414. Telegram From the Department of State to the Embassy in Vietnam1

1113. For the Ambassador from the Secretary. Re Deptel 1074.2 It has now been decided that you should plan arrive Washington the 26th in order to start intensive, top level meetings on Friday, the [Page 910] 27th.3 Meeting with President is tentatively scheduled for December 1st. Our thought is that you should arrive early enough on the 26th in order to have as much rest as possible. You may, however, prefer the day of rest in Hawaii, but you can make that decision later.

Forrestal will be leaving evening Wednesday, November 18th directly for Saigon. You can, on the basis of his report to you, decide on makeup of small group to accompany you. We will make following announcement at noon press briefing here tomorrow unless you see objection:

“Ambassador Taylor is scheduled to return to Washington for consultations with the President, the Secretaries of State and Defense, and other government officials, beginning Friday, November 27th. Ambassador Taylor will be here for five or six days.”

You may wish to confirm this announcement in Saigon Thursday morning your time.4

We are looking forward to seeing you.


  1. Source: Department of State, Central Files, POL 17–5 US–VIET S. Top Secret; Immediate; Nodis. Drafted by Forrestal, cleared with William Bundy and the White House, and initialed by Rusk.
  2. Telegram 1074 to Saigon, November 11, suggested that, subject to his and the President’s approval, Taylor return to Washington on November 21. (Ibid.) Since the President’s schedule did not coincide with this plan, his return was delayed.
  3. This decision was taken at a meeting of the Working Group held at 11:30 a.m. at the Department of State and attended by Rusk, McNamara, Wheeler, McCone, William Bundy, McNaughton, and Forrestal. At this same meeting, a 100-page report by the Working Group and a 20-page summary by Bundy were distributed. (Department of State, Bundy Files, Manuscript, ch. 18, p. 10) Regarding the report, see Document 403.
  4. On November 18, Taylor cabled that he had no objection to the press release (Telegram 1537 from Saigon; Department of State, Central Files, POL 17–5 US–VIET S)