Sunday, Ndvember 3, 1968
THE MICHIGAN DAILY
Sunday, November 3, 1968 THE MICHIGAN DAILY
WASHINGTON (R) - The big
breakthrough in U.S.-North Viet-
namese efforts to negotiate terms
for a bombing halt began to de-
velop last Sunday night.
It was then that secret word
began' to reach the White House
from Hanoi on "the essential un-
derstanding," as President John-
son put it Thursday night, of the
conditions for ending American
attacks on North Vietnam.
But U.S. officials now believe
that President Ho Chi Minh had
made the basic decision about a
month earlier to begin to de-es-
calate the war and move into seri-
ous peace negotiations.
The reason for this judgment
was both military and political
and grew out of the Johnson
administration's view of the war,
which is very different from Ha-,
noi's publicly stated view.
Johnson and his advisers felt
that Ho' Chi Minh and his asso-
ciates were paying. a very high
price to continue the war and
would -want at some point to be-
gin to move the conflict into se-
Some of Johnson's advisers told
him that Hanoi either had to
move toward substantial peace
negotiations in early October or
wait several months until a new
president was installed in the
The chief U.S. negotiator in
Paris, Ambassador Averell Harri-
man, had advised as early as
August that if Hanoi felt it could
get an acceptable deal with John-
son it would undoubtedly do so.
On Sept. 17, Johnson had con-
ferred with Harriman and re-
viewed his conditions for halting
the bombing. According to ad-
ministration officials these were
" The demilitarized zone se-
parating North and South Viet-
nam would be respected by Com-
munist forces as well as U.S. and
0 That North Vietnamese and
Viet Cong troops would not make
terror attacks on Saigon and the
other cities and towns of South
9 That representatives of the
Saigon government of President
Nguyen van Thieu would be ad-
mitted to the second phase of the
Paris talks, following the bomb-
Johnson said he could not settle
for less in halting the bombing.
In Paris and in statements from
Hanoi, the North Vietnamese
pressed the line-which they con-
tinued throughout October-that
they would accept no conditions
for halting the bombing.
On Oct. 3, Ambassador Cyrus
R. Vance, having returned to
Washington following the Oct. 2
Paris meeting, conferred with
Johnson. Officially he was back
to review the situation in the
talks. Actually, according to gen-
erally *accepted reports, he was
seeking maximum negotiating
flexibility in the belief that in
O c t o b e r the long-deadlocked
bombing issue might begin to
The peace talk session in the
second week of Octob'er was held
on the 9th and for the first time
the North Vietnamese negotiating
team began to ask questions that
bore on how a bombing halt might
By that time it had become ap-
parent that a lull had set in on
the battlefield and that North
Vietnam was withdrawing whole
battalions from South Vietnam.
The United States took the posi-
tion that if this was a Hanoi ini-
tiative to de-escalate the war,
Hanoi should give assurances that
a new offensive would not be
launched when the bombing stop-
One of the key questions report-
edly asked by Ambassador Xuan
Thuy in that critical first week
of the negotiations was whether
the United States would stop the
bombing and other attacks on
North Vietnam if Hanoi agreed to
have the Saigon government at
the negotiating table. Harriman
replied that would make a deci-
Harriman and Vance also em-
phasized that de-escalation was a
vital element of any deal. Hanoi
had insistently rejected such re-
ciprocity, but the battlefield lull
initiated by North Vietnam seem-
ed to offer a way around the re-
ciprocity issue. All the enemy had
to do was give Johnson "reason
to believe," as he himself had
said, that the de-escalation would
hold and that the DMZ and the
cities of South Vietnam would be
By Oct. 12, a Saturday, the
secret talks had advanced so rap-
idly that administration officials
believed an agreement might be
possible in the following week.
Johnson consulted at long range
with Ambassador Ellsworth Bun-
ker and Gen. Creighton W.
Abrams, the U.S. troop com-
mander, in Saigon. They told him
they believed that Hanoi was
ready to shift the war at least
partially from the battlefield to
the conference table.
They reported they had drafted
their own analysis, which they
were about to send to Johnson,
which reached that conclusion on
the basis of the military situation
in South Vietnam.
