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March/April 2023   -   -  

March 1: The International Conference on Vietnam completes its work as the 12 nations attending agree to reconvene if the cease-fire breaks down. Secretary of State William Rogers says he is “very satisfied” with the results.

March 2: U.S. delegates are given a list of thirty-four POWs—twenty-seven servicemen and seven civilians—to be released over the weekend. President Richard Nixon promises that aid for North Vietnam, if approved by Congress, will not come from domestic programs but from defense and foreign-aid funds. U.S. Air Force planes fly 156 North Vietnamese and VC Joint Military Commission (JMC) delegates from Hue and Danang to Saigon after they complained of the lack of security afforded them to carry out their responsibilities. The formal Paris Peace Accords declaration is signed at the international conference in Paris. The Saigon daily Doc Lap is fined one million piasters (about $3,200) by a military court for printing an interview with a disabled Vietnamese veteran who complained about the war’s length and his outcome. The court deems the article detrimental to national security.

March 3: Canadian Red Cross workers leave South Vietnam, asserting their work has been obstructed by North Vietnamese and VC commission delegates. The U.S. proposes another joint appeal to end hostilities in the South.

March 4: North Vietnam releases the third group of POWs—106 Americans and two Thais—to U.S. Air Force officers at Gia Lam Air Field. U.S. troop withdrawals and mine-sweeping in Haiphong Harbor resume after a four-day break. The actions were halted because the Americans and North Vietnamese were in disagreement over the release of POWs.

March 5: The VC release 30 Americans (27 servicemen and three civilians), two West Germans, and two Filipinos in Hanoi. U.S. officials report NVA troops have rebuilt the air field at Khe Sanh and, in violation of the cease-fire, are using the strip for courier flights. Hanoi official Bui Tin states North Vietnamese and VC delegates will be boycotting further meetings of the JMC because of a dispute over the exchange of Vietnamese POWs. Two top Department of Defense officials warn Hanoi to live up to the cease-fire if North Vietnam expects to receive reconstruction aid. Representatives from the Laotian government and the Pathet Lao meet to discuss the formation of a coalition government. South Vietnamese President Nguyen Van Thieu announces he will allow foreign journalists weekly access to VC and North Vietnamese JMC delegates at Tan Son Nhut Air Base. Indonesia threatens to pull out of the International Commission of Control and Supervision if continued violations keep the commission from carrying out its duties.

March 6: At the Pentagon Papers trial, CIA analyst Samuel Adams testifies that “political pressures in the military to display the enemy as weaker than he actually was” led to diminished enemy strength estimates. Lon Nol announces he is prepared to hold talks with North Vietnamese and VC representatives to discuss the withdrawal of foreign troops from Cambodia. The Pathet Lao accuse the U.S. and the Vientiane government of attempting to sabotage the two-week-old cease-fire. Rogers tells the House Foreign Affairs Committee he is confident peace can be sustained in Vietnam but that prospects for a political settlement are debatable.

March 7: South Vietnam agrees to release 6,300 NVA troops in a second POW exchange. Canadian Prime Minister Pierre Trudeau agrees to send External Affairs Minister Mitchell Sharp to Saigon and Hanoi to get assurances that a true cease-fire will soon take effect so the ICCS can proceed with its mission. The Saigon government expels acting UPI bureau chief Donald Davis for “un-Vietnamese activities.” In an interview, Brig. Gen. Lon Non (Lon Nol’s brother) says Lt. Gen. Sisowath Sirik Matak—whom the U.S. regards as Cambodia’s best hope for restoring the country’s stability, and Lon Non’s chief rival—must not be allowed to join the Phnom Penh government.

March 8: Near Quang Tri City, South Vietnam releases NVA 500 POWs; a corporal chooses to remain. Heavy fighting is reported in the area. Washington and Hanoi agree that the JMC will meet in a week to discuss the two countries’ future economic relationship. Former POW Maj. Hubert Flesher argues that the U.S. stuck its “nose into somebody else’s business” and that Nixon could have ended the war on the same terms four years ago. Sources claim the U.S. has complained to the Laotian government it is violating the cease-fire with a continued operations against communist-controlled Thakhek.

