By Alex Ferguson
Last week, Barack Obama met with Truong Tan Sang, the current “president” of Communist Vietnam. Obama is quoted as saying, “At the conclusion of the meeting, President Sang shared a letter with me sent by Ho Chi Minh to Harry Truman. And we discussed the fact that Ho Chi Minh was actually inspired by the U.S. Declaration of Independence and Constitution, and the words of Thomas Jefferson.”
The question is, does Obama actually believe this Communist claptrap, or is he just cynically repeating the lies he learned as a lad.
At the time of the Truman letter, Ho Chi Minh was looking for some easy foreign aid, but Harry Truman saw right through him.
Truman knew all he needed to know about Minh’s suppression of freedom in North Vietnam. He was well aware of the enslavement, torture and murder of the Vietnamese people.
Typically, the only time the liberal left ever quotes Minh directly is in reference to this lying letter. Let’s change the paradigm and look at what he really said when he wasn’t hustling the rubes.
That necessarily takes us to a remarkable collection titled: “Selected Writings, 1920-1966;” edited by Bernard B. Fall. Here are some excerpts:
- (1921) Russia has never hesitated to come to the help of peoples awakened by its historic and victorious revolution. One of its first important acts was the founding of the University of the East.
- The 62 nationalities represented at the university form a commune.
- The University of the East … has fulfilled a great task, namely: 1 – It teaches to the future vanguard militants the principles of class struggle. 2 – It establishes between the proletarian vanguard of the colonies a close contact with the Western proletariat, thus preparing the way for the close and effective cooperation which will alone ensure the final victory of the international working class. 3 – It teaches the colonized people …, to know one another and to unite, by creating the basis of a future union of Eastern countries, one of the wings of the proletarian revolution.
- (1926) The Communist International is struggling unremittingly against the rapacious capitalists in all the countries in the world.
- (1921) Victory to Vietnam’s revolution. Victory to the to the world’s revolution.
- (1951) The antidemocratic camp is headed by the United States.
- (1957) The national question can no longer be viewed from an abstract and isolated point of view. Marxism-Leninism has shown that national movements effectively directed against imperialism unfailingly contribute to the general revolutionary struggle and that national claims and national movements must not be estimated according to their strictly local political and social character in a narrow-minded way, but according to the part they play against the imperialist forces of the world.
- (1960) Socialism will ultimately triumph throughout the world.
Another impeccable source of clarity is a 1995 Wall Street Journal interview with Bui Tin, the former North Vietnamese Army colonel who accepted the surrender of Saigon in 1975:
Question: Was the National Liberation Front (Viet Cong) independent?
Answer: No. It was set up by the Communist Party … we
always said there was only one party, only one
army in the war to liberate the South and unite
In his interview with Stephen Young, Bui Tin was quite
forthcoming about the source of Communist victory. (The American antiwar movement) was essential to our strategy. Support of the war from our rear was completely secure while the American rear was vulnerable. Every day our leadership would listen to
the world news over the radio at 9 a.m. to follow the
growth of the American antiwar movement.
Visits by people like Jane Fonda and former Attorney Gen. Ramsey Clark and ministers gave us confidence that we should hold on in the face of battlefield reversals. We were elated when Jane Fonda, wearing a red Vietnamese dress, said at a press conference that she was ashamed of American actions in the war and that she would struggle along with us … America lost because of its democracy, through dissent and and protest. It lost the ability to mobilize a will to win … If Johnson had granted Gen. William Westmoreland requests to enter Laos and block the Ho Chi Minh
Trail, Hanoi could not have won the war.
And finally, we turn to Gen. Vo Nguyen Giap’s published memoirs:
What we still don’t understand is why you Americans
stopped the bombing of Hanoi. You had us on the ropes.
If you had pressed us a little harder, just for another day
or two, we were ready to surrender!
It was the same at the battle of TET. You defeated us!
We knew it, and we thought you knew it, but we were
elated to notice your media was helping us. They were
causing more disruption in American than we could in
the battlefields. We were ready to surrender. You had
Alex Ferguson is a longtime Whittier resident.