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July 16–August 31: The Lull in Fighting, the U.S.-South Vietnamese Conference at Honolulu, and the Third Enemy Offensive


299. Telegram From the Embassy in Franceto the Department of State

Source: National Archives and Records Administration, RG 59, A/IM Files: Lot 93 D 82, HARVAN-(Incoming)-July 1968. Secret; Immediate; Nodis; Harvan; Plus. Received at 12:13 a.m.


300. Memorandum of Conversation

Source: Library of Congress, Manuscript Division, Harriman Papers, Special Files, Public Service, Kennedy-Johnson, Trips and Missions, Paris Peace Talks, Calendar, May 9–July 1968. Secret. The meeting was held at the Soviet Embassy. The conversation was also reported in telegram 18036/Delto 462 from Paris, July 16. (National Archives and Records Administration, RG 59, A/IM Files: Lot 93 D 82, HARVAN-(Incoming)-July 1968)


301. Memorandum for the Record

Source: Library of Congress, Manuscript Division, Nitze Papers, Vietnam War, Courses of Action—Post Paris Peace Talks 1968. Top Secret; Nodis; HARVAN/Plus. In an attached note transmitting a copy of the memorandum to Clifford and Wheeler, Nitze wrote: “Cy Vance and I met for one hour and thirty minutes with J.P. McConnell, Tom Moorer, Westy, and Lew Walt in Executive session yesterday afternoon. CY had previously obtained approval from highest authority to discuss with the Chiefs all aspects of his assignment in Paris. Herewith follows a Memorandum for the Record which I prepared following our meeting. J.P. has reviewed it and it has his full concurrence.” The memorandum was transmitted to Clifford and Wheeler in telegram WDC 10622 to Honolulu, July 18.


302. Memorandum From Secretary of Defense Clifford to President Johnson

Source: Washington National Records Center, Department of Defense, OSD Files: FRC 330 73 A 1250, VIET 337 1968. Top Secret. A notation on the memorandum reads: “Dep Sec. has seen.” For his personal assessment of the trip, see Clifford, Counsel to the President, pp. 550–553.


304. Notes of Meeting

Source: Johnson Library, George Christian Papers, Classified-George Christian (1 of 2). No classification marking. These notes were transmitted to Harriman and Vance in telegram 206919/Todel 725 to Paris, July 22. (National Archives and Records Administration, RG 59, Central Files 1967–69, POL 27 VIET S)


305. Telegram From the Embassy in Franceto the Department of State

Source: Johnson Library, National Security File, Country File, Vietnam, HARVAN, Paris Todel—Paris DeltoVIII, 7/11–22/68. Secret; Nodis; Harvan; Plus. Received at 9:23 a.m. The following notation by Rostow appears on the telegram: “For the President From Walt Rostow—Herewith Zorin chats indecisively on last Vance-Lau talk. He suggests a Hanoi interest in cutting down a straight DMZ deal, dropping other items, plus a Hanoi desire to avoid anything explicit.” Shriver's assessment of the Harriman-Zorin conversation is in telegram 18279 from Paris, July 20. (National Archives and Records Administration, RG 59, A/IM Files: Lot 93 D 82, HARVAN-(Incoming)-July 1968)


307. Telegram From the Department of State to the Embassy in France

Source: National Archives and Records Administration, RG 59, A/IM Files: Lot 93 D 82, HARVAN-(Incoming)-July 1968. Secret; Priority; Nodis; HARVAN; Plus. Drafted and approved by Rusk and cleared by Alan Parker of S/S.


308. Notes of Meeting

Source: Johnson Library, Tom Johnson's Notes of Meetings. Top Secret. The meeting was held in the White House. Helms, Wheeler, Rostow, and Taylor left the meeting at 3 p.m., and Christian and Tom Johnson left at 3:15 p.m. Rusk and Clifford remained until 3:54 p.m. (Ibid., President's Daily Diary)


309. Information Memorandum From the President's Special Assistant (Rostow) to President Johnson

Source: Johnson Library, National Security File, Country File, Vietnam, Harvan Misc. & Memos, Vol. V(a) 7/68. Secret. The notation “ps” on the memorandum indicates that the President saw it.


