President Nixon of the United States, in a nationwide radio and television broadcast, told the American people on Tuesday right that an agreement ending the bitter twelve year old war in Vietnam had finally been initialled by the United States and North Vietnam in Paris.
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Background: President Nixon of the United States, in a nationwide radio and television broadcast, told the American people on Tuesday right that an agreement ending the bitter twelve year old war in Vietnam had finally been initialled by the United States and North Vietnam in Paris.
The agreement, he pointed out, will herald a ceasefire throughout Vietnam - a ceasefire that has been set for the 28th January, following the official signing in Paris on January 27.
United States servicemen in Saigon gathered to hear the President's broadcast. His announcement of the weekend ceasefire will set in motion vast contingency plans for the withdrawal of the last 23,000 American troops still stationed in South Vietnam.
Immediately after President Nixon's broadcast, the United States Ambassador to South Vietnam, Mr. Elsworth Dunker, hurried from his Embassy to confer with President Thieu in the Presidential Palace. People in Saigon, making ready for the coming ceasefire, later President Thieu's own broadcast to his nation.
He told the South Vietnamese to beware of what he called "Communist treason" after the ceasefire. He also indicated that he doubted the ability of an international supervisory force to keep the peace in vietnam. "We and we along are able to maintain peace," he told his people.
Expressing serious doubts about the prospect for a genuine end to the quarter-century of intermittent war in Vietnam, the President warned that the new political phase of the struggle with the Communists would be "as tough and dangerous he the phase of military struggle."