751G.13/10–3054: Telegram

The Ambassador in France (Dillon) to the Department of State

top secret

1839. Repeated information Saigon 245. Reference Deptel 1565.1 I delivered letter in reftel to Mendes this morning. He said he appreciated the statements expressed in second paragraph and that his main concern was that U.S. and French work so closely together on a day-to-day basis that there could be no opportunity for them to be played off one against the other in Vietnam. In this connection he said he thought it would have been better if, in view of the time that had elapsed since the Washington talks, U.S. had conferred with French prior to delivery of letter to Diem, both regarding content of letter and date and method of delivery. Mendes then said that the information which he had received so far from Saigon indicated no improvement in the situation but rather a continuation of the steady deterioration which had characterized South Vietnam for some time.

He then asked me to take up Secretary’s letter with LaChambre, which I intend to do later today.2

  1. Dated Oct. 29. p. 2193.
  2. See telegram 1835 from Paris, Oct. 30, supra.