Historical Documents

Volumes

Browse by Administration

Foreign Relations of the United States, 1961–1963, Volume III, Vietnam, January–August 1963

Editors:
Edward C. Keefer
Louis J. Smith
General Editor:
John P. Glennon

United States Government Printing Office
Washington
1991

Department of State
Office of the Historian
Bureau of Public Affairs



Overview

Preparation of this volume proceeded in 1984 on the basis of a research plan developed by the editors after a preliminary review of repositories in both governmental and private agencies. From the outset the editors approached their research realizing the need to supplement the written record of U.S. policy during the Vietnam war with interviews of officials who participated in the policy process. They also reviewed those oral history interviews of participants already in existence and available in various locations. Oral history citations are provided in the footnotes to the text.

On the basis of their preliminary research and review of already published documentation, including the 1971 "Pentagon Papers,'' the editors developed the following six areas of focus for further research and the selection of documents for inclusion in this volume: 1) Discussion and formulation of policy in Washington; 2) Policy implementation in South Vietnam; 3) The relationship among the United States Government, the Diem government, and dissident elements in South Vietnam; 4) The implications of the Buddhist crisis which developed in May; 5) U.S. intelligence assessments of the situation in Vietnam and the viability of the Diem government and the prospects of a potential coup; and 6) U.S. military involvement in Vietnam. The editors did take careful account of the documentation in the "Pentagon Papers,'' but have, in general, sought to avoid reprinting documents already published there.

Ways to Explore