146. Editorial Note

After meeting in Bonn with the leaders of the Federal Republic of Germany, May 9–11, Secretary of Defense McNamara and two aides traveled to Saigon for brief consultations and an assessment of the situation. General Taylor, William Sullivan, and Michael Forrestal flew from Washington and arrived in Saigon on May 11. McNamara arrived on May 12 and the group, with the exception of Forrestal, returned on May 13. According to Taylor, President Johnson was “impatient” with the lack of visible progress in the war against the Viet Cong and in implementation of plans to strengthen the South Vietnamese Government. There was also a general feeling in Washington that Khanh had rather too abruptly changed directions on the question of taking the war to North Vietnam. Therefore, McNamara, Taylor, Sullivan, and Forrestal were to take a second look at the situation. (Swords and Plowshares, pages 311–312)