feontribation tc^fSLrcls U^itca slates obj^cti\f;:f3 
inci^ir^ i t of c-:cr\-r:'-;;i^; restoration ana expansion of eo^terea iil 

fr^o world • lvh.Ua intcrasl producfcioii rnd do^stic a^iu rcr^i^a tratia 
sre fnovi^j ^lc:;iy bade fecyard psrosrar levels it if: too ear^r to exgm&i 

Ql yi\*">;>"*t ^"i »Vi fj' 1 * /■»*"•- * ^fl i'^ 1 m*t n 4 Jv^a T ~/^- T ••> »"-^» *••■*» ^"*^"A-V "*i'i *-i«*-t , „-» -^ 4* *•■'"> ?**> -* 
j^i., O. wb v r «> SVV'Utu^v u.*\J jlJ,-wa#* OX I .* .-I .: , -,^3X *t5S*?*I« wi£@ >')U2vw t t'-'>v 

nortvaon cr problc -^ 01 incrofiBin^ tha proSactioa o* actual and potential 
jT^r^ latiJsj forestuj snd rainos*, A number er eccr^c^ic nid projeets ab 
olthsr tc develop tlie pater s&ee< :y Tcr exploitation of t!::r^ rocourc 
o^* inliiato action n^co^car? f*>r loiting unuedd vz^c^ozs d ; : ^n 




•TAP C l " ""T 1 


Declassified per Executive Order 13526, Section 3.3 
NND Project Number: NND 63316, By: NWD Date: 201 1 


* . 

i # 


crority Indorsation 

esoso&icsi §ssis or frgxrova tte soil to allci ir.oro planlLi:; end 
aofatoro greatar output per scr©« 

*5* *v^» 

(?d) Sfes issoaaos of a varata* to Cfcrattisxist China regarding 
jrctva c^nSiiqusnosg or C&taosa agg^ssion against Southeast Asia 
is continuant wson prioi* e sag teat trith Etasnca end tho Onload Hfra&tei 

to purticipatc in courses or action set Torch in oth^r par^-raptis of 
the &3S pstpsr astS en agj^ss cni Kith Australia nrd Kssi Zealand as s^ll 
that oveh a \^xmln^ should ba clvon* 2f forts to r^ch traders landings 
on thu pcticn to bo i&ksn if Cor-^inisi Chins inv:r- js Southeast Asia 
hovo Kdda p:o;;i'^;3 at tho ssilitaxy lev-^1, Cn October 6 t 3-952* mili- 
tary r^pr^scnia tives or tha United Sl&iasi Great 3rf.f &in| Franco, 
Australia* and t:-u Ssaland jr.©t in WasMngton^ D« C #f to conslcter jvaraly 
.' gtfl&toy ncoosts of tha fefons$ of Southeast Asia in fevsnt or Chinog& 
Ccrs'-unlst &&gr58$iei}« It tetd besn couoic^rsd pravioiisly that tho 
possiblo advont&gea of a Fiw ?o:or Fliliiaigr Conf^ronco justified it3 
Wing held c sspito th3 fact th t firrly spread "a^on Joint political 
fuicanco h?.d not been cbirilr^* 

Tho representatives eoncluded that J 

&• Air, ground Itr4 ttstfal action limit 3d orfly to V^ ar-oa 
of aggression &nd contiguous nr :-:,3 or China offers little 
prospect of causing Co unist China to oaso lis aggjr&ssion* 

b. Tho imposition of a total sea bloekad3 f in conji: iciion 
with tb@ actions lb:?.t:j to th» arc^n or &ggrs3$ias3 end con- 
tlguotfcs areas of Ccvviunlsi Chin- v::uX5 of -/or little £f>3ur.r.r.c-o 
or forcing tho Cfainssa Cbrc&uniots to ce ;o aggrsssdoni 

c* A co.':b5.naticci ci all coc-rcivj ie.sastiro3 including tba 
defeiis® oC tho areas of B£gr$s$xQiw intsrdiotio^ or %h& Ifteaa 
of co::^ , uiiioation f a full coa bloctcstds slid air ati?ck3 on all 
enit^bla tsrgats or zijlriiry Bignific^no^ in China, in zo far 
as thsy a^s vllhin tha ftlliod e- : r illiioa, plus such rainforco* 
&&nts fai ti^a and soals a^ i:aj be prsctioa^la in tfcs iis;sdiate 
sr^i offers ths te^t proapact or cra^jsing Cc*:.uni3t China to 
cease && af2ras^ion# 


Eb^se conclu:>ioir; t howsY2r# nxi^t bs costeidsrod as purely idLlitsu^ 
T&fflBm iho British cnclsavor^ to I' tit tSa^ courts of action to tho 
araa of ae^rsssion Irv- eoritsndia^ that o::p^r^ ^d air r:nd nav^l acilcn 
should bo ir: Ssstlva < ni b%toz£ Allied cap^bilities # ?i^o ?roriCb ::^ro 
pri?arily cone 3 with tioii r^latod to t'ia dofens.3 of Tonkin, -ho 
foroign d^losatoa i3loo stros:;c! tho n^cossi^r for ^dltionil direct 
; -iiiv-rr -i : ort in Tonkin atid Bonp ; both b^roro, aa a dbtorront» 
v d aftor cci a^^rassion. It ^r.3 oorio-as thot tfes otter povora »Kpeets< 


Declassified per Executive Order 13526, Section 3.3 
NND Project Number: NND 633 16. By: NWD Date: 201 1 

Security Isiforn itxca 

f > 

tha United States to provids tha bulk of this support* Ho'rever t 
the United St&taa r:ilit-a^r r&r&i 3s.Tt&tlira& i sihil^ s^eogrdsimg tns 

noc-d for land roiriforcaaaata hold that- tha cablet or Sstairaat 

action *:a 3 outcid^ ilu tanaa of rafersnoa* 

At a raatl&s of military r&prosaniattroa of th-3 Colanders tft 

• Chief of tha five pva^ en April 6 at Honolulu the rapre^irtstivsa 
s£r3^i en raa&suraa for csor&iaati&j Irni/id-nl pl-vas of each of tha 
fiva co^tri,os for actio:, in t&a evorrt of C&1R339 Comvdst agjpas- 
sion In Southeast Asia* Ir.olulxnj Song Kong and! Formosa! and fov 
undertaking sr>2ci*l planning s-todlaa* Si© rapfasa&tatlvaa of tha 

• United States hava not bssn authorised to participate in davaXopt*ent 
.of a combined piazu Tho arepresaiitaiivss agr^ad that thsy should 
&act and exchanga information 0:1 an on-cali n32d-to-*-xG~r basis and 
that th-jry t;ould appoint rcpro^ntaiivo;* to Maintain continuing 
liaison. It seas agreed tart" no fo>u.vl organisation or saaratarlat 
should bo s^t up and tint rapg^eatativaa should root at dlCfar*&t 
places in tha area according to th;> ns$d* 

(7©3 At tha stiiitaiy conv-3 rsations in October r~*ferrod to above 
*■ the forces tint vould 33 required for a naval bloakada &ng tha 
probable effe£tiv$&&83 end socsibls corxsc-quancca of blooksdo s^asureo 
ware studies,, A-r?e.:erit with tha 'Jnitod Kin^dow a*?d -'r^nca that a 
nival feloo&a&a should bo £r,oludad in the mlniraam eoursaa of aotiosi in 
tha errant of Chinasa Sootsunlst Intervention has not ba^n reached* 



} To c:\coxitc . o fcoopsraiiofi egong Southeast Asian countries 
and bot^eon tfc-sse o6Tft L rlea a ;d tlss tfast tha United States haa con- 
tinned to support tha Stenotic Conaaission for Asia end the HaJ? -: rvl* 
(3CA?S} V tha rations! office of tha International Labor 6rg&td-2atiosi| 
tha rational or^jiisatiaa of tfca -orla Koalih Organisation; the 
£ica Consultative Co. altled f the Sabbsr 2tufy tlitmpi arid iho Consulta- 
tive Gcra&ttca of tha Cole:dx> PXUfe 

(?f) Although it io tbo policy s$t forth in tha psper to 
strengthen covert oparstiong designed to assist in tha achieve - ;at of 
the? objectives in Southeast Asla f it is not bolleved that this is tha 
pizee for ca. i^nt en pro;;i\i3o in thi^ r^ipact* 

(?h) ChSnasd VcrA^.;r. .officers assienad ta p33ta in Southeast 
sia taya d^volonsid contacts \rith InfluoBtial Chinesa a inclu5i\i2 
editors ^/vl lr:;inc33 Isadar^ end assisted ^.n disiij ution of U.l> 
Chir^sa Isn^oa^a public <tiotiD to toy itv3i^5/li^l3 cr-1 or£^r;i^tic;r\:> 
of tha Chinoso ed ; ii^iityt Thes ^ activ±tia3 hive as^: • .1 in counLer- 
in^ Cocnixaiat oro ■ ■ : sr:d ,mc?-iri -in.: isifluantial Xcadara in 
China39 oo.i^uirtti33 -who h^va opsosaif often succfessfttlly f oodbarnion 

of th; rowjrr of ^n?-nos0 Co^rti*nl3ts In organisations of tha Chlaasa 




Sscarity I^c^A-tion 

Declassified per Executive Order 13526, Section 33 
NND Project Number: NND 633 16. By: NWD Date: 201 1 

TO? ssftm 

5 30 ur ity Xnf orsa t ion 


*. < i 

(?i) Tfca United States contiauss to take thd position on 
regional dofsn^ .> ooos^irufction that the initiative eii ary i:o/^- :or*t 
for regional, daltemg ujfKlarstaiidi^s or pacts isost cosa £rc:'< coimtrSsas 
of tha area audi that the t&itad Staios Koiald bo r^Oy to loud 
appropriate assistance sssd advice if it is r^quosiadt by tte countries 
of thg area aid there in r ::on to believe that snea action trould 
tiset thair QQdda and deuiros and pire&ote ths collrctivo sseurity of 
ths fr^o sorld* There i6 reason to beliefs that if th® Unitsd Ststss 


" n V-> 


ticn it vould bs isi&inierprafcsd ns outsico intsrreronc^ ant- prs&suya 
and 'could Xail to acMsvd ths obj^ativ^s. 


41 Th3 Departewmt or State's public af-tetra officer hava 
ezaphasi^ed or. auitabla occasions as oepcrtunitiss hav$ o£ 

*- - ( 


tssporta&es to iha sacurily or iho Uftiiesi States which th3 United states 
GovorAncsit attaches to preservation oX co\s^ tries in Sotttha&st Asii 
fro:a Co: ironist do.ixnatioru Although there is ^i^ovrln^ realisation 
lESOjig the fesarican p^oplo ns to tha inportvi:- of Souihas&t Asia to iho 
fres tforld, th£ra is do yat r,o indication that public cpirdon vould 

. support a contrTotttioa to Vxo stroggtea ii\ Indochina* for c:::^ola 9 othvr 
than that cur £nt3y being vMe In nilitajy ensUiter.a and Is financial 
aid, i f e., direct U.S, ailitaiy participation irould r^t be e&oasptahlB 

. tasier pfgsaat cor/titxons. 

(%) Tho Qjoltect -ivfc£3 support. j 1 th3 ap v Sicatlori3 of C^\boIi£ f 
Ir303| c^ncl Vi^t-Ii-:^ i*or ttsadtorship in tfes U^\tc;d t'atilonSi rnd f ^rtor 
tha applic at %<m% iter® v9toad by tba poiriot Uniou in tha Security 
Council, suj^ox*tsd thn i^ocolu^ ior;s passed cy the Ssuoral A^3?r;bly in 

fevor oi 1 m^^rsoip for tli^ ihroo states, Vh^ thraa St^ts$ #srs 
r^co^ic^d "by Csnada on Bocsntjor £9i 1952 ar^ ty Turk:^ on Tnrch > f 
1953 1 brirrin; tfe3 isxnhsr of eo\mtri ?a which hft¥9 03cts>uS5<J recogni- 
tion to 35« Kaverfcholessi program toward recognition by othar Aaii^i ' 
rtatas (a:' th^se only T i: iiV^5 ani tha Rapublic c.r Korea yacos- 
rd^^d) has becra vajy c-lo;?; £;van tlis Philip ;i^-s f ia ^pito of a r .: -■- r 
of official &3&tra*noe9 : i ha^ t^^n raluotimt to act# 

(cb) Offieisl t>^^ic affirpjation to JV^nco thiit tho Waited States 
z>>gardg tha ?«si^sh 2;fort oil IiKJochitn as inportant in tha eensrsl 
int •■r/..:-.tio:a? interest and rr^antial to th^ fr^j vorld's sacarity vas 
given vhsa the UnitasS Stetas jolD^d in ths JSiKJ Ccv ^cil r9.soXatlon or 
Decc^bor 17 P 19^2f ^Stieh rocor^tr^d tha Cv^.cn i:oc;}rity intu-est rs^d 
d^clorocl it t:, ^.vl::.; of cpx&inains support f^on tho.!SiT0 CoTeraf ?nts» 
This sf?i?tiatiaa yas rsitsnied ?.i ths tipie oT Prist© i inister Khar's 
vi^it to ^hlastoo in Ksroh 1953- 



■ Ouirlty I-;foi . ttion 


Declassified per Executive Order 13526, Section 3.3 
NND Project Number: NND 633 16. By: NWD Date: 201 1 

TO? 23CS32 
pa zur it? InTcit-ation 


-v *~- 

. • 

a , 

(2-c) Ta^ Siocutivo Branch has requested tha Con-r^ss for approiral 
of end Iter, r-ilit--^ aid for Indochina for Ft 195* in th£ t&raat or 
Mk60 million, ^ usa pro^rzw of §50 •jdllion tr-A sconc^ie aid 
jln tha emctmt of "25 Billion* 3?hssa proposed s&ooftfcS h&vss rot yot 
fcjon approved by tha Congrossi Is FT 1933 military aodUltefi assist-nco 
vas authorised in tha ar;ovnt of j263*8 million s&& economic ar/J tech- 
iiic?jL aaaiataitce in tbs amount of ;;25 idLllicn, with a furihsr sum of 
$3^*5 isiHion fop cordon-use its3?a» 

(3d) Tfco Dfeiied States continues to cultivate friendly g^ 
cooperative ral&tidgs vith tha Govsri^onts of tha Associated 5taiaa 
and Frarco and has rsc&ipsd in **ashinston tha first te&assador c? 
Fiat-Sasu A X&otisn L^g&tioa is to be opa&ed shortly* Ccr.bodia 
ms been roprasastad in U'asbtegtori since 1953.* 

(8a) This section of KSS 12^/2 lists eight ale^snta of xsiilvs 
political, nilit^r;-, soosoaic and social policies co&sidarad especially 
important amosag positlvo policies to probata which tha ffftitad States 

- should vs3 its in-'lusiveo pith franco sad tfea Associated States* Jfas 
u uc3 of iBtlBanoa 11 in tarns or action &ay to assumed to fall short cf 

. pressure of ary typs vhsra scch pra.ssura sttght ba sslf-dafa&tisig. In 
addition to tha opoortiydtias which tha A^aricasi fobassadaxs in Paris 
and Saigon fijvo ha4 to sst forth tba vi-gws of tha United it-:teo, 
tfcsra h?f:> basis a nssbar of special occasions fehich b&9B paraittad tha 
fullest end frankest ezciriivoo vith tha Frsncb raf^rdins fcilit3tfy f 
politic:!, $&& economic aspects of tha Indochina situation* Stich 
occaalo&a «sra tha mili&zy talks in r&afcln*to2i in October 19i2 t HfcTQ * 
Council sessions in Dee»bar 1952 , tfaa visit oT tha J-?cr:»t^ry of Staia 
arJ t;i3 Director of £txtudl Security to Paris in Fabxizosy 1953 > tha 
visit of Prcc.ior * ;.yar sr.d Cabinet colleagues to ^ashingtOit in ¥.%£ch 

Cl^rk inl:arch and Afei:^l E&dfiaril in AprD. l?53 t s^d, finally* \>^ 
otu^y urt "'jrtalcan in Zndochir^ ^t th^* invitation of th^ Pramli t/ tba 
American military nissioa hor-Jad by G^naral G f 15anial« 

A review o? davclcpfiCiits as*! con^irieratioiis relating to su2ciCic • 

ele^nto of poVlcy outlinadt in Section S(^) o:' ISC 324/2 rolloys: 



Sacurity InTortsation 


Declassified per Executive Order 13526, Section 3*3 
NND Project Number: NND 63316, By: NWD Date: 201 1 

ecurity Information 


*,- *, 

•» • 

bofor.? tha National As^/rCol^ in Jroiu xy 1053 iwksa provision 

for continuing support or thu ?rancli eiHtazy effort in Irvdo- 

china on a level coir^'isurato *;ith this r^s^onsibili^ . 

(2) Sfa? preuenoa of /ranch forces and French ls^rJ^rshlp in 
tlss ttlUt&i? straggle prs&^rvss tha territorial integrity of tha 
Associated States without ifaieh thdir evolution to*zard full i:r : o- 
psndence vould bo ir- : "os:ii:^l3 # At ih:: sa&s "fctae nilitsiy consider- 
ations Triakc it nsc^sssiy to proceed cautiously along ths path of 
evolutionary tfeWlapasrit* Fr jica has f&cllitstsd arron^\c;nt for 
Consultations snoag tha Associated States Tor regulation of tfrair 
mm ocoTioroic a£.Tair3# inclu-iir;^ tariffs* Sections to councils 
st th$ runioir-o.1 Isrol as th3 first stap in elactioa of a Katisnal 
Assembly te&ra hold in Vict-'.:,; in January 19.53 1 Cor^l^.eribla 
ele-^nts of opinion isitiiin L::j As-~ociitsd Stot<ss v;sro dissatisfied 
-with ths rats of evolution or p;r^istecl in thoir -sttitvlo of cojpti- 
claa toward French 5:rtor.ticr«s» The French sra c.mrc or this atti- 
tude sn6 mm considering vhvt further st-?ps ri?.y b-a tai<on« 

(3) Franco h^s instituted a urn systoi of r^i^^nfcalion in 
infochim tgp wfoicb -\r~:ie^ is ropr n*cr;tod by a COmissioTi&r Cor.-rtX 
&r£ in ouch of ths tftras AGsociutsd itatun by n High Cor^-.i^sion^r. 

00 Supplies funi5:>hed us part of the United States nilit-jy 
aid pro^ r <73 feslped equip n ^>: Inf^ntr/g artillery, ^■r.d oara>» 
tros? units of tha armies of th> Associated States* ^ of Ji-n^ 
1953 1 tbs u^b<-r of regular troops in ih~? ration?! airii^s of tlvaoa 
atatca h^i rror-n to about 100 f OjJ in Vlst-rt» a 12»COO ±11 L-C3 f nr^ 

ar^ios of ttes3 states can only ba acliicv^cl by ds^r;: ^. 

(5) Slio d^valoppi^it of oors effective artsS stable pcyvwenants 
in tbo A^soclatecl Stat^a Is lilr^ly to b 3 a gradual process to wJiich 
Ifcitsd States Rilita^sr and c^or.o^ic aio ro;rr.r^ can conttoua 
to CDntributOt Sesna progress h^!> bssn assais but before tfe stsbil iiy 
i\r,coszzry for ©ffectiv© administration cm ba aohicyod ; j n end nust 
ba brc hb to tan Viot i inh rib^llion sik! tbs authority of ^ov^m- 
mont sittst h# exiir^zi ovar areas vh^ra it Jias not bii3n e2C^rcis3d or 
recognised. Sha i r rxich Oovsm ^nt h-13 tlras fstr"pl>ayed tha princi- 
■pal role iri advising tbs A^sociat^d States on pvu>lio s Lnistr^tioii 
but th3 Unltjd States sconos^io alrt emission bas r.5vi^*;oc possible 
^eatjs of coT^ributtng to fiscal and oth^r acfeiiiiBtr^tiva refonaft 
and faciilitias for training voai^g officials in ^ovjr -vfc s&dnistratioii« 


Security luvor -tioii 


Declassified per Executive Order 1 3526, Section 3.3 
NND Project Number: NND 63316. By: NWD Date: 201 1 


V +~' 

This is a field in uMch tha ^r \ *i h-~vo a co&iira&!£| irrfcsrast and 
ara p&rhspa bo^t ca Xi iod 1;y i:*--.' it-ion* escosrienceg srki l-rr/mjo 
to assist* Tha extent to i-hich 1 advice anil asaisi * .:-.-■.:; 

vill be s^lobcie4 and caa bo effaoilvoly ran&arsd by otb@r nations is 
isot entire!;/ cl e -r« TVn acoorua bat&aazi Fmnso and iha Associated 
Stat as provide that first pr^fsra &ca in tha daloetios of tec;n:loi 
froni abroad s!iall be ^iv^a to citizens o£ tfca KrtittOh Pnion. In 
V4et-San elootiona to r^unioipal c sils in o:iv\;r 1953 $K?rs a hops* 
ful first step toaard establish ^ of d^nooratic institutions, 
taie? elect io:; 3 to district offices and e^bntit^ljy a National 
Assembly ays expoei^d to t &o placa in the fiot diot mt future tut 
thara nay no Justifiable delajrs civin^ to tha desirability of carefifl. 
preparations in a country uajtaallias **ith tbo electoral procosa whora 
th^ro ara no political partiss in tfcs usually eooaptad aeusat 

Sta© campai?!! of tbo Sing of Gas*bodla for issdpsndasiCB within 
the Fronoh Union equal to that or India or Pakistan within tha 
British Cceusoc^ilth tews rav^iei political difficulties ishich 
began ear3^ in 1953 ivh::n tha Kjtag* dissolved ifrs icatio^al ^.ss ;ly. 


In £503 pfiofcats of icrritor/ : - -In in 71 -,t ! inh hs&da or 
"unier control o:' dissiierita supported V.y tha Viet l>ivih in a result 
of tho Viat linh invasion in Ayril 195% tbpsats to political 
st&bllity in that country !• vo tlv^aCorj r*ot ditsitiisbadU 

(6) Jha Vir* - - Govor^.e-ht has acquired about 3d* COO 
bactaros of agricultural eatatsa ls^o;m^rs Tor ranis to 

£$ali f&x?:arsi r.nd on Jun$ :i ^ r?w agrarian rafoisa bill csu&a into 
effsoti llrUi:r - J -nt3^ -.1 Jjmroving land c:.n-rcvilp coniitiona* 
E^gSjoml governors hsva boon Askad to ti&a a oansus or vao*"tit 
national lnii^a suitable for faraiwtj ^hieh coul r ? ba allocated in 
cu-Il lota to I- . idl ..-.-I peasaBtSt 'Th- Cir:u:oi::l burcl^i oT th^? 
var 15iiit3 tfe3 fums t&icl) tha viatn^t^sa Cov >rn^nt can : afei 

aimilabla ^or carrying out l:r. : ra-jorms. Tha viattei^asa Covenfe- 


ment has eatablishsd a fx^rf for acvsrwea agaiBst xn3 noaaon's 
crocs Tor it^:a such as tools s :.- sd mnd fertxli^ar. 

