793.5/9–554: Telegram

No. 278
The Secretary of State to the Department of State

top secret

Dulte 5. Eyes only Acting Secretary from Secretary. Have received Taipei’s 153.1 It seems likely Communists relate Quemoy to Manila Conference as they related Dien Bien Phu to Geneva Conference. I remain of conviction expressed my Dulte 12 that we should help Nationalists to hold Quemoy “if it is judged defensible with our aid.” We do not want to duplicate the French mistake of making a symbol of what cannot be held in the face of Communist willingness to accept immense casualties to gain political objective. If, however, Quemoy can be and is held, then much of the Communist prestige stemming from Dien Bien Phu will have been cancelled out.