Created: 7/1/1969

OCR scan of the original document, errors are possible


Intelligence Memorandum

Anomalies in Soviet Shipping to North Vietnam During the First Half9

Copy No. July 9

CENTRAL INTELLIGENCE AGEUCY Directorate of Intelligence9


Anomalies in Soviet Shipping

to North Vietnam During the First Half9


Recent anomalies in Soviet shipping tosuggest that the USSR has expandedof military-related cargo that itto ship to North Vietnam by sea since Sovict shiPS during theelivered the first seaborneNorth Vietnam of Soviet Chief(GIU) cargo

arae number of

and the first shiploads ofNorcn Vietnam from the Soviet Far East. to previous practice, Soviet shipsto Haiphong have stopped atto discharqe military cargo withoutthough deliveries of mili-

tary-related cargoes have become more frequent, there is no conclusive evidence of any seaborne deliveries to North Vietnam of combat arms or

The GIU cargoes were shipped underwith both aviation equipment and land Shipments by the GIU to other countriescategories have included bothilitary-related items. in the past to North Vietnam (byto Cuba weref.ininq

by the USSR to the Middle East and Cuba have

Uo_ic This memorandum uas produced solely bti uas prepared by the Office of Economicuas coordinated th the Office of

ranged from trucks to combat aircraft. Theinvolved in these suspicious shipments to North Vietnam were small. Even if every suspicious item were combat materiel, total deliveries of suchwould be negligible compared with the amount of military aid which North Vietnam receives from the

Thc deliveries of vehicles from the Sovietast may have been diversions from rail shipment across Chinaesult of Chinese harassment. The presence ofm antiaircraft gunshe railyard near the Wharves in Haiphong on9iversion of combat materiel from

lSGa' bUt the mode of arrival of these guns in Haiphong has not been determined. Similar qunS have been used in the Haiphong area for some time.

If Soviet shipments across China are being delayed or harassed, as some reports indicate, the USSR is likely to switch more military-relatedand possibly some combat materiel, to sea shipment. Soviet authorities probably couldsome shipments of combat materielime it they wished to do so. Repeated shipments by sea

large quantities of combat materiel, however, probably would be detected.

Chief Engineering Directorate Cargo

1. 9 the first seaborne shipments of cargo by the USSR's Chief Engineering(GIU) to North Vietnam were detected. The first shipment arrived in Haiphong from the Black Sea onpril aboard the Soviet large-hatch ship Partizanskaya Iskra.* ton cargo, which has not been identified,

2. The GIU is frequently involved in shipments of combat materiel and military support equipment such as trucks and radar to other countries, both by rail and by sea. It has also been involved in at least one rail shipment to North Vietnam. arge-hatch ship, which eventually called at

* ry cargo ship vith at least one hatch SO feet or more in length. This oversize hatch facilitates the handling of large items of cargo. Nearly all of the general cargo shipped to North Vietnam from the Black Sea i& carried by ships of this type.

North Vietnam, delivered GIU cargo to an interme-

In another instance, 3GIU cargo were shipped from North VietnamUSSR by sea. However, the GIU had never

the shipper of seaborne cargo to North Vietnam.

..iCheIVOyf?etheekeain other respects. The ship passedonebruary declaring fromOdessa) to Singapore. Before callingit called at Djakarta and Surabayaadvance notice, probably to discharge Previous calls at intermediate portssuspected of delivering military cargobeen

ons of cargo on board tne Partizanskaya Iskra for Haiphong were

he second detected seaborne shipmentcargo to North Vietnam is aboard theSlava, which in

early July.

Much of thc other cargo for Haiphong on the Partisans kayo Slava has been identified and consistsariety of general cargo,motorcycles weighing AS tons consigned to the

* The Baymak/ uhich declared from Nikolayev to Vja-ITarta, delivered aviation material to Djakarta. Later tt called at llaiohino

- 4 -

There were also0 toot on the deck of the Bratslavj their contents have not been identified The Oktyabrskaya Revolyutsiya, was supposed to deliver

g to Singapore withto be made to Djakarta. However, tho shipto have


8. The first and only seaborne shipment of

to North Vietnam is aboard the Bvrcxovka, which Is scheduled-to arrive in Haiphonguly.

9. on these ships

probably are what they purported to b<

HaznoeKsport imnumng -varioushich is subordinate to the Soviet Ministry of Foreign Trade and has dealt in the past with the export of tobacco products, building materials, mioa, hides, hardware, insulators, fire fighting equipment,, leather goods, crockery, domestic etec trical appliances, sewing machines, clothing, kniuted' goods, sports goods, sporting guns, match tou$ . muf** ' '' and so on.

- G -

One delivery ot ammunition and firing pins was consigned to North Vietnam's quasi-military

"Central Committee for Sports and Gymnastics."observed between

7 and early

shipments by sea of

and ammunition to other destinations are not There have beenuch deliveries to-Cuba since the beginning* Most of these were

and, where identified, turned out to bem caliber. Host of thc shipments were small. There is no evidence*that any of them included combat weapons or ammunition.

Technical Cargo

of the Soviet arrivals inthe first half9 delivered

to Cuba and

the UAR. The Jti nhneudinsk, anuary arrival, carriedull load of flour, some caustic soda,on of

12. The Oktyabrskaya Revolyutsiya and theboth discussed previously-in connectiondelivered

to Haiphong. The Oktyabrskaya Revolyutsiya is reported to have unloaded

at Haiphong.

