334. Memorandum From the Deputy Assistant Secretary of Defense for International Security Affairs (Lang) to the Deputy Secretary of Defense (Vance)1


  • Congo Developments—Wednesday

1. Operation Dragon Rouge. The last of 14 C–130s (including 2 spares) landed at Ascension about 4:30 Wednesday2 afternoon (our time). The force commander reports he is ready to proceed when instructed.

2. “GO” Procedures. Spaak has delegated discretion to the Belgian Ambassador at Leopoldville to trigger the move of Belgian forces from Ascension. On the US side, the decision will be made by the President. Detailed procedures on channels of communications to be used in the decision-making process have been sent to Brussels and Leopoldville. (For reliability and speed, only US channels will be used.)

3. Air Operations. New guidelines have been set which will permit the use of air operations within 25 miles of Stanleyville in support of Van der Walle’s drive. Air operations will be geared to Van der Walle’s advances and will be permitted over the city itself when he begins his final assault. Separate guidelines have also been set for the use of air operations in support of Operation Dragon Rouge. The Joint Staff is satisfied that both sets of guidelines meet operational requirements.

  1. Source: Washington National Records Center, RG 330, OASD/ISA Files: FRC 69 A 7425, Congo 381 (12 Aug. 64). Top Secret. A stamped notation on the memorandum reads: “Mr. Vance has seen.” A copy was sent to McNaughton.
  2. November 18.