TET OFFENSIVE: DECLASSIFIED
First in Series of Releases Expected in July, New Transparency Effort To Share Historical Information of Current Relevance
recognition of the 50th anniversary of the Tet Offensive—which took
place on January 30, 1968—Director of National Intelligence Daniel R.
Coats directed intelligence agencies to review their holdings to reveal previously classified details to the public.
In December 2016, former DNI James R. Clapper instructed
the Intelligence Community Senior Historians Panel to identify topics
of historical interest for declassification and release, as a part of
the IC’s continuing efforts to enhance public understanding of IC
For the first release of this initiative, the panel recommended
documents relating to the Tet Offensive be reviewed for declassification
and release in commemoration of the Vietnam War.
The Tet Offensive
The Tet Offensive was a series of surprise attacks launched by the
North Vietnamese Army and the Viet Cong on January 30,1968 throughout
South Vietnam that targeted multiple prominent sites, including the
Presidential Palace and the U.S. Embassy in Saigon.
While the attacks initially took the U.S. and South Vietnamese forces
by surprise, they eventually recovered to repel the Viet Cong. The
dramatic nature of the Tet Offensive began to turn U.S. public opinion
against the war and precipitated the U.S. withdrawal from Vietnam.
Review & Declassification
Based on the recommendation of the Historians Panel, DNI Coats has
directed that IC elements review their record holdings to identify
classified records pertaining to the Tet Offensive and review them for
declassification and release.
The declassified documents will be released over a period of 15
months, in three installments, beginning in July 2018. Subsequent
releases will take place in January 2019 and April 2019.
How to Learn More
will serve as the hub for information on the progress of the Tet
Offensive document declassification throughout the process and will
provide access to materials sourced from across the IC upon their
release. Efforts to declassify historical information of current
relevance are rooted in the 2015 transparency implementation plan that led to semi-annual meetings of the IC Historian Panel . Follow @inteldotgov #TetDeclassified for updates.