13. 9 the Ignatiy Sergeyevat the Bosporus for Haiphong from Nikolayev, the port of origin for many previous arms shipments.

* There were deliveries by Soviet shios to References

ammunition have not been made in connection with voyages, of non-Soviet shios to Cuba.


nlv.Lhe second ship to declare forfrom this port. Ten tons of


muiuutfu idkuicn Vietnam. The ship

made an unscheduled stop in Sihanoukville, Cambodia, on its way to Haiphong and probably offloadedequipment under an aid agreement withehicleompressor-oxidizer truck, which is used with missile systems, wan photographed on the deck of the Ignatiy Strgeyev when it passed the Bosporus,. When the ship was photographed again, seven days after its arrival at Zero Buoy inthis vehicle was no longer on dock, it had been unloaded at Sihanoukvillebecause the Cambodians have no missiles) or lightered off at Haiphong. The nature of the

cargoes shipped to North Vietnam has not been determined, but theretrong suspicion that they are at least military-related.

Suspicious Voyages in the Past

14. Six of thchips discussed abovesuspicious voyages to North Vietnam in(three of the remaining four ships werefirst voyage to North Vietnam). TheIakraargo to7 that includedrates resembling Styx missileno Styx missiles have ever been observedVietnam. The nature of this suspicioushas not been determined. Theto North

Vietnam in6 and February it berthed atbeforefoot mansard-roof crates,to those used to transport militaryphotographed near tho Haiphong wharves. 8 it tons ofons of which have not been


is Thf* Rratslav arrived inons outons

of its cargo unidentified, includingoxescargo shipped by Aviaeksport. tons; ons The Oktyabrakaya Hevolyutmiyato North Vietnam in


"field kitchens"

otal ofons and shipped by Prom-masheksport which handles both commercial anditary-related goods. Thedelivered

ons of which were unidentified Motor Vehicle Shipment. from tho covi^ Vjtv.

tok- This was theun

facitic ports,. in April and Mav lOfiQ

st^iaTca^ SJmilar VOya9GS'

stantial cargoes of vehicles. The Orekhov 6

April arrival, delivered5 tons offrom^Iadi-

rucks, andump trucks The Vysokogorsk, on its first voyage to Haiphong ar-

of carg^fc-aded

vrucks, IL-

r^UCks CUCkB* dndercouble-decker

on in HalpSng

least * carryinguses, 7

*Vitim uas onZy tfiearqe-hatch shin tol to north Vietnam from the Soliet yjr til

, i fYnS,twas made % the Ostroqozhsk uly 0 arrival, which tint n*

vehicles delivered from the Sovietmay originally have been intended forthrough China, only to be divertedChinese harassment. According to abroadcast of9 the Chineseend8oviet freightwith motor vehicles for North VietnamSino-Soviet border for three months. Ain Poking reported in late Hay thatcontinually harassed and delayedshipments to North Vietnam and thathad continued up to late that there had been no noticeableharassment, however,esult of thcRiver incident. aiphong portin March or early April that Sovietwere being stopped by the Chinese, butthese supplies would come by ship. Soviet railChina are continuing.

Antiaircraft Guns in Haiphong

of Haiphong onayantiaircraft guns m) onin the main railyard four-fifths of aof the main wharf area. Antiaircraft guns

of this size have been emplaced in the Haiphong area for some time. Goods on other cars in the yard appeared to have arrived by sea, but it has not been determined how the guns arrived or whether they were incoming or outgoing cargo. If they wereby sea, thc most likely vessels to have carried them were the Partiaanskaya Iskra and the Bratalav (discussed previously) and the Pavlovak, which arrived on Each ship offloaded cargo immediately preceding or during the time the antiaircraft guns were photographed. The Pavlovak was the first large-hatch ship to sail directly to Haiphong from the Black Sea since Ofons of cargo carried for Northons has not been identified.

Pavlovsk also was one of theships to departlack Sea port to the outbreak of the Ussuri It left the Blackarch 3 days after the initialincident, about enough time for the USSRrerouting rail shipments destined for Vietnam.

- 10 -

However, no direct evidence connects anytt


The various anomalies noted in the past- sug?est an expansion in the categories

wnimg to ship by sea to North Vietnam since the

b:fcn^itute conclusiveborne shipments of combat arms and

v6Jumes involved are

small. Even if every unidentified and suspicious

item were combat arms or ammunition, total deliv-

CaCgo would be negligible compared

military which North

Vietnam receives from the USSR.

hiS.-Pparentin Soviet Policy mayiversion of cargoes from railacross China because of thc threat of Chinese harassment, if the Chinese continue to delay and

nb"ome sources h^ USSR.mfV ship moro military-related car-

to North Vietnam by sea, be shipped together with

North Vietnam. The USSR could conceal shipments of combat materielime if it wished toP n

carqoes would be diffi-loadinq ports is excellent

Combat materiel delivered however, presumably would commercial cargoes.

etection of such cult. Security at Soviet

Haiphong has beenng halt. Even though the advantages of concealment

oPPSnrrJh? USSR' reP"tZd sea shipmeS CO North Vietnam of large quantities of combat

materiel probably would be detected.



Original document.

Comment about this article or add new information about this topic: