322. Message From the President’s Assistant for National Security Affairs (Kissinger) to the Deputy Assistant Secretary of State for East Asian and Pacific Affairs (Sullivan) in Paris1

Thank you for your messages.2 We have just received a letter from Thieu in which he in effect accepts the agreement, and, so far as we can tell, the protocols except for the issue of police forces.3 We are sending you the text separately.
What is clearly needed in Article 6 is some flexibility on the type of weapons the police can carry. There is no problem about excluding such items as cannons and tanks, but there should be the possibility of carrying carbines and rifles. Given the forseeable dangers of uprisings I don’t see how one can ask the police to engage in riot control solely armed with pistols. The two sentences you suggested will help, but the remaining sentence on pistols must be weakened. In negotiating this you can say that we are prepared to make clear the exclusion of heavy weapons such as tanks and cannons.
As for the understanding on Article 8c, we cannot under any circumstances accept the Vietnamese word “don doc”. We are prepared to substitute the English word “encourage” for “promote” assuming the Vietnamese translation is harmless. As for the last sentence, we can accept the phrase “according to the terms of the agreement” or “in accordance with the terms of the agreement”.
With respect to entry points you make a rather cogent case. Is the [Page 1133] GVN fully aware of the solution you have worked out? If they are and they have not protested, I am prepared to let matters rest.
Reference your paragraphs 11 and 12 on the four party commission, the US will send an officer to Paris, and we will ask General Woodward to send Major Miles tomorrow. The increase in the DRV advance party for Saigon is acceptable.
Haig informs us that another objection that Thieu has to the protocols is the reference to “zones of control”. We assume he is referring to the Vietnamese text of the ceasefire protocol. Whatever the precise issue, just make sure that Vietnamese translation in the protocols conforms to that of Article 3 of the agreement. Whatever the DRV tactic, I believe they have no option but to accept our position of consistency with the agreement.
Please ask Aldrich to have his memoranda on the protocols, which I will require for Congressional briefings, ready for me when I arrive.4 Also as I told you, the chances are good that the Secretary will want Aldrich to come back with me.
If you have the time, I would appreciate your putting in memorandum form your ideas concerning the Hanoi leg so that I may hand it over.
I agree to the understanding you have worked out concerning “unanimous agreement”.
We accept the DRV changes in the ICCS note and the January 23 announcement.

Warm regards.

  1. Source: National Archives, Nixon Presidential Materials, NSC Files, Box 860, For the President’s Files (Winston Lord)—China Trip/Vietnam, Sensitive Camp David, Vol. XXIV. Top Secret; Flash; Sensitive; Exclusively Eyes Only. Sent via Scowcroft and Guay.
  2. See specifically Documents 316 and 317.
  3. Document 320.
  4. See Document 324.