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249. National Security Council Decision Memorandum 561

TO

  • The Secretary of State
  • The Secretary of Defense
  • The Attorney General
  • The Director of Central Intelligence

SUBJECT

  • Actions in Support of the Cambodian Government

Based on the NSC meeting of April 22,2 I direct that the following steps be taken:

  • —Immediate step-up of U.S. military assistance—wherever possible through third country channels.
  • —Maximum diplomatic effort to enlist assistance by other interested countries.
  • —Authorization for specified shallow cross-border attacks against North Vietnamese/VC sanctuaries in Cambodia, to be conducted by GVN forces in division size with cross-border U.S. artillery support. U.S. tactical air support should be planned but made available only on the basis of demonstrated necessity.
  • —Air movement of ethnic Cambodian forces now in CIDG units in South Vietnam with their equipment to Phnom Penh as soon as possible. Arrangements should be made for their subsequent logistical support through South Vietnam.
  • —Congressional liaison, when appropriate, will be handled by the White House.

The Washington Special Actions Group is designated as the implementing authority for these actions.

Richard Nixon
  1. Source: National Archives, Nixon Presidential Materials, NSC Files, NSC Institutional Files (H-Files), Box H–073, WSAG Meeting, Cambodia, 4/23/70, a.m. and p.m. Top Secret; Sensitive; Principals Only. A copy was sent to Wheeler.
  2. Document 248.