25. Telegram From the Department of State to Secretary of State Rusk at Saigon1

Tosec 70. For Secretary from Acting Secretary and Secretary McNamara. We would appreciate your views soonest on desirability unadvertised movement of US forces, such as naval units toward North Viet-Nam, in order to deter and discourage North Viet-Nam or other communist elements from military exploitation of current confused situation in Laos. Such movements would obviously have to be carried out in such manner that coup government in Vientiane does not feel it has blank check from USG and also so that there is a credible innocuous explanation.

  1. Source: Department of State, Central Files, POL 27 VIET S. Secret; Flash; Exdis. Drafted by Green, cleared in substance by McNamara and McGeorge Bundy, cleared in draft by U. Alexis Johnson and Thompson, and approved by Ball. Repeated immediate to Vientiane.