339. Editorial Note

On December 2, 1963, General Harkins made the following announcement:

“On December 3 the first increment of approximately 300 U.S. military personnel will be withdrawn from the Republic of Vietnam. They will be followed during the next two or three weeks by another 700, making a total reduction in force of 1000 before the end of 1963.

“The fact that this reduction can be made at this time reflects much credit on both the American Advisory and Support personnel and their Vietnamese counterparts who have assimilated knowledge and techniques in a most commendable manner. The training of Vietnamese personnel has progressed to the point where the withdrawal of some US forces is possible.”

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The full text of the statement is in Department of the Army telegram DA 946750 to Saigon, November 30; Johnson Library, National Security Files, Vietnam Country File. Also published in Declassified Documents, 1976, 156 D.