Foreign Relations: The Deep-Breathing Season

After a string of monsoon-season victories in which they chewed up eight South Vietnamese battalions, the Communist Viet Cong suddenly slowed their offensive. Whether they were pausing to catch their breath — or to fathom President Johnson's recent pronouncement, calling for both a buildup of U.S. forces and a renewed try for peace — was un clear. But the fact was that while the guerrillas have conducted some small-unit actions, it has been weeks since they have risked any big, battalion-scale attacks.

Nip-Ups, Not Knockouts. The Viet Cong had reason enough to work...

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