Memorandum to the Secretary of Defense on the Resumption of the De Soto Patrols, 18 November 1964


Source: The Pentagon Papers, Gravel Edition, Volume 3, pp. 641


ASSISTANT SECRETARY OF DEFENSE
WASHINGTON, D. C. 20301

18 NOV 1964

INTERNATIONAL SECURITY AFFAIRS

MEMORANDUM FOR THE SECRETARY OF DEFENSE

SUBJECT: Immediate Resumption of the DESOTO Patrols

The Joint Chiefs of Staff, in JCSM 894-64 (Tab A), recommended a resumption of the DESOTO Patrols which have been suspended since mid-September. Action on the memorandum in question was deferred pending State-Defense review of all proposed future courses of action for Southeast Asia. In the interim, the Joint Chiefs of Staff incorporated a general recommendation for the resumption of DESOTO patrols in their memorandum, JCSM 902-64, which you will recall was forwarded for Ambassador Taylor's review and comment. Ambassador Taylor's views on this subject as reported in message Saigon 1378 to State (Tab B) stated that he perceived no advantage in resuming DESOTO patrols unless they be for essential intelligence gathering purposes. However, as this course of action, among others, is under current consideration, I shall keep it in mind for possible use. Recommend your signature to the attached self-explanatory memorandum addressed to the Chairman, Joint Chiefs of Staff.

Peter Solbert
Deputy Assistant Secretary

Enclosure:
Memo to Ch/JCS

Your reference:
JCSM 894-64

MEMORANDUM FOR THE CHAIRMAN, JOINT CHIEFS OF STAFF

Subject: Immediate Resumption of the DESOTO Patrols

I have noted the recommendation by the Joint Chiefs of Staff, as expressed in the referenced memorandum for the resumption of DESOTO Patrols. Their views were stated again in a subsequent memorandum (JCSM 902-64) as a proposed future course of action for Southeast Asia.

This proposal of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, among other recommendations for courses of action in Southeast Asia, is under active consideration.

[Sent 20 November 1964 as drafted]

Robert S. McNamara


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