85. Memorandum From the President’s Special Assistant for National Security Affairs (Bundy) to Secretary of State Rusk and Secretary of Defense McNamara 1

The President would like to have it understood publicly that there has been, and will be, no delegation of responsibility to the field for the use of any war gases. To this end, he has recently informed a number of private citizens that this is his policy.2

I would suggest that you refer to this policy in one of your public statements during the next month, making clear that the policy is one of long standing in the United States Government.

  1. Source: Washington National Records Center, OSD Files: FRC 330 70 A 1266, 385 Methods and Manner of Conducting War 1965. No classification marking. The date is handwritten, and “Sec Def has seen 17 May 1965” is stamped on the memorandum. An April 27 note in an unidentified hand on another copy indicates that the original was handcarried from the White House on or about April 22 and given to Secretary McNamara and that this copy was given to Vance. (Ibid.)
  2. Not further identified.