. QaWtior^i of Isnd rsdistributioia cml tenszs^gr fevo not raised 

serious ?roK^23i3 in Ivco o!: 1 C^sbodia» 


It is xraliksly that ^tich oro^rass O^n ba a-'; in :u;>riizc 
usscla for ii^ustri^l credit, oovaSar rice ::iar!«ting aystorai or 
capital : '-... atlon until ^rtor p^ do i« r^atorod* A l-vbor codo 

$ b&on a:"op;jv: aid 1 ] elation en ad : r ' ' f th ani&xrtaas exist- 
ing trsida urdon3 to sarry on thsir activities end nasi o:*^g to bo 



(?) BXlitaxart 



Declassified per Executive Order 13526, Section 53 
NND Project Number: NND 63316. By: NWD Date: 201 1 

TO 7 * ~ \£ -" ¥ 

ocrjrily In .or: at ion 

. - 

(?) ; ilitr,ry 6 politieal, psychological Deastir^s nhifib 
shoold bn tskea i-i addition to ihjse tftlcb hssrc alro _f;y b&su 
adopts to it tha Vi a • inU forces ara i ;r continuous 

sfctiJ/* ih^ military d&seusaloas which nsra hold nlt£i niliiaigr 
. - rdprasarrfe f itlTra3 or ^r:uic;3* ih3 United Ei*y.v-;i, Australia and 
Sesr Zeal££# cr3 rc£03Kred to In paragraph (vV) above* In tba 
field or psychologic si naftfars tha Units:! States haipsd in tfea 
jpraparaticrn oC p.: " j said tfea Air -'brco Soared an aircraft 
Sp$©ial3y equipped to K9lSs& low slfcltoEla bro&dssstsa Tha ^ 
hav.* vaiy roe^tly tried tbis out cvor ifiot i-inh oont lulled 
arsss fdth r '-suits vttUth th v f exit justified th*ss in sski&g 
for a further loan of tbs aircraft. 


(8) In conversions in ^ashiagton in Ju©3 1952 rsprasonta^ 
tives or the Daparteant of Ctrt^ oi>ci:3:?id vith tbs Kresaeh i Stftlatar 
for tha AssoOisied States tb© desirability of bringing ^boat a 
better ttildsrstariding of ;;hat hao t_r;: 'loyio-tq bri&£ Sadapaz fcfie& 
to tha Associated 5tat&s-« .*hs -: srisan r$prasgntativi20 saggssted 
that tha French drasf up and publicise ? sort of balaissa sfedot 
itiilch troiai show what bad be-sa dana arrf what pre r^ss v?3 boing 
pads* l:o definit? decisions on ncans of cco;:jratirr : itJi the 

. Froncb in publicising dovolopsinnts wore r 5h3d« As g g&n 1 
nila it has sashed appropriate) for publicity regarding Xfttaohiaa 
to Janata £toh French soure&3 or fx&a repra rf:&tiy«3 or tha 
Associated States* TKj Shfomaiioa forvieo>> o" tha tailed f ■ »t^s 
Cbvwnftgnt fesv§ bsaa pblrs to giva soses ; /f>Iicliy to davolopr :is 
by griming vi£»r distribution to s*=:tta .1:; of r: >n£-ibl^ ?yoncb 
political loaders rugardli ; ni-o raaa ar*d rut^ire plans « Jb© 
Kinistei* of tha Asaociatad Statao pointed to tha difficulty of 
co^iviri^ji^ 1* l&vs zn*- 1 . th^ir poopla in cesi-ain countries of Asia 

" euoh es Ir^ds, !>b u*o t ^ is a ctron^; feolin;. ibrfc Suropasn 
nations should vi f ;- ot froa a^y eoimtrias o ; " ^;;ia ro aatter ^hat 
tha* Taix>uJ:ov\t taa$s cbawersatiotis ha rsltorated 
htv3 ecmvictiou tb it thti solution to t^o phobias of Ir-'ochina vas 

* as jruch political as nilit^ry a 

(?-^) 7h3? &zplt»e] • tion of this oiaraga^ph of SSO 124/2 haa b«sa of 
constimt conpani to ti:^ ^^pn " :-ntu of Defense ar.d SLita* To fimiivh 
ur;;-3Tirly ns^dad a5.d for tha or ti against th© Viet £lnb at ths oul : *;t 
of th? cry : :-.sorv in October 19,.2 fl tiss Qnited states contixi 1 4>3 delivery 
or* a priority ba$tts seeond c " / to -ov^i of arn, sqttipftfent airf suiteplal 
for th3 So-rfjs ol tha frD v ":cfi Union including t!;^sa of ths As^ooiatad 
States- United ftv! .:-. £ - c:co;:: / i ivi ftrrsiigc ..iv3 Mhlch ' *^ po&sit&a 

;h3 fDublir:;; of tlvs trsnrpQ^t ri^cr^ft aVaH&bXe to tha *i ; .:;. ;h 
Cc: ':.">:vi at thit ti" ^ in or.:or tbat par^chato drops r.t £51 incr^a^ed tc :o 
end si&s : irbt bi nossibld aa a »rt of a pms 1 t;c- ^^ of o msira 

- : . a# nuyertbsilo^af thj G::^.;y s^is .' ; tha - : ti\^ in Cctoftyjr 1S52© 
'.-.-::) oltn-39 ichich h ' * - Cun * C c* for o:^ ! sutr 

1n» ■-* "j *J ■= .--^.v .-* • ,-, r\l* hS'.i v • ■ "^ '•* *■ t> f ^ •v-iTr *■-*: ^"TlViSvlaf^ "ii r< i -'■'■'•!'>*>* £—r 

Declassified per Executive Order 13526, Section 3.3 
NND Project Number: NND 63316. By: NWD Date: 201 1 




to caul hasftff blo;T3 to tfes ensggr« In early April 1953* ths ?i$t ; xnh 
launched an attack against Laos vhicfc althowgft ctescribsd by iho Ccr 4 - 
puj&st radio r.s belief* a ^liberation 1 ? of that area by Lao Sfeiiooilidts 
tidsd by B Vidtn toss Yolai&asrs was is fact snproyo&ed and dear 
kggj . 2 ion by tfca Viat & 2x& xritfa practically no Eaotian support* 
Ehs establish it o? a strong ; "it ct tfta ?lair*es £33 Jarroe rse 
Xi^ng Ssouaos by tha French U::io:>r $0 forces v-3 accoenplishad and re- 
infOTces&nts reara rapidly deployed at iuan ; ; Sfc&bitn* end Vi«nti«i? rt 
th£ two capital citiss* Th3 vi:*t Kinh did not attack either capital 
nor the Platings d J^rros strong point t bat withdraw the &&ln bo<3y 
of Irwoding troops at tha end o: April l^aviBg so;;i irro^ul^r sl&Rsnte 
behind* Bifcdor Ctansttnlst ampicss a V&tfcii li.0 Gov^r^.:s:it" nm estab- 
lished untfer a Ico leader f but no rallying o^ the psopla too': place 
tosovd this poppet rsgifcs and in feet the invasion caused a stifftenin 
or Lao Kaiiq^alists in support of tha i: oyal GoTsrissesi. -be aeej 
King and Cxokh ?rIn?o fe&d bravely; raftss^ to %&&» laiang ?nbpiv: tften 
it wss throatennd and by o^ggnpls hoartsnsd tha Lad psople against 
the forc-irn isiv&dore* 

As a result of this nssj trand in Vi^t Kinh tactics* the Qovemaioat 
or Jhailand awioynccsd its iiils.itlon to raise in the United Hatlena 
a resolution ol' consideration ^aiiist tha threat to the cocarity or 
Ifeailattd posed by £_n invasion of Laos yMch brought tha Viet i-inh to 

^ <J l 1 


mo unitei States r3sponc!5d to th3 c. -ior^cr.oy and quioVl^ sup^li^d 
ste C«H9 aircraft irilth United Statoa civilian esera to :.ii ia tha 
airlift to tha b^lr- gxiai -" gaxrisons in L=ost 3£iis ro?nt rctlon, 
togsthsr with tha i ll^ta aroiual o^ interest "v tho praw or tha 
Fro? ;.or3.d in eovsring tha blatant ait< oliizsy hava bo^ cad of tho 
gaosfifi for tha withdratcal of tha Viet Kinb in Lao5e 

SJiosa d^Talopriaxsta Ka^a it cloar t^t if aUlt ^x^ procr^BS is to 
b^ BObievfed to ^vfocMna ar*d if t;i3 i r or the c;;: :/ i^ to ba 
reduced, additional Torc^^ ej^ concentration c^" rer;:l ar forces wiH 
ba required* In Cec^tbar of 1952 -nu Fabra^rjr of 15^3 Franoh trlnistsm 
i^ror:vicl tr-3 U*S« ^r%;r;tary ol Stats that Fr?jiC3 boliovsd that en 
s3ditioiml share ol" ths bun'^n ia l.:\^i^i \- tld faava to l>3 borna 
bj tfc^ t/nitad £tfite$« Inr^pj^ tha U.5« po^iti^n, in lina vita the; 
r^ferencD eara-;iu->b or H5C 12k/2* h^s ba$n dh3 of v:iIlin;no33 to 
ox^rains ^na?atb^tic-?CLly Franoh require ^nts i/hilo at th=3 saasa tins 
stro33inj; tto no^ Tor an ovsr-all strat j ;ic plan or corcsyc v;;*cV; 
Vfould giva ^i^i^isj o« a substantial i?^;otion of en^y str^n^th within. 
a stated pariu;^ 

^ih^n the rrencji ^iniatu-rj vi : ;ltc:! (ashln^ton i'i - ^rch o£ 1953$ 
tba President ssxi th^ -ecr L iy of State raitsratsd Mi^ U f ^, ap;a^ci^ti^n 


InCov icn 


Declassified per Executive Order 13526, Section 3.3 
NND Project Number: NND 63316. By: NWD Date: 201 1 



4 -. j- .j vi v i «, 

Seciarity 2nfoim*tioi* 

of tha ir.portMico of Indochina to tha fro$ vrorld ana our admiration 
for the efforts and s~cririceD of tho French and of tho Vietusst&so ■ 
and ths othar associated States, In tnm f tho "ranch particularity 
through . - ? . L-,toan:aau f ths Mnistsr for Associated States &et forth 
tha scr^tagie concept or plan fcgr naans of which it ic hop^d to brsak 
tha back of organised o:ror$r resistance 

fSie Fa-onc'i pirns %Mch. coftprisos th3 el;- -:rtis listed bolovi f is 
based on tha assumptions th-t ihaz^ idll ba no- direct Ghlftssci fixxsaiist 
or ns® E&ssiva Yi^t i : inh i&igfvsmtiofti a&d that tlio Vl&ta££«39Ci forces 
will bo inor&assd bv tha immbors roqt^sted* 

(1) 7h3 mining in 1953 1 195** a^d 1955 of *«* 117,000 
addition*! Vierfcnrr^sa troops to fc*3 or^nis**d into li?ht Cb&aondo-* 
tjjrpd battalions aisd sscarity forcos officered V Viotite £$o rri 
iaorcasltagly tasidar Viotftas&se uilxtary authority of gosft 2750 
adc-tioivil Laotian troops BirdX&rly ors&nuUadi of s&as 3900 
additional Giiatbod3£fl troops sirdlarly org^riised. In addition*^ 
tha Vioin *se&3 :u\ r ;r aad ?-iy Forco uill bo augraaxted to a fores 
in 1955 of 3596 Air Force and 2?00 V*v-j* Tha total ovor-all 
attgpsmt?tlgn of ftoaociatod States n&tiy-a forces as outlisi^d in 
the plan 5.g I2?t9^5« 

(2-) Kss vtss of tlv s battalions as tjiay bacc^a available 
and in csm^unotio^ with : r x^h Union aavl with regular 7iatn>a &sa 
troops to elsar tha south and cantor of th$ cotsntjy of ths -: sy« 
Tho light 7ietnnr.33a battsliorts scould i . .-lin in th*sg areas to 
guarantea territorial security tfhila th? regular tmits C^re^ch 
Ifeloa and Vi9tna&£3?) Eould hs Kovsd to tonkin to iner sasa fiuj 
forco^ avallablo thsra for ©oaratioisa against t: r ? briUc of ths 

(3) Lato in 195^ or early 1955 it is antioij^ited that tha 
atz^ikin^ forjo availabls to tha French ^onid bs siif^iciont to 
p^r^>it :;::'o::?lvo operations in ths Korth ssgainot th^ Viot Kinh« 
In ths opinion of tha French High Ca^sn&M, ths Viet li]""> voald ba 
forced to engage in Kfcit is hoped to to a dsci&i'/a action or to fcs 
drlvon into tho barren kill rdjfiona Khsro h^ could j;ol mirviro as 
an organised forco aloA; pr^^nl linsoo 

K» L-3to\iri3teau f noralshed in:or.:i^tion regarding tha ssiiisatsd adcJi- 
tioiul c*o^t or tha plan ov -r andi abovs th^ pr^:5ont costa b3iri^ borna 

I:/ th;; French : :v! Yiatnarcdds t: surias :.:.' on th3 ^n^^ a that 

u.u aosistiinc^, both budg ; \?portir»3 and I-2A? would c binae at 
pra^nt Isvals* "-• L-rior.v.::- -\\\ expects that ilia FVonc-h and th? Vietnsnoso 
will bj abls to fin^rc^ tha additional cost in oalcrAir year 1553 °-" tho 
I *^ loyi^s provided scno 10 billion Cranes or f23.6 ::illlc:i iri 9#3, 

-- -* .-- t ■ -. •-> *• .t»/»1 f S**s j**i -■ -■ *-*'\ * ,■ '- f^rt't' *■-■'■ ■ \~'*' " ": p ISO ■ ? " * — ,--■. ,'.,-." 



Declassified per Executive Order 13526, Section 3.3 
NND Project Number: NND 63316. By: NWD Date: 201 1 

TO? SC33T : : 

* ^zvrVcj In Conation 

ft •; > ' * - * - 


I'l 1953 K&&? zpyropri iior:5, to furnish iter-is of an estimated v&lus 
or yip. 3 nillic:u 

For calendar 19-- * H. Lstottra u e&ftft&iiw a 'Visficit* or 
231 million c:/r;rcjd nottfeer by ths French ;;o? fta Tiatrsmrusaa ft&dU 
Igtft-s an$ .Cor vihich U.% ncsisiaiiGB vill pr-^^ivbly bo requested* 
i^&-iio:a assist&nca fro.- I HAP of a v^lua or &m$ v£l»3 nillion is 
also eatis^tocU 

For caloninr 1935 » tha estinrio on tfea c~v.o basis as abov3 
IttcCtoias a *deficit 1! or approximately V2990 -allien r::i a&litiqaal 
e:i:I-ite^3 vorfch about $10 million^ 

It should b-3 Esap-haslaad tlsst ths abovo ars pr&liriin&ry figttres 
subject to ecr .:-;Ml S£ruaialtt2 a&d to semiiqy as to tfoothar in p^rt 
at l^ti^t SOZ& of ths firasnslal deficits could not b-i r;ada up through 
incro^od Viotnsmosa cor*tributloiis« (Tr^ro to^\s to bo little 
pro^£^t-*;3 j-c«-ill.y in cilonhr 19J'» — that tb£ Frsnsh sdll fcs ablo 
to ineraaro tfasir contribution.) 


(9b) In c&ntinu .tion of ths conversations vfcleh hs&Q 00 ?n h*ld 
intervals with t&3 Bj tab and French for olsimln^ action iss ths event 
of aggression in the Pacific ai :■* rilitasy representative or ths 
United Siitos* Fr:sie$- 9 ths United * i-:;/;- ;» Australia and Hsu S&alard 
hold discussion to Qons3 ter osslULs :.:ilit.-try action :xi tb^ evont of 
Chinsss (fa&rf&ni it asgrassioti in Southsft&t Asia* 3ioss conversation 
ar@ referred to. in p-ir^rrph (?d) abov$« 

(9c) , Kite passagradh appears adsquaitfty covonrl bj tho discussion 
above partletQ^rly v:u 7 or (fd) and (?:0. 

10-13 Action projaeted in iiaragrap&s 10 to 13 is to talcs place in 
tko er/ont Ghimss Co: a&unist s*or$as £jii0anre$8 overtly in th^ conflict 
In Imloohina* Sha srooosed course of action aro bsllsveci edaquiits 
but nust bo kopt uirlar obtiatant r.v!.:;; in ths light of th^ outcc^o of 
farihor military taUts ^;id ovcr^alLl ece^ftit arxl c^p^bilAticn not; 

crOy 01 ths United States but oJ? friendly nations* chiaOy tho 

!?«''.% *f o»,*1 ?:"4*" "''i' ~\** -syv^ /**i'* sirt** ^ 

«V\*3 C;^i* > '=? 

x ' J » *, Li vh • i- 

Seeirilgr SaTomation 


Declassified per Executive Order 13526, Section 33 
NND Project Number; NND 63316. By: NWD Date: 201 1 


**- ,-. • 

* • 






August 5 3 1953 




Further United States Support for France 
and the Associated States of Indochina 

A. NSC 12V2 

E. NSC Action Nos. 758, 773 and 780 

C, NIE-63 and NIE-91 

The enclosed report by the Department of 
State on the subject is transmitted herewith for consideration 
by the National Security Council of the recommendation con- 
tained in paragraph 9 thereof at its meeting on Thursday, 
August 6. 1953. 


Executive Secretary 

cc: The Secretary of the Treasury 

The Chairman, Joint Chiefs of Staff 
The Director of Central Intelligence 




/ 7> 


seci -; coat, :;-,_f-^.j_: 

S5QHR1TY > nz ii\* V 

Declassified per Executive Order 13526, Section 3.3 
NND Project Number: NND 63316. By: NWD Date: 201 1 



The winding up of the Indochina war is a necessary 
condition to enable France to check "both these trends and 
reassume a more confident and positive role on the continent, 

h. The lack of success so far in Indochina is traceable 
largely to French. failure? 


a, by timely grants of sovereignty and impressive 

military success 3 to win a sufficient native support to 

permit more rapid development of larger and more effective 

native armies, and to frustrate nationalist appeal of the 

Viet Minh. 

b> to plan and execute aggressive military operations, 

5* The present French government is the first in seven 
years which seems prepared to do what needs to be done to wind 
I up the war in Indochina* Its plans offer the United States at 
last an opportunity to attack the major Indochinese and 
Metropolitan French problems as a whole. The French Premier 
has assured our representatives that his government is anxious 
to continue the struggle and to press on to win, but he can 
carry through his program against political opposition only if 
he offers a "package' 1 solution, not only of Indochina but of 
the related French weakness in Europe and at home. For this 
purpose the new government has developed the following programs 

§.• Military Initiative , . A new commander 5 General 
Navarre- has taken over in Indochina and is determined to 
.assume the offensive. The initial operations under his 
command testify to this resolve. He has revised the plan 
originally presented in outline to us by M, Letourneau in 
March 1953 for breaking the back of Viet Minh resistance 
during the campaign season of 195^~ 55* His plans include 
an increase in the native armies by approximately the 
following figures s 59*600 in 1953' 76 5 000 in 19 5^ and 
20 j 000 in 1955 for a total of 331 , 6 50 by January 1956, 
At his request, the French government is prepared 7 despite 
popular opposition 5 to send nine more regular infantry 
battalions plus ancillary units from France, if the rest 
of the program is agreed on. The Navarre operational 
plans drawn up on Indochina were approved by Lt, Gen, 
! Daniel, USA, in his report on his recent mission. 



Declassified per Executive Order 13526, Section 3*3 
NND Project Number: NND 633 16. By: NWD Date: 201 1 


]=L* Pol It leal, , Program « Ftirsuant to the French 
declaration of" Jiily 3 5 M. Laniol has assured U. S. 
representatives of his determination to grant genuine 
independence to the Associated States without the strings 
which have marked the previous grants of "independence 11 . 
Ke apparently envisages something very much like Dominion 
status , retaining only such French authority and privileges 
as may be agreed. 

c. Fi s c a .l,Re h^b il ita t ion . Laniel conceives his pro- 
ject for Indochina as an integral part of a new and 
supreme effort by France to "put its house in order" . 
He plans to approach a balanced budget during CY 19 5^ • 
This will involve a cut in French military as well as 
civil expense for that year. At the same time he contem- 
plates a greater effort in Indochina. To do this he asks 
the U. S. for additional assistance amounting to about 
$400 million for FY 1954. 

6» a. Attached are two tables showing (1) the financing 
of the Indochina war in CY 1953 and as proposed for 
CY 195^5 an & ( 2 ) u * S„ aid for France and Indochina under 
1953 program and 1954 appropriations. They contain 
tentative figures for 19f?4* 

b. As the first table makes clear , under the proposed 
"program, the United States would assume about 50 per cent 

of the 1954 budgetary expenditures ($829 million out of 
$1,676 million) and. if end-item aid is included, would 
be carrying about 61 per cent of the total financing. ■ 
This would represent about two and one- third times the 
amount of U. S. aid for CY 1953* 

c. As shown by the second table, this program would 
entail an increase of $403 million over the assistance 
now planned for France ($1,286 million). Of the total 
French military budget for both Indochina and NATO, the 
presently planned U, ■ S. aid, including .end items,; would 
be 26 per cent: if the aid were increased as requested, 
such U. S; assistance 5 including end items , would be 34- 
per cent of the total v • ; 

d. Finally ? as the first table indicates, under the 
program , the to'c&l expenditures for Indochina for 1954, 
Including end items, would be $2,160 million as compared 
with $1,700 for CY 1953- 



Declassified per Executive Order 13526, Section 3.3 
NND Project Number: NND 63316. By: NWD Date: 2011 




7. The program presents substantial risks. Under it, 
the French build- up in Europe would be slowed down in some 
degree, both by the limited troop diversion and the cut in 
the French military budget. Moreover, in the best of 
circuratances, the Indo-Chinese war cannot be successfully 
closed out before the 195^-55 fighting season. Consequently, 
in addition to any supplemental aid furnished now. we would 
have to contemplate a comparable further contribution a year 
from now to assure a satisfactory conclusion. Furthermore, 
there is the risk that the French Union forces in Indo-China 
might suffer reverses before the projected additional effort 
can be brought to bear, 


8. Despite these risks and uncertainties it is believed 
that the U« S 9 should agree, in its own security interests, 
to furnish the additional !^+00 million of aid to France • 
'Tferipus factors lead to this conclusion: 

a, The Laniel government is almost certainly the 
last French government which would undertake to continue the 
war in Indo-China. If it fails, it will almost certainly 
be succeeded by a government committed to seek a settlement 
on terms dangerous to the security of the U. S. and the Free 
World. The negotiation of a truce in Korea, added to the 
frustrations and weariness of the seven years' war, has 
markedly increased the sentiment in France for some kind of 
negotiated peace in Indo-China, In the recent protracted 
French governmental crisis, every leading candidate bid for 
popular support with some kind of promise to reduce the 
Indo-China commitment in some way. For the first time in 
seven years, latent defeatist impulses emerged into real 
efforts by political and parliamentary leaders to "pull out" . 

b. Under present conditions any negotiated settle- 
ment would mean the eventual loss to Communism not only of 
Indo-China but of the whole of Southeast Asia. 

