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THE SITUATION IN SOUTH VIETNAM
(Information as0ov 63
contains classified information> nl uin llnitedStates within lheUS Codeprohibits
its tiansmission orny manner to anwell as its useHn_injiiillu.il tcujAMerffTyor interest ol the United States or for the benefiToTTmy-
"Toreign government io the detriment of the United Slates.
SC. No. 3
THE SITUATION IN SOUTH VIETNAM (Information as0 EST)
The Vietnamese coup leaders aregreater difficulties than they had expected inrovisional government. There is wrangling among civilian candidates, and there are signs of some dissension among the coup leaders themselves.
The bodies of Diem and Nhu were movedfrom the mortuary of the military hospital to that of the Catholic hospital in Saigon, allegedly to protect them from angry mobs, and Monday morning hospital authorities said the bodies had again been removed during the night. Press dispatches said hospital authorities had been ordered to make this announcement; there are reports that the coupplan to bury the bodies secretly. Photographs are circulating ln Saigon purportedly showing the bodies, with tbat of Diem riddled by bulletsa head wound, while the body said to be Nhu's showed evidenceeating. Press sources said Nhu bad been stabbed to death. Coup spokesmen,so far are sticking to the statement that Diem and Nhu committed suicide.
The generals who led the coup hadapid turnover to an all-civilian government. They now are talking in termsrovisional government comprising both generals and civilians, which may last longer than six months. General Le Van Kim, the political planner of the coup, ran into haggling among the civilians even before Gia Long palace fell. Cooperation between General "Big" Minh and Vice President Tho, who is to be Prime Minister, appears to be excellent. As one indication that Tho has no Intention of servingere front man, he is
said to have rejected the appointment of General Ton That Dinh, the military governor of Saigon, as Minister of Interior. (In this, Tho will have the Support of many of the generals, who consider Dinh
unstable, unprincipled, and opportunistic.) Dinh, who controls most of the effective forces in tho capital area andost-coup promotion to Major General, has been giving interviews magnifying his role in the coup, and night well attempt to seize power.
4. General Tran Tu Oai, the new director of information, has announced that civilians In tho new government will be "technicians and notnd that the basic policy will be "democracy withinuggesting that he envisages arole for the generals. Tho disparate groups of exiles in various world capitals are making hurried preparations to return to Saigon, where they will pose additional problems for tho politicalof the country.
era IS KIM ana DOB lntltoaieu ier Amoassauur wigethat the military would have to run the country for six monthsinimum but hopefully less than two years.
The coup loaders, while retaining martial law, have moved rapidly to release non-Communist political prisoners of the Dlera regime, reopen schools, and reintegrate the troops which defended Diem in the final fights. Special Forces commander Colonel Tung, however, has been executed.
On the other band, two civilian leaders who had not been associated with the repressions ot tho former regime have been arrested. They are Tran Quoc Buu, leader of tho country's principal trade union, and Nguyen Pbuong Thiep, an official of the National Assembly. Buu was one of the first civilians to hall the coup's success, and waswith associates when his deputy brought word that some of tho military coup leaders were assuming
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an arrogant "we did it all ourselves" attitude. Buu, requesting an early meeting with Ambassador Lodge, noted that the Vietnamese had an unfortunate tendency to "act like kings when they get onhe next report was tbat Buu bad been arrested.
8. Buddhist leader Tri Quang has left thewhere he*had been in asylum. ThoUN observers has left Saigon. Radiotwist music, banned by Mme. Nhu's moralitythe relaxed atmosphere. The pagodasand Buddhist flags are flying. here were flurries ofactlvitiy, quickly suppressed by the ml11-
9. There is still no discernible militaryby the Viet
[There haveow attacKS on scattered
strategic hamlets in the vicinity of Saigon.
The situation in the northern city of Hue is unsettled and somewhat obscure. Popularls rising against Diem's younger brother Ngo Dinh Canesult of rumors that mass burial sites have been found on his property. Can, former strongman of the northern provinces, was shunted aside by Nhu in August, and now is seeking protection from the US Consulate. There are also reports, however, that Can and General Do Cao Tri, northern corps commander, mightounter-coup. The public ls suspicious of Tri because of his severe repression of the Buddhists.
Diem's brother Ngo Dinh Luyen, ambassador to London, resignedtatement charging tbe death of Diem and Nhu was "murder camouflaged as suicide." Another brother, Archbishop Thuc, was on his way back to Romeilgrimage to Lourdes.
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lime. Nhu is still in Los Angeles, reportedly lookingouse. Her three youngest children are to be flown from South Vietnam, where they were in thecity of Dalat, to Rome.
12. oundup of world reaction to the overthrow of Diem is appended as an annex.
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