176. Letter From the Ambassador in Vietnam (Lodge) to the Secretary of State1

Dear Dean: This is for you, the President, Bob McNamara, and whoever else you think needs to know. It is definitely not a subject which should get into the cable traffic.

General Khanh told me on May 25 that when Diem was shot he had in his hand a brief case containing one million dollars U.S. currency “in the largest denominations”. He said that General Minh took possession of the brief case and has never yet surrendered it. He added that General Minh at the same time had taken possession of forty kilograms of gold bars.

I advised General Khanh not to make this public lest it shake public confidence here in all generals. He hopes that General Minh will make his exit quietly.

As ever yours,

Cabot L.
  1. Source: Department of State, Rusk Files: Lot 72 D 192. Correspondence—L. Top Secret.