March 9: McGeorge Bundy testifies that three documents disclosed in the Pentagon Papers did not damage national security. U.S. minesweepers detonate the first mine found in Haiphong Harbor. Lt. Gen. Tran Van Tra, the Viet Cong’s chief delegate to the JMC, discloses that the Provisional Revolutionary Government and South Vietnamese representatives have started discussions about the two-party military commission to be formed. In Cleveland, Vietnam War veterans testify at a hearing concerning the inadequacies in the GI Bill of Rights.

March 10: Michel Gauvin, Canada’s leading delegate to the ICCS, criticizes two of the nations on the commission (most likely Poland and Hungary) for not investigating reports that Hanoi is violating the cease-fire by reportedly setting up missile sites at Khe Sanh. The State Department reports it has voiced its concern to Saigon regarding the treatment of American correspondents. The VC call off a prisoner exchange after accusing South Vietnamese forces of attacking and occupying the turnover point of Duc Pho.

March 11: Sources say Nixon will ask Congress to grant postwar aid to North Vietnam only if Hanoi stops NVA infiltration into the South and withdraws troops from Laos. Rogers claims Hanoi has removed the missiles from Khe Sanh, most likely because of Canada’s protest. John Kenneth Galbraith and Arthur Schlesinger testify for the defense at the Pentagon Papers trial. Schlesinger, a special assistant to President John Kennedy, says that release of the papers would not be advantageous to a foreign nation and that “the more they read material like this, the better it is for us.” The U.S. says it has received a list of 108 POWs (one of them a civilian) to be released by the North.

March 12: The U.S. announces troop withdrawals have been suspended until the next-to-last group of POWs has been released and a list and the date of release for the last group is announced.

March 13: The VC hand over a list of 32 Americans to be released at the end of the week. The State Department and the White House voice concerns that the North may be violating the peace accord by moving troops and supplies down the Ho Chi Minh Trail toward South Vietnam.

March 14: The third phase of Hanoi’s release of POWs begins. The U.S. resumes troop withdrawals. A communique states Lon Nol will dissolve his government and hold new general elections.

March 15: A grenade kills at least 17 when it is thrown into a crowded Buddhist pagoda in Soai Xien village in the Mekong Delta. At an unscheduled press conference, Nixon warns North Vietnam that it “should not lightly disregard such expressions of concern, when they are made [by the U.S.], with regard to a violation”—in this case the movement of troops. Many interpret this as a threat to resume bombing raids. American B-52s bomb targets in Cambodia for the ninth consecutive day. Tra, speaking with journalists, says the “Americans were good soldiers, but they fought the wrong war.” Theodore Sorenson, counsel to Kennedy, testifies that when he left the White House, he took many government documents with him.

March 16: A U.S. Air Force plane leaves Hanoi with the 32 Americans—27 servicemen and five civilians—released by the VC. The VC accuse the U.S. of shipping war materials into South Vietnam bypassing the inspection required by the cease-fire. The Pentagon denies it. The U.S. and Saigon charge North Vietnam with a major build-up of weapons in Tay Ninh Province. Thieu asks Canada to remain a member of the ICCS. Hoang Tung, senior editor of North Vietnam’s Nhan Dan newspaper, claims Hanoi is not hiding any American POWs and that, as soon as it is possible, a search will be started for the missing and dead. White House analysts say North Vietnam has more than 300 tanks and artillery pieces either in South Vietnam or on the border. The U.S. again halts troop withdrawals until details of the last POW release are received. Saigon announces plans to hold general elections for village councils. Judge William Matthew Byrne, Jr., rules that Pentagon Papers defendants Anthony Russo and Daniel Ellsberg cannot challenge the government on its system of classifying documents.