310. Notes of Meeting

Source: Johnson Library, Transcripts of Meetings in the Cabinet Room. No classification marking. Tom Johnson joined the meeting at 6:33 p.m., and Rostow and Rusk at 6:40 p.m. (Ibid., President's Daily Diary) A full transcript of the meeting is ibid., Transcripts of Meetings in the Cabinet Room. Tom Johnson's handwritten notes of the meeting are ibid., Tom Johnson's Notes of Meetings. Beginning at 11:15 a.m., Rusk met with Wallace to brief him, first at the State Department then at 12:20 p.m. at the White House. (Ibid., Dean Rusk Appointment Books, 1967–1969) The President joined Wallace's briefing from 12:45 to 1:05 p.m. (Ibid., President's Daily Diary)


311. Memorandum From Director of Central Intelligence Helms to Secretary of State Rusk

Source: Central Intelligence Agency, DCI (Helms) Files, Job 80–B01285A, DCI (Helms) Chrono, Jan-Jul. 1968, 01 Jan-31 Jul 1968. Top Secret. A copy was sent to Clifford.


312. Telegram From the Embassy in France to the Department of State

Source: National Archives and Records Administration, RG 59, A/IM Files: Lot 93 D 82, HARVAN-(Incoming)-July 1968. Secret; Immediate; Nodis; Harvan; Plus. Received at 4:09 p.m. In a note transmitting a copy of the telegram to the President, July 29, 6:40 p.m., Bromley Smith wrote: “Ambassadors Harriman and Vance in the attached cable argue for a cessation of the bombing now based on certain assumptions. Secretary Rusk may raise this cable with you when he calls at 6:45 p.m. You may wish to consider the substance of the cable at tomorrow's luncheon meeting.” (Johnson Library, National Security File, Country File, Vietnam, Harvan Paris Todel—Paris Delto, IX—7/23–31/68) The notation “ps” on the covering note indicates that the President saw the telegram.


313. Telegram From the Department of State to the Embassy in France

Source: National Archives and Records Administration, RG 59, A/IM Files: Lot 93 D 82, HARVAN-(Incoming)-July 1968. Secret; Immediate; Nodis; Harvan; Plus. Drafted and approved by Rusk and cleared by William Shepard of S/S-S. A notation on a copy of the telegram sent to the White House reads: “Sent 9:34 p.m. July 29.” (Johnson Library, National Security File, Country File, Vietnam, Harvan Misc. & Memos, Vol. V(a), 7/68)


314. Telephone Conversation Between President Johnson and Secretary of State Rusk

Source: Johnson Library, Recordings and Transcripts, Recording of Telephone Conversation Between Johnson and McNamara, July 30, 1968, 9:57 a.m., Tape F6807.02, PNO 14. No classification marking. This transcript was prepared specifically for this volume in the Office of the Historian.


315. Telephone Conversation Between President Johnson and Secretary of State Rusk

Source: Johnson Library, Recordings and Transcripts, Recording of Telephone Conversation Between Johnson and McNamara, July 30, 1968, 11:54 a.m., Tape F6807.02, PNO 15. No classification marking. This transcript was prepared specifically for this volume in the Office of the Historian.


316. Notes of Meeting

Source: Johnson Library, Tom Johnson's Notes of Meetings. Top Secret. The meeting was held in the Mansion of the White House. Rusk, Clifford, Wheeler, and Smith left at 2:05 p.m. and Taylor and Helms at 2:20 p.m. Christian and Tom Johnson remained until 3:05 p.m. (Ibid., President's Daily Diary)


317. Information Memorandum From the Executive Secretary of the National Security Council (Smith) to President Johnson

Source: Johnson Library, National Security File, Country File, Vietnam, Harvan Misc. & Memos, Vol. V(a), 7/68. Secret. The notation “ps” on the memorandum indicates that the President saw it.


319. Information Memorandum From the Executive Secretary of the National Security Council (Smith) to President Johnson

Source: Johnson Library, National Security File, Country File, Vietnam, Harvan Misc. & Memos, Vol. VI, 8/68–9/68. Top Secret. The notation “ps” on the memorandum indicates that the President saw it and the attachments.


