161. Memorandum From the Special Assistant for Vietnamese Affairs, Central Intelligence Agency (Carver), to John H. Holdridge of the National Security Council Staff1


  • Brainstorming Session Results

We have separately submitted reports on current and projected Agency activities in the field of psychological warfare against North Vietnam.2 We herewith offer for your consideration and use the following series of essentially brainstorming suggestions for psychological warfare exploitation. These are submitted in no particular logical order and were developed with no special thought or reference as to which component of the government should execute them:

If feasible, knock out Radio Hanoi and usurp its frequency.
Build audience for offshore shipboard radio by announcing in advance actual targets for naval bombardment.
Spread the rumor that General Giap is dead and that a double is now acting in his place.
Go on the air with simulated NVA tactical radio broadcasts in which great losses are stressed; utilize frequencies which will enable general populace to listen in.
Spread the rumor that Le Duan is acting strangely these days: accordingly, he is never alone/he is always alone.
Use radio messages and erratic flight pattern to simulate dropping of men behind enemy lines; drop parachutes in area of simulated team drop.
Float rubber boats ashore at strategic positions.
Run harassment flights toward Hanoi to keep alert mechanism going 24 hours a day; perhaps use drones for this purpose.
Use cloud projection device to bring certain key messages forcefully to attention of the masses.
Drop leaflets entitled “How to Find Out Where Your Soldier Son Is Today.”
Disseminate outdated or otherwise troublesome quotations from Ho Chi Minh (in his own voice, if possible).
Splice together an invented speech by Le Duan—one which would cause him ridicule.
Drop gift packages including transistor radios.
Put our own voice messages on tail-end of encrypted NVA tactical messages.
Announce new austerity measures on black radios.
Drop leaflets simulating actual currency.
Surface Ho’s “last letter” warning against insularism and adventurism.
Focus on paucity of men left of marriageable age.
Write new lyrics to North Vietnamese political songs to ridicule the leadership.
Cannibalize old speech tapes of Ho Chi Minh and provide daily advice from the grave to the populace.
Airdrop weekly Vietnamese newspapers.

George A. Carver, Jr. 3
  1. Source: Central Intelligence Agency, Files of the Deputy Director for Intelligence, Job 80–B01720R, Box 7, GAC [George A. Carver] Chronology, May–June 1972. Secret; Sensitive. Copies were sent to Sullivan, Lieutenant General Knowles, Rear Admiral Flanagan, Brigadier General Manor, and Mr. Crane.
  2. Carver sent at least two reports on May 18 to Richard Kennedy. The first discussed what could be done with an existing psychological warfare activity—a “Disinformation Program to Convince Hanoi Leadership that the U.S. Government is in Clandestine Communication with Dissidents Within North Vietnamese Officialdom.” The second proposed establishing a radio station to broadcast programs similar to those Axis Sally and Tokyo Rose broadcast in World War II. About this proposal Carver wrote: “The basic pitch will be very simple: the war is madness and it continues only because of the blind ambition and insane policies of the top Party leadership in Hanoi.” (Central Intelligence Agency, Files of the Deputy Director for Intelligence, Job 80–B01720R, Box 7, GAC [George A. Carver] Chronology, May–June 1972)
  3. Carver initialed “G.A.C. 2” above his typed signature.