£♦ The loss of Indo-China would be critical to the 
security of the U, S. Communist control of Indo-China would 
endanger vital raw material-sources 5 it wotild weaken the 
confidence of other Southeast Asian states in Western leader- 
ship; it would make more difficult and more expensive the 
defense of J.ipan, Formosa and the Philippines s and complicate 
the creation of viable Japanese economy. If the French 
actually decided to withdraw, the U. S. would have to consider 
most seriously whether to take over in this area, 

d. On the other hand, if the proposed program does 
succeed, and the French are able to achieve victory in Indo- 


Declassified per Executive Order 13526, Section 3,3 
NND Project Number: NND 633 16. By: NWD Date: 201 1 


China within two years, the effect will be to strengthen the 
Free World and our coalition in Europe as veil as Southeast 
Asia* France will be enabled to adopt in Europe the active 
role which her weakness has undermined in the preceding 
period. . . 

Re e omme nd a t ion 

9. Accordingly it is recommended that the National Secur% 
Council agree to an increase in aid to France in the current 
fiscal year by an amount not exceeding 3&O0 million above that 
already committed 5 provided only that (a) the Joint Chiefs of 
Staff inform the National Security Council that in their view 
the French plan holds the promise of military success; and 
(b) the Director of the Foreign Operations Administration 
ascertain the available sources within currently appropriated 
funds and. the extent to which a special supplementary 
appropriation will be necessary when Congress reconvenes in 
January 19 5*+ • 



Declassified per Executive Order 13526, Section 3.3 
NND Project Number: NND 63316. By: NWD Date: 20! 1 



. - * ■ -» r • m * 



(millions of dollars) 

+ - 

Pre s ent e stimatejrf^p^^ 

French Exp edit ionary Corps 866 866 

Reinforcements under Navarre plan 5*+ 

French Air Force and Navy ^13,7 _J37 

Total French forces 1003 1057 

Associated States forces 

Regular Armies 335 ^00 

Light battalions and support troops :*+3 196 

Air and naval forces 9 23 

Total 3«7 "Tl9 

Total budgetary requirement ~TJ>KJ T£>?F 

Financ in^__of r e quir ement s 
French budget or equivalent 
French fiscal resources 975 690 

U* S, financial assistance 
Presently available 258 ^26 

Requirement yet to "be financed m *+p3 

Total 2^J "329 

Total French budget or eauivaient 

including U, St financial assistance 1233 1519 

Associated States fiscal resources ^157 ,157 

Total budgetary resources 1390 16 76 

T otal _U« S v a id f pr_ Indo c h in a 

Financial 'assistance (as above) 258 829 

Military end- item pro gram ■ 255 ^29 

Common- use program 30 30 

Economic aid to Associated States -25 25 

Total 558 1313 

Tot al f inancing by France v A sso ci ated 

States and the U, S. ' / 

Budgetary • . - 1390 I676 

Other 310 kSh 

Total 1700 2160 

Total U. S. financing as percent of total 

program 33$ 61^ 

NOTE: U, S, fiscal year 19 5 1 *- aid program is 
related to French calendar year 195^ 
budget program. 

130 . SECRET 

^w *-" - - * I 

Declassified per Executive Order 13526, Section 3.3 
NND Projecl Number: NND 63316. By: NWD Date: 20! 1 



' "(millions of dollars) 

Program Proposed Appropriated 

1253. 1S& 124: 

I* Aid re].at^ JL9. AEEii 
mejno r and urn* 

~ Hut ual~ defense financing 
Attributed French 

NATO budget 16 9 100 85 

Attributed Indochina **0 r foO . JtS2 
budget . 

Total 217 / 500 ■ ^85 

Defense support 
Attributed French NATO 

budget 158 

Attributed Indochina 

" budget _210 a , _.0 

Total 3&5 - * 

"Kitty 11 to cover partial 

costs of expansion , . 

Indochina forces ' 100 26 b 

Total aid related to 

April memorandum 5S5 6°0 *"5ll 

II • jteniel £egugst for aid 
to finance pro pose d" 
' Indochina program 829 

Total U. S» aid now 
available for Indochina 
in relation to April 

memorandum 3jl4 

Requirement yet to be 

financed, " **03 

• »- tfv** r~r~* «--^w^ _ . ' m v '-»-»-* aw 

*Hemoranduia on aid prepared by U. S, delegation to the North 
Atlantic Council meeting in Paris and handed to the French 
Government by the EI# S* delegation on April 26 ? 1953* 




Declassified per Executive Order 13526, Section 3.3 
NND Project Number: NND 63316. By: NWD Date: 201 1 





III* 2aJ§> &XQ iS addi t io n 
to April memorandum 
Military end-item 
program: Erance 
Military end- it em 
program: Indochina 
Cordon-use program 
for Indochina 
Economic aid to 
Associated States 

IV* Total U. S« aid for 
Fr mo e and Indochina 
Presently" available 


Requirement yet to be 



V. Total military program 

o£ Frarxce and the - 
Associa ted States^ 
including U. S u assistance 

in all forms French 

»-^-"i» *■»-**---*■*-» »**»i.«i 

II ■!■!■ !-»**>» 

mi 1 i t ?.r y buds e t 

NATO and other areas 


Present French budget 


Additional U. S, 

financing requested 

Total French budget with 
U. S „ support 

Associated States 

military budgets 

U. S. aid outside April 


Total program with "U, S. 












Proposed Appropriated 
h 195^ 















r „775 



Declassified per Executive Order 13526, Section 33 
NND Project Number: NND 63316. By: NWD Date: 201 1 

TAB B (Cont'd) 

VI. . Total U, S . aid as 

percent total programs 
financed bv Ua_S. ? 
Fr aric e ana' *As s o c i a t ed 

Presently available 


Inc ludi ag r e qui r em ent 

yet to be J inane ed 








Proposed Appropriated 

19& 125k 





U. S. fiscal 195*+ aid program is related to French 
calendar 195*+ budget program. 





Figure arbitrary since attribution has not yet 
taken place: figure based upon 1952 experience, 
and also includes counterpart of $60 million 
provided out of fiscal 1953 appropriation, under 
April memorandum. 

Available from unprogrammed portion of carry- 
into fiscal 195 1 * of unobligated fiscal 1953 
appropriations for Far East military aid. 


Arbitrarily reduced 20 percent to reflect 
proportionate reduction in European military aid 
appropriation below figures proposed to Congress 

This figure shown as zero because of reprogr aim- 
ing which took place in course of the year, 
because of over-programming for France for 
the period FY 1950-1953; in effect, no net 
additional funds were therefore necessary for 
the French end-item program out of the 1953 
appropriations . 



Declassified per Executive Order 13526, Section 33 
NND Project Number: NND 633 1 6. By: NWD Date: 201 1 



1 Si L 



11 August 1953 





The Navarre Concept for Operations 
In Indochina. 

1, In a memorandum for you, dated 21 April 1953* subject; 
"prooosod French Strategic Plan for the Successful Conclusion 
of the War in Indochina/ 1 the Joint Chiefs of Staff pointed 
out certain weaknesses in the LeTourneau-Allard plan,, but 
felt that it was workable. During the visit of the U.S. 
Joint Military Mission to Indochina, Lieutenant General 
Havarre submitted in writing to Lieutenant General 'Daniel, 
Chief of the Mission, a paper entitled, '"Principles for the 
Conduct of the War in Indochina" appended hereto, which 
appears to correct these weaknesses and which presents a 
marked improvement in French military thinking concerning 
operations in Indochina. 


2. In his report Lieutenant General 'Daniel stated that, 
in his opinion, the new French command in Indochina will 
accomplish under the Navarre concept the decisive defeat of 
the Viet Minh by 1955 and that the addition of two or more 
French divisions from outside of Indochina would expedite 
this defeat. Additions other than in divisional organization 
would be in error since it is the divisional team, with its 
combat proven effectiveness, which is sorely needed in Indo- 
china. Lieutenant General r Daniel further reported that 
French military leaders were most cooperative with the mission 
that several agreements were accomplished too improve the 
effectiveness of the proposed military operations, and that 
repeated invitations were extended to the U.S. mission to 
return in a few months to witness the progress the French 
will have made. 

3. Based on -past performances by the French, the Joint 
Chiefs of Stafx 1 have reservations in predicting actual re- 
sults which can be expected pond In additional proof by 
demonstration of continued French support and by further 
French performance in Indochina. However, if vigorously 
pursued militarily in Indochina and supported politically 
in France 3 the Navarre concept offers a promise of success 

to warrant appropriate additional U.S. aid re-" 
implementation. 'Such aid to France and the 

from U.S. support of the Havarre 

quired for 

States result in 


Con ? 




•■■ - : i ritiy 





, »•<.-_ 

V»" - * * U to 1 * 3 


Declassified per Executive Order 13526, Section 3.3 
NND Project Number: NND 63316. By: NWD Date: 20! 1 




concept should be based on needs of the French Union Forces 
in Indochina for additional equipment necessary to implement 
the organization of the "Battle Corps" by the 
Navarre concept* and necessary support of the planned expan- 
sion of indigenous forces , such needs to be screened by the 
Military Assistance Advisory Group in Indochina. In addi- 
tion, to improve the chances of success-, this support should 
include continued close liaison and coordination with French 
military authorities together with friendly but firm encourage- 
ment and advice whore indicated. 

4. Accordingly, the Joint Chiefs of Staff believe that the 
necessary support should be provided to permit full and vigorous 
implementation of the Navarre concept, conditioned upon con- 
tinued implementation of French support, demonstration of 
French intent by actual performance in Indochina, and continued 
French willingness to receive and act upon U.S. military advice. 
Further, the French should be urged at all levels to support 
and vigorously prosecute the Navarre concept to the maximum 
extent of their capabilitle 


For the Joint Chiefs of Staff 

ifa*-*^ sp 


Joint Chiefs of Staff. 

Append' :: 


r ^ r ^ i 



Cu-^1* Jol 4 'K 2-&$<4ȣ 



Declassified per Executive Order 13526. Section 3.3 
NND Project Number: NND 63316. By: NWD Dale: 201 1 

TOO ^rMr? 








> j* 

a 4 

I. - To retake the initiative immediately through the 
carrying .out, beginning this summer, of local offensives and 


■ by pushing to the utmost commando and guerrilla actions'. 


, II. - To take the offensive in the north beginning September 
15, in order to forestall the enemy attack. To conduct the 

battle which will take place during the fall and winter o 


1953-195^ in an offensive manner by attacking the flanks and 


the rear of the enemy. 

- ■ •, 

III. - To recover from areas not directly involved in the 


.battle a maximum number of units. To pacify these regions 



IV. - To build up progressively a battle corps by grouping 
, battalions into regiments and regiments into divisions and by 
giving to the units thus created the necessary support (artillery, 

engineers, armor, communications) taking into account the very 


special character of the, war iri Indochina (the terrain,, the 
ene^r) m To bring about a maximum of cooperation with the Air 

Force and the Navy 



Declassified per Executive Order 13526, Section 3.3 
NND Project Number; NND 63316. By: NWD Date: 201 1 

TOP Qcp^n 

V. - To maintain a reserve of special type units (armor, 

commando, light battalions , etc.) for attachment to groups and 

■ - - . ■ 
■ divisions in accordance with requirements of terrain and mission* 

VI. -■ To continue the effort of instructing and organizing 
.-the Army of the Associated States so as to give them more and". 

more participation as well as more and more autonomy in the ". 

* . • ' * *« 

conduct of operations. 

■ . . " ' *- 

■ • ■ ■ -r- ' ' '•'■■" ' ' ' 

TOP SECRET •. ' ' ' . ' Appendix 

(This document consists of 1 page. Copy No. 3 of 17 copie 
Series B) . ,-,-._ : ' 



Declassified per Executive Order 13526, Section 3.3 
NND Project Number: NND 63316, By: NWD Date: 201 i 



>' >. ■ ' x i 






TOP c frp' 

•- ■ . 4 


28 August 1953 




irre Concept for Opera t Ions 
in Indochina. 

li 111 a :.i::UOr: t:; . I for 1 J 

"The Navarre Concept Cor 0£ 
Chiefs of Staff commented on 
"promise of success 1 "*. It is 
of Defense contemplates send 
rand urn to the Seer tary of 3 
cover of a memorandum (Hnclo 
to the Chairman,, Joint Chief 
Joint Chiefs of Staff. 

Uj dated 11 August 1953j subject; 
rations In Indochina ., : the Joint 
the Navarre concept and its 
understood that the Secretary 
ing a copy of the reference Siemo- 
tate in the immediate future under 
sure) which was passed informally 
s of Staff j for comment by the 

2. Though the Joint Chiefs of Staff remain in general 
agreement with th< memorandum of 11 August, it is believed 
that certain changes therein are appropriate prior to for- 
warding it to the Secretary of State, The Joint Chiefs of 
Staff consider the second sentence of paragraph 3 t° 1 -> G 
overly opfcimlstic wj h respect to the "promise of success" 
offered by the Kavarre concept. Though vigorous military 
prosecution in Indochina and political support of the Navarre 
concept in Franco are fundamental, it is believed a basic 
requirement ,£or military success in Indochina is one of 
creatine a political cltmat In that country which Will pro- 
vide th ine bive for natives to wholeheartedly support the 
French and supply th< m with adequate intolligene : vital to 
the successful conduct of military operations in that country 

3. In furtherance of the 'Daniel Mission the Joint Chiefs 
of Staff are receiving Progress Reports from Indochina. A 
report dated 24 August 1953 states that the French are not 

in fact mrsuing agreements reached between General o 'Daniel 
and General Navarro (including the Navarre concept) as vigor- 
ously as expected by General 0' Daniel and contemnlated by him 
in his report. Specifically, General Trapncll, in his 24 
August Progress Report, states that (a) the French have :3 uo 
plans for a general fall offensive beyond limited objective 






■ -v\ 

tJop y / of— "Z. copion ooch 


(> ( -M';<. 

- i 


KantXnP foul.- No. 


Declassified per Executive Order 13526, Section 3.3 
NND Project Number: NND 63316. By: NWD Date: 201 1 


In - ?aU 


operations designed to keep the enemy off balance", (b) re- 
or an': : .on into regiments and divlsion-sise units 

'is still 



arise of ur, .ency in 

goi rt<a> 

in the planning st-ros 11 , (c) there 

tli training of senior Vietnamese commanders and staff officers 


(d) the organization of a training command is awaiting the solu- 
tion of ''political ^problems" and (e) the "organization of the 
amphibious command has not gone beyond the planning stages". 

4. In order to accurately present current views of the Joint 
Chiefs of Staff to the Secretary of State , it is suggested that 
a new memorandum dated 23 August 1953^ which is being forwarded 
separately and which reflects the views expressed in the above 
paragraphs, be substituted for the memorandum of 11 August as 
an enclosure to your proposed memorandum to the Secretary of 
State. In addition, in order to point out more clearly that 
military success in Indochina is dependent upon the manner 
in which operations ai^e conducted, it is recommended that the 
last paragraph of the draft letter to the Secretary of State 
(Enclosure) be changed as -follows (changes indicated in the 
usual manner) : 

"There is attached for your information a memorandum 
to Bie from the Joint Chiefs of Staff, dated H-£»g£efc-1953 
25 August 1953 j which ate^fcett stafo at the present IJavarre 
concept appears to correct the previously indicated weaknesses 

and from their viewpoint presents a marked improvement in 
French military thinking concerning operations in Indochina. 
Of course, the actual success of the operations in Incl Una 

will e . it upon the 

sa? f 

* "^o "3 

siveness and skill with which 

the French and Vietnamese forces conduct their future opera 

tions, Aeeer^V^i- Nevertheless , the Joint Chiefs of Staff 
bell ,' as do I, that the necessary support should be pro- 
vided to Detroit full an vigorous h .' menfr ion of the 
Navarre concept, conditioned upon con . Implement at ion 
of French support, demonstration of Fv vent by actual 

performance in Indochina, and con vued V ich willingness 
to i\ • _ Lve end act upon U.S. military \ ' ce . Further, the 
French should be urged at all levels to support and vigor- 
ously prosecute the Navarre concept to the maximum extent 
of their capabilltie 


For the Joint Chiefs of Staff: 


I (Lx_-A- 


Joint Chiefs of Staff. 


Enclosure • * 


TCP c-rrnri 


Declassified per Executive Order 13526, Section 33 
NND Project Number: NND 63316. By: NWD Date: 201 1 


t - 





I Hi OLbua.1 


23 August 1953 


Subject; The Navarre Concept for Operations 

In Indochina. 

1. In a memorandum for you, elated 21 April 1953/ subject: 
"proposed French Strategic Plan for tho Successful Conclusion 
of tho Uar in Indochina, " the Joint Chiefs of Staff pointed 
out certain weaknesses in the Lo'rourneau-Allard plan, but 
felt that it was workable. During the visit of the U*S. Joint 
Military Hlssion to Indochina, Lieutenant General Kavarre sub- 
mitted in writing to Lieutenant General 'Daniel, Chief of the 

[Isslon, a paper entitled "principles for the Conduct of the 

r In Xnctochlna 11 appended hereto, which appears to correct 
hose weaknesses and which presents a marked improvement in 
French military thinking concerning operations In Indochina. 


2. In his report Lieutenant General 'Daniel stated that, 
in his opinion, the new French command in Indochina will 
accomplish under the Navarro concept the decisive defeat of 
the Viet Minh by 1955 and that the addition of two or more 
French divisions from outside of Indochina would expedite 
this Peat. Additions other than in divisional organiza- 
tion would be in error since it is the divisional team, with 
ifcs-< tbat proven effectiveness, which is sorely neoded In 

I ;ido eh I a , Lie u t enan t G en e r al r Demi el f u r th o r re ported tha t 

ench military leaders were most cooperative with the mission, 
th 4 several agreements were accomplished to improve the of fee- 
fciven t of the proposed military operations, and that repeated 
invitations were extended to the U.S. mission to return In a 
few months to witness the progress the French will have mad 



— Jv 

ised on past performances by the French, the Joint Chiefs 
of Staff have reservations in predicting actual results which 
can be expected pending additional proof by demonstration of 
continued French support a by further French performance In 
Indochina*. Tho Joint Chiefs of Staff are of the opinion that 
a basic requirement for military success in Indochina is oxie 
of creating a political climate in that country which will pro- 
vide the incentive for natives to support the French and supply 




copies each 


r*N ~*Of~» 

yffc «-J A IT** V 




SecDcf. Cont Ko, 


Declassified per Executive Order 13526, Section 3.3 
NND Project Number: NND 63316, By: NWD Date: 201 1 



m t' --.Li 


them with adequate Intelligence which is vital to the success- 
ful conduct of operations in Indochina. If this is accomplished 
and if the Havarre concept is vigorously pursued Militarily in 
Indochina and fjiven wholehearted political support in France, 
it coos offer a promise of military success sufficient to -.-.•arrant 
appropriate add! tign 


1 U.S. aid required to assist. U.S. support 

of the Navarre concept should bo based on needs of tho French 

lion Pore es in Indochina for additional equipment necessary 
to implement the organisation of the "Battle Corps" envisaged 
by the Navarre concept and necessary support of the planned ex- 


Pension of indigenous forces j such needs to be screened by the 
Military Assistance Advisory Group in Indochina. In addition, 
to improve the chances of suocesSj this support should include 
continued close liaison and coordination v;ith French military 
authorities together with friendly but flrsa encouragement and 
advice uhere indicated* 

ki In furtherance of the 'Daniel jftssion the Joint Chiefs 
of Staff are receiving Progress Reports from Indochina. Infor- 
nation received from Indochina indicates the French are not 
pursuing agreeiaentB reached between General 'Daniel and 

ineral H&varre (including the Kavarre QOncept) as vigorously 
as expected by General G 'Daniel and as contemplated by him in 
his report. Progress reports state that (a) the French have 
t: no plans for a general fall offensive beyond limited objec- 
tive operations designed to keep the enemy off balance % (b) 

snlzatlon Into regiments and division-size units "is still 
in the nla********* ** 


Gins stages" j (c) there is ! 'no sense of urgency in 
*ae training of senior Vietnamese coraraanders and staff officers % 
(d) the o: a '.: ration of a training corxnand is awaiting the solu- 
tion of "political problems M and (e) the ^organization of the 
r:aibiou;3 plan has not gone beyond the planning stages !r . 

5* In light of the apparent slowness of the French in fo31oir- 
ing up the Navarre ©Sncept and other agreements reached between 
General ?lavarre and General 'Daniel,, the Joint Chiefs of Staff 
believe that additional U.S, support should be conditioned upon * 
continued liiaple; citation of French support,, demonstration of 

pencil indent by actual performance in Indochina, and continued 
French v;illinrness to receive and act upon U*S. military advice.. 
Further, £hb Fr eh should be urged 


.vigorously propecute the Navarre 


at all levels to support and \ 

ncept to the maxi: i extent 


ir capabilities- 

** • 




f-Vl A 

ic. are 


Joint Chiefs of Staff: 





Joint Chiefs 

OlcLi I . 

Ibl o£y«iLl 


• - - - - 

Declassified per Executive Order 13526. Section 3.3 
NND Project Number: NND 63316. By: NWD Date: 201 1 


SEPTEMBER 1, 1953 NO. 469 

FOR RELEASE AT 12:30 P.M., (11:30 A.M., C.D.T.), 

Wednesday, September 2, 1953 

The War in Indochina 

We do not make the mistake of treating Korea as an 
isolated affair. The Korean war forms one part of the 
world-wide effort of Communism to conquer freedom. 
More immediately it is part of that effort in Asia. 

A single Chinese Communist aggressive front extends 
from Korea on the north to Indochina in the south. The 
armistice in Korea, even if it leads to a political 
settlement in Korea, does not end United States concern 
in the Western Pacific area* As President Eisenhower 
said in his April l6th speech, a Korean armistice would 
be a fraud if it merely release Communist forces for 
attack elsewhere. 

In Indochina a desperate struggle is in its eighth 
year. The outcome affects our own vital interests in 
the Western Pacific* and we are already contributing 
largely in material and money to the combined efforts 
of the French and of Vietnam, Laos and Cambodia- 

We Americans have too little appreciated the 
magnitude of the effort and sacrifices which France has 
made in defense of an area which is no longer a French 
colony but where complete Independence Is now in the 
making. This independence program Is along lines which 
the United States has encouraged and justifies Increased 
United States aid ; provided that will assure an effort 
there that is vigorous -and decisive. 



Declassified per Executive Order 13526, Section 33 
NND Project Number: NND 63316. By: NWD Date: 201 1 

Communist China has been and now is training, 
equipping and supplying the Communist forces in Indo- 
china. There is the risk that, as in Korea, Red China 
might sehd its owh arhiy into Indochina, The Chinese 
Communist regime should realize that such a second 
aggression could not occur without grave consequences 
which might not be confined to Indochina • I say this 
soberly in the interest of peace and in the hope of pre- 
venting another aggressor miscalculation. 

We wont peace In Indochina, as well as in Korea. 
The political conference about to be held relates in the 
first instance to Korea, But growing out of that 
conference could come, if Red China wants it, an end 
of aggression and restoration of peace in Indochina. The 
United States v/ould welcome such a development. 

1H 3 

Declassified per Executive Order 13526, Section 3.3 
NND Project Number: NND 63316. By: NWD Date; 201 1 

copy Tf»n orjpw*"' 

t?2 uLU/i^i use l6l Meeting 

September 9, 1953 


* ■ 

(For Consideration) 



1* This very important and complex matter is being rushed to euch 
an extent that there remain a number of questions which are not completely 
answered at this time. However, a successful termination to the Indochina 
problem is so desirable with respect to all our Far Eastern policies, and 
the pressure of time so great due to the approaching end of the rainy 
season there (about October 1 — after which major operations by the Viet 
Minh may recornmence)j that action in principle if felt to be essential by 
the Secretary of State is warranted at this time. The State Department 
asserts that if this French government which proposes reinforcing Indo- 
china with our aid, is not supported by us at this time, it may be the last 
such government prepared to make a real effort to win in Indochina. (This 
may be somewhat over-pessimistic.) 

2. This brief is written without having available the final papers 
upon which the NSC will be asked to act. These are still (7 September) in 
process of being drafted by the State Department. However, we are aware 
generally of their probable content, 

3» As you remember. General Bedell Smith presented to the NSC on 
6 August the proposals of the Ikniel government to finish up the Indochina 
situation* This involved a request for about $H0Q million additional U.S. 
aid (r:ow $385 million), and Daniel's statement that his program for Indo- 
china would have to be paralleled by a program to balance the French budget 
or it would not be politically acceptable to the French Assembly. The NSC 
(see Tab "A", Action No. 87^) agreed at this time that State, FCA and the 
JCS should proceed promptly with further exploration with the French and 
that if these agencies felt the French program hcild promise of success, 
they should submit detailed recommendations to the NSC. This has now been 
done and the recommendations will be considered at Wednesday's meeting, 

h. At the 6 August NSC meeting, the President commented on the 

Daniel proposals, saying he thought we should support the French proposals 
only under the following conditions (see Tab "B tf , Brief of NSC Meeting, 
6 August.); 

a. We must get the French to commit themselves publicly 
to~a program which will insure the support and cooperation 
of the native Indochinese, The later increments of our 


1 f 


L . 


Declassified per Executive Order 13526, Section 3.3 
NND Project Number: NND 63316. By: NWD Date: 201 1 


VI ,^ ft 


increased aid should be provided only if the French have made 
real progress in giving the natives greater independence. 

b. If ve are to give greatly increased support, the French 
must invite our close military advice in the conduct of the war in 



c. The French should give us renewed assurances regarding 
passage of the EDC. 

d. He, the President, would not propose to call Congress 
back for an extra session to vote any additional funds for 

e. We might invite Daniel to visit the United States and 
be prepared to make a conditional committment regarding further 
support for Indochina operations. 

5* Action on this matter was somewhat delayed by the general 
strikes in France, but on 1 September the State Department received 
further, more detailed information from the French (paragraph 7 below), 
and the Joint Chiefs of Staff have reviewed the French program, which 
is based on the "Navarre Plan 11 described to General 1 Daniel when he 
vi&it&d Indochina some months ago. The JCS state (see Tab "C"), 
Memorandum for the Secretary of Defense, 28 August 1953)* 

a. M . . . a basic requirement for military success in 
Indochina is one of creating a political climate In that 
country which will provide the incentive for natives to 
support the French and supply them with adequate intelli- 
gence which Is vital to the successful conduct of opera- 
tions ... If this is accomplished and the Navarre con- 
cept is vigorously pursued militarily in Indochina and 
given wholehearted political support in France, it does 
offer a premise of military success sufficient to warrant 
appropriate additional U.S. aid required to assist." 

b. That information from Indochina indicates the 
French are not pursuing agreements reached between 
General f Daniel and General ITavarre as vigorously as 
expected. (Even more recent information from Saigon 
indicates some slight improvement, however, ) 

£. In light of the French slowness in following up 
the Kavarre concept, additional U.S. support "should be 
conditioned upon continued implementation of French 
support, demonstration of French Intent by actual per- 
formance in Indochina, and continued French willingness 
to receive and act upon U.S. military advice." 

«**\ f : 


Jh Sir 4 *, k- ~ - -•-» 


Declassified per Executive Order 13526, Section 3,3 
NND Project Number: NND 633 16. By: NWD Date: 201 1 


gjj gLtflUL 

6. On Friday, h September, at the joint State - JCS meeting, the 
JCS further stated they believed the necessary financial support 
should be granted, conditioned upon the French assurance of expanded 
effort. They felt this financial support should not be doled out in a 
bargaining fashion but should be made available, with such savings as 
possible, for the stated purposes. We should leave the French no loop- 
hole in this regard to consider that we were showing lack of intent 
to support the Indochina operation and hence give them an excuse for 
insufficient action. 

7* On 1 September, the French presented to the United States 
a memorandum, in answer to the U.S. questionnaires, which gave fairly 
detailed information on their programs. This memorandum states that 
even if France's financial situation requires a reduction of her 
military budget, the French government nevertheless intends to carry 
out General Navarre's recommendations, and implementation has already 
began. Complete execution remains subject, however, to U.S. aid 
amounting to $3^5 million up to the end of 195^ • It goes on to say: 
" In the event this aid could not be granted, a complete reconsideration 
of the plan of operations in I dochina would be unavoidable." The memo 
then gives further information on plans and requirements. The French 
have indicated 9 additional infantry battalions of French Union forces 
cna be in Indochina by 1 November, that they are increasing the build-up 
of the native forces, that they are offering independence to the 
Associated States and that they will remove "colonial-minded" French 

8. The FOA has considered the legality of providing the funds 
required to meet the French program. They state that by use of the 
President's powers to transfer funds within "Titles" of the MSP Act, 
plus miney already appropriated for additional support for Indochina, 
the requirements can be met. However, this may require a transfer of 
up to $235 million from "Itle I", the NATO area, and we have not yet 
fully worked out what the Impact of this transfer would be on NATO 
programs and on "offshore procurement" in the NATO area. 


* 9. Mr. Dulles, at the NATO Council meeting in April of this 

year told the NATO countries he expected offshore procurement contracts 
in Europe during our fiscal year 195^ to amount to $1*5 billion, subject 


to appropriations by Contress. This was important for helping meet the 
European balance of payments. Congress seriously cut appropriations, 
and the transfer to Indochina of an additional $285 million from avail- 
able funds will fvirther reduce opportunities for offshsrre procurement in 
Europe (although some of the Indochina fundg may be expended in France 
for OSP) . However, the military services have been reviewing world-wide 
ovez*all MDAP end- item programs during the past month against the foreign 
military units, in being or cleaz\Ly to be created, which vould recieve 
the end- items. This review is scheduled to be complete In about a week, 
but very rough preliminary indications seem to show up lessened require- 
ments to meet priority programs due to slowness in the creation of 

TOP ' ' ' ■ 

Declassified per Executive Order 13526, Section 33 
NND Project Number: NND 63316. By: NWD Date; 201 1 

- -TI^-* 



foreign military units. Therefore, in a very tentative way, it seems 
that the transfer of $285 million from NATO requirements to Indochina 
will not have a disastrously bad impact on NATO. It would be highly 
desirable to complete this review before acting finally on the Indo- 
china proposal , in order to psrmit a better understanding of the im- 
pact on NATO and how to deal with it, but delay is not essential if 
the urgency of acting, in Indochina is great enough in the eyes of the 
Secretary of State, 

10. FOA points out the high desirability of consulting with 
Congressional leaders concerning the Executive's intention to provide 
additional aid to Indochina. The hearings on this year f s MSA programs 
brought out Congressional worries over the degree of U.S. involvement 
in financial support for Indochina. Such consul tat ion, which we hear 
may be undertaken by the President himself, will require some time 
and may thus permit the better evaluation of the impact of the pro- 
posals on NATO and offshore procurement (per paragraph 9 above). 

11. It- is not yet known precisely what the State Department 
will recommend to the NSC for consideration. (Mr. Dulles is taking 
this matter up with the President and is not expected back in Washing- 
ton until late on Monday, September 7)» However, they may recommend 
NSC approval in principle for the provision of aid required to meet 
the French request, subject to: 

a. French agreement to the following conditions: 

(l) French to make every effort to achieve the 
elimination of . the regular enemy forces. 

(2) French to promptly increase native and French 

Union forces in Indochina, and agree to carry on the campaign 
under the Navarre concept. 

(3) French to continue to pursue policy of generously 
and freely negotiating with the Associated States re 
their independence. 

(k) French to welcome continuing exchange of information 
and views with U.S. military, especially re intelligence 

(5) The Indochina program will not entail any basic 

or permanent alteration of France's NATO plans and programs 

(6) End- item assistance required will be agreed upon 
in Saigon. 

r .r'*> 



■ "a #7 

Declassified per Executive Order 13526. Section 3.3 
NND Project Number: NND 63316. By; NWD Date; 201 I 


(7) Not to exceed $385 million will be all the US. will . 
provide for "mutual defense financing" up to 1 January 195 5 j 
realizing that additional funds may be needed thereafter. 
(Source of the $3^5 million need not be disclosed to French 
but it may be desirable to make certain savings in FY 5^ end 
item programs for France and Indo-China.) 

(8) Any savings accruing from more detailed planning and 
screening will reduce the U.S. aid required. 

(Note that the President's suggestion re EDC is 
left out of the above* This is because opponents of either 
program may join forces in the French Assembly to defeat the 
Indo-China program. However, it should be made clear to French 
that failure to include ratification of EDC as a condition of 
aid does not indicate that our assumption that she will ratify 
has changed in any respect.) 

b. Consultation with Congressional leaders. 

c. Aid agreement with French will be reduced to clear written 
detail in a classified Note or Aide Memoire to avoid the frequent and 
divisive controversies surrounding this subject in the past. 


12- It is recommended that you: 

a. Ask for full discussion of the impact of the transfer 

of funds from aid to NATO on NATO force levels 
and offshore procurement, and the likely 
political results on the other NATO government. 
(Mr. Dulles, Mr. Stassen and Admiral Radford may 
comment thereon.) 

b. Ask if the Secretary of State believed it essential 

for the NSC to act in principle at this meeting: 

If the Secretary of St^te replies that the NSC 
should act at once^ then we recommend you approve the 
proposal fn principle to be followed by the immediate 
conduct of through discussions with appropriate Congressional 
leaders and subject to French acceptance of the conditions 
listed in paragraph 11 a, above. 


Declassified per Executive Order 13526, Section 3.3 
NND Project Number: NND 63316. By: NWD Date: 201 1 


- . ■ - i * % 

If the Secretary of State believes It is possible to delay 
action until a later meeting, ve recommend you suggest this 
be done so that you may give the NSC a better evaluation of the 
impact of the proposal on NATO and offshore procurement before 
the NSC takes final action. 

c. That you agree vith the State Department in not conditioning 
U.S. support for this Indochina program vith French ratification 
of the ED'C • 



i ** •"- - - ." » 

f - 

Declassified per Executive Order 13526, Section 3.3 
NND Project Number: NND 63316, By: NWD Date: 201 1 



September 9i 1953 
8;06 p«m« 
S31TTT0: Amembassy Paris S6S 

1. Subject to our receiving necessary assurances from French, 
1 T SC today approved additional aid nroposed for Indochina based on 
substance D3T~L 52? ■ with Presidential approval exnected tomorrow. 
Comments URTELS 939, 940, 9*11 fully taken into n:count in presenta- 
tion to 1TSC* 

2 # On most confidential basis you should therefore no--' infor- 
mally advise L?niel and Bidault above action and indicate assurances 
desired are to effect that French Government is determined: 

a, put promptly into effect program of action set forth its 
memorandum Sept 1; 

b t carry this program forward vigorously with object of 
eliminating regular enemy forces in Indochina; 

c. continue pursue policy of perfecting independence of 
Associated States in conformity vdth July 3 declaration; 

d. facilitate exchange information v/ith American military 
authorities and take into account thoir vie^s In developing and 
carrying out French military plans Indochina; 

« e. assure that no basic or permanent alteration of plans and 
programs for TATO forces v.dll be made as result of additional 
effort Indochina; 

f * provide appropriate info to US Govt of amount of expendi- 
tures for military program set forth in memo of Sept 1. 

3< " f e I'ould exnect these assurances be embodied* in note which US 
in reply would acknowledge, US reply ^ould go on to make clear that; 

a» appropriately established financial requirements for 
military program as indicated in Sept 1 memo from French Govt, 
ndt rpt not to exceed $3S5 million or its equivalent in Calendar 
Year 195^, will be met by U^ Govt (see para S below); 




Declassified per Executive Order 13526, Section 3.3 
NND Project Number: NND 63316. By: NWD Date: 201 1 


b. amount df 33S5 nillion or its equivalent in francs or 
piasters is decried to satisfy in full request made by French 
memo of Sent 1; 

c, no further financial assistance nay be expected for 
Calendar Year I95U; 

d. US Govt retains right to terminate this additional assis- 
tance should for any reason French n -ovt plan as outlined in memo 
of Sept 1 nrove incapable of execution or should other unfore- 
seen circumstances arise which negate the understandings arrived 
at between the t^o govts e 

U, You should immediately begin informally to work out language 
with French covering paragraph 2 above, (\ r o will cpble soonest new 
dr?.ft of US reply.) it should be made crystal clear to French that 
final TTS Govt agreement will be given only when satisfactory language 
for exchange notes has been obtained, 

5. During time you are working out exchange * f ith French, 

A Ministration will Inform interested leaders both houses Congress 

since new program involves important change in orientation foreign aid 

program as enacted by Congress, " T o have begun and will continue work 

on this phase of matter with greatest urgency and hope havu it completed 

by time you wind up negotiations with French,* Please impress on your 

French colleagues overriding necessity maintain complete secrecy on 

all aspects this matter until Congressional leaders informed and 

negotiations actually completed and notes exchanged between two go^ts* 

, 6, It was agreed by I"SC thore should also be assurances from 
French Govt re intention move ahead on ."jjIO, but that for various 
reasons such assurances need not necessarily be contained in formal 
notes e:: changed "between govts* \ r ould like your current views on how 
most satisfactory assurances can best be obtained* 

7* 'Jhile procedures whereby payments to French or Associated 
States will be made will have to be worked out, i.t is important that 
French understand clearly our basic approach to this additional aid — 
US is agreeing to finance a specific action program up to an agreed 
dollar figure Consequently, wa will Day or reimburse French or 
Associated States on basis of agreed franc and/or piaster expendi- 
tures as they occur at rates of exchange then current, US should 
receive benefit any reduced costs resulting from screening, devalua- 
tion, or other causes, Awripriate safeguards «*ill bo included in US 
note. FOA will forward details of suggested procedures shortly, 


* « 

1 1 

Declassified per Executive Order 13526, Section 33 
NND Project Number: NND 63316, By: NWD Date: 201 1 

top ssarac szctrity i^opjiatioit 

Si "e have very serious problem finding i3S5 million and unless 
there are compelling reasons to contrary »c "ould plan to release 
counterpart accruing Calendar Year l^^M (now estimated ^7^— SO million) 
to help meet total ♦ Healizo French may be counting on this counter- 
part for other purposes tut trust you will be able reach agreement 
along these lines. This connection, rould like to knov lines French 
thinking on ho»* they would present US aid figures to parliament, whether 
as reparate amount outside regular French budget for 195^ or as item 
only on resources sido a3 shovn heretofore, 

9« Will expect you keep us currently informed regarding negotia- 
tions on language of note, 

10 « Cony memo submitted : T SC being pouched FYT* Copy TSC action 
paper rill folloir soonest* *flii ini'urn Heath separately of developments* 
FYI, current Planning envisages foUoving *'SP sources for $335 million: 

1« $70-S0 million IiSA counterpart accruing in Calendar 
Year 1954; 

2* Roscreening of Fiscal Year I95U French IIDaP program; 

3» Rescreening of Fiscal Year 195** Indochina IIDAP pro^ra 


4. Transfer of Title I avd possibly II VDXP funds from 
Defense to FOA (thereby possibly :>.a.u sg amount of regular 03P 
that FATO countries including Fiwi^e could otherwise have received) » 


top secrIi srxriuiY i: t fobhatioit 


Declassified per Executive Order 13526, Section 3.3 
NND Project Number: NND 633 16. By: NWD Date: 201 1 

* _ 






September 11, 1953 




Further United States Support for France and the 
Associated States of Indochina 

Memos for NSC from Executive Secretary, same 
subject, dated August 5 and September o, 1953 
B. NSC Action No. 897 

The following actions on the subject by the 
National Security Council, the Secretary of the Treasury, and 
the Acting Director, Bureau of the Budget, at the Council 
meeting on September 9? 1953 ? (NSC Action No. 897) as subse- 
quently approved by the -President , are transmitted herewith 
for the information of the Council. The recommendation in b 
below has been referred to the Secretaries of State and Defense 
and the Director of the Foreign Operations Administration for 
appropriate action, 


a, Noted and discussed the memorandum from the 
. Department of State on the subject enclosed 

with the reference memorandum of September 8, 
1953 5 including the September 1 memorandum 
from the French Government and the report < 

■ that the Secretaries of State and Defense, 
the Director of the Foreign Operations 
Administration, and the Joint Chiefs of Staff, 
concur in the opinion that the proposed 
French program holds promise of success and 

..: can be implemented effectively. 

b. Agreed to recommend to the President: 


(1) The granting of additional assistance, 
not to exceed S3 8 5 million or its equi- 

valent in local currency, as requested 
by the French, on the following basis: 

(a) The United States Government should 
obtain assurances to the effect that 
the French Government is determined: 

3ecD©£ Cent a Ho.-. 

v %. *>■> 


Declassified per Executive Order 13526, Section 3.3 
NND Project Number: NND 633 J 6. By: NWD Date: 201 1 

ttt r? B^SSi^Ti'iB 

(i) To put promptly into effect 
the program of action set 
forth in its memorandum of 
September 1* 



(ii) To carry this program fo 
ward vigorously with the 
object of eliminating reg 
ular. enemy forces in 

(iii) To continue to pursue the 
policy of perfecting in- 
dependence of the Associated 
States, in conformity with 
the July 3 announcement, 

(iv) To facilitate exchange of in- 
formation with American mili- 
tary authorities and to take 
into account their views in 
developing and carrying out 
French military plans in 

(v) To assure that no basic or 

permanent alteration of plans 
and programs for NATO forces 
will be made as a result of 
the additional effort in 

(vi) To provide appropriate in- 
formation to the United States 
Government of the amounts of 
the expenditures for the 
military program indicated in 
the September 1 memorandum 
from the French Government, 

(b) The United States Government should 
make clear to the French Government 

(i) The appropriately established 
financial requirements for the 
military program as indicated 
in the September 1 memorandum 
from the French' Government, 
not to exceed $385 million in 
Calendar Year 195 1 *-. will be 
Provided by the United States 




Declassified per Executive Order 13526, Section 3.3 
NND Project Number: NND 63316. By: NWD Date: 201 1 




*■— jZ * 

St ' ■ :■->: ' ■ i 

. 9 . *■ 

(ii) The amount of §385 million 

is deened to satisfy in full 
the request made by the 
French memorandum of Sep- 
tember 1. 




(iii) Ho further financial assist 
ance may be expected for 
Calendar Year 195*+ • 

• m (iv) The United States Govern- 
■ ment retains the right to 
terminate this additional 
assistance should for any 
reason the French Govern- 
ment plan as outlined in the 
memorandum of September 1 
prove incapable of execution 
or should other unforeseen 
circumstances arise which 
negate the understandings 
arrived at between the two 
governments based on para- 
graphs (aO and (b) herein. 

The provision of this additional assist** 
ance' 5 to the extent necessary through 
the use of the President's transfer 
powers, in* conformity with Annex B of 
the enclosure to the reference memo- 
randum of September 3, 1953* or other- 



y/JMlES S. LAY, 3?/// 
I / Executive Secretary 


c c: The Secretary cf the Treasury 

The Chairman, Joint Chiefs of Staff 
The Director of Central Intelligence 




f Ui 


Declassified per Executive Order 13526, Section 33 
NND Project Number: NND 63316. By: NWD Date: 201 1 


■ ' ■ to ™ ■ ™ l ■'■ 


The agreerhent conpists of six letters exchanged 
between Bidault and f-hibafisador Dillon on September 29, 
1953* The three letters attached cover the full 
text of the" agreement: 

1. French letter setting forth the political and 
military undertakings of the French Government in 
Indochina ("Step 1") 

2, US letter setting forth the amount, terms and 
conditions of supplementary aid ("Step 3 ff ) 

3- US letter acknowledging a French letter 
which sets forth procedures to verify expenditures 
on the war In Indochina ("Step 6 ; ) 



Declassified per Executive Order 13526, Section 3.3 
NND Project Number: NND 63316, By: NWD Date: 201 1 

English Translation French Letter "Step 1" 

■ ■■*■■■■■> 

m — ■ ■ ' 



PARIS, 29 September 1953 

My dear Mr. Ambassador; 

With reference to the exchange of views which has 
taken place during recent weeks between the Government 
of the United States and the Government of the French 
Republic concerning the additional aid necessary for the 
financing of the military operations in Indochina, I 
have the honor to confirm to your Excellency the informa- 
tion contained in the memorandum of September 3> 1953 
of the French Government which indicated the plans, 
programs and policies of the French Government for the 
into^ified prosecution of the war against the Vietminh 
by the forces of France , Cambodia, Laos and Vietnam. 

At the moment when the Government of the United 
States is considering the possibility of such additional 
aid, I consider it equal ly* useful to state briefly 
the intentions of the French Government as follows: 

1. France is firmly resolved to apply fully its 
declaration of July 3, 1953, by which it announced its 
intention of perfecting the independence of the three 
Associated States of Indo-China. 


2. In the view of the French Government, the purpose 
of the addditional aid in question is to enable it to 
put into effect the strategic and tactical principles 
of a military action program in Indo-China, the terms 
and timing of which are set forth in Annex No. 4 of 
the memorandum of September 3. As outlined in the 
aforementioned document, the strategic plan of the 
French Command consists essentially of retaking the 
offensive with a view to breaking up and destroying the 

His Excellency 

The Honorable Douglas Dillon 

Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary 
of the United States of America 
at Paris 



Declassified per Executive Order 13526, Section 3.3 
NND Project Number: NND 63316. By: NWD Date: 201 1 



regular enemy forces. Convinced that the military 
problem in Indo-China can be settled only in conformity 
with such a plan, the French Government confirms that 
it intends to carry forward vigorously and promptly 
the execution thereof. In accordance with the basic 
strategic concepts of the Navarre Plan, the French 
Government "has already commenced to build up the 
Associated States forces and is proceeding to despatch 
French reinforcements to General Navarre. 

3. The French Government will continue to facilitate 
exchanges of information and views on a continuing 
basis between French and United States military 
authorities and will take into consideration the viev/s 
expressed by the latter with respect to the development 
and carrying out of the French strategic plans without 
in any way, of course, detracting from exclusive French 
responsibility for adoption and execution thereof. ] 

4. The French Government is prepared to provide to the 
United States Government all appropriate information 
regarding the type and amount of expenditures necessitated 
by the military program. 

5. The French Government considers that the increased 
effort which it intends to make in Indo-China under the 
conditions set forth in the memorandum of September j 
will not entail any basic or permanent alteration of 
its plans and programs concerning those of its forces 
which are placed under the command of the North Atlantic 
Treaty Organ Ization. 

• I avail myself of this occasion to renew, my 
dear Ambassador, the assurances of my highest considera- 

(s) Bidault 

Security Information 


Declassified per Executive Order 13526, Section 3.3 
NND Project Number: NND 63316. By: NWD Date: 201 1 



STEP 3 1 

1 i i ■ i i ■ ii ■ ■ 


American Embassy 

Paris, September 29, 1953 


I have the honor to refer to Your Excellency's letter 
of September 29, 1953, to my reply thereto of the same 
date, and to the memorandum of the French Government of 
September 3, 1953 • This memorandum, together with its 
annexes, outlines' the plans, programs and policies of the 
French Government for the intensified prosecution of the 
war against the Viet Mlnh by the forces of France, Cambodia, 
Laos, and Vietnam* 

I* In accordance with the request of the French 
Government, the United States Government has carefully 
considered these documents with a view to determining the 
contribution which it could make in support of the addi- 
tional military effort, with a view to helping to bring 
the hostilities in Indo-Chlna to a satisfactory conclusion 
within the foreseeable future. In consequence of this 
consideration and in light of the request of the French 
Government and of the understandings set forth in our ex- 
change of letters under reference, as well as in the fol- 
lowing paragraphs of this letter, the. United States Govern- 
ment will make available, prior to December 31, 19 5^, 
additional financial resources not to exceed $385 million, 
or its equivalent in French francs, in support of the 
additional military effort of the French Union in Indo-China, 

Kis Excellency 

Monsieur Georges Bidault, 

Minister for Foreign Affairs, 

X Copy held in S/S-R. 



- ? 

Declassified per Executive Order 13526, Section 33 
NND Project Number; NND 63316. By: NWD Date: 201 1 



This amount Is additional to: (l) the . , !p 1 +60 million in aid 
described in the memorandum handed to the French Govern- 
ment by representatives of the United States Government 
in Paris on -April 26, 1953; (?) the economic aid program 
to the Associated States; (3) the Item of 585 million 
appropriated by Congress for the United States fiscal year 
1953/5^ for artillery, ammunition and semi-automatic wea- 
pons for the French forces under the command of the North 
Atlantic Treaty Organization; (*+) any dollar funds that 
may be made available to France from United States fiscal 
year 1953/5^ appropriations for basic materials develop- 
ment, overseas territories development, and technical 
assistance; and (5) it is likewise additional to the end- 
item assistance to the French Government and the Associated 
States out of past or currently available United States 
appropriations, after the adjustments required by Congres- 
sional action and by the present augmentation of financial 
aid to France have been made. The end-Item assistance 
to be made available for Indo-China operations and re- 
ferred to above has been discussed and will be determined 
by the United States Government in the near future* 

II. This commitment of the United States Government 
is made upon the understandings derived from the above- 
mentioned exchange of letters 5 dated September 29 > 1953 > 
and from the memorandum of September 3, 1953* 

III. It is understood that the total amount of United 
States assistance described in paragraph I of this letter 
\s the full extent of assistance which the United States 
Government will be able to make available to the French 
Government and to the Associated States for the calendar 
year 195^ from the United States fiscal year 1953/5^ ap- 
propriations. It is further understood that there will be 
counted as a part of the additional United States assistance 
described in this letter (S385 million or its equivalent 

in French francs) releases of counterpart (except for the 
counterpart of any of the types of special assistance 
described in paragraph I 0+) above) accruing during the 
calendar year 19 5*+ in the Special Account of the Credit 
National from dollar aid allotments to France from United 
States fiscal year 1952/53 and prior appropriations, to 

t , 



Declassified per Executive Order 13526, Section 3.3 
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the extent that such releases increase the total of counter- 
value receipts in support of the French military budgets 
for the calendar, years 1953 and 195^ above a franco amount 
equivalent, at the rate of exchange current at the time 
described below in this paragraph which has been or is to 
be made available in support of the French military budgets 
for the calendar years 1953 and 195^ from United States 
fiscal year 1952/53 an ^ 1953/5 1 * appropriations. The amount 
of this aid is $1,070 million, made up as follows: 

(a) $^85 million of assistance from United States 
fiscal year 1953/5 1 * appropriations, composed of $*+00 
million for Indo-China and &85 million for French forces 
under the command of the North Atlantic Treaty Organization 

(b) $217 • 5 million of budget-supporting offshore 
procurement already effected from United States fiscal 
year 1952/53 appropriations; 

(c) $367.5 million of defense support aid from 
United States fiscal year 1952/53 appropriations. The 
franc resources to be realized from this latter amount 
of aid will, of course, be net of the 10 percent counter- 
part set aside for the use of the United States Government. 
This net amount is calculated at $33°»75 million. Thus 
when counterpart withdrawals for military purposes from 
the Special Account of the Credit National in the two 
calendar years 1953 and 195*+ taken together exceed the 
franq equivalent of S330-75 million computed at the rate 

of exchange at which the counterpart is deposited, addi- 
tional accruals during the calendar year 195^ will be 
counted as a part of the amount of 135 billion francs of 
additional assistance described in this letter • 

IV. In its memorandum of September 3? the French 
Government has estimated that during the calendar year 
195*+ the plans outlined in the aforementioned memorandum 
for increasing the forces of the Associated States will 
cost a total of 195 billion francs, of which it is olanned 
that the Governments of the Associated States will finance 
60 billion francs (the equivalent of 6 billion piasters 
at the present rate of exchange). On these assumptions 







Declassified per Executive Order 13526, Section 3.3 
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STEP "\ 

I - ' ' I 

the sum of $385 million referred to above, or its equiva- 
lent in French francs, is considered by the "Jnited States 
Government to represent the full amount of 135 billion 
francs requested in the memorandum of September 3? which 
stated that the complete execution of the recommendations 
of General Tavarre was subject to the grant of this addi- 
tional aid. It is of course understood that in the review 
in detail of the cost of financing the various components 
of these plans, savings might be developed which would re- 
duce the amount of additional aid required. Any savings 
developed would be applied first to reimburse the French 
Government for any expenditures it may have to make in 
order to meet any shortfall in the proposed contribution 
by the Associated States of the equivalent of 60 billion 
francs % and thereafter to reduce the ceiling figure of 
^385 million in additional aid described in this letter • 

V. The United States Government concurs in the pro- 
posal made by the Trench representatives that the process 
of refining the estimate of costs, together with the 
development of procedures for determining the requirements 
for funds and for making the additional aid available, 
should be worked out in detail between representatives 
of the Governments concerned, and should be carried on 
continuously throughout the calendar year 195 l *-» It is 
understood that the procedures to be worked out will be 
based upon the principle that the United States Government 
will provide the financing for agreed franc and/or piaster 
expenditures (outside the 60 billion francs referred to 
in paragraph IV above) relating to the Kational Armies of 
the Associated States, as such expenditures actually arise, 
up to the aforementioned maximum of '3^5 million computed 
at the rates of exchange current at the time when the 
expenditures are made* Any changes in costs which may 
result from any adjustments in the rates of exchange will 
j . of course be taken into account in determining the amount 

of United States financing to be made available, provided, 
however, that the total amount of the additional United 
States assistance described in this letter will in no case 
exceed $%8$ million* 



Declassified per Executive Order 13526, Section 3.3 
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Vie Should, for any reason, the French Government's 
plan, as outlined in the memorandum of September 3 and 
Your Excellency's letter of September 29 referred to above, 
prove incapable of * execution or should other unforeseen 
circumstarces arise which negate the above assumptions or 
understandings, the United States Government would not 
consider itself, insofar as the additional aid referred 
to above is concerned, committed beyond the amounts it had 
theretofore made available to the Trench Government, and 
it would desire to consult urgently with the French Govern- 
ment as to the future course of action. 

VII • The United States Government has reached its 
decision to increase its assistance for Indo-China in the 
conviction that the heroic efforts and sacrifices of France 
and the Associated States to prevent the engulf -me nt of 
Southeast Asia by the forces of international Communism y 
and to permtt thereby the emergence of the free and inde- 
pendent states of Cambodia, Laos and Vietnam, are in the 
interest of the entire free world. It is also confident 
of the ability of France, with the ever-increasing assistance 
of the Associated States, to bring this long struggle to an 
early and victorious conclusion. 

I avail myself of this occasion to renew to Your 
Excellency the assurances of my highest consideration. 

Douglas Dillon 

BELTimmons/D Jl InGrew 



Declassified per Executive Order 13526, Section 3.3 
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STI5P 6 1 

American Embassy 

Paris, September 29, 1953 

Ky dear Mr* Ambassador 

I have the honor to refer to your letter of September 
29, 1953? which reads as follows: 

fl I have the honor to refer to the letters 
which are being exchanged under today 1 s date be- 
tween the Minister for Foreign Affairs and yourself 
concerning the Claris of the French Government with 
respect to its military effort in Indo-China and the 
contribution to be made by the United States Govern- 
ment in support thereof. 

"During the conversations leading up to the 
afore -mentioned exchanges of letters, representa- 
tives of our two Governments undertook an exchange of 
■ views regarding the procedures for making the assis- 
tance available and for accounting for the utiliza- 
tion thereof, with particular reference to the 
requirement which must be met by the United States 
Government under its foreign aid legislation of estab< 
f lishing a clear and precise record concerning the 
uses to which the assistance has been put* 

"In this respect, the French Government, after 
having examined carefully the problem raised by the 
United States Government during those conversations, 
is prepared: 

Monsieur Alexandre Parodi, 
Arabassadeur de France, 
Secretary General, 

Ministry for Foreign Affairs, 


Copy held in S/S-R 




1 6 h 

Declassified per Executive Order 13526, Section 33 
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lf l. To provide to the United States Government 
all appropriate information regarding the type and 
amount of expenditures financed by the assistance 
for Indo-China. It is understood that this informa- 
tion will relate noto only to the costing of the 
program but also to the expenditures actually ef- 
fected . Representatives of the two Governments will 
consult with respect to the degree of detail necessary 
to enable the United States Government to meet the 
requirements of its foreign aid legislation and agree 
upon the details to be furnished* 

lf 2i To designate qualified representatives, who 
would work together with the designated representatives 
of the United States Government in examining from time 
to time all relevant French documents for the purpose 
of confirming the reports rendered with respect to 
the utilization of the assistance made available by 
the United States Government, 

f, 3. To receive in Indo-China the designated 
representatives of the United States Government 
for the purpose of observing and reviewing from time 
to time the utilization of United States assistance* 
The French Government is also prepared to provide 
other information and facilities as heretofore pro- 
vided under Article IX (3) of the Economic Coopera- 
tion Agreement between the United States and France, 
dated June 28, 19>-f8, as amended * 

"It is understood that the procedures to be 
worked out in accordance with the principles set forth 
in this letter will be applicable to the total amount 
of assistance to be made available by the United 
States Government for Indo-China during the calendar 
year 195 1 *. 11 

The United States Government has taken note of the 
position of the French Government as set forth in your letter 
quoted above ♦ >/lth particular regard to paragraph 5 thereof, 
the United States Government wishes to confirm to the 



Declassified per Executive Order 13526, Section 3.3 
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■ i » ■ ■ i ■ ■ i ■ 


French Government that any examination of French documents 
made pursuant to the terms thereof will be for the purpose 
of enabling the United States Government to satisfy the 
requirements of its foreign aid legislation. It goes with- 
out saying that there is no intention on the part of the 
United States Government to question the effectiveness of 
the French Government's procedures for the payment and 
auditing of public expenditures. 

I avail myself of this occasion to renew, my dear 
Mr. Ambassador, the assurances of my highest consideration. 

Douglas Dillon 


BELTimmon s/DJHcGr ew 



■ - 


Declassified per Executive Order 13526. Section 3.3 
NND Project Number: NND 63316. By: NWD Dale: 2011 

JU .nTiiEliT Ji- &T, TE 

i"'0it Lh j x iLiSo 

SEPTEMBER 30, 1$53 

No. 529 

FOB PLEASE AT 12:00 NOOK. E.S.T., (JEMIfESbAY, Serjte.iber 30, 

t * • t 



The force s of Franca and the Associated States in 
Indochina have for 8 years been engaged in a bitter 
struggle to prevent the engulf men t of Southeast Asia 
by the forces of international communism. The heroic 
efforts and sacrifices of these French union allies 
in assuring the liberty of the new and independent 
states of Cambodia, Laos and Vietnau has earned the 
admirr tion and support of the free world. In recognition 
of the French union effort the United States Government 
has in the past furnished aid of various kinds to the 

Governments of France and the Associated States to assist 
in bringing the long struggle to an early and victorious 

The French Government is firnly resolved to carry 
out in full, its declaration of July J f 1955 by which is 
announced its intention of perfecting the independence 
of the three Associated States in Indochina, through 
negotiations vdth the Associated State 

s • 

EKe Governments of France and the United States 
have now rgreed that, irv support of plans of the French 
OoverYiinent for the intensified prosecution of the war 
against the Viet Minh, the United States Will make 
available to the French Government prior to December Jl, 
195*4- additional financial resources not to exceed $385 
Billion* This sic is iix addition to funds already ear- 
narked bj the United States for aid to France end the 
Associated States* 

The French Gavern/.o^nt is determines to make every 
effort to break up ani destroy the regular enemy forces 
in Indochina* Tov&rd this end the government intends 
to carry through, in close cooperation v/itb the G&rabodian, 
Laotian B.t\d Vietnamese Governi-ients, the plans for- increas- 
ing' the Associated States forces ttf>ile increasing" tempor- 
arily French forces to levels considered necessary to 
assure the success of existing 'military plans. The 
additional United ^t- fees uiti is deai^nec to help make It 
possible to achieve these objectives .ith uaximum speed 
c?nd effectiveness* 

" 167 

Declassified per Executive Order 13526, Section 3.3 
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The Increased French effort In Indochina will not 
entail any basic or permanent alteration of the French 
Government's plans and programs for its NATO forces. 

» * 





Declassified per Executive Order 13526, Section 3.3 
NND Project Number: NND 63316. By: NWD Date: 201 1 


. c 



Oct. 21, 1953 

6;5&' p.m. 

E2*E TO: Amembassy SAIG01T 695 

Department continues much concerned at repercussions in Trance 
and elsewhere of illconsidered action Vietnamese rational Congress 
Oct, l6. Although Department hopes and Relieves that statesmanlike 
action and utterances of Bao : Dai, Tain on one hand and Laniel, Bidault 
on other will prevent damage' from becoming irreparable, Department 
believes essential find ways revitalize concept mutuality of interest 
between France and Vietnam. Your continuing views and comments v/ould 
be appreciated. 

Department deplores atmosphere prevailing at national Congress, 
utterances and resolutions of which have jeopardized war effort upon 
successful outcome of \rhich lives and property most members of Congress 
in effect depend. Failure of Congress to express appreciation of 
efforts and sacrifices of 300,000 Vietnamese* fighting Viet Iiinh 
appears even mor? extraordinary than failure to express similar senti- 
ments regarding essential French sacrifices and effort, Bao Dai 
statements have helped but insufficiently, 


Mutuality of interest in outcome of struggle is major present 
factor which needs emphasis and Department confident everything possible 
being done Saigon and Paris, 

In addition however there is problem of reconstruction which will 
arise when war is won P\3ST if it is lost, neither French nor we will 
have any such problem S*BPAHEK!« That problem will include necessity 
for providing reconstruction of country devastated by eight years of 
war, restoration of communications and reintegration into national 
life of several hundred thousand soldiers. Vietnam will need French 
help for this purpose and France will perhaps continue to need our 
assistance. PAHS! There is obviously no commitment i-»hich can be made 
on our behalf at this time. EITDPAHEiT* Department wonders however 
whether establishment of high level planning authority for purpose of 
laying foundations of reconstruction-rehabilitation effort might not 
be useful. Perhaps this authority should spring from Vietnamese 
tlve with French invited to participate. Prospect of fruitful coopera- 
tion in constructive work after war is won might have sobering effect 





Declassified per Executive Order 13526, Section 3.3 
NND Project Number: NND 63316. By: NWD Date: 20! 1 




on political dreamers and doctrinaires i It mi^ht divert attention from 
constitutional verbiage and emt;' demac&cuery and start people thinking 
of and nerhaps develooing vested interest in the practical problems 
"hich uill face* the now Vietnam made possible by current expenditure 
of Franc o-Vietnamc se blood and US-French-Vietnanese treasure 

Department advances above purel2 r tentatively and v-ould appreciate 
your comment and comments derived your continuing discussion vdth 
French and Vietnamese contacts. 


SSCT1RITY I -.Tore :ATI01! 


Declassified per Executive Order 13526, Section 3.3 
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NSC 162/2 

October 30, 1953 



to the 


References s A. 




NSC 3.62 end NSC 162/1 

*-■. - -»»v 



NSC Action Nos, 853, 868, 886, 926 and 9kk 

Memo for NSC from Executive Secretary, 

subject, "Review of Basic National Security 

Policy", dated October 28, 1953 

NSC 153/1 

Memo for NSC from Executive Secretary, 

subject, "Project Solarium" , dated July 23, 1953 

The National Security Council, the Secretary of the 
Treasury . the Attorney General, the Director, Bureau of the 
Budget, the Chairman, Council of Economic Advisers, and the 
Chairman, Atomic Energy Commission, at the 168th Council 
meeting on October 29, 1953 , adopted the statement of policy 
contained in NSC 162/1 subject to the changes which are set 
forth in NSC Action Ho. 9m~&. 

In connection with this action the Council also noted 


The Presidents statement that if the Department 
of Defense hereafter finds that ths provisions of 
subparagraph 9-a-(l) ? when. read in the context of 
the total policy statement, operate to the dis- 
advantage of the national security, the Secretary 
of Defense should bring this finding before the 
Council for reconsideration. 

b. That action should be promptly taken' to 
*"" existing arrangements regarding atomic v; 
subparagraph 39 -b. 


apons to 

c. That the policy in NSC 162/1 does not contemplate 
any fixed date for D-Day readiness. 

NSC 162/2 



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'* f~ 

# . -m. * 


d. That the Planning Board would submit for Council 
"~ consideration a revision of "U. S. Objectives vis- 
a-vis the USSR in the Event of War", as presently 
stated in the Annex, in the light 01 the provisions 
of IISC 162/1 5 as amended. 

The President has this elate approved the statement of 
policy contained In NSC 162/1 5 as amended and adopted by the 
Council and enclosed herewith',, and directs Its implementation 
by all appropriate executive departments and agencies of tfrj 
U. S. Government, As basic policy, this paper has not h^en 
referred to any single department or agency for special coordin- 

Accordingly 3 NSC 153/1 is hereby superseded. 

It is re ernes ted that s/oecial security precautions be 
observed in the handling of the enclosure and that access to 
it be very strictliy limited on an absolute need-to-know basis. 



Executive Secretary 

^ « 


The Secretary of the Treasury 

The Attorney General 

The Director j Bureau of the Budget 

The Chairman^ Council of Economic Advisers 

The Chairman, Atomic Energy Commission 

The Federal Civil Defense Administrator 

The Chairffian, Joint Chiefs of Staff 

The Director of Central Intelligence 


NSC 162/2 





Declassified per Executive Order 13526, Section 3.3 
NND Project Number: NND 63316, By: NWD Date: 201 1 






- / Table of Contents ' -' . 


General Considerations »..«.,•*••».•». » • ••• • • . . . . . i 

Basic Problems of National Security Policy. . • • . . . . 1 

The Soviet Threat to the United States; ........ .» . 1 

Defense Against the Soviet Threat * ..«*•••»••<.«•»». 5 

Present State of the Coalition • • « . « •».«•♦•♦•. 10 

The Uncommitted Areas of the World. ....*..,....... 13 

U. S, Ability to Support Security Expenditures...* 2.** 

The Situation as to U. S, Manpower . •*»«,«*. 16 

Morale ....,.....,..«....,,../,*.,..,.............* 17 


Policy Conclusions .•«„••-»-•-»*«*-«< .,...;......* 18 

Basic Problems of National Security Policy. ....... 18 

Nature of the Soviet Threat. .*....♦. 18 

Defense Against Soviet Power and Action 19 

Defense Against the Threat to the U. S. Economy 

anci -ins"Di cu bxens . «.ir, ta ««i«i6tf«»».. , :.»i«.t«o*..c ^-i 

Reduction of the Soviet Threat* ......«.*».*.< 2** 

ASQSS (U. S, Objectives vis-a-vis the USSR in the Event 

HSC 162/2 




Declassified per Executive Order ! 3526, Section 3.3 
NND Project Number: NND 63316. By; NWD Date; 2011 


by the 




Basic Problems of National Securitv Policy ■ 

1. a, To meet the Soviet threat to U. S, security, 


b. In doing so 9 to avoid seriously weakening v 
the U. S. economy or undermining out fundamental 
values and institutions. 

The Soviet Threat to the United States 

•"-*•-- ■ ■■> ^^.^J-^--»- M l ia H ^l PI I f --<M 

2« The primary threat to the security 7 free insti 
tutions, and fundamental values of the United States is 
posed by the combination of 



a. Basic Soviet hostility to the non~ communist 
world, particularly to the United States, 

b. Great Soviet military power. 

c« Soviet control of the international 
communist apparatus and other means of subversion 
or division of the free world. 

3. a, The authority of the Soviet regime does not 
appear to have been impaired by the events since 
Stalin's death, or to be likely to be appreciably 
weakened during the next few years* The transfer 
of power may cause soma uncertainty in Soviet and 
satellite tactics for some time, but will pro- 
bably not impair the basic economic and military 
strength of the Soviet bloc. The Soviet rulers 
can be expected to continue to base their policy 
on the convict. ion of irreconcilable hostility 
between the bloc. and the non- communist world. 
This conviction is the compound product of Marxist 
belief in their historically determined conflict 
with ? and inevitable triumph over, "world 
capitalism 11 led by the United States, of fear 

NSC 162/2 17 /j " TOP SECRET 

Declassified per Executive Order 13526, Section 33 
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--» + 

-- * 


for the security of the regime and the IBSR, 
especially in the face of a hostile coalition 9 
of distrust of U. S„ aims and intentions, and of 
long-established reliance on techniques of con- 
spiracy and subversion. Accordingly, the basic 
1 Soviet objectives continue to be consolidation - 
and expansion of their own sphere of power and 
the eventual domination of the non«communist 
world • 


b. Soviet strategy has been flexible and 
will probably continue so, allowing for retreats 
and delays as well as advances. The various 
"peace gesture's 11 so far have cost the Soviets 
very little in actual concessions and could be 
merely designed to divide the West by raising 
false hopes and seeking to make the United 
States appear unyielding. It is possible, 
however 9 that the USSR, for internal and other 
reasons 9 may desire a settlement of specific 
issues or a relaxation of tensions and military 
preparations for a substantial period, ■ Thus 
far s there are no convincing signs of readiness 
to make important concessions to this end, 

k P a. The capability of the USSR to attack the 

United States with atomic weapons has been con- 
tinuously growing and will be materially enhanced 
by hydrogen weapons. The USSR has sufficient 
i bombs and aircraft, using one-way missions, to- 
inflict serious damage on the United States, 
especially by surprise attack* The USSR scon 
jmay have the capability of dealing a crippling 
i blow to our industrial base and our continued 
ability to prosecute a war. Effective defense 
could reduce the likelihood and intensity of a 
hostile attack but not eliminate the chance of 
a crippling blow. 

bo The USSR now devotes about one- sixth of 
its gross national product to military outlays 
and is expected to continue this level. It has 
and will continue to have large conventional 
military forces capable of aggression against 
countries of the free world. Within the next 
two years 9 the Soviet bloc is not expected to 
increase the size of its forces, but will 
strengthen them with improved equipment and 
training and the larger atomic stockpile* 


NSC 162/2 



Declassified per Executive Order 13526, Section 33 
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. * * 

. V 



c. The Soviet bloc now has ths capability 
of strong defense against air attack on critical 
targets within the USSR under favorable weather • 
conditions , and is likely to continue to 
strengthen its all-weather air defenses. 

5. a. The recent uprisings in East Germany and 
the unrest in other European satellites evidence 
the failure of the Soviets fully to subjugate 
these peoples or to destroy their desire for 
freedom) the dependence of these satellite 
governments on Soviet armed forces; and the 
relative unreliability of satellite armed 
forces (especially if popular resistance in 
the satellites should increase) • These events 
necessarily have placed internal and psycholo- 
gical strains upon the Soviet leadership. 
Nevertheless, the ability of the USSR to 
exercise effective control over, and to ex- 
ploit the resources of, the European satellites 
has not been appreciably reduced and is not likely 
to be so long as the USSR maintains 
adequate military forces in the area, „ 

b. The detachment of any major European 
satellite from the Soviet bloc does not now 
appear feasible except by Soviet acquiescence 

or by war. Such a detachment would not decisively 
affect the Soviet military capability either in 
delivery of weapons of mass destruction or in 
conventional forces, but would be a considerable 
blow to Soviet prestige and would impair in 
some degree Soviet conventional military 
capabilities in Europe, 

c, The Chinese Communist regime is firmly 
in control and is unlikely to be shaken in the 
foreseeable future by domestic forces or rival 
regimes, short of the occurrence of a major war. 
The alliance between the regimes of Communist 
China, and the USSR is based on common ideology 
and current community of interests. With the 
death of Stalin and the Korean truce, Communist 
China may tend more to emphasize its own 
interests, though limited by its present economic 
and military dependence on the USSR, and, in 

the long run, basic differences may strain or 
break the alliance. At present, however, it 
appears to be firmly established and adds 

NSC 162/2 




< t 

Declassified per Executive Order 13526, Section 3.3 
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strategic territory and vast reserves ox 
military manpower to the Soviet bloc* 

6 # a. The USSR does not seem likely delib- 
erately to launch a general war against the 
United States daring the period covered by 
current estimates (through micVO-955)* The y 

uncertain prospects for Soviet victory in a 

general war, the change in leadership, satellite 
unrest, and the U* S* capability to retaliate 
massively, maiee such a course improbable • 
Similarly, an attack on IIATO countries or other 
areas which would be almost certain to bring on- 
general war in view of U, S, commitments or 
intentions would be unlikely * The Soviets 
will not j however, be deterred by fear of 
general war from taking the measures they con- 
sider necessary to counter Western actions 
which they view as a serious threat to their 

b* When both the USSR anft the United J 

States reach a stage of atomic plenty and 
ample means of delivery, each will have the 
probable capacity to inflict critical damage on 
the other j but is not likely to be able to prevent 
major atomic retaliations,, This could create 
a stalemate s with both sides reluctant to ini- 
tiate general warfare \ although if the Soviets 
believed that initial surprise held the prospect 
of destroying the capacity for retaliation, they 
might be tempted into attacking * 

i c* Although Soviet fear of atomic reaction s 

should still inhibit local aggression^ increas- 
ing Soviet atomic capability may tend to diminish 
the deterrent effect of U* S„ atomic power against 
peripheral Soviet aggression. It may also sharpen 
the reaction of the USSR to what it considers 
provocative acts of the United States * If. either 
side should miscalculate the strength of the 
other's reaction, such local conflicts could 
grow into general war-, even though neither 
seeks nor desires it. To avoid this, it will 
in general be desirable for the United States to 
make clear to the USSR the kind of actions which 
will be almost certain to lead to this result, 

j recognizing j however, that as general war becomes 
more devastating for both sides the threat to 

NSC 162/2 -J?! TOP SECRET 

Declassified per Executive Order 13526, Section 3.3 
NND Project Number: NND 63.3 16. By: NWD Date: 201 1 



resort to it becomes less available as a 
sanction against local aggression* 

7. The USSR will continue to rely heavily on 
tactics of division and subversion to weaken the free 
world alliances and will to resist the Soviet power. 
Using both the fear of atomic warfare and the hope 
of peace 5 such political warfare will seek to exploit 
differences among members of the free world ? neutralist 
attitudes s and anti-colonial and nationalist senti- 
ments* in underdeveloped areas. For these purposes ? 
communis t parties and other cooperating elegants will 
be used to manipulate opinion and control govern- 
ments wherever possible. This aspect of the Soviet 
threat is likely to continue indefinitely and to 
grow in intensity. 

8* Over time j chair 3 in the outlook and policies 
of the leadership of the JSSE may result from such 
factors as the slackening of revolutionary zeal ? the 
growth of vested managerial and bureaucratic interests s 
and popular pressures for consumption goods. Such 
changes 5 combined with the growing strength of the 
free world and the failure to break its cohesion 5 
and possible aggravation of weaknesses within the 
Soviet bloc through U. S. or allied action or other- 
wise, might induce a willingness to negotiate. The 
Soviet leadership might find it desirable and even 
essential to reach agreements acceptable to the United 
States and its allies, without necessarily abandoning 
its basic hostility to the non-Soviet world. 

Defense Against the Soviet Threat 

-j^*«i*-*»« - 5-r>- "»-**■«<-■*■- •-• j- -■ r#--.i^-£» ■g-yva— »-.>4 »-_-■>■«.■». rc*m*~i,>~ emiT 1 1 *n ■^,.i^ij»'i,— j--Sj,». 

9. In the face of the Soviet threat, the security 
of the United States requires \ 

a. Development and maintenance of 





(1) A strong military posture, with • 
emphasis .on the capability of inflicting 

massive retaliatory damage by offensive 
striking power 5 


(2) U« S. and allied forces in readiness 
to move rapidly initially to counter aggres- 
sion by Soviet bloc forces and to hold vital 
areas and lines of communication! and 

Declassified per Executive Order 13526, Section 3.3 
NND Project Number: NND 63316. By: NWD Date: 201 1 


•-. v 

, ; 


* * 

(3) A mobilization base, mid its pro- 
tection against crippling damage ■. adequate 
to insure victory in the event of general , 
■ war , 

b, Maintenance of a sound, strong and 
growing economy 2 capable of providing through 
the operation of free institutions 9 the strength 
described in £ above over the long pull and of 
rapidly and effectively changing to full, mobili- 
zation t 

c. Maintenance of morale and free institu- 
tions and the willingness of the U. So people to 
support the measures necessary for national 

10. In support of these basic security require- 
ments 5 it is necessary that the United States; 

a. Develop and maintain an intelligence 
system capable of; 

(1) Collecting and analyzing indications 

of hostile intentions that would give maximum 
prior warning of possible aggression or sub- 
version in any area of the world. 




(2) Accurately evaluating the capabilitie 
of foreign countries 3 friendly and neutral as 
well as enemy 5 to under taks military, political, 
economic, and subversive courses of action 
affecting U. S. security, 

(3) Forecasting potential foreign 
developments having a bearing on U, S. 
national security, 

b. Develop an adequate manpower program 
designed to: 

(1) Expand scientific and technical 

(2) Provide an equitable military 
training system. 

(3) Strike a feasible balance. between 
the needs of an expanding peacetime econoray 
and defense requirements. 


NSC 162/2 



Declassified per Executive Order 13526, Section 3.3 
NND Project Number: NND 63316. By: NWD Date: 201 1 



(h) Provide for an appropriate distribu- 
tion of services and skills in the event of 
national emergency, 

c fc Conduct and foster scientific research and 
evelopment so as to insure superiority in quantity 
and quality of weapons systems, with attendant 
continuing review of the level and composition of 
forces and of the industrial base required for 
adequate defense and for successful prosecution 
of general war* 

d. Continue 7 for as long as necessary ? a state 
of limited defense mobilization to develop military 
readiness by: 

(1) Developing and maintaining production 
plant capacity, dispersed with a view to I 
minimizing destruction by enemy attack and 
capable of rapid expansion or prompt con- 
version to essential wartime output. 

(2) Creating and maintaining minimum 
essential reserve stocks of selected end- 
items, so located as to support promptly and 
affectively the war effort in areas of 
probable commitment until war production and 
shipping capacity reaches the required war- 
time levels*. 

(3) Maintaining stockpiling programs, 
and providing additional production fac Hi- 
ties ? for those materials the shortage of 

- which would affect critically essential 
defense programs; meanwhile reducing the 
rates of other stockpile materials, 

e* Provide reasonable internal security against 
covert attack, sabotage, subversion,, and espionage 3 
particularly against the clandestine introduction and 
detonation of atomic weapons. 

11 o Within the free world 5 only the United States 
can provide an 3. maintain, for a period of years to 
come, the atomic capability to counterbalance Soviet 
atomic power* Thus, sufficient atomic weapons and 
effective means of delivery are indispensable for U. S. 
security. Moreover, in the face of Soviet atomic 
power g defense of the continental United States becomes 



! ', 





Declassified per Executive Order 13526. Section 3.3 
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* ■ 

vital to effective security; to protect our strik- 
ing force j our mobilization base, and "our people. Such 
atomic capability is also a major contribution to the 
security of our allies, as well as of this country * 

12 o Tha United States cannot, however, meet its 
defense needs, even at exorbitant cost, without tha 
support of allies. 

§,. The effective use of U. S. strategic 
air power against the USSR will require over- 
seas bases on foreign territory for some years 
to come* Such bases will continue indefinitely 
to be an important additional element of U. S< 

[ strategic air capability and to be essential 

to the conduct of the military operations on 
y the Eurasian continent in case of general war. 
The availability of such bases and their use 
by the United States in case of need will de- 
pend, in most cases, on the consent and co- 
operation of the nations where they are located. 
Such nations will assume the risks entailed only 

■ i if convinced that their own security will 
thereby be best served. 

J>. The United States needs to have aligned 
on its side in the world struggle, in peace and 
; in war. the armed forces and economic resources 

and materials of the major highly- industrialized 
non- communist states. Progressive loss to the 
Soviet bloc of these states would so isolate 
the United States and alter ths world balance as 
. to endanger the capacity of the United States to 
win in the event of general war or to maintain 
an adequate defense without undermining its 
fundamental institutions * 


c* U. So strategy including the use of 
atomic weapons, therefore, can be successfully 
- * carried out only if our essential allies are 

convinced that it is conceived and will be im- 
plemented for the purpose of mutual security 
and defense against the Soviet threat. U* S. 
leadership in this regard, however, does not 
imply the necessity to meet all &,esir-es of our 

NSC 162/2 181 TO? SECRET 


Declassified per Executive Order 13526, Section 33 
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d* Our allies are, in turn, dependent on 
the United States for their security: (1) 
they lade that atomic capability which is fch* 
najor deterrent to Soviet aggression; (2) most 
lack political and economic stability sufficient 
to support their military forces # The United ■ - 
States should be able for the foreseeable 
future to provide military aid, in more limited 
amounts than heretofore, to our essential 
allies, It should bs possible in the near 
future s however j generally to eliminate most 
grant economic aid, if coupled with appropriate 
U« S. economic and trade policies. 

13. a. Under existing treaties or policies, 
an attack on the NATO countries, Western Germany, 
Berlin 5 Japan, the Philippines, Australia, 
Nov; Zealand, and the ; rican Republics, or on 
1 the Republic of Korea, would involve the United 
States in war .with the USSR, or at least with 
Communist China if the aggression were Chinese 
alone . 

b. Certain other countries, such as Indo- ^ 
China or Formosa, are of such strategic im- 
portance to the United States that an attack 

on them probably would compel the United States 
] to react with military force either locally at 
, the point of attack or generally against the 
[ military power of the aggressor. Moreover, the 
principle of collective security through the 
United Nations, if it is to continue to 
survive as a deterrent to continued piecemeal 
aggression and a promise of an eventual effec- 
tive world security system, should be upheld 
even in areas not of vital strategic importance. 

c. The assumption by the United States, as 
the. leader of the free world* of a substantial 

degree of re spoils ibility for the freedom and 
security of the free nations is a direct and 
essential contribution to the maintenance of 
its own freedom and security » 

%h* a. The United States should keep open 
the possibility of settlements with the USSR, 
compatible with basic U. S. security interests, 
which would resolve specific conflicts or reduce 
the magnitude of the Soviet threat. Moreover, 
to maintain the continued support of its allies, 

NSC 162/2 ' 202 T0P SSCRET 


Declassified per Executive Order 13526, Section 3.3 
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-- *• 






p t 

the United St?. tor. must seek to convince them 
of its desire to reach such settlements. Bui 9 
in doing so, we must not allow the possibility 
of such settlements to delay or reduce efforts 
to develop and maintain adequate free world 
strength, and thus enable the Soviets to 
increase their relative strength. 


b It must be recognized, however, that 
the prospects for acceptable negotiated settle 
nents are not encouraging • There is no evidence 
that the Soviet leadership is prepared to modify 
its basic attitudes and accept any permanent 
settlement with the United States, although it 
may be prepared for a rodus viv toi on certain 
issues. Atomic and other ma'o or "weapons can be 
controlled only by adequate and enforceable safe 
guards which would involve some form of inter- 
national inspection and supervision. Acceptance 
of such serious restrictions by either side would 
be extremely difficult under existing conditions 
of suspicion and distrust* The chances for such 
disarmament would perhaps be improved by agree- 
ments on other conflicts either beforehand or at 
the same time, or by possible realization by the 
Soviets j in tirne^ that armament limitation will 
serve their own interests and security. 


c. The; United States should promptly de- 
termine what it would accept as an adequate 
system of armament control which would effec- 
ts " " """•'" " 


Present State of the Coalition* 

** - - -V *>*.»• JMW4C4 

15. a. The effort of the United States , es- 
pecially since 1950, to build up the strength, 
cohesion and common determination of the free 
world has succeeded in increasing its relative 
strength and may well have prevented overt 
military aggression since Korea. 

'.-• - • - . - 

" fJPT li' i '. ^M »* 

*Tm term "coalition" refers to those states which are 
parties to the network of security treaties and regional 
alliances of which the United States is a member (NATO, 
OAS, AHZUSj Japan 3 etc), or. are otherwise actively 
associated in the defense of the free world. 

NSC 162/2 



Declassified per Executive Order 13526, Section 3.3 
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b. In Western Europe the build-up of 

military strength and the progress of economic 
recover/ has,, at least partially, remedied 
a .situation of glaring weakness m a vital 
area. NATO and associated forces are now 
sufficient to make aggressive action in Europe 
costly for the USSR and to create a greater 
feeling of confidence and security among the 
Western European peoples. However, even though 
significant progress has been made in building 
up these forces , the military strength in Western 
Europe is presently not sufficient to prevent a 
full-scale. Soviet attack from overrunning Western 
Europe. Even with the availability of those 
German forces presently planned within the frame- 
work of EDC, present rates of defense spending 
by European Nations and present rates of U* S. 
Military Assistance certainly could not be ex- 
pected to produce forces adequate to prevent the 
initial loss of a considerable portion of the 
territory of V/estern Europe in the event of a full- 
scale Soviet attack. Therefore, since U. S. 
Military Assistance must eventually be reduced, it 
is essential that the Western European states, 
including West Germany, build and maintain maximum 
f feasible defensive strength. The major deterrent 
to aggression against Western Europe is the mani- 
fest determination of the United States to tise 
its atomic capability and massive 'retaliatory 
striking power if the area is attacked. How- 
ever, the presence of U. S. forces in V/estern 
Europe makes a contribution other than military 
to the strength and cohesion of the free world 

c. In the Far East, the military strength 
of the coalition now rests largely on U« S. 
military power plus that of France in Indochina, 
the UK in Malaya and Hong Kong, and the in- 
digenous forces of the Republic of Korea, Viet- 
nam, and Nationalist China. Any material in- 
crease will require the revival of the economic 
and military strength of Japan. 

d. The strength and cohesion of the 
coalition depends, and will continue to depend, 
on' the continuing strength and will of the 
United States as its leader, and upon the as- 
sumption by each coalition member of a proper 
share of responsibility. 



NSC 162/2 



Declassified per Executive Order 13526, Section 3.3 
NND Project Number: NND 63316, By: NWD Date: 201 1 


- . . - * 


16. While the coalitonn is founded on common 
interest and remains basically sound, ^certain factors 
tend to weaken its cohesion and to slow down the 
necessary build-up of strength, 

a. Some of these factors are inherent in 
the nature of a coalition led by one strong 
power. The economic and military recovery by 
our NATO allies from their low point of a few 
years ago, and the revival of Germany and Japan, 
has given them a greater sense of independence 
from U. Si guidance and direction. Specific 
sources of irritation are trade with the Soviet 
bloc, the level of the defense effort, use of 
bases and other facilities, and the prospect 
of discontinuance of U. S, economic aid without 
a corresponding change in (I, S. trade policies. 

_ > The coalition also suffers from certain 
other weaknesses and dilemmas. A major weakness 
is the instability of the governments of certain 
NATO partners, such as Italy and France, The 
colonial issue in Asia and Africa, for example, 
has not only weakened our European allies but 
has left those areas in a state of ferment which 
weakens the whole free world. Efforts by the 
United States to encourage orderly settlements 
tend to leave both sides dissatisfied and to 
create friction within the alliance. Age-old 
issues such as divide France and Germany, or 
Italy and Yugoslavia, still impede creation of 
a solid basis of cooperation against the Soviet 

c. Moreover, allied opinion, especially 
in Europe, has become less willing to follow 
U, S. leadership, Many Europeans fear that 
American policies, particularly in the Far 
East, may involve Europe in general war, or 
will indefinitely prolong cold-war tensions. 
Many consider U, 3. attitudes toward the Soviets 
as too rigid and unyielding and, at the same 
time, as unstable, holding risks ranging from 
preventive war and "liberation 11 tj withdrawal 
into isolation. Many consider that these 
policies fail to reflect the perspective and 
confidence expected in the leadership of a 
great nation, and reflect too great a pre- 
occupation with ant i- communism. Important 


NSC 162/2 



Declassified per Executive Order 13526, Section 3.3 
NND Project Number: NND 63316, By: NWD Date: 201 1 

. « 




sectors of allied opinion are also concerned 
over developments within the United States which 
seem to them inconsistent with our assumed role 
of leadsr in the cause of freedom* Thzsa allied 
attitudes laaterially impair cooperation and, if 
not overcome 5 could imperil the coalition* 

dc Pear of what a general war will mean for 
them is deeply rooted and widespread among our 
| allies. They tend to see the actual danger of 
j Soviet aggression as less imminent than the 
United States does, and soma have a fatalistic 
feeling that if it is coming they will not be 
able to do much about it. In the NATO countries , 
many have serious doubts whether the defense 
requirements can be met without intolerable 
political and economic strains. Certain of 
our allies fear the rearmament of Germany and 
Japan on any large scale, and in Germany and 
Japan themselves strong currents of opinion 
oppose it as unnecessary or dangerous* More- 
over , in certain countries, particularly France 
and Italy* grave domestic problems have called 
into question not only the authority of the 
governments ? but also the basic foreign 
policies and alignments which they have followed. 
All those factors lead to allied pressure in 
favor of new major efforts to negotiate with 
the USSR, as the only hope of ending the present 
tension, fear and frustration. This pressure 
has increased with recent "peace gestures" of 
the new Soviet leadership^ which has made 
every endeavor to exploit it. Whether these 
hopes are illusory or well-founded, they must 
be taken into consideration by the United States, 

The Unco •itterl Areas of the World 

17. Despite the Soviet threat, many nations and 
societies outside the Soviet bloc, mostly in the under 
developed areas , are so unsure of their national 
interests, or so preoccupied with other pressing 
problems 5 that they are presently unwilling to align 
themselves actively with the United States and its 
allies. Although largely undeveloped 5 their vast 
manpower j their essential raw materials and their 
potential for growth are such that their absorption 
within the Soviet system would greatly, perhaps 
decisively j alter the world balance of power to our 
detriment. Conversely f their orderly development into 
more stable and responsible nations, able and willing 
to participate in defense of the .free world, can in- 
creasingly add to its strength. 




NSC 162/S*" 




Declassified per Executive Order 13526, Section 3.3 
NND Project Number: NND 63316, By: NWD Date: 201 1 

* m 


' ' _' • 18* In many of these uncommitted areas, forces of 

.unrest and of ■ resentment against the West are strong* 
Amomg these sources are racial feelings, anti-colonIalism 9 
rising nationalism s popular demand for rapid social and 
* economic progress* overpopulation 3 tha breakdown of 
static social patterns 5 and, in many cases, the conflict 
of local religious and social philosophies With those- of 
the West* The general unreliability of the governments 
of these states and the volatility of their political 
life complicate the task of building firm ties with 
them, of counteracting neutralism and ? jfrhere appropriate 
and feasible, of responding to requests for assistance 
in Solying their problems. Outside economic assistance 
alone- cannot be counted on either to solve their basic 
problems or to win their cooperation and support. Con- 
structive political and other measures will be required 
to create a sense of mutuality of interest with the 
free world and to counter the communist appeals. 

i?« S« . Ability to Suuuort Securit y Expe nditures 

19. The United States must maintain a sound J 

economy based on free private enterprise as a basis 
both for high defense productivity and for the main- 
tenance of its living standards and free institutions. 
Not only the world position of the United States, but 
the security of the whole free world, is dependent on 
the avoidance of recession and on the long-term ex- 
pansion of the U. S, economy* Threats to its stability 

or growth, therefore, constitute a danger to the 
security of the United States and of the coalition 
which it leads. Expenditures for national security, 
in fact all federal, state and local governmental 
expenditures, must be carefully scrutinized with a 
view to measuring their impact" on the national 

20. The economy of the country has a potential 
; • for long-term economic growth. Over the years an 

expanding national income can provide the basis for 
higher standards of living and for a substantial 
military program. But economic growth is not 
automatic and requires fiscal and other policies 
which will foster and not hamper the potential for . 
long-term growth and which Will operate to reduce 
cyclical fluctuations. 

