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Digital Archive International History Declassified

July 16, 1965

DISCUSSION BETWEEN MAO ZEDONG AND HOANG VAN HOAN

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    Mao Zedong advises Hoang Van Hoan to escalate without hesitation, as the war has already begun to do so.
    "Discussion between Mao Zedong and Hoang Van Hoan," July 16, 1965, History and Public Policy Program Digital Archive, CWIHP Working Paper 22, "77 Conversations." http://digitalarchive.wilsoncenter.org/document/113064
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MAO ZEDONG AND HOANG VAN HOAN[1]

Beijing, 16 July 1965

Mao Zedong: …We all believed in the Geneva Accords but the enemy did not respect them.  After you regrouped your troops, they started killing people.  They kill people in the South in order to teach them a lesson.  At first, our motto was mainly for the political struggle and the military struggle was secondary.  Later, the political and military struggles became equal.  And then the military struggle will be the main [part], the political struggle will be supportive to the military one.  So, we are also escalating step by step.  

At first, we destroy a platoon, and then a company.  Then we annihilate a battalion, and a regiment or two.  That way, we can destroy from 4 to 5 battalions [in] each campaign.  We should escalate and we should know how to escalate step by step.  

[1] Hoang Van Hoan headed a DRV National Assembly delegation to China.