jCortlj Koreahs continue to act on- the assumption that they can prolong the impasse over the Pueblo incident without incurring serious risks of US militaryto secure the release of the crew. Pyongyang's most recent maneuver toormal US apology was to broadcast an open letter to President Johnson,written by the entire Pueblo crew, urging the Prosident to take the "necessary measures" to obtain their release.
The main throat of the letter was to emphasize the futility of denying that the Pueblo hadNorth Korean waters because Pyongyang has "irrefutablefrom the ship's documents and chartB. The letter claimed for the first time that the Pueblo had operated within North Korean waters for ten days, and disclosed that the crew hadeverything truthfully" and had apologized to the North Korean Government. Finally, the letter endorsed Pyongyang's right to insist on an apologyuarantee against furtheras tho price forthe crew.
The Soviets promptlyon the open letter to the President, but commentary on the Pueblo incident is now quite sparse, reflecting Moscow'sdesire to play the affair in lov key.
In South Korea, tensionfrom the capture ofand the North Koreanthe presidential palaceeasing. Thebeen aided by the Vanceby US offers of increasedassistance. Seoul lastto quiet criticismgovernment and generallyinternal security bya new defensechairman of the JointStaff, Choe Yong-hui.had earlier reshuffledofficials. The newminister is likely to haveworking relationshipofficials than hisno change in South Koreanis likely.
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Mar 68Original document.