NSCl62/g ' • TOP SECRET 


Declassified per Executive Order 13526, Section 33 
NND Project Number: NND 63316, By: NWD Date: 201 1 



21 « Excessive government spending leads to in- 
flationary deficits or to repressive taxation s or to 
both# Persistent inflation is a barrier to Ions- 
term growth because it trndetmines confidence in the 
currency j reduces savings 9 and makes restrictive 
economic controls necessary « Repressive taxation 
weakens the incentives for efficiency, effort s and 
investment on which economic grov/th depends. 

22. In spite of the reimposition of tax rates 
at approximately the paalc levels of World War II, 
expend I tures have risen faster than tax receipts, 
with a resulting deficit of $9. l J- billion in fiscal 
year 1953 • Despite anticipated larger receipts, 
without the imposition of new taxes, and assuming sub- 
stantially unchanged world conditions, a deficit of 
$3«8 billion is estimated for fiscal year 195**. 

23. a« Under existing law, tax reductions of 
$5 billion a year will become effective next 
January. A proposal to impose substitute taxes 
therefor would be a reversal of policy. 

b. Additional revenue losses of $3 billion 
a year are due to occur on April 1, 195 1 *. Con« 
gross has not acted on the President's recom- 
mendation that these reductions be rescinded. 
Even if the $3 billion reduction is rescinded, 
or offset by revenue from new sources, large 
deficits would occur in FY 1955 and FY 1956. 

at present levels of expenditures. 


c. The economic problem is made more 
difficult by the need to reform the tax system 
in the interests of long-term economic growth* 
Inevitably, many of the changes necessary to 
reduce the barriers to growth will lead to a 
loss of revenue in the years immediately fol- 
lowing their adoption* 

2k. Any additional revenue will haVe to be 
secured by new taxation on a broad base. 

25. 3?he present high level of the Government 

debt further complicates the financial and economic 
problems of the country. Substantial additional 
borrowing could eo.-se only fro:n sources which would 
be inflationary. 

NSC 162/& . * ' TO? SECRET 


Declassified per Executive Order 13526, Section 3.3 
NND Project Number: NND 63316, By: NWD Date: 201 1 


26, There is no precise level or duration of 
government expenditures which can be determined in 
advance j at which an economic system will be 
seriously damaged from inflationary borrowing on the 
one hand or from repressive taxation on the other. 

The higher the lpvel of expenditures , the greater is * , 
the need for sound policies and the greater are the ^ 
dangers of miscalculations and mischance. These 
dangers are now substantial. \ 

27, The requirements for funds to maintain our 
national security must thus be considered in the light 
of these dangers to our economic system, including the 
danger to industrial productivity necessary to support 
military programs, arising from excessive levels of 
total Government spending, taxing and borrowing. 

28, Modifications of the foregoing fiscal 
policies to promote long-term growth may be neces- 
sitated for a limited period; (1) to deal with 
short-term cyclical problems or (2) to achieve 
overriding national objectives that justify departure J 
from sound fiscal policies. 

The Situation as to U. 3. Manpower 

29. a. The national security programs of the 
United States rest upon the manpower to 
operate them, the economy to produce the 
material for them, and the financial re- 
sources to pay for them, 

b, The qualified manpower annually coming 
of military age is adequate to carry out our 
existing military programs. However, the con- 
tinuing development of more complicated weapons, 
machines, and devices used by the military 
greatly increases the need for military man- 
power possessed of higher skills, and for 
their better utilization, and emphasizes the 
need for expanded technical training and re- 
tention of technically trained personnel, 

c. Any considerable increase in the need 
for military manpower Would require considera- 
tion of: 


(1) Broadening the present criteria 
governing draft eligibility. 


l-.'SC 162/2 TOP SECRET 


Declassified per Executive Order 13526, Section 33 
NND Project Number: NND 63316. By: NWD Date: 201 1 



L'fUCll'la ' 

. | 

(2) Broadening th3 physical re« 
quirements for enlistment, particularly.. 

to secure technicians ♦ 

(3) Extension of the average length 
of military service, including increased 
incentives for re«enlistment. 

(k) Increased recruitment of long- 
terra volunteers and of women* 

(5) Greater use of civilians for / 
te clinical maintenance work. 

(6) Leadership to develop a national 

response to increased needs f including 

steps to make military service a. natter 

of patriotic pride and to increase the 

I attractiveness of a military career, 
f ■ ' 

d. Any decisions on these matters should 
he made in the light of a comprehensive study 
to be submitted to the President by the Office 
of Defense Mobilization by December l s on 
> manpower availability under varying assumptions 

as to the degree and nature of mobilization re^ 
quirements , 


30. Support for the necessary security programs, 
based upon a sound productive system, is ultimately 
dependent also upon the soundness of the national 
morale and the political willingness of the country 
to support a government which it feels is holding 
the proper balance between the necessary sacrifices 
and the necessary defense,, Accordingly 5 the American ^ 
people must be informed of the nature of the Soviet- 
Communist threat, in particular the danger inherent 
in the increasing Soviet atomic capability; of the 
basic community of interest among the nations of the 
free world} and of the need for mobilizing the spiritual 
and material resources necessary to meet the Soviet 

NSC 162/3 * " ?0P SECRET 


Declassified per Executive Order 13526, Section 3.3 
NND Project Number: NND 63316. By: NWD Date: 201 1 

i * - . , - • . * 



W m m v- m 'm*_t- 

Basic Problems of National Security Policy 

31* a* * To meet the Soviet threat to U„ S 
I security o 

V . 

f . In doing so, to avoid seriously weaken*- 
ing the U c S* economy or undermining our funda- 
mental values and institutions* 

Nat ur e l of _ t the „.S o vi e t^.Thr eat 

32 . a. With increasing atomic. power ? the Soviets 
have a mounting capability of inflicting very 
serious and possibly crippling damage on the 
United States, The USSR will also continue to 
have large military forces capable of aggressive 
action against countries of the free world. 
Present estimates are, however , that the USSR 
will not deliberately initiate general war 
during the next several years, although gen- 
eral war might result from miscalculation. In j 
the absence of general war, a prolonged period 
of tension may ensue, during which each side 
increases its armaments, reaches atomic plenty 
and seeks to improve its relative power posi- 
1 tion 


b* In any case 5 the Soviets will continue 
to seek to divide and weaken the free world 
coalition, to absorb or win the allegiance of 
the presently uncommitted areas of the world, 
: . ana to isolate the United States, using cold 

War tactics and the communist apparatus, Their J 
capacity for political warfare against the United 
States as well as its allies will be enhanced by 
their increased atomic capability c 

33 * £o A sound ^ strong, and growing U 3. 
economy is necessary to support over the long 
pull a satisfactory posture of defense in the 
free world and a U e S capability rapidly and 
effectively to ch e to full mobilization. The \ 
United States should not weaken its capacity I 
for high productivity for defense ? its free ' 
institutions , and the incentives on which its 
long-term economic growth depends. 




Declassified per Executive Order 13526, Section 33 
NISTD Project Number: NND 63316. By: NWD Date: 201 1 


b, A recession in the level of U. S, 
economic activity could seriously prejudice the 
security of the free world. 

ggfeff s e_A? fllns t „ S py tgt ,,, Pfflee^ ^d , 4**t jlftfi 

3 1 ** In the face of these threats'/ the United 
States must develop and maintain, stL^ne^lov^s^Xear 
sible_eos_t y requisite military and non-military 
strength to deter and, if necessary 5 to counter 
Soviet military aggression against the United States 
or other areas vital to its security, 

a* The risk of Soviet aggression will be 
minimized by maintaining a strong security pos- 
ture, with emphasis on adequate offensive re- 
taliatory strength and defensive strength. This 
must be based on massive atomic capability , in- 
cluding necessary bases; {^integrated and ef- 
fective continental defense system: ready forces 
of the United States and its allies suitably 
deployed and adequate^ to deter or initially to 
counter aggression, and to discharge required 
initial tasks in the event of a general war; and 
an adequate. mobilization base; all supported by 
the determined spirit of the U. S, people, 

b. This strong security posture must also 
be supported by an effective U« S, intelligence 
system, an- r adequate manpower program, superior 
scientific research and development f a program 
of limited defense mobili nation 5 reasonable 
internal security $ and an informed American 


c* Such a strong security posture is es- 
sential to counter the Soviet divisive tactics 
and hold together the coalition. If our allies 
were uncertain about our ability or will to 
counter Soviet aggression 5 they would be 
strongly tempted to adopt a neutralist posi- 
tion , especially in the face of the atomic 

35- In the interest of its own security, 
United States must have the support of allies. 





NSC 162/2 



Declassified per Executive Order 13526, Section 3*3 
NND Project Number: NND 63316, By: NWD Date: 2011 


a* The military striking power necessary 
to retaliate depends for the foreseeable future 
'on having bases in allied, countries. Further- 
more 5 the ground forces required to counter 
local aggressions must be supplied largely by 
our allies e 

, b. The loss of major allies by subversion, 
divisive tactics ^ or the growth of neutralist 
attitudes ^ would seriously affect the security 
of the United States, 

36 , United States policies must, therefore , be 
designed to retain the cooperation of our allies , to 
seek to van the friendship and cooperation of the pre- 
sently uncommitted. areas of the worlds and thereby to 
strengthen the cohesion of the free world, 

a. Our allies must be genuinely convinced 
that our strategy is one of collective security, 
■ The alliance must be rooted In a strong feeling 
of a community of interest and firm confidence 
in the steadiness and wisdom of U, S, leadership. 

b c Cooperative efforts, including equit- 
able contributions by our allies, will continue 
to be necessary to build the military, economic 
and political strength of the coalition and 

the stability of the free world, 


c. Constructive U, S, policies, not related 
solely to anti- communism, are needed to persuade 
uncommitted countries that their best Interests 
lie in greater cooperation and stronger af- 
filiations with the rest of the free world • 

d* To enhance the capacity of free world . 

nations for self-support and defense, and to ; 

■ " - . reduce progressively their need for U c S P aid, < 

the United States should assist in stitnulatin 


international trade, freer access to markets and 


raw materials, and the healthy growth of unde 
developed areas. In this connection, it should 
consider a modification of its tariff and trade , 
policies* ' 

e. In subsequent fiscal years economic 
grant aid and loans by the United States to other 
nations of the free world should be based on the 
best interests of the- United States, 

NSC 162/2 Xvj ° TOP SECRET 

Declassified per Executive Order 13526, Section 3.3 
NND Project Number: NND 63316. By: NWD Date: 201 1 


37, a. In Western Europe , a position of strength 
must be based mainly on British, French, and 
German cooperation in the defense of the continent, 
%o achieve a stronger Europe, the United States 
should support | as long as there is hope of early 
success, the building of an integrated European 
Community (including West Germany and if possible 
a united Germany) , linked to the United States 
through NATO. The United States should press for 
a strong, united stable Germany, oriented to 
the fr^e world and militarily capable of over- 
coming internal subversion and disorder and also 
of taking a major part in the collective defense 
of the free world against aggression. The 
United States must continue to assist in creat- 
ing and maintaining mutually -agreed European 
forces, but should reduce such assistance as 
rapidly as United States interests permit* 

b. In the Far East, strength must be 
built on existing bilateral and multilateral 
security arrangements until more comprehensive 
regional arrangements become feasible • The 
United States should stress assistance in 
developing Japan as a major element of strength. 
The United States should maintain the security 
of the off-shore island chain and continue to 
develop the defensive capacity of Korea and 
Southeast Asia in accordance with existing 
commitments • 

£« In the Middle East, a strong regional 

grouping is not now feasible. In order to assure 
during peace time for the United States and its 
allies the resources (especially oil) and the 
strategic positions of the area and their denial 
to the Soviet bloc, the United States should 
build on Turkey, Pakistan and, if possible , 
Iran, and assist, in achieving stability in the 
Middle East by political actions and limited 
military and economic assistance, and technical 
assistance, to other countries in the area. 

d, In other areas of the free world the 
United States should furnish limited military 
aid, and limited technical and economic as- 
sistanee, to other free nations, according to 
the calculated advantage of such aid to the 
U# So world position. 

KSC 162 A ' 13k TOP SECRET 

Declassified per Executive Order 13526, Section 3.3 
NND Project Number: NND 63316. By: NWD Date: 201 1 




38* a. As presently deployed in support of our 
commitments, the armed forces of the United 
States are over-extended, thereby depriving us 
of mobility and initiative for future military 
action in defense of the free world. 

b. Under present conditions, however, any 
major"withdrav>al of tJ» S. forces from Europe 

or the Far East would be interpreted as a 
diminution of U* S 9 interest in the defense of 
those ureas and would seriously undermine the 
strength and cohesion of the coalition. 

c. Our diplomacy must concentrate upon ■ 
clarifying to our allies in parts of the world 
not gripped by war conditions that the best 
defense of the free world rests upon a deploy- 
ment of D, S« forcer, which permits initiative, 
flexibility and support} upon our political 
commitment to strike back hard directly against 
any aggressor who attacks such allies; and 

upon such allies 1 own indigenous security efforts* 

39 • &• I n specific situations where a warning 
appears desirable and feasible as an added 
deterrent, the United States should make clear 
to the USSR and Communist China, in general 
terms or with reference to specific areas as 
the situation requires, its intention to react 
with military force against any aggression by 
Soviet bloc armed forces. 


b* (1) In the event of hostilities, the 
United States will consider nuclear weapons 
to be as available for use as other muni- 
tions* Where the consent of an ally is 
required for the use of these weapons 
from U» S. bases on the territory of such 
ally, the United States should promptly 
obtain the advance consent of such ally 
for such use, The United States should 
also seek, as and when feasible, the 
understanding and approval of this policy 
by f^ee nations* 

(2) This policy should not be made 
public without further consideration by the 
National Security Council. 

koC I or-; 






Declassified per Executive Order 13526. Section 3.3 
NND Project Number: NND 63316. By: NWD Date; 201 I 



Defense Against the Threat to the U. S. Economy and 


kO* a. A strong, healthy and expanding U. S. 

economy 13 essential to the security and stability 

of the free world* In the interest of both the 

United States* and its allies, it is vital that - ^ 

the support of defense expenditures should not 

seriously impair the basic soundness of the U. 8. 

economy- by undermining incentives or by inflation* 

b. The United States must, however, meet 
the necessary costs of the policies essential 
for its security. The actual level of such costs 
cannot be estimated until further study, but 
should be kept to the minimum consistent with 
the carrying out of these policies. 

c. Barring basic change in the world situa- 
tion, the Federal Government should continue to 
make a determined effort to bring its total an- 
nual expenditures into balance, or into substantial 
balance with its total annul revenues and should 
maintain over-all credit and fiscal policies de- 
signed to assist in stabilizing the economy* 

d. Every effort should be made to eliminate 
I waste, duplication 3 and unnecessai^y overhead in 

| the Federal Government, and to minimize Federal 

; . expenditures for programs that are not essential 

to the national security, 

i e. The United States should seel: to main- 

\ \ tain a higher and expanding rate of economic 

activity at relatively stable price levels. 

f . The economic potential of private 
enterprise should be maximized by minimizing 
governmental controls and regulations, and by 
encouraging private enterprise to develop 
natural and technological resources (e,g, nu- 
clear power) . _ 

*+l, To support the necessarily heavy burdens for 
national security, the morale of the citizens of the 
United States must be based both on responsibility and 
freedom for the individual. The dangers from ScvlVat 
subversion and espionage require strong and effective 



Declassified per Executive Order 13526, Section 3.3 
NND Project Number: NND 63316, By: NWD Date: 201 1 


security measures* Eternal, vigilance, however, is 
needed in their exercise to prevent the intimidation 
of free' criticism. It is essential that necessary 
measures of protection should not be so used as to 
destroy the national unity based on freedom, not on 
fear* , 

Reduction of the Sovie t Thr eat 

*f2. a. The United States must seek to improve 
the power position of itself and the rest of the 
free world in relation to the Soviet bloc, 

b* The United States must also keep open 
the possibility of negotiating v/ith the USSR and 
Communist China acceptable and enforceable 
agreements, whether limited to individual issues 
I now outstanding or involving a general settle- 
ment of major issues, including control of 
armaments • 

c, The willingness of the Soviet leader- 
ship to negotiate acceptable settlements, with- 
out necessarily abandoning hostility to the non- 
Soviet world, nay tend to increase over time, 

if the United States and its allies develop and 
increase their own strength, determination and 
cohesion, maintain retaliatory power sufficient 
to insure unacceptable damage to the Soviet 
system should the USSR resort to general war, 
and prove that the free world can prosper des- 
pite Soviet pressures, or if for any reason 
Soviet stability and influence are reduced, 

d. The policy of the United States is to 
prevent Soviet aggression and continuing domina- 
tion of other nations, and to establish an ef- 
fective control of armaments under proper safe- 
guards; but is not to dictate the internal 
political and economic organization of the USSR.* 

V3. As a means of reducing Soviet capabilities 
for extending, control and influence in the free, world, 
the United States should: 

* *v 


This paragraph does not establish policy guidance for 
our propaganda or informational activities , 

NSC 162/2 197 TOP SECRET 


Declassified per Executive Order 13526, Section 33 
NND Project Number: NND 63316. By: NWD Date: 201 1 



a. Take overt and covert measures to dis- 
credit Soviet prestige and ideology as effective 
ins t indents of Soviet power, and to reduce the 
strength of communis t parties and other pro- 
Soviet elements* 

; b. Take all feasible diplomatic 9 political^ 
economic and covert measures to counter any 
threat of a party or individuals directly or in- 
direct?./ responsive to Soviet control to achieve 
dominant power in a free world country. 

c. Undertake selective, positive actions 
to eliminate Soviet-Communist control over any 
areas of the free world, 

kk, £. Measures to impose pressures on the 
Soviet bloc should take into account the de- 
sirability of creating conditions which will 
induce the Soviet leadership to be more re- 
ceptive to acceptable negotiated settlements. 

b. Accordingly j the United States should 
take feasible politicals economic, propaganda 
and covert measures designed to create and ex- 
ploit troublesome problems for the USSR, impair 
Soviet relations with Communist China, com- 
plicate control in the satellites, and retard, 
the growth of the military and economic poten- 
tial of the Soviet bloc, 

^5* In the face of the developing Soviet threat, 
the broad aim of U, S. security policies must be to 
create s prior to the achievement of mutual atomic 
plenty 5 conditions under which the United States and 
the free world coalition are prepared to meet the 
Soviet-Communist threat with resolution and to 
negotiate for its alleviation under proper safeguards # 
The United States and its allies must always seek 
to create and sustain the hope and confidence of the 
free world in the ability of its basic ideas and 
institutions not merely to oppose the communist threat % 
but to provide a way of life superior to Communism. 

h6* The foregoing conclusions are valid only so 
long as the United States maintains a retaliatory 
capability that cannot be neutralized by a surprise 
Soviet attack. Therefore, there must be continuing 
examination and periodic report to the National 
Security Council in regard to the likelihood of such 
neutralization of U. S, retaliatory capability. 

NSC 162/2 



Declassified per Executive Order 13526. Section 3.3 
NND Project Number: NND 63316. By: NWD Date: 201 1 




*r m i t tun | ,m<t 

- (The following paragraphs are taken verbatim from I:SC 20/h- 3 
approved in November, 19H8* They also formed an annex to 
to liSC 153/1 > approved in June, 1953* This subject is 
currently under review by the NSC Planning Board* ) 

1. In the event of war with the USSR we should 
endeavor by successful military and other operations to 
create conditions Which would permit satisfactory accom- 
plishment of J c S ft objectives without a predetermined 
requirement for unconditional surrender B War aims 
supplemental to our peace-time aims should includes 

a. Eliminating Soviet Russian domination in 
areas outside the borders of any Russian state allowed 
to exist after the war* 

b* Destroying the structure of relationships 
by which leaders of the All-Union Communist Party 
have been able to exert moral and disciplinary 
authority over individual citizens, or groups of 
citizens, in countries not under coiiimunist control, 

c« Assuring that any regime or regimes which may 
exist "on traditional Russian territory in the 
aftermath of a war: 

(1) Do not have sufficient military power 
to wage aggressive war, 

(2) Impose nothing resembling the present 
iron curtain over contacts with the outside world. 

* - : d. In addition j if any bolshevik regime is left 

in any part of the Soviet Union, insuring that it does 
not control enough of the military- industrial poten- 
- 1 tial of the Soviet Union to enable it to wage war 

on comparable terms with any other regime or regimes 
which may exist on traditional Russian territory, 

£• Seeking to create postwar conditions which 
*:" , Will; 

(1) Prevent the development of power 
relationships dangerous to the security of the 
United States and international peace, 

IvSC lo2/2 ' . TOP SECRET ' . 


Declassified per Executive Order 13526, Section 3.3 
NND Project Number: NND 633 16. By: NWD Date: 201 1 


(2) Be conducive to the successful develop 
meat of an effective world organization based 
upon the purposes and principles of the United 

r; anions, 

(3) Permit the earliest practicable 
, discontinuance within the United States of 
: wartime controls* 

2* In pursuing the above war aims, we should aval 
making irrevocable or premature decisions or commitiiierit 
respecting border rearrangements, administration of 
government within enemy territory 5 independence for 
national minorities, or post-war responsibility for the 
readjustment of the inevitable political, economic, and 
social dislocations resulting from the war. 



iSC lu2/2 



Declassified per Executive Order 13526, Section 3.3 
NND Project Number: NND 63316. By: NWD Date: 201 1 

751G.5 ~ MSP/11 - 23$3sSECRST FIEE 



6:17 PiMi 
NOV 23, 1953 

Amembassy PARIS priority 1930 

/jnembassy SilGOIl PRIORITY 920 

Please convey following personal message to Bid^ult QUOTE I 
wanted you and Prime Mini ot or Laniel to know thrt following your 
urgent request for early delivery of 2$ additional C-W aircraft for 
Indochina the President and I have looked into this matter carefully* 
It gives us great pleasure to tell you that to© are now able to give 
you an affinitive answer to this request the importance of which we 

fully realize UNQUOTE. 