March 17: Intelligence officials report there are more enemy supplies than before the spring offensive, but that manpower is below fighting strength. A Cambodian Air Force captain steals a plane and bombs the presidential palace. He misses by 20 yards and kills 20. Lon Nol declares a state of emergency. Tra calls the U.S. charges of NVA infiltration into the South groundless.

March 19: In Paris, South Vietnamese and PRG delegates open talks to discuss the South’s political future. Security forces continue “the dismantling of subversive networks” in Phnom Penh. Laotian premier Souvanna Phouma sends a cable to the Pathet Lao imploring the two parties to reach a settlement of their remaining problems before the deadline for forming a new coalition expires in four days.

March 20: Intelligence officials report a sharp reduction in the number of NVA troops and equipment moving South. ICCS members begin investigating reported cease-fire violations. The man who tried to assassinate Lon Nol, identified by the Cambodian government as So Porta, is rumored to be safe in the communist-controlled zone of the country. South Vietnam begins moving 100,000 refugees from the northern provinces to unsettled land near Saigon.

March 21: Dr. Morton Halperin tells the jury he sent a copy of the Pentagon Papers, which he wrote and claims was not the property of the U.S. government, to the Rand Corporation for storage.

March 22: South Vietnam says it has broken the one-week siege by communist troops of Rach Bap, twenty miles north of Saigon. U.S. delegates to the JMC demand a list from Hanoi of POWs held in Laos as well as a date and place for their release. Troop withdrawal pauses again until the list is received. Gen. Phoune Sipraseuth, head of the Pathet Lao delegation, leaves talks with the Laotian government one day before the deadline. Halperin says the Pentagon Papers leak did no damage to the U.S.

March 23: American officials protest the move of refugees from Pleiku Province to a camp in Kontum Province. Enemy rockets hit a refugee camp 95 miles southwest of Saigon, killing 33. Prince Norodom Sihanouk insists he will never negotiate with the Lon Nol government and vows to continue the war in Cambodia until the U.S. stops interfering in the country’s affairs. Halperin explains to the jury that although he did not have written or oral permission to take top-secret documents, it was standard practice for government officials to take their private papers when they left.

March 24: The Vietcong’s JMC delegates release a list of the last 32 POWs but demand the U.S. withdraw all JMC personnel and Marine security guards in exchange for those held. Of the 395 enemy prisoners brought to Bien Hoa for repatriation back to North Vietnam, 200 express their wish to remain in the South. Gen. Duong Van Minh says only a “third force,” those who do not support either the Thieu regime or the Vietcong and make up a majority of the South’s population, can bring about the reconciliation called for in the peace agreement. The Cambodian government rejects peace negotiations that exclude Lon Nol. U.S. planes bomb Cambodia for the eighteenth straight day. In Florida, Nixon issues a statement praising the nation’s Vietnam War veterans. He calls for the American people to show their respect and claims the government is “now doing more than we have ever done” for veterans. The declaration contrasts sharply with recently released reports by the House and Senate Veterans Affairs committees claiming not enough is being done.

March 25: Nixon says he has ordered U.S. forces to stay in Vietnam until all POWs have been released. An Indonesian ICCS delegate is seriously wounded by a sniper in Can Tho.

March 26: Truong Dinh Dzo, one of South Vietnam’s best-known political prisoners who was jailed in 1967 while running as a peace candidate in the presidential election, is released. The JMC agrees that the last of the American POWs (including nine held in Laos) will be released, and the remaining 5,000 combat troops will be withdrawn in the next two days. The White House declares, “This does and will end the United States presence in Vietnam.” Bui Tin says North Vietnam will withdraw JMC delegates by the end of the week.

March 27: The Nixon Administration says that the bombing in Cambodia will continue until a cease-fire has been reached and the communist insurgency ends. The final POW release begins; the thirty-two held by the VC, as well as the nine Americans and a Canadian missionary held by Laos, are among the first let go. U.S. troop withdrawals start up again. Sharp announces Canada will keep its ICCS observers in Vietnam for at least 90 days. In the Philippines, a Pentagon observer says when the prisoner release is finished, Hanoi has agreed to help recover missing and dead U.S. servicemen.

