93. Memorandum From Rob Roy Ratliff of the National Security Council Staff to the President’s Assistant for National Security Affairs (Kissinger)1

SUBJECT

  • Covert Psychological Warfare Operations Against North Vietnam

At Tab A is a status report on CIA’s on-going psychological warfare operations against North Vietnam.2 The efforts to encourage observance of the ceasefire agreement and to urge North Vietnam to abandon military adventurism in favor of reconstruction now employ one gray and one black radio. A new black radio is proposed. Other radio efforts have been dropped as they became outmoded, and the mailing of letters to DRV officials abroad was terminated due to lack of response.

“Mother Vietnam,” a gray radio which began over a year ago, has been especially effective. It features a female announcer who exudes warmth and compassion in her appeals for unity while denouncing the senselessness of continued conflict. It has stimulated ralliers and deserters; Radio Hanoi monitors it and sends complete transcripts to the Central Committee of the Lao Dong Party; and the North Vietnamese people have been warned against listening to the CIA-affiliated radios, especially “Mother Vietnam.”

The new black radio, “The Voice of Nam Bo Liberation,” (Tab B) will be directed against the National Liberation Front and attempt to produce tensions between Southerners among the Viet Cong and North Vietnamese.3 It will repeat a one-hour program eight times per day.

All of the radio facilities are managed by the Republic of Vietnam with CIA covert assistance. An estimated $379,000 was spent last Fiscal Year and $390,700 is planned for the current year.

State, Defense, JCS and CIA 40 Committee principals concur; however, Under Secretary Porter has unspecified “reservations” and [Page 384]recommends that these activities be reviewed quarterly. CIA is prepared to respond to any State request for information, but it does not appear necessary to have the full Committee review these covert psychological warfare operations against North Vietnam quarterly. We will continue to receive periodic progress reports.

Recommendation 4

That you approve the continuation of CIA’s covert psychological warfare operations against North Vietnam including a new black radio.

  1. Source: National Security Council, NSC Intelligence Files, Subject Files, Box I–10, Vietnam, January 1973–October 1973. Secret; Eyes Only; Outside System. Sent for action. Stearman and Kennedy concurred.
  2. Memorandum for the 40 Committee, June 14, providing a report on covert psychological warfare operations against North Vietnam and the National Liberation Front, June 18, attached but not printed.
  3. Memorandum for the 40 Committee, June 21, proposing a new black radio for psychological operations against the National Liberation Front, June 21, attached but not printed.
  4. Kissinger initialed his approval, July 18.