. m. Admiral Radford wi.ll inform General Valluy of this decision 
tomorrow. Planes expected to bo ready to depart not later than 

December 12 






Declassified per Executive Order 13526, Section 3.3 
NND Project Number: NND 63316, By: NWD Date: 201 1 


7£lG.OO/ll-30£}:8ECRET FILE 

RccUl: November 30, 1953 
6:23 p.m. 


TO: Secretary of State 

NO: 2110, November 30, 7 p.m. . 


Laniel asks me to assure you and the President that Ho Chi 
Kinh interview mil not (repeat not), of itself, and certainly 
not (repeat not) pending full consultation at Bermuda, be 
permitted to affect in any way Indochina policy which he has 
followed since he became Prime Minister* He and Vidal consider 
interview 98 percent propaganda and recognize that it has 
already had great effect both in France and Indochina and will 
make continuation of their policy considerably more difficult. 
Laniel is nevertheless confident that he can keep his govern- 
ments support without going further in direction of negotiations 
than he did in his November 2k statement (Embassy's telegram 
2055, November 25). He did not (repeat not), speculate as to 
what situation might be under another government in January. 
Navarre has reported belief that in six months he should be 
able to achieve major improvement in milltniy siturtion, 
including particularly cleaning up south. I reminded them of 
very long time which had elapsed between first hint and actual 
opening of Korean truce negotiations and of importance to any 
eventual negotiations of first obtaining best possible military 

As indicative of pressure here Vidal subsequently told mo that 
President /.uriol hsd summoned Laniel at 3=00 this morning and 
told him to consult representatives of three Associated States 
immediately with view to seeking earliest possible opening of 
negotiations with representatives of Ho Chi Kinh, Laniel bad 
flatly refused and said that he had no (repeat no) 3 intention 
of changing his policy, at least until he had consulted US and 
UK at Bermuda and then Associated Elates. 


Despite Laniels unquestioned sincerity on this, his November 2k 
statement left ccnsidcrrblc latitude for negotiations and we 
must remember both the very heavy pressure which the Ho inter- 
view will unquestionably stimulate and the fact that Laniel 
government must constitutionally resign in mid-January. 

* ■ 




Declassified per Executive Order 13526, Section 33 
NND Project Number: NND 633 16. By: NWD Date: 201 1 





• Os fr*i 

3 fr% F^ nr* 

** &« «*■ £\ J :; 

;; Letter Ho. 4.05/3SH2Ff/EG? 
dtd 7 fceeoabcr 1953 

Kajor General TRAFK3LL, Chief HAAG 

General Navarro, CinC French Foreee, Intlo China 

H.D.A.P, FX-54 

Letter 540/BH1FT/4/OS/S dated 24 October 1953. 


> In my above referred letter, I imparted to you the groat 
con corn which I felt on the matter of net bode of planning the American 

Aid Program for 1954 as applied to tho Expeditionary Corps in Indo chine 

id* My letter etrcsged two main points! 

- the necessity of avoiding any modification of re que ; as submitted 
to your commando Such requests conform to tho noma in tho Indochina 
war based on several years of e:cperionce 

- tho desirability of having deliveries expedited in order to enablo 
me to complete, at the earliest possible data, tho Battle Corpo uy_ 
which I am counting for a decisive improvement in tho military situ 


For the pact month, nothing has intervened to lessen my 
concern^ To the contrary, it seems to bo evident that oy requests have 
boon subject to important reductions which might troll prevent rea3 v 
tion of a dependable logistical system at the very t:bae that tho Battle 
Corps will be most actively engaged© 

In particular, tho Aid Progs for the Fay Bast K&val Forces 
has just boon forearded to me I hava noted that there .is a groat 
difference ezcl&ilng between tho reguoste of tho FIJ^O Admiralty and 
Washington approving agencies,af act that should i&imedi&toly be stressed* 

2 e fhis fact brings no to the realisation that disagrees m% exists 
between the intentions of the highly placed American civilian and Kili«* 
tary Authorities, (v/hieh whom I have personally come into contact on 
frequent occasions) and tho various American Organisations of implo- 
mentation which play a part in the planning of Military Aid Programs* 

All highly placed American Authorities jrho have come to Xndoehi 
havo assarted to rio that tho United States \ioro decided to undertake an 
extensive effort « These assurances have brought me to levy a consider* 
able increase in tho personnel cone ted from Franco and from tho Asso- 
ciated States o This increase is in the process of being realign \ c 

I cannot understand, then, the re duct .ions \ tch are con Ldered 
concerning American Aide Should theee reductions be retained, tli 
woi\ld result in an obvious discrepancy bot n the means in p<ireonnal 
id the means in materiel which I have at my disposal* Without any 





jf^l fT% *hi ~-r 


KJ > <U, 


Declassified per Executive Order 13526, Section 3.3 
NND Project Number: NND 63316. By: NWD Date: 201 1 


rf - ■ .' i 







•-. *' 


Aout&j "I' would bo forced to reconsider tho operational plan anti~ 
• eipatod for th ■■ year 1954> «h'iohj then, v:ould appeal 1 too ambitious an 
undertaking* Concerning tho suppZ ientary DAKOTA Squadron which I 
had requested as coon as I assumed my Command, and which vras only 
granted a fen days agoj the dolay occuring before this decision wai 
madei has already placed mc in a difficult operational situation* 

, With rospoct to the Ground Forces, 
th© fallowing points. 

I again vrioh to emphasise 

Formulation of allocations of equipment based upon tho 
regular tables of equipment of tho American Army (which are known 
to bo insufficient in Indochina) will hiring about tho reduction of 
tho ntmbor of units for vrhich activation ::ao anticipated* It will 
bring about tho neglect of all the territorial ground installations 
for organic units, not authorised in tho tabloc of equipment© Those 
ground installations are, however, essential to tho implanted unit 
in viou of their Mission of opacification"* It \;ill bring about a 
handicap to tho Ground Forces in tho dual mission thoy have to ae- 
compliohs destruction of tho rebels 1 Battle Corps and "pacification",* 

4« With respect to the Haval Forces, I note in particular reduc- 
tions involving landing craft of all typooo Hov:. vcr^ expressly as a 
result of insist ant suggestions on tho part of General O^MIIIEL, I 
have decided to develop amphibious facilities* coastal aa well as 
river ,, and to contemplate amphibious operations tho scope of which 
I should find nysolf forced to reduce* 

5o I remind you alco that, though I have requostod helicopters 
for development of ny facilities of aanouvre and of action on tho eneisy 
rear, your cosuaand has proposed to fill ray needs only under tho condif 
tions that I give up (in an equal dollar value) a quantity of equips 
nont on supply to be taken from the initial requests nads for tho three 

I cannot aecopt having r:y potential whittled away in such a manner^ 
, duo to tho fact that 1 have requested these holi copters for the specif i 
purpose of extending and improving conditions under vhich this potential 
io to bo utilised* 

6 In resume, 1 have no indication which will enable me to feci 
assured that I could have at say disposal sufficient equipment to take 
care of the eosssitaentfl which Kill periodically nature as planned in 
development of the French &nc\ Associated States- Forces during the first 
half of 1954o. 

It is essential* then, in the h:\ iti-at order, that I hive fir~i 
information with regard to the disposition which ny roquecte concerning 
Ground and Air Forces will receive© 



I ©est - jotly request that tho reductions Had© by Ifashingic 
bo rocc idsrod ii ofar as they affect tho throe f-orrleeat 

It is indispc " B&t I c 

I can e.oi en rocsiv£r*3 She firto T£ 1*954 

r i rleus pro:;; aos« 


info; tion as to he-; doc:*' 
equipstant and the balance 

Declassified per Executive Order 13526, Section 3.3 
NND Project Number: NND 63316. By: NWD Date: 201 1 


- * 



k*J? iv~,£ ; 

• 1 

I would liko to have aestt3?aneas to tho effeoi that, vrJ 
n$xt fch?*o Months * an aoiual effort will be maclo taking tho Torn o£ ess> 
fcoi --v.^ivo deliveries* m * 

\ I trould bo grafcaful if yea would pleaao get in touch trith !";.: 

ir> :*:on A- oxitiafl again in vis;; of thoiv realising hon strongly I i s .■ « 

o this natter * % and I hop? that your mediation trill affaot a eola- 
tion Whicb will prove to be efficacious aa wall as Batiafying* 


SigiioS; B@ncral KAVAE3 

^Y* *T -*.*1 r"' '*! * 

Cotty t\ivr 

- Aab&esador HEATH 

p ?T? O F^ T* T 1 

Iw* o^-» ^^ ,.:^ £_..t 


Declassified per Executive Order 13526, Section 33 
NND Project Number: NND 63316. By: NWD Date; 2011 



r*0-i 7 r o 
L- JL v <-. £ 




Approved 15 December "1953 
Published 18 December 1953 


The Intelligence Advisory Committee concurred in this 

estimate on 15 December 1053. The FBI absia , the 

subject being outside of its jurisdiction. 

The following member organizations of the Intelligence 
Advisory Committee participated with the Central Intel- 
ligence Agency in the preparation of this estimate: The 
intelligence organizations of ike Departments of State, 
the Army, the Navy, the Air Force, end The Joint Staff, 




Declassified per Executive Order 13526, Section 3.3 
NND Project Number: NND 63316. By: NWD Date: 2011 





To estimate the probable reactions of Communist China and the USSR to: 

a. The commitment in Indochina, before the end of 1954, of US ground, air, and 
naval forces on a scale sufficient to defeat decisively the field forces of the Viet Minh. 

b. The commitment in Indochina, before the end of 1954, of US ground, air, and 
naval forces on a scale sufficient to hold the Viet Minh in check until such time as 
US-developed Vietnamese forces could decisively defeat the field forces of the Viet 


For both a. and b. above: 

1. No Chinese Communist intervention 
in force in Indochina had taken 

2. Commitment of US forces had been 
publicly requested by the French 
and Vietnamese governments. 

3. At the time of the US commitment 
French Union forces still retained 
essentially their present position in 
the Tonkin Delta. 

4. Communist China and the USSR 
would have prior knowledge of the 
US intent to commit its forces in 

5. Following the US commitment, there 
would be a phased withdrawal of 
French forces from Indochina. 

6. The US will warn the Chinese Com- 
munists that if they openly inter- 
vene 2 in the fighting in Indochina, 
the US will not limit its military 
action to Indochina. 


1. We believe that the Communists would 
assume that the purpose of committing US 
forces in Indochina was the decisive defeat of 
the Viet Minh. Consequently, we believe that 
Communist reactions to such a US commit- 
ment would be substantially the same whether 

J The Problem and the Assumptions have been 
provided to the intelligence community as a basis 
for the estimate. 

'For the purposes of this estimate, open interven- 
tion Is defined as the commitment of substantial 
Chinese Communist combat forces, under any 

it were designed to defeat the Viet Minh with 
US forces (Problem a.) or eventually with US- 
trained Vietnam forces (Problem b.). 

In the Event of a Pending US Commitment 

2. We do not believe that Communist China, 
upon learning of a forthcoming commitment 
by the US, would immediately intervene open- 
ly with substantial forces in Indochina. The 
acceptance by Communist China of an armi- 
stice in Korea, its policies to date with respect 
to Indochina, and its present emphasis on 


Declassified per Executive Order 13526. Section 3.3 
NND Project Number: NND 63316. By: NWD Date; 201 I 


. I 


domestic problems seem to indicate a desire 
at this time to avoid open intervention in the 
Indochina war or expansion of the conflict to 
Communist China. US warnings against Chi- 
nese Communist intervention in force 3 proba- 
bly would have a strong deterrent effect. 
Moreover, the political advantage to be gained 
by portraying the US as an "aggressor" would 
probably appear both to Communist China 
and the USSR to outweigh the military advan- 
tage of moving large Chinese Communist 
forces into Indochina before the arrival of US 

3. In addition, Communist leadership would 
probably estimate that they would have time 
to take a number of steps which, without a 
serious risk of expanding the war to China, 
might deter a US military commitment or seri- 
ously impair its effectiveness. Such steps 
might include: 

a. Increasing logistic and rear area support 
to the Viet Minh. 

b. Covertly committing Chinese troops to 
operate as "Viet Minh guerrillas." 

c. Encouraging intensified Viet Minh guer- 
rilla and sabotage operations in Indochina, 
particularly in and around the Tonkin Delta, 
designed to inflict such damage on the French 
Union position as to increase the difficulties 
of the US operation. 

d. Building up Chinese Communist strength 
in south China, including Hainan. 

e. Seeking by diplomatic and propaganda 
means in the UN and elsewhere to forestall US 
action, to gain the support of non-Communist 
countries, and to exploit differences between 
the US and its allies over preparations for this 

•Such warnings would reinforce the warning al- 
; ready given by Secretary of State Dulles, in his 
American Legion Speech at St. Louis, 2 Septem- 
ber 1953: 
"Communist China has been and now is train- 
ing, equipping and supplying the Communist 
forces in Indochina. There is the risk that, as 
• in Korea, Red China might send its own army 
Into Indochina. The Chinese Communist re- 
gime should realize that such a second aggres- 
sion could not occur without grave conse- 
quences which might not be confined in Indo- 
china. I say this soberly in the interest of 
peace and in the hope of preventing another 
aggressor miscalculation." 

i. Concluding a defense pact with the Viet 

Although, in response to a US military com- 
mitment in Indochina, the Communists might 
threaten to renew hostilities in Korea, we be- 
lieve that they would not actually take such 
action as they probably estimate that re- 
newed aggression in Korea would result in ex- 
panding the conflict to Communist China itself. 

Actual US Commitment 

4. In the initial stages of an actual US mili- 
tary commitment, the Communists might not 
feel compelled to intervene openly in force 
immediately. They would recognize the diffi- 
culties which the US forces would face in oper- 
ating in the Indochina climate and terrain. 
They would also realize that the xenophobia 
of the indigenous population of Indochina 
might be effectively exploited to the disadvan- 
tage of US forces by Communist propaganda; 
the Chinese Communists would therefore pre- 
fer that the US rather than themselves be con- 
fronted with this antiforeign attitude. They 
might estimate that, with increased aid from 
Communist China, the Viet Minh forces, by 
employing harassing and infiltrating tactics 
and avoiding major engagements, could make 
any US advance at the least slow and difficult. 
It is probable, therefore, that the Chinese 
Communists would' initially follow a cautious 
military policy while they assessed the scale, 
nature, and probable success of the US action, 
the effect of such action on Vietnamese na- 
tional morale and military capabilities, the 
subsequent military and political moves of the 
French, the temper of US opinion, the reac- 
tions of US allies and the neutralist states, 
and the position of the UN. Even at this early 
stage, however, the Chinese Communists 
would probably take strong actions short of 
open intervention in an effort to prevent the 
US from destroying the Viet Minh armed 
forces. 4 

1 The Special Assistant, Intelligence, Department 
of State, believes that the timing of the Com- 
munist reaction to the commitment of US forces 
in Indochina cannot be estimated with any de- 
gree of assurance. Ke th ore believes that a 
decision by the Communists to folJov/ a cautious 
policy in the initial stages of the US action 
should be presented as a possibility, rather than 
as a probability. 



Declassified per Executive Order 13526. Section 3.3 
NND Project Number: NND 63316. By: NWD Date: 2011 


5. In addition to the steps outlined in para- 
graph 3 above, the Chinese Communists, at 
this early stage of US commitment, would 
probably provide an increased number of mili- 
tary advisors, possibly including commanders 
for major Viet Minh units. Moreover, Peiping 
might covertly furnish limited air support for 
Viet Minh ground forces, but would be unlike- 
ly to undertake air operations which it esti- 
mated' would provoke US retaliation against 
Communist China itself other than retaliation 

■ against those airfields from which such air 
attacks were launched. 

6. If the leaders of Communist China and the 
USSR came to believe that a protracted stale- 
mate in Indochina was likely, they would 
probably not openly commit Chinese Commu- 
nist ground, naval, or air forces to an inter- 
vention in force in Indochina, nor would they 
renew hostilities in Korea or commit new acts 
of armed aggression elsewhere in the Far East. 
Peiping and Moscow would probably believe 
that a long and indecisive war in Indochina 
could be exploited politically and that, in time, 
US and Vietnamese will to fight might be worn 


7. If at any time, however, the leaders of Com- 
munist China and the USSR came to believe 
that a decisive defeat of the Viet Minh armed 
forces was likely, they would be faced with 
the decision whether Communist China 
should intervene openly in force in order to 
avert this development. 

8. The. following considerations might induce 
the Communists to decide in favor of open in- 
tervention in force: 

a. Decisive defeat of the Viet Minh armed 
forces would be a grave blow to Communist 
prestige throughout the world and would seri- 
ously diminish prospects for the expansion of 
Communism in Asia. 

b. A US military commitment in Indochina 
might form part of a larger plan, possibly in- 
volving, in the minds of the Communists, the 
resurgence of Chinese Nationalist strength, 
aimed at the destruction of the Chinese Com- 
munist regime. In any case, decisive defeat 
of the Viet Minh armed forces would bring US 
power to the borders of China, 

c. Whatever the initial intention, success- 
ful US military action in Indochina might en- 
courage the US to increase pressure on other 
points of the Communist periphery, 

d. Many observers, particularly in the Asian 
neutralist states, would consider the US in the 
wrong in Indochina and would condone Chi- 
nese Communist intervention as a move to 
"liberate Indochina from American imperial- 
ism." These sentiments could be effectively 
exploited by Communist propaganda. 

e. The US, despite its warnings, might not 
retaliate strongly against Communist China, 
because it would fear that such retaliation 
would alienate its NATO allies, result in wider 
military deployment of US forces, cause Pei- 
ping to invoke the Sino-Soviet treaty, and 
thereby increase the danger of general war. 

f. By intervening openly in force the Chi- 
nese Communists might be able to' prevent in- 
definitely both the successful accomplishment 
of the US mission and the disengagement of 
substantial US forces from Indcc] 

9. On the other hand, the following considera- 
tions might deter the Communists from decid- 
ing to intervene openly in force: 

a. It would be more important to concen- 
trate upon domestic problems including 
strengthening of Communist China's econ- 

b. There would be a grave risk of US re- 
prisals against Communist China and possibly 
of general war. 

c. Indochina is remote from the USSR and 
the centers of power in Communist Chin 
Accordingly, the establishment of a strong US 
position in Indochina would not constitute, to 
the same degree as in Korea, a threat to Chi- 
nese Communist and Soviet power in the Far 


d. Short of actual intervention, the Chinese 
Communists could acquire a position of 
strength by reinforcing and rehabilitating the 
military facilities on Hainan. This position 
would dominate the Gulf of Tonkin, and pose 
a distinct threat to sea-air lines of communi- 
cations of US forces in Indochina and to rear 

i *ses. 

■ CvC 




Declassified per Executive Order 13526. Section 3 3 
NND Project Number: NND 63316. By: NWD Date: 201 1 


e. The loss in prestige involved in the de- 
feat of the Viet Minh armed forces could in 
part be offset by depicting the Viet Minh as an 
indigenous liberation movement Moreover, 
the Viet Minh Government and its armed 
forces could be preserved on Chinese soil 

.where they could exercise constant military 
and political pressure on the .forces of the, US 
and the Associated States. 

f. The military and political nature of the 
Indochina war is such that even if the US 
defeated the Viet Minh field forces, guerrilla 
action could probably be continued indefinite- 
ly and preclude the establishment of complete 
non-Communist control over that area. 

g. Under such circumstances, the US might 
have to maintain a military commitment in 
Indochina for years to come. Heavy US com- 
mitments to Indochina over the long run 
might cause concern to US allies and might 
create divergences between the US and neu- 
tralist states. 

10. The Director of Central Intelligence and 
the Deputy Director for Intelligence, The Joint 
Staff, believe that the Communist reaction to 
commitment of US forces in Indochina would 
largely depend upon US posture prior to, and 
at the same time of, such commitment. If the 
US posture made manifest to the Communists 
that US naval and air retaliatory power would 
be fully applied to Communist China, then 
Peiping and Moscow would seek to avoid 
courses of action which would bring about 
such retaliation. Insueh circumstances, the 
chances are better than even that the Chinese- 
Communists" would not openly intervene in 
Indochina, even if they believed that failure to 
intervene would mean the defeat at that time 
of the Viet Minh field forces in Indochina. 
Therefore the Director of Central Intelligence 
and the Deputy Director for Intelligence, The 
Joint Staff, believe that in weighing the argu- 
ments set forth in paragraphs 8 and 9 Chinese 
Communist leaders, m such circumstances, 
would estimate that it was more advantageous 
to them to support a guerrilla action in Indo- 
china and tie down large US forces in such a 
war, than to risk US retaliatory action against 
China itself which open intervention would in- 
volve. However, the Communists would al- 
most certainly continue to support the rem- 

nants of the Viet Minh, including re-equipping 
' these remnant forces on the Chinese side of 
the border and possibly augmenting them 
with Chinese "volunteers" so that Viet Minh 
resistance could be continued indefinitely. 
Moreover, they would pursue their objectives 
in the rest of Southeast Asia by all means 
short of open military intervention. 

1L The Special Assistant, Intelligence, De- 
partment of State, the Director of Naval Intel- 
ligence, the Assistant Chief of Staff, G-2, 
Intelligence; Department of the Army, and the 
Director of Intelligence, USAF, believe that 
the condition of "decisive defeat of the field 
forces of the Viet Minh" prescribed for con- 
sidering this problem would necessarily result 
in such a serious setback to Communist pres- 
tige, security, and expansionism as to lead to 
the following conclusions. In weighing the 
arguments presented in paragraphs 8 and 9, 
the Communist leaders in both Peiping and 
Moscow would probably give greatest con- 
sideration to: (a) the loss of prestige, the 
threat to Bloc security, and the setback 
to Communist expansionism in Southeast 
Asia involved in a decisive defeat of the 
Viet Minh armed forces and, (b) the risk of 
direct US action against Communist China. 
To the Communists, the consequences of the 
decisive defeat of the Viet Minh armed forces 
would be both certain and far reaching. In 
appraising the possible nature and scale of 
direct US action against the China mainland, 
the Communists would weigh any US warn- 
ings of probable consequences of intervention, 
the temper of US and free world opinion, and 
the probable US desire not to expand a local 
action. It is unlikely that the Communists' 
appraisal would lead them to the conviction 
that the US reaction to their intervention in 
Indochina would take the form of extensive 
and intense warfare against Communist 
China. In any case, their overriding sus- 
picion of the ultimate motive of US forces in 
strength on or near the borders of Communist 
China would strongly influence their courses 
of action. Thus, the thought foremost in 
their minds would most probably be that fail- 
ure to dislodge US military forces from the 
Chinese border would lead to increasing chal- 
lenges to Communist power elsewhere. We 



Declassified per Executive Order 13526, Section 33 
NND Project Number: NND 63316. By; NWD Date: 201 1 


therefore believe that t he ch ances are pro 
#bly better than even that thejCdmmunlsts 
v{0^3^epO?l^ J^& ""involved and that the 

Chinese Communists would intervene openly 
and in force in an effort^the Commu- 
nist position in Indochina.