December 3

This Day in History

Vietnam War

Dec 3, 1965:

Memorandum outlines terms for bombing halt

In a confidential memorandum to Defense Secretary Robert McNamara, Assistant Secretary of Defense John McNaughton outlines the terms that should precede any permanent bombing halt. He said that North Vietnam must not only cease infiltration efforts, but also take steps to withdraw troops currently operating in South Vietnam. In addition, the Viet Cong should agree to terminate terror and sabotage activities and allow Saigon to exercise "governmental functions over substantially all of South Vietnam." McNaughton did not believe that these conditions would soon be obtained, however, as they amounted to "capitulation by a communist force that is far from beaten."

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