204. Letter From the Assistant Secretary of State for Far Eastern Affairs (Robertson) to the Assistant Secretary of Defense for International Security Affairs (Sprague)0
Dear Mannie: The timing of the introduction of the Honest John and 280 mm gun battalions into Korea with the concurrent introduction of related materials authorized in DEF 9338501 and DEF 933889,2 is, as you know, of great interest to us. Although we have mutually agreed to move the battalions into Korea without publicity, we can expect the Koreans to give this action considerable play in official statements and in the press upon arrival of these weapons in Korea or soon thereafter.
In view of this anticipated reaction in Korea and the effect the movement of dual-capable weapons into Korea can be expected to have in Japan and other countries in the Far East it is important that the Department of State be fully informed on the plans regarding the timing of these introductions. It would be appreciated, therefore, if you would keep me informed on the exact timing of the introduction of these items.3
- Source: Washington National Records Center, RG 330, OASD/ISA Files: FRC 62 A 1698,091.3 Korea. Top Secret.↩
- Dated December 11, 1957; for text, see Foreign Relations, 1955–1957, vol. XXIII, Part 2, pp. 525–527.↩
- DEF 933889 to CINCUNC, December 11, 1957, a joint State–Defense message from ISA signed by Sprague, confirmed that the introduction of Honest John and 280 mm gun battalions into Korea was not contingent upon a reduction of forces by the Republic of Korea, [text not declassified] (U.S. Army Military History Institute, Department of the Army Communication Center Files)↩
- On January 16, Deputy Assistant Secretary of Defense John N. Irwin II responded in a letter to Robertson indicating that the 100th (Honest John) and the 663d (280 mm gun) field artillery battalions were being deployed to Korea by January 31. (Washington National Records Center, RG 330, OASD/ISA Files: FRC 62 A 1698,091.3 Korea) See Supplement.↩