Bunker then began a series of
meetings with South Vietnamese
President Nguyen van Thieu on
the terms for ending the bombing.
Thieu is represented by American
officials as indicating lie would
go along with Johnson's plan-
if the U.S. president was prepared
to resume the bombing in the
event Hanoi violated the DMZ
with new escalation, or attacked
the cities of the South.
At that point two weeks of hard
bargaining began. Hanoi, accord-
ing to the U.S. version, wanted a
delay in the talks and a commu-
nique in which the United States
would .state that it was imposing
a bombing halt unconditionally.
BLOW YOUR MIND AFTER THE STRIKE!
Mendoy 8:30 p.m. Canterbury House
Scintillate with Pam Myles, Dave Johns,
Jack Quine, Marge Himel, and Jim Strand!
Proceeds go to the
JIM LEWIS for SHERIFF MOVEMENT.
Souls $1.25-Bodies admitted FREE !
A RIVER SPAN in North Vietnam severed by American planes;
such objects are now off-limits to the bombers.
SATURDAY and SUNDAY
WOMAN OF THEDUNES
Directed by Hiroshi Teshigahra, 1963
Screenplay by Japan's Nobel Prize winner in literature.
"A horrifying allegory and comment on man's indi-
viduality; a man and a woman trapped in a sand pit."
7:00 & 9:05 ARCH ITECTURE
662-8871 I5C AUDITORIUM
The United States, it, is said,
maintained that the talks must
go forward without delay, and
that the Saigon government would
have to participate if they were
to be productive. Harriman also
told Xuan Thuy that if there were
violations of the demilitarized
zone or attacks on the cities of
the South it was a dfact of life"
that Johnson could not sustain
a bombing halt.
Hanoi negotiated for inclusion
of the National Liberation front,
political arm of the Viet Cong, on
equal terms with the Saigon gov-
ernment by proposing that the
second phase in Paris be called
a Four-Power conference. This
was unacceptable to Thieu.
On the military side Hanoi
tried to get Johnson to call the
proposed bombing halt uncondi-
tional. Johnson: stood on his for-
mulation that he had to have
some reason to believe that if he
halted the bombing North Viet-
nam would not take advantage of
that fact to improve its military1
Last Sunday, Oct. 27, what
Johnson Thursday night called
"confirmation" began to come in
from Hanoi. As one official put it,
"we achieved a breakthrough."
The actual form of this reported
Hanoi response has not been dis-
Before taking the final action
he announced Thursday night,
Johnson summoned Abrams from
Saigon. The general arrived at the
White House at 2:30 a.m. Tuesday.
I Of the bombing halt. Abrams
is reported to have told the Pres-
ident that in view of all the cir-
cumstances, "I think it's the right
thing to do."
Essentially, the question John-
son asked the field commander
was whether, if the North Viet-
namese decided to attack, Abrams
could protect his men. The essence
of Abrams' answer is reported to
be that a week would be required
for them to move from the posi-
tions to which they have now pull-
ed back and if they did move he
would have time to take counter-
The President reportedly affirm-
ed Abrams' standing orders that
if any such threat developed he.
could act at once on his decision
without consulting Washington.
Officials said this now includes
authority to Abrams to retaliate
against the North -presumably
Such a development presumably
would also raise for the President
the question of whether he should
resume the bombing.
Ambassador Bunker then ad-
vised President Thieu in Saigon
that Johnson was prepared to'act
on the basis of the understanding
reached in Paris with Hanoi.
On Wednesday afternoon, Oct.
30, Johnson was informed by
Bunker that Thieu said his gov-
ernment was prepared to act on
the basis of the Paris understand-
ing and agreed to the halting of
all attacks against North Vietnam
at 8 a.m., Nov. 1, Washington
by The Associatcd Press and College Press Service
POLICE CLASHED WITH BLACKS in Washington
D.C. yesterday after an officer wounded a woman he
said was chasing him with a butcher knife.
The incident touched off an angry gang of young blacks
who hurled rocks and bottles at every approaching car driven
by a white man.