March 28: Responding to criticism on Capitol Hill, Secretary of Defense Elliot Richardson maintains Nixon has constitutional authority to continue bombing in Cambodia. Forty-nine more POWs leave Hanoi. The U.S. is denied an extension for the JMC because North Vietnam refuses to continue the commission once its sixty-day limit ends . Thieu formally inaugurates his new Democracy Party.

March 29: The last U.S. combat forces depart South Vietnam; 7,200 Department of Defense civilian employees remain in-country. Tens of thousands of North Vietnamese attend the repatriation of the last 67 American POWs. In news conferences around the U.S., former POWs tell of their mental and physical torture at the hands of their captors. In a national address, Nixon says the U.S. forces are now disengaged from the Vietnam War, but he warns North Vietnam to comply with the peace accord. Three Republican senators—Jacob Javits (N.Y.), Charles Mathias (Md.), and Mark Hatfield (Ore.)—contend Nixon has no authority to bomb Cambodia. The Defense Department reports 11,000 mines were dropped in North Vietnamese waters in 1972.

March 30: Nixon, with “deepest personal regret,” accepts Ellsworth Bunker’s resignation as U.S. ambassador to South Vietnam. He names Graham Martin, a career diplomat, to replace him. South Vietnam complains to the ICCS that communist troops have continually shelled and assaulted Tong Le Chan and Rach Bap ranger camps. The VC claim thousands of U.S. military advisers, disguised as civilians, remain in the South and are a hindrance to a political settlement.

March 31: North Vietnam’s and the U.S.’s chief JMC delegates leave Saigon. The communists accuse the U.S. and South Vietnam of “systematically and very seriously sabotage[ing]” major stipulations of the peace agreement. In New York City, an estimated 100,000-150,000 march up Broadway during a tribute to those who served in Southeast Asia during the war. The PRG names Nguyen Van Tien as its permanent observer to the UN. Thieu departs for the U.S. to seek assurance of continued aid. The Swedish International Development Authority announces plans to build its largest-ever project in a foreign country—a $68 million paper factory in North Vietnam. After astrologers reach a consensus that Lon Nol will not survive in power until the end of April, 55 Cambodia top clairvoyants are jailed.

April 1: While appearing on “Meet the Press,” Secretary of Defense Richardson defends the Nixon Administration’s continued bombing of Cambodia as a necessity to keep Lon Nol’s government alive and to force the communists to accept a cease-fire. South Vietnam’s Tong Le Chan ranger camp goes into its sixth week of besiegement. A Swedish government official says American military deserters can no longer expect automatic asylum because the draft has been suspended and there is no danger of being sent into the war zone. South Vietnamese President Nguyen Van Thieu arrives in California for two days of talks with President Nixon.

April 2: The Nixon administration describes the opening days of talks with Thieu as friendly and cordial. Philip Manhard, a high-ranking diplomat who was held in solitary confinement and tortured by North Vietnam for four-and-one-half years, says giving U.S. aid to Hanoi would “generate a stable, peaceful coexistence” between the two nations. UN Secretary General Kurt Waldheim says the VC Provisional Revolutionary Government’s request to establish an office at the UN is “under study” and that a reply to the PRG regarding its naming a permanent observer on March 31—a surprise to the UN—will be forthcoming. Phnom Penh begins rationing gas because all supply routes are blocked. The State Department acknowledges that there is no formal treaty with Cambodia but that the U.S. has been allied with the neutral government in Phnom Penh because the two countries have been “fighting a common enemy for the past three years.” Judge William Matthew Byrne, Jr., rules that federal government analyses of the Pentagon Papers showing their disclosure did not damage national security is exculpatory evidence and must be turned over to the defense. Lt. William Calley, Jr., appeals his life sentence for premeditated murder to the U.S. Court of Military Appeals.