320. Memorandum From the Assistant Secretary of Defense for International Security Affairs (Warnke) to the Deputy Secretary of Defense (Nitze)

Source: Library of Congress, Manuscript Division, Nitze Papers, Vietnam War, Courses of Action—Post Paris Talks 1968. Top Secret; Sensitive; Eyes Only. The time of the meeting and a list of participants have not been found.


321. Memorandum From the President's Special Consultant (Taylor) to President Johnson

Source: National Defense University, Maxwell Taylor Papers, Vietnam Policy 1968. Top Secret. The attached note transmitting a copy of the memorandum to Smith reads: “Brom: Please pass my report electronically to the President at the Ranch so he may have it for his reading tomorrow. M.D.T.” Taylor drafted this report in his capacity as Chairman of the President's Foreign Intelligence Advisory Board. In his note transmitting a copy of the memorandum to the President, August 2, 8:30 p.m., Smith wrote: “Here is General Taylor's evaluation of the lull in enemy activities in South Vietnam. General Taylor plans to send you a separate paper covering recommended actions based on the conclusions he has reached. If any public use is to be made of this paper, I recommend that you do not use one sentence in the report until we have learned whether the 18,000 figure included in it is agreed within the Intelligence Community.” (Johnson Library, National Security File, Country File, Vietnam, 8 I, 1/67–12/68, Taylor Memos—General) The notation “ps” on this covering note indicates that the President saw Taylor's memorandum; a separate notation indicates that the memorandum was received at the Ranch at 11 a.m. on August 3. The President visited his Texas ranch August 2–19. (Ibid., President's Daily Diary)


322. Telegram From the Embassy in France to the Department of State

Source: National Archives and Records Administration, RG 59, A/IM Files: Lot 93 D 82, HARVAN-(Incoming)-August 1968. Secret; Immediate; Nodis; HARVAN; Plus. Received at 9:57 a.m.


323. Telegram From the Executive Secretary of the National Security Council (Smith) to President Johnson in Texas

Source: Johnson Library, National Security File, Country File, Vietnam, Harvan Misc. & Memos, Vol. VI, 8/68–9/68. Secret; Harvan; Plus. Received at the LBJ Ranch at 8:25 a.m. The notation “ps” on the telegram indicates that the President saw it.


324. Notes of Meeting

Source: Johnson Library, George Elsey Papers, Van De Mark Transcripts (1 of 2). No classification marking.


325. Memorandum Prepared in the Central Intelligence Agency

Source: Central Intelligence Agency, Executive Registry Subject Files, Job 80–R01580R, 271—Vietnam Task Force. Secret. This unsigned memorandum was derived from telegram CAS 6132 from Saigon, August 6. In an August 8 covering note transmitting a copy of the memorandum to Smith, Helms wrote: “I believe the President will be interested to read this report. Would you please pouch it to him at the Ranch? For your information, and that of Walt's, George Carver returns to Washington late today and will be briefing the President's Foreign Intelligence Advisory Board tomorrow.” No record of that meeting has been found. According to attached covering notes, the memorandum was also sent to Rusk, Katzenbach, Bundy, Clifford, Nitze, and Wheeler. Carver was in Vietnam for a 2-week observation mission July 20–August 8.


326. Notes of Meeting

Source: Johnson Library, George Elsey Papers, Van De Mark Transcripts (1 of 2). No classification marking. Prepared by Elsey.


327. Notes of Meeting

Source: Johnson Library, Tom Johnson's Notes of Meetings. No classification marking. The meeting lasted until 1:15 p.m. Nixon and his party arrived at the Ranch at 11:59 a.m. A lunch followed this briefing after which Nixon departed. (Ibid., President's Daily Diary) Vance returned to Paris on August 12. The President had offered Nixon the opportunity for the meeting during a telephone conversation on August 8. (Ibid., Recordings and Transcripts, Recording of Telephone Conversation Between Johnson and Nixon, August 8, 1968, 4:09 p.m., Tape F6807.02, PNO 21)