14. Memorandum for the Record1


  • Minutes of the Meeting of the 40 Committee, 7 August 1970


  • Mr. Kissinger, Mr. Mitchell, Mr. Packard, Mr. Johnson, Admiral Moorer, and General Cushman
  • Mr. William Broe was present for Item 1.
  • Mr. Fred Valtin was present for Item 2.
  • Mr. William Wells was present for Items 4, 5 and 6.
  • Mr. Archibald Roosevelt was present for Items 7 and 8.
  • Ambassador David D. Newsom was present for Item 8.
  • Messrs. Thomas Karamessines and Wymberley Coerr were present for all items.

[Omitted here is material unrelated to Vietnam.]

[Page 28]

4. South Vietnam—Proposed Support of the Farmers-Workers Party

The proposed support of the Farmers-Workers Party in South Vietnam was approved.2 Mr. Johnson noted that Tran Quoc Buu, President of the Vietnamese Confederation of Labor, around whom the project was conceived, was one of the more earnest and competent figures in that country.

5. South Vietnam—Periodic Report on the National Social Democratic Front

The periodic report on the National Social Democratic Front was rather gloomily described by Mr. Wells, who indicated that Thieu had never had his heart in nor fully supported the concept; he would utilize any success it achieved for his own ends but would do nothing to strengthen the Front.3 Mr. Mitchell asked what Thieu was doing with the money, and Mr. Wells indicated that, as far as was known, Thieu himself had retained the unexpended sum of approximately [dollar amount not declassified]. It was noted that Ambassador Bunker had not asked recently for further support.

6. North Vietnam—Covert Operations

On Mr. Packard’s memorandum on covert operations in North Vietnam dated 25 June 1970,4 an inventory of capabilities, the Chairman observed that he could hardly present this Sears Roebuck-type catalogue of possibilities to higher authority. He asked DOD to come up with some operational plans—two or three—on those capabilities which were the most palatable.

[Omitted here is material unrelated to Vietnam.]

Peter Jessup
  1. Source: Department of State, INR/IL Historical Files, 40 Committee Meetings. Secret; Eyes Only. Drafted by Jessup on August 10.
  2. Reference is to an attached memorandum, not printed, prepared for the 40 Committee on July 23. The proposal called for a limited, one-time payment [dollar amount not declassified], which had been approved by Ambassador Bunker and the Department of State.
  3. Reference is to an attached periodic report, not printed, prepared for the 40 Committee on June 15 that covered the period January 1 to March 31, 1970. It noted that Thieu was only giving limited attention to the NSDF, but was “inclined to support ten NSDF candidates in the Senate elections” even though the member parties wanted him to support more. According to the report, the relationship between Thieu and the parties was “tenuous and could be upset by untoward future events.”
  4. Attached but not printed is a covering memorandum from Packard to Kissinger, June 25, that summarized a Department of Defense and JCS report on some possible uses for covert assets. Packard wrote that the report “should not be construed as representing my position or that of the Joint Chiefs of Staff on either the types of operations to be conducted or the broad issue of advisability of resuming covert operations against North Vietnam.”