April 3: Saigon says she will boycott the two-party Joint Military Commission—which has been operating for five days—until the dispute over Tong Le Chan is solved. The VC warn Saigon must “bear the responsibility for the consequences” if it carries through with the boycott. Thieu ends his conference with Nixon with a promise of “adequate and substantial economic aid” for the year and a commitment from Nixon only “to seek congressional authority for a level for the next year sufficient to assure economic stability and rehabilitation.” An administration official says that when Henry Kissinger and Le Duc Tho signed the cease-fire on January 23, Hanoi “fully understood” the U.S. would continue military action in Cambodia and Laos until each reaches its own cease-fire. Laotian and Pathet Lao negotiators do not meet for the first time in 25 weeks for their regular Tuesday session. The meeting was called off at the request of the Laotian. The VC warn that further U.S. military aid to the South could start the war all over again.

April 4: Richardson and Joint Chiefs of Staff Chairman Adm. Thomas Moorer state there is no danger of a Cambodian military defeat, but there may be a need to airlift supplies. Thieu arrives at Andrews Air Force Base—he is greeted by Vice President Spiro Agnew and several hundred Vietnamese students and residents. Cambodia proclaims a “state of national danger.” Two American journalists, Frances Fitzgerald and Daniel Southerland, say they were held by the VC for two days and treated well. North Vietnam and the VC warn the reports of torture by ex-POWs may threaten to interfere with the repatriation of American remains and with the search for MIAs.

April 5: The Senate votes to block reconstruction aid to North Vietnam unless Nixon first obtains Congress’s approval. At the National Press Club, Thieu promises “never, never” to ask for U.S. troops and says his government can withstand a new enemy offensive without American air support. Thieu then meets with congressional leaders. Two Harvard biochemists contend herbicides used by the U.S. have contaminated fish and shellfish in Vietnam’s waters and may cause long-term health hazards. Xuan Thuy, Hanoi’s chief Paris negotiator for over four years, charges the U.S. with “trying to stall” carrying the cease-fire provisions. Saigon reports several attacks by enemy troops on government positions. The Pentagon says it sees no sign of the start of a new, major communist offensive. A large South Vietnamese convoy of supplies, supported by U.S. aircraft, sails up the Mekong River toward Cambodia’s besieged capital.

April 6: Sources say Thieu has asked for $700 million in aid through 1975. Military sources say U.S. B-52s are bombing enemy troops outside Phnom Penh in an effort to break the siege. Sen. Edward Brooke (R-Mass;), while visiting Vientiane, is told that North Vietnamese officials—with whom he had hoped to assess Hanoi’s postwar needs—are too busy to meet with him now or in the near future.

April 7: After conferring with Nixon and Kissinger in California, Gen. Alexander Haig, Jr., leaves for Southeast Asia to get a better assessment of the deteriorating situation. Officials say an International Commission of Control and Supervision helicopter has been shot down and another is missing in northwest South Vietnam, near the Laotian border. The U.S. Pacific Command reports an American pilot was killed after his observation plane was shot down in Cambodia.

April 8: An ambush hits the convoy near the Cambodian border. Three fuel tankers and two cargo ships reach Phnom Penh. A VC spokesman says the downing of the ICCS helicopter—which killed two VC officers, a Canadian, ane Indonesian, two Hungarians, and the crew of two Americans and a Filipino—is a “regrettable accident.” The VC contend their troops hit the helicopter because it had strayed from its course. In Hanoi, exiled Prince Norodom Sihanouk says he was in Cambodia for one-and-one-half months visiting the liberated areas in Siem Reap and Stung Trieng provinces.

April 9: ICCS officials contend the VC fired on two more helicopters. Three more ships reach Phnom Penh while a third vessel is destroyed. Thieu meets with Pope Paul VI, who urges the South Vietnamese president to release political prisoners, while police clash with anti-Thieu demonstrators outside the Vatican. Canada threatens to pull out of the ICCS. The Navy concludes the trials of the 22 men charged in the October 1972 Kitty Hawk racial incident.

