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Digital Archive International History Declassified

January 19, 1973

CABLE FROM GENERAL VO NGUYEN GIAP AND THE CENTRAL MILITARY PARTY COMMITTEE TO COSVN PROVIDING GUIDANCE ON THE MILITARY STRUGGLE

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    General Vo Nguyen Giap and the Central Military Party Committee sent a guidance cable to COSVN laying out a number of military struggle measures to be carried out in response to military operations by their enemies in liberated zones, especially Loc Ninh.
    "Cable from General Vo Nguyen Giap and the Central Military Party Committee to COSVN Providing Guidance on the Military Struggle," January 19, 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] (Hanoi: Nha xuat ban Chinh tri quoc gia, 2002), 949-951.. Translated by Merle Pribbenow. https://digitalarchive.wilsoncenter.org/document/175841
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Because the enemy was launching military operations in the intermediate perimeter area with the goal of seizing and occupying our liberated zones, and especially the Loc Ninh liberated zone, Comrade Vo Nguyen Giap and the Central Military Party Committee sent a guidance cable to COSVN laying out a number of military struggle measures that were to be carried out:

[Summary]

-Eastern Cochin China’s primary mission is to firmly hold onto the liberated zone, and especially the Loc Ninh liberated zone.

-COSVN must correctly carry out the instructions of the Politburo and of the Current Affairs Committee of the Central Military Party Committee. These instructions are to keep a powerful reserve force on call, not committing too many of our forces or committing them too soon. You may only employ a portion of the 7th Division to fight the enemy in southern Dau Tieng district.

-You must not use the entire division. Instead, you must keep most of the division in the rear and continue to strengthen your reserve forces.

-In order to disrupt the enemy’s land-grabbing schemes, you must intensify the operations of your elite forces [sappers], local forces, and guerrilla militia by launching attacks against enemy rear bases, logistics warehouses, and lines of communications in the enemy’s interior in order to force the enemy to disperse his forces and place the enemy on the defensive.