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Vietnam DeclassifiedThe CIA and Counterinsurgency$
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Thomas L Ahern

Print publication date: 2009

Print ISBN-13: 9780813125619

Published to Kentucky Scholarship Online: September 2011

DOI: 10.5810/kentucky/9780813125619.001.0001

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(p.220) (p.221) Chapter 11 CORDS
Vietnam Declassified

Thomas L. Ahern

University Press of Kentucky

President Lyndon B. Johnson's National Security Action Memorandum 362 set up Civil Operations and Revolutionary Development Support (CORDS) as an element of Military Assistance Command Vietnam (MACV). Central Intelligence Agency Headquarters responded with a cable to Saigon saying that the agency would meet any call upon its resources, and it exhorted the station to join in supporting “the letter and spirit of the President's directive.” Nevertheless, the creation of CORDS and the appointment of a manager, even one as forceful as Robert Komer, did not guarantee a fully coherent program. Although not only Komer but also General Nguyen Duc Thang saw the Regional and Popular Forces as vital to pacification, their chain of command continued to run from the Joint General Staff down through the tactical commands at corps and division level. Each of these had MACV advisers reporting through the military side of MACV.

Keywords:   Lyndon B. Johnson, CORDS, MACV, Robert Komer, Nguyen Duc Thang, Popular Forces, pacification

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