129. Memorandum From Secretary of Defense Clifford to President Johnson 1


  • SEA Deployments, the Strategic Reserve, and Related Actions (U)

What should be the composition of the forces totaling 30,000 men to be sent to General Westmoreland?

We have agreed on a package including 24,200 Army, 4,025 Air Force, and 1,775 Navy personnel. We have also agreed we should bring back the 27th Regimental Landing Team and support units, totaling 7,363 Marines in July, and replace them with Army. This would bring the approved South Vietnam deployment to 565,500 U.S. military personnel, including the 10,500 deployed in February. These deployments can be sustained with current personnel policies, without new legislation. For details see Tab A.2


What callup of reserves do we recommend to support that deployment?

We recommend a callup of 36,621 Reserve and National Guard personnel, including 31,600 Army, 3,497 Air Force, and 1,524 Navy. This is within the scope of existing law. For details see Tab B.3

What additional callup of reserves do we recommend to reconstitute the strategic reserve?

We recommend a follow-on callup of 48,393 Reserve and National Guard personnel: 45,300 Army to bring our active strategic reserve to 7 divisions (5–1/3 Army, 1–2/3 Marines); and 3,093 Air Force. For details see Tab C.4

Alternative Executive Orders to implement this are at Tab D.5

Clark M. Clifford
  1. Source: Johnson Library, National Security File, NSC History of the March 31st Speech, Vol. 7, Meeting Notes. Top Secret.
  2. Tabs A–C are attached but not printed. Tab A listed Army, Air Force, and Navy units by strength and deployment date.
  3. Tab B listed the reserve military units that would be requested in an immediate recall to active duty.
  4. Tab C listed the Army and Air Force units that could be recalled to build up the strategic reserve.
  5. Not printed.