8. Memorandum From the President's Assistant for National Security Affairs (Kissinger) to President Nixon 1
- NSC Meeting of January 25 on Vietnam2
At Tab A are proposed talking points3 for the NSC meeting on Saturday.
At Tab C is the paper on Vietnam Alternatives.4 (You will recall that you saw and approved it for distribution while at Key Biscayne.) The members of the NSC have had the paper since Tuesday5 and I understand that each has a number of comments.[Page 18]
Since the paper was prepared by the NSC staff prior to January 20, it was not coordinated with the agencies. It is designed to be an initial cut at broad alternative objectives and courses of action. It will have served its purpose if it stimulates a discussion of basic issues. Following the discussion on Saturday6 and next Wednesday,7 it would probably be most useful to draft a completely new inter-agency paper which focuses more sharply on the real choices in objectives, negotiating strategy and U.S. troop levels and the major points of disagreement among your advisers.
You may wish to re-read the five-page summary paper at Tab B before the meeting.
- Source: National Archives, Nixon Presidential Materials, NSC Files, Box 74, Vietnam Subject Files, Vietnam, Memos to the President for NSC, 1969. Secret. Nixon wrote the following notes on the first page of the memorandum: “1. Helms should stay. 2. Police forces. 3. V. Nam training.”↩
- See Document 10.↩
- Attached but not printed.↩
- Tab C was a 27-page undated paper consisting of two parts: I, a more detailed version of the summary provided in Tab B, and II, “Alternative Military Strategies,” that contained three options with analysis: “A. Escalation, B. Current Military Posture, C. Substantial Reduction in U.S. Presence with RVNAF Assuming Increased Responsibility.”↩
- January 21.↩
- January 25, at the NSC meeting.↩
- January 29.↩
- The tab cited here and under II below are the two parts of Tab C referred to in footnote 4 above.↩