©The Japan Times
May 17, 1998
Ho Chi Minh advocated class war
Because Don MacLaren, in his May 10 letter, “Ho Chi Minh was a nationalist,” seems to be interested in the truth about Ho Chi Minh, let us provide him with a few basic items.
First, the small communist party in North Vietnam in their war against the French (1945-1974) did win the support of many Vietnamese nationalists, but Ho Chi Minh also clearly believed in class war against “the oppressor classes,” and caused hundreds of thousands of Roman Catholics and others to move from North to South Vietnam.
Second, the South Vietnamese government from 1954 to 1975 was led by genuine nationalists, many of who had also fought against the French.
Third, as I personally saw in Saigon and Cholon in 1960, almost six years after the first Vietnamese war ended and four years before Ho Chi Minh’s guerrillas became a serious threat in the South, if we judge by goods in the shops, motorized traffic, and the beautiful dresses of the ladies, the local standard of living was higher then than it is now, 38 years later.
Fourth, after the United States abandoned South Vietnam in the early 1970s and the country finally fell to the North Vietnamese in 1975, hundreds of thousands of anticommunists from North and South fled the country in boats. The U.S. news media and their fanatic opposition to the war must take primary responsibility for the unknown number, probably tens of thousands or more, who died trying to escape from Ho Chi Minh’s communist dictatorship.
As for the total number of people who died during the war, several parties, but especially the North Vietnamese communists, must take responsibility for that.
John T. Blackmore