April 10: Sources say all ICCS helicopter flights have been temporarily suspended. Sources report Waldheim has told the PRG it cannot open UN office. The U.S. begins a fuel airlift into Phnom Penh. Sihanouk insists the insurgent groups fighting in Cambodia will not negotiate a cease-fire with Lon Nol government. In South Vietnam, Haig observes that truce-monitoring actions are at a standstill.

April 11: In Phnom Penh, 184 trucks arrive carrying food and other supplies. Daniel Ellsberg explains to the Pentagon Papers jury how he went from being a hawk on the Vietnam War in 1964 to a dove after he went to Vietnam in 1965. Fighting steps up in the Mekong Delta. American sources report the ICCS helicopter that was shot down was on course and was being guided by a VC navigator. At a Senate Foreign Relations Committee hearing, two legal scholars and a former attorney general testify that the U.S. has no constitutional authority to continue bombing Cambodia.

April 12: Returning to the U.S., Haig tells Nixon the Indochina situation is serious but has not reached crisis proportions. The Pentagon says it has no evidence that there are any POWs still being held in Southeast Asia, but the U.S. is continuing to press for information, especially in Laos. Japan’s senior specialist on North Vietnam in the Foreign Ministry goes to Hanoi to discuss opening up diplomatic relations. France says it is raising North Vietnam’s position to full ambassadorial status. Sen. John Stennis (D-Miss.), chair of the Armed Services Committee, calls for the passage of war-powers legislation to preclude the president from reintroducing American troops into Vietnam without congressional approval. ICCS investigators claim the two helicopters shot down near the Laotian border strayed fifteen miles off course. The British, Australian, and Japanese embassies evacuate dependents from Phnom Penh.

April 13: Canada ICCS delegates charge Hanoi with violations of the peace accord, specifically sending new troops into the South.

April 14: Thieu returns to South Vietnam hailing “the beginning of a new era of peaceful reconstruction.” Sources contend 12,000 enemy troops are concentrated around Phnom Penh. Henry Labouisse, UNICEF’s executive director, asks for $30 million for 1973-74 to aid the children of Southeast Asia. A Senate study reports that half of Cambodia’s population—roughly three million people—have become refugees since the 197- U.S. incursion.

April 15: Western diplomats say that the U.S. bombing of Cambodia is causing high civilian casualties. Reports allege South Vietnamese troops have crossed into Cambodia. Saigon denies the charge. Hundreds of Cambodian refugees are said to be fleeing into South Vietnam. Canada’s chief ICCS delegate, Michel Gauvin, says it is imperative that survivors return to the area to verify the site of the helicopter crash.

April 16: Ellsberg testifies he made the Pentagon Papers public to “give Congress the confidence to act” to end the war. A South Vietnamese military official concedes his troops might have entered Cambodia, but if they did, it was “during the heat of battle.” The Defense Department says it plans to close or reduce the size of 274 bases with an anticipated savings of $40 billion per year. Pentagon officials report the U.S. has bombed Tha Vieng, Laos, after it was overrun by NVA troops, a major violation of that country’s cease-fire. The Lao Defense Ministry says enemy troops have overrun three government positions in the northeast.

April 17: The pro-government Saigon newspaper Tin Song closes. Ellsberg tells the jury that he signed a pledge not to copy the Pentagon Papers and that he never received permission to remove or copy the documents held by Rand Corporation. U.S. planes bomb enemy positions for a second day in Laos.

April 18: The Third Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals declares unconstitutional two provisions of the Uniform Code of Justice which led to the conviction of antiwar Army physician Capt. Howard Levy in 1967. A new trial is ordered. Cambodia’s information minister insists foreign journalists refer to the enemy as “Vietnamese communists.” A Lao official says the U.S. will continue to drop bombs in the northeast if communist troops do not cease their offensive there. Ellsberg ends his testimony by charging that the papers document thousands of war crimes and illegal acts conducted by patriotic but misguided high government officials.

