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329. Memorandum From the President's Assistant for National Security Affairs (Kissinger) to President Nixon 1

SUBJECT

  • Positive Steps to Aid Cambodia

As you requested, there follows a report on the positive steps since June 15 which have been taken by the various U.S. Government agencies to provide assistance to Cambodia.2

Supply

  • —Arrangements have been made to provide radio transmitters to the Cambodians to broadcast into areas of Cambodia which Radio Cambodia presently cannot reach. An EC–121 will be used temporarily for this purpose.
  • —The Indonesians have offered to provide 15,000 rifles. U.S. technicians arrive in Indonesia June 18 to study conversion of the Bandung ammunition plant to handle AK–47 ammunition.
  • —The Japanese have offered $2 million in humanitarian aid; we will attempt to stimulate more.
  • —The GRC has reportedly offered to furnish light and medium weapons to equip two divisions. We are considering this.
  • —Efforts are being made to stimulate aid from Australia (communications equipment) and New Zealand.
  • —970 individual and 30 crew-served captured weapons have been turned over by ARVN to Cambodian forces along with 37,000 rounds of ammunition.
  • —1950 individual and 250 crew-served captured weapons under U.S. control are ready for delivery when the ability of the FANK to use [Page 1072]them has been determined. CINCPAC and MACV have been directed to work closely with our Defense Attaché in Phnom Penh to provide as much captured material as can be effectively used. MACV is reviewing all captured material for this purpose.
  • —40 U.S. trucks are ready in Vietnam for delivery to the Cambodians; Cambodian drivers and mechanics are being moved to Saigon on June 18.

Military Assistance

  • —A Presidential Determination is being forwarded to you to add another $1 million to the present Cambodian FY 70 MAP of $7.9 million; $25 million in military assistance and $10 million in defense support is being arranged for FY 71. A detailed program is being developed by CINCPAC and MACV. The support funds will in part be used to support 2500 Khmer–Krom troops (of whom 2,000 are now deployed) and 4,000 Thai–Khmer troops (of whom 1,000 have now been recruited). Two additional Khmer–Krom battalions in training in South Vietnam will be deployed to Phnom Penh on July 14.
  • —Four 1000-man packs have been positioned for the Thai–Khmer troops and will be sent in when their training begins on July 1.
  • —The Thai have been informed of our willingness to train and equip two Thai regiments for deployment to Western Cambodia, and to consider indirect means for supporting pay and allowance bonuses which we cannot legally provide directly.
  • Five Cambodian T–28 aircraft are being repaired in Thailand, and five Thai T–28's have been loaned to Cambodia. Ten additional T–28's are being airlifted from the U.S. to Thailand for further loan or transfer to Cambodia.
  • MACV is drawing up a plan for the full use of U.S. air assets and of GVN ground and air assets in Cambodia to ease NVA/VC military pressure on the Cambodian forces.
  • —Proposals for paramilitary operations against NVA/VC supply lines in South Laos and Northeast Cambodia are being drawn up.
  • —A South Vietnamese Air Force advanced base is being established in Phnom Penh with aircraft, helicopters, supplies, and security. Planning for this base has been expedited.

Intelligence

  • CIA has stepped up its intelligence collection [less than 1 line of source text not declassified] activities in Cambodia, Thailand, Vietnam, and Laos; [1½ lines of source text not declassified].
  • —Five military intelligence officers are being added to [less than 1 line of source text not declassified] Phnom Penh for assessment and validation of intelligence.
  • Five 5-man road watch teams have been sent from South Laos to Northeastern Cambodia, and five more are being readied; native Cambodians will accompany these teams.
  • —On June 16 MACV was directed to make maximum use of indigenous ground reconnaissance teams for intelligence, target identification for air attacks, and forward air control of air strikes.
  • MACV was directed today to encourage the South Vietnamese to establish a Joint Information Center in Phnom Penh to coordinate intelligence collection, evaluation, and dissemination. MACV and the Defense Attaché in Phnom Penh will assist and participate.
  • MACV has been requested to expedite stationing at Phnom Penh of two or three South Vietnamese light observation aircraft.
  • —U.S. tactical air reconnaissance over Cambodia has been increased to include COMINT, ARDF, and photography.
  • MACV is introducing sensors in Northeast Cambodia to assist in detecting enemy movement and locating targets.

Diplomatic

  • —We are following the activities of the post-Djakarta Conference three-nation team (Malaysia, Indonesia, and Japan) to see where we might be helpful. This team will press for an international conference on Cambodia, international actions by the 1964 Geneva powers, and increased support for the international position of the Cambodian Government.
  • —The French are going ahead with $5 million loan to Cambodia and are maintaining teachers, doctors and their military mission in Phnom Penh.
  • —We are approaching Australia, New Zealand and Japan renewing our pressures for assistance to Cambodia.
  1. Source: National Archives, Nixon Presidential Materials, NSC Files, Box 509, Country Files, Far East, Cambodia, Vol. VII, 5 June 1970–19 June 1970. Top Secret; Sensitive. A stamped notation reads: “The President has seen.” Holdridge and Kennedy sent this memorandum to Kissinger on June 17 with the recommendation that he sign and send it to the President.
  2. At 9:12 a.m., June 17, the President telephoned Kissinger to complain about the lack of action since he had met with the WSAG on June 15 (Document 326). The President insisted that Kissinger obtain an up-to-date report on aid to Cambodia. (National Archives, Nixon Presidential Materials, NSC Institutional Files (H-Files), Box H–074, WSAG Meeting, Cambodia, 5/19/70)