Police fired tear gas into the crowd after they set fire
to three cars and overturned another. Both the woman with
the knife and another bystander were wounded when the
officer fired several shots as he stufhbled away from them
* 0 x
LIU SHAO-CHI was reported to have urged top
Peking leaders to obey party rules in considering his
expulsion from the Chinese Communist Party.
The report, from the Hong Kong Star, an Australian
edited tabloid, said that Liu also refused to confess to "more
mistakes in Mao-thought" or accept suggestions that he
According to the story, Premier Chou En-lai tried to woo
Liu into supporting party chairman Mao in a last minute
bid for reconciliation between the two leaders. Liu, however
refused to make any public confessions.
In Taipei, experts on Chinese Communist leaders sug-
gested Liu was a victim of the deepening conflict between
Peking and Moscow.
* * !
ANGRY JORDANIANS stormed the U.S. embassy in
Amman yesterday forcing Bedouin security troops to ex-
change fire with the armed demonstrators.
First reports said one person was killed and several were
wounded in the exchange.
The demonstration, involving at least 10,000 people, began
as a protest march marking the fifty-first anniversry of the
Balfour declaration which promised a national homeland
for the Jews in Palestine.
The mob attacked the embassy after a speech by Palestin-
ian nationalist leader Suleiman Nabulsi, leader of the "Na-
tional Coalition" of Palestinian factions which support
guerilla action against Israel.
J. R. WIGGINS, U.S. AMBASSADOR to the United
Nations, demanded strict observance of the Middle East
cease-fire before the Security Council yesterday morning.
The Council met iin emergency session on complaints
by Israel and Egypt, each side blaming the other for instigat-
ing two military intrusions last week.
In his first speech since he became UN ambassador,
Wiggins criticized both Egypt's argument that it has a right
to practice "preventive defense" and Israel's contention that
it is entitled to "reprisal.' He said neither were acceptable
A RECORD 73 MILLION VOTRS are expected in
next Tuesday's election.
Gains are expected in the South w;ere many states have
sharply increased registrations due to the influx of black'
voters since passage of the voting rights act of 1965.
However, the turnout may drop below 1964 levels in fifteen
usually Democratic states, including Michigan, California,
New York, Connecticut, Massachusetts, Rhode Island, Penn-
sylvania, West Virginia, Washington, New Mexico, Kentucky,
Oregon and the District of Columbia.
According to an Assocated Press survey of official regis-
tration records and estimates by election pfficials, a total of
90,141,438 of the 121.5 Million Americans of voting age are
registered to vote.
The actual turnout is estimated at 72,987,527 or 81 !;
the MICHI GAN-1LLI NOIS
GLEE CLUB GONCERT
Saturday, November 9
7:00 & 9:30 Hill Auditorium
Featuring Russell Christopher
Former Member-U of M Glee Club
ARK FILM SOCIETY
MONDAY, NOV. 4
7:30 & 9:30
THE PRESIDENTIAL CAMPAIGN entered its last
weekend underneath the spectre of an electoral college
As their appeals for support echoed across the land, all
three major candidates were predicting victory in next Tues-
Most polls and surveys placed Nixon in, the lead, but
Associated Press News Analysts believe the political picture is
rapidly changing as Humphrey gains support from President
Johnson's decision to halt the bombing- of North Vietnam.
There were continuing indications, though, that Wallace's
third party candidacy could prevent either Nixon or Hum-
phrey from winning a majority of the electoral vote, which
could throw the election onto the House of Representatives
for the first time in 144 years.
I "DOJMIN" KEPS UP OWITE
at the ARK
The Liongollen Award
INDIVIDUAL TICKET SALES
Hill Auditorium Box Office
Open 8 A.M.-6 P.M. Mon.-Fri.
Mail Orders Still Accepted
Send Checks to 6044 Administration Bldg.
$2.50 $2.00 $1.50
'NATIONAL GENERAL CORPORATION4_
FOX EASTERN THEATRES
375 No. MAPLE RD.-76941300
Unlike other classics
West Side Story'
MIRISCH PICTURES presents
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