April 19: Hanoi’s Foreign Ministry says the U.S. Navy has halted mine-sweeping activities with no explanation. The U.S. announces ending the mine-sweeping and recalls the chief official in Paris discussing postwar aid to North Vietnam because of Hanoi’s cease-fire violations. In Paris, the North Vietnamese call the suspension of talks “sabotage.”

April 20: The State and Defense departments say the U.S. has renewed reconnaissance flights over North Vietnam despite the prohibition against them in the peace accords. Sources contend that since the cease-fire, there is no evidence that NVA and VC troops are fighting in Cambodia. The U.S. Pacific Command says an Air Force Phantom is missing in Cambodia.

April 21: South Vietnam’s largest private bank closes after Nguyen Tan Doi, its managing director and a National Assembly progovernment member, is charged with embezzling depositors’ money. The U.S. distributes notes charging North Vietnam and the PRG with violations of the cease-fire. The notes—sent to Great Britain, France, the USSR, and China—refute claims made by the communists on April 16. A VC official approves the ICCS request to reexamine the helicopter wreckage. Secretary of State William Rogers declassifies confidential reports from Senate Majority Leader Mike Mansfield (D-Mont.) to presidents Kennedy and Johnson urging restraint, not expansion, of the Vietnam War.

April 23: Lon Nol and chief opposition leaders reach an agreement to create an all-party council. All 70 men aboard the mine-sweeper Force are reported safe after a fire sinks the vessel in the Philippine Sea. The State Department maintains NVA troops are training and supplying insurgent forces in Cambodia.

April 24: The Scottish freighter Spraynes picks up the crew of the Force and heads to Okinawa. The Four-party Joint Military Team on Dead and Missing Persons—the U.S., North and South Vietnam, and the VC—agree to expand from 14 to 35 members each.

April 25: Haig appears as a surprise government witness at the Pentagon Papers trial. In Paris, PRG and South Vietnamese delegates exchange new plans for a political settlement two days before the deadline set up in the peace accords. The White House announces Kissinger will meet in Paris with Le Duc Tho in May to discuss how to implement cease-fire provisions. Saigon warns foreign correspondents they must get permission to enter communist-controlled areas or face arrest. The Defense Department says 39,000 tons of bombs were dropped on Cambodia in March.

April 26: Judge Byrne sends the Pentagon Papers jury home after he rules the government, for the second time, has withheld evidence from the defense. William Sullivan arrives in Paris to meet with North Vietnamese deputy foreign minister Nguyen Co. Sweden condemns the U.S. bombing of Cambodia.

April 27: Byrne releases a Justice Department memo reporting that two convicted Watergate conspirators—G. Gordon Liddy and E. Howard Hunt—had broken into the office of Ellsberg’s psychiatrist to steal his medical records. South Vietnam and the VC blame each other for 12,000 cease-fire violations and 25,000 deaths since the agreement was signed in January. A Senate subcommittee makes public a Defense Department report indicating the Cambodian bombings have moved from striking NVA lines of communication in March to supporting government troops in April. The U.S. intensifies bombing around Phnom Penh.

April 28: South Vietnam and the VC begin the first exchange of civilian prisoners. Sihanouk says his forces are positioned around Phnom Penh but they will not attempt to capture it; he wants to watch it fall “like a ripe fruit.”

April 29: South Vietnamese Foreign Minister Tan Van Lam says Saigon has refused a request from Cambodia to provide air support if the U.S. suspends its bombing.

April 30: Rogers tells the Senate Foreign Relations Committee the bombing of Cambodia is legally justified by the Constitution. Byrne orders John Dean, Patrick Gray, Liddy, and Hunt to produce affidavits concerning any link between the Watergate break-in and the Pentagon Papers trial. The PRG releases 322 civilians. Canada’s ICCS delegation says it believes the VC are correct about the helicopter going off course. Former Thai Foreign Minister Thanat Khoman says that the U.S. presence in Thailand was never meant to continue beyond a cease-fire and that the bases have had a damaging effect on Thai society.




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