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Digital Archive International History Declassified

February 25, 1973


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    COSVN Party Current Affairs Committee sent a cable to the local areas, following the instructions given in Directive 02/CT73 to prepare for the struggle in South Vietnam after the Paris Agreement was signed.
    "COSVN Party Current Affairs Committee Guidance on the Struggle to Demand that our Opponents Implement the Paris Agreement," February 25, 1973, History and Public Policy Program Digital Archive, Lich Su Bien Nien Xu Uy Nam Bo va Trung Uong Cuc Mien Nam (1954-1975) [Historical Chronicle of the Cochin China Party Committee and the Central Office for South Vietnam, 1954-1975], 2nd ed. (Hanoi: Nha xuat ban Chinh tri quoc gia, 2008), 1192-1193. Translated by Merle Pribbenow.
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On 27 January 1973 the American imperialists were forced to sign the Paris Agreement to End the War and Restore Peace in Vietnam. This was a great victory for our nation that opened up a new phase, leading to the complete liberation of South Vietnam and the unification of our country.

In order to seize the initiative in the struggle to demand that the enemy strictly implement the agreement, even before the agreement was signed COSVN issued Directive No. 02/CT73 directing the local areas to actively prepare for a broad-ranging high tide of struggle throughout South Vietnam.

As soon as the agreement was signed, the enemy massed their troops to attack and occupy our liberated zones, blatantly violating the agreement and making the developing situation extremely complicated. Faced with this reality, on 25 February 1973 the COSVN Party Current Affairs Committee sent a cable to the local areas, committees, and sectors confirming that in this new situation they were to continue to implement the instructions given in Directive 02/CT73.

Assessing the situation, the cable said that COSVN had concluded that even though the agreement had been signed and the U.S. was being forced to withdraw all its troops and stop its bombing and shelling attacks, the U.S. was continuing to assist and defend the actions of the puppets, who were not only not implementing the cease-fire, but were seriously and systematically violating the agreement. The situation in South Vietnam was unsettled and unstable, the cable said.

Faced with this situation, the cable said that COSVN had decided to launch a broad-ranging campaign throughout our entire Party, our entire army, and our entire population in all three areas [mountain jungles, rural lowlands, the cities] to continuously attack the enemy, using political struggle as our foundation and employing military forces to provide outstanding support to the struggle to exploit the legal effects of the agreement to the maximum in order to force the enemy to strictly implement the agreement, first of all by stopping its attacks and granting the people their free and democratic rights.

The goal was to defeat the enemy’s plans to sabotage the agreement so that we could preserve peace while at the same time we worked to expand and develop our political and military forces, to continue to secure new victories, and to build up to gaining total victory.

COSVN laid out a number of urgent missions that were to be carried out:

1. Organize a wave of powerful denunciations of the U.S. and the puppets.

2. Incite the people to rise up in response to the proclamations of the Provisional Revolutionary Government of South Vietnam.

3. Quickly complete study sessions to understand and absorb the instructions in Directive 02/CT73 and the document, “When the cease-fire takes effect, What We Must Do at the Village and Hamlet Level.” In their study sessions, our regional and provincial Party committees should rely on our strategic principles and relate these principles to the actual situation as it was developing on the ground in order to provide guidance to our agents and organizations for use in our villages and hamlets.

4. Hold training classes for all cadre, Party members, soldiers, and civilians on the essential provisions of the agreement for use in struggles against the enemy.

5. Ensure that all Party chapters and Party members at the village and hamlet level have a firm understanding of our current vital, pressing tasks, which are to intensify the political struggle movement and the military proselyting attacks being conducted by the civilian masses.

6. Utilize and exploit the outstanding supporting role that armed struggle will play during the new phase.

7. Constantly strengthen and expand revolutionary power, and build a balanced force of the three types of troops [main force, local force, guerrilla militia].

8. Leadership and guidance at all levels must be reoriented in a powerful and timely manner suited to the demands of the new situation.

[Translator’s Note: This document can also be found in the first edition of Lich Su Bien Nien Xu Uy Nam Bo va Trung Uong Cuc Mien Nam (1954-1975) [Historical Chronicle of the Cochin China Party Committee and the Central Office for South Vietnam, 1954-1975] (Hanoi: Nha xuat ban Chinh tri quoc gia, 2002), 952.]