| % Mr Carter de Paul
Box L, Navy 150
FPO San Francisco, Cal
[October 19, 1956]
Dear Admiral Burke,
I wish to send you a succinct report
in the form on an Ex Navy Sit Rep on the situation of Operation Laos,
on this, the 19th of Oct. We are in the village of Vang Vieng, half way
between Vientiane and Luang Prabang. I know you are receiving the Letter
from Laos that the International Rescue Committee forwards, so I'll not
repeat those details.
The Navy shipped all the equipment
and it arrived, both on time and in good condition. Thank you. The Naval
attaché in Hong Kong and the supply depot in Subic and Sangley
In Saigon my three men and I were guests
of President Diem who gave us a tour of the resettlement areas in his
own plane. In each camp around south Viet Nam we found thousands who remembered
our unit (then CTU 90.8.6) in Haiphong, and all remember the Navy.
President Diem then flew us to Vientiane,
the capitol of Laos. From there the Laotian army gave us a truck, with
our two jeeps to complete the transportation. The Minister of Education
helped map out our training program for the schools, and the Minister
of Health gave us a carte blanche to resupply when needed, from Laotian
We then set out of the two day trek
through the bamboo jungle towards the north, to an area where the Pathet
Lao, though not in legal control, are strongly present. We arrived at
this village of Vang Vieng two weeks ago.
Here through the village Chieften we
have set up a little 12 bed hospital, and a fine hut-of-a-house to live
in. We even have some beer that we brought up with us. There is a U.S.
flag flying over our house, and a sign over the door saying "Uncle
We shall stay here several months treating the hundreds that come in every day. Most have never seen a white man, none have ever seen a doctor. Between Haiphong and our arrival here, there were many words, and some rough times. Now we are doing a job that God and Man should be pleased with. "Words sound, but it is actions that really attract..."
Thomas A. Dooley, M.D.