NBC Evening News for Tuesday, Sep 30, 1969
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(Studio) Green Berets released and flown to United States on leave. To be reassigned outside Vietnam. Charges dropped because CIA won't let its agents testify and Army says fair trial not possible without them.
REPORTER: David Brinkley
(Long Binh, South Vietnam) Men dance around for joy. Colonel Robert Rheault burns papers he'd prepared for trial. [RHEAULT - says won't comment on substantive issues now. May hold news conference later. Men always have done their duty. Should be no cloud over us.] [Major Thomas MIDDLETON, JR. - says no comment as to whether he killed double agent or about espionage homicide. We'd have won trial.] [Captain Robert MARASCO - says charge absurd and wrong.] Rheault says Thai Khac-Chuyen had penetrated Special Forces operation to work for enemy. [RHEAULT - says people killed in war. Not considered homicide.]
REPORTER: Robert Hager
(Saigon, South Vietnam) Chuyen's widow is amazed and bitter at decision. Accuses US of being more cruel than VC. Family has received no pension and body never been found.
REPORTER: Bob Jones
(DC) [Defense Secretary Melvin LAIRD - says men free and assignments won't be affected.] CIA Director Richard Helms says if CIA testified, CIA men would have to leave Vietnam. Some members upset about aloofness of Army Secretary Stanley Resor, and violation of civilian authority by General Creighton Abrams.
REPORTER: Robert Goralski