Four Facts About The Vietnam War Which Our Kids Are Seldom Told

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Four Facts About The Vietnam War

Which Our Kids Are Seldom Told

September 2010. Prepared for the VCA (Vietnamese Community in Australia)

By Mr. Trung Doan 0400 466 848 and Dr. Cuong Bui 0414 738 093

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  • China sent in troops and advisors, and gave North Vietnam aid worth 15-20 billion US dollars:

"During 1964 – 71, China dispatched 300,000 technical personnel and troops to help in air defense, engineering work, and logistics supplies; Chinese economic aid between 1950 and 1978 totalled $15-20 billion" – p.796, "The Rise of Modern China" by I. C.Y. Hsu 1995 – Oxford University Press, Inc.

  • The Dien Bien Phu victory against the French, widely presented as general Vo Nguyen Giap’s, actually had deep Chinese involvement:

"As early as 1950 Mao had offered Ho Chi Minh military, political and economic aids – the famous battle of Dien Bien Phu (1954) was fought largely with Chinese weapons and under Chinese direction"p.795, "The Rise of Modern China"; And

"Between 1950 and 1954, Beijing sent some of its most capable generals to [North] Vietnam as military and political advisers; they helped it professionalize and politicize its army, reorganize its administrative structure, and mobilize the masses. [They] actually planned and often helped direct Viet Minh operations. The CMAG [Chinese Military Advisory Group] contributed greatly to the success of the border, Northwest, and Dien Bien Phu engagements " – p. 63, "China and the Vietnam Wars 1950-1975" by Qiang Zhai 1999 – University of North Carolina Press

  • The Soviet Union also aided North Vietnam’s war, to the tune of 1 billion dollars a year:

"The Soviet Union poured billions of rubies into Vietnam. During 1965-1975 military aid was central, and economic aid was geared entirely to the war effort. By the 1970s Soviet aid amounted to $1 billion or more annually " – p. 415, "Encyclopaedia Of The Vietnam War" by Spencer C. Tucker 2000 – ABC-CLIO

As further evidence of this debt, its repayment was raised during 2001 negotiations between Vietnam and Russia: " Putin will aim at extending the Cam Ranh [naval] base’s lease, which expires in 2004. [Hanoi] has suggested Russia forgive billions of dollars of debt in exchange for continued use of the base""Advantage: Hanoi in Intensifying Geostrategic Game" by Stratfor, 14 February 2001

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  • Reading most textbooks, it is easy to think that the Vietnam War was mainly between the US and communists only

No textbook would look credible if it overtly denies the existence of the South Vietnamese armed forces, which won many key battles and also suffered many casualties. However, many downplay or omit their role, creating this false impression.

  • Textbooks tend to distinguish between the Viet Cong and the North Vietnamese forces. In reality, the Viet Cong were directed, trained, and supplied arms by North Vietnam

"The 1954 Geneva Accords allowed a 300-day regroupment period during which almost one million people fled the North for the South. Some 80,000 Viet Minh soldiers, mostly regional and local troops who had carried the bulk of the fighting in the South, returned to the North, but 10,000 veterans remained in the South and would form the core of the future People’s Liberation Armed Forces" and "Although Ha noi insisted that the Southern guerrilla war be self-sufficient, it provided experienced leadership, technical support, and supplies. Additionally, [its] soldiers who had gone North during the regroupment were infiltrated to the


South, forming the bulk of PLAF main forces units" – p.451 and 453, "Encyclopaedia Of The Vietnam War" by Spencer C. Tucker 2000 – ABC-CLIO.

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  • Other parties played a major role against the French

"[T]he V.N.Q.D.D. [Vietnamese Nationalist Party] might possibly have won, had it not been that Vo Nguyen Giap, at a crucial moment of the rivalry, was able to synchronise his attack on them with French operations, and to decimate [their] armies …" – p. 8, p. 17, "The Saving of South Vietnam" by Kenneth Grenville 1972 – Alpha Books

  • Near the end of the fight against the French, Ho Chi Minh set out to seize monopoly power by killing non-communist parties’ leaders

"[T]he Dai Viet Quoc Dan Dang (Greater Nationalist Party…) … was formed in 1939 by Truong Tu Anh, who was assassinated by the Communists in 1946" – p. 25, "Viet Cong" by Douglas Pike 1966 – MIT

"Many Vietnamese who were considered potential contenders for power died at the hands of the Vietminh during this period, among them such well-known men as Pham Quynh, and the Trotskyite Ta Thu Tau; Huynh Phu So, founder of the Hoa Hao, was killed in 1947" – p.135, "Vietnam – Yesterday and Today" by Ellen Hammer – Holl et al 1966

"[T]aking advantage of this accommodation with the French, the Communist Party proceeded to liquidate its opposition. .. Many were bound hand and foot and thrown into a river. Some were buried alive " – p. 69, "Losers are Pirates" by James Banerian 1984

"A French expedition force of less than two divisions was allowed to re-enter North Vietnam in February 1946 .. But the Viet-Minh had had about ten months in which to establish their administration, … and kill or terrorise into submission the genuine Vietnamese nationalists who wanted a Viet-Nam independent from France but equally free of Communist rule" – p. 27, "Street Without Joy" by Bernard Fall 1963 – The Stackpole Company

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  • Civilians were killed by all sides, particularly as guerrillas dressed as civilians. Yet most students are taught about My Lai only. Images, which leave powerful impressions, are usually of victims of American troops only

It is as if somehow victims of the communists’ widespread and persistent terror were less worthy of being mentioned.

Few, if any, textbook shows pictures of victims of Communist atrocities, such as the LHS photo below (showing some of the 200 Dak Son villagers burned alive or shot by communists in 1967), the middle photo (67 bus travellers killed by a communist road bomb in that same year, in Quang Nam), and a few mention but do not show images such as the RHS one (1968 Tet massacre of thousands of civilians).

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– End –

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Four Facts About The Vietnam War Which Our Kids Are Seldom Told

BanTinCDNVTD VCA Submission – VN War in curriculum 0i11

 

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