12 Sources: An Annotated Bibliography on the Hundred Viets (Bach Viet/Baiyue)

Posted in Ancient History, Annotated Bibliography with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on July 10, 2020 by Ian Pham
Photo by Hugo Heimendinger on Pexels.com*

Introduction:

The following is a collection of sources and excerpts I selected which talk about the ancient ancestors of the Vietnamese people, known in history as the “Hundred Viets” race (Bach Viet/Baiyue).

My original plan was to present the sources in my standard blog format, which is to write about each topic individually, one article at a time. I still intend to do that, so anyone who enjoys my history articles will still have that to look forward to.

At the same time, however, there is so much information that I would like you all to be aware of and see as soon as possible. That way, you know that the information exists, and if you wanted to do a little exploration of your own into our ancient and glorious past, then you can.

That is why I’ve compiled this short list of academic sources about the Hundred Viets. The following are some excellent excerpts quoted directly from the works themselves. They provide some detail into the ancient roots of the Vietnamese people, further demonstrating that Vietnamese history is pretty awesome.

The sources are not organized in alphabetical order, but rather in the order that I believe will make the most sense to the reader and help them see the big picture.

I hope you enjoy this read, and that you find it helpful in discovering and understanding the rich heritage of the Vietnamese people.

Brace yourself, though. It’s a longer read.

Word count: 2709**

Estimated reading time: 15-19 minutes

*photos in this article are presented primarily for aesthetic purposes, and, while they could be, are not necessarily related to the topics discussed
**word count does not include the standard bibliography at the end of the article (word count with bibliography: 2955)

1. Murphey, Rhoads. East Asia: A New History, Fifth Edition. Boston: Longman. 2010.

The Yue kingdom had included the related people and culture of what is now northern Vietnam… In Han times, the southern people and culture of Yue were regarded as foreign and were in fact very different from those of the north. More than traces of these differences remain even now, including the Cantonese language and cuisine… The people and culture of Vietnam were still more different, and they regained their independence from China after the fall of the Han. (Murphy 2010: 60)

Photo by Irina Iriser on Pexels.com

The name Viet (Yue in Chinese) derives from the name of an ancient kingdom that existed during the Warring States Period (sixth to third centuries BCE) on the southeastern coast of what is now China. The name came to be applied by the ancient Chinese to peoples on their southern frontier… Nam Viet (Chinese Nan Yue, meaning “South Viet”) was the name of an ancient kingdom in southern China. (Murphey 2010: 188)

Chronology…

  • … 220 BCE: Qin conquer northern Vietnam kingdom of Yue
  • … 111 BCE to 220 CE: Han conquest of Yue, northern Vietnam

(Murphy 2010: 189)

2. Holcombe, Charles. A History of East Asia: From the Origins of Civilization to the Twenty-First Century. New York: Cambridge University Press. 2011.

The new nineteenth-century name Vietnam was consciously intended to evoke the memory of an ancient (208-110 BCE) kingdom called Southern Viet (pronounced Nam Viet in Vietnamese). Because the capital of that ancient Southern Viet kingdom had been located at the site of the modern city of Guangzhou (in English, Canton), in China, however, nineteenth-century Vietnam was obviously somewhat further south… The reason, then, why the capital of the ancient kingdom of Southern Viet was… located north of modern Vietnam in what is now China, was because the very earliest Bronze Age kingdom called Viet (in Chinese, Yue 越), from which all of these names presumably ultimately derived, had been located even further north, in the vicinity of the modern Chinese Province of Zhejiang, almost halfway up the coast of what is today China! Early Chinese texts, in fact, referred to most of what is now southeast China as the land of the “Hundred Viets.” (Holcombe 2011: 9)

3. Nguyen, Dieu Thi. “A mythographical journey to modernity: The textual and symbolic transformations of the Hung Kings founding myths.” Journal of Southeast Asian Studies, no. 2 (2013): 315-37.

The origin or founding myth of Vietnam is ‘Truyen Hong Bang’ (The tale of Hong Bang)… According to the tale, King Kinh Duong, who belonged to the bloodline of the Northern Than Nong (in Chinese Shen Nung, or the Divine Farmer) on his paternal side, and to the Immortals on his maternal side, ruled over the Southern realm named Xich Qui Quoc (The Red-haired Devils’ Realm)… During a journey to the Water Realm, Kinh Duong married a Dragon Spirit, who gave birth to one son, Sung Lam, also known as Lac Long Quan (Dragon Lord of the Lac)… The Dragon Lord met Au Co, an Immortal from the Mountainous Realm, and was smitten by her beauty… The quoc dan (realm’s people) over which they ruled were known as the Bach Viet (One hundred Viet), noted for their custom of tattooing as taught by their Dragon Lord-Father to ward off crocodiles and other aquatic creatures. (Nguyen 2013: 318-19)

Photo by Pixabay on Pexels.com

4. Cameron, Judith. “Textile Crafts in the Gulf of Tongking: The Intersection Between Archeology and History.” In The Tongking Gulf Through History, edited by Nola Cooke, Li Tana, and James A. Anderson: 25-38. Philadelphia: University of Pennsylvania Press. 2011.

According to Vietnamese folk history, the earliest groups in the Red River region had no knowledge of spinning and weaving until the time of the Hùng kings, the first indigenous chiefdom centered on the Red River valley. It was ruled by kings who claimed descent from a heroic ancestor, the Lạc dragon lord, who had come from the sea, subdued evil elements in the region, and civilized the people by teaching them to cultivate rice and weave clothes. (Cameron 2011: 31)

The spinning and weaving data from these excavations provide firm evidence for the introduction of textile technology into the Red River valley by late prehistoric groups belonging to the Tanshishan culture (probably Yue) from Fujian Province. (Cameron 2011: 30-37)

5. Milburn, Olivia. “A Virtual City: The ‘Records of the Lands of Yue’ and the Founding of Shaoxing.” Oriens Extremus, vol. 46 (2007): 117-46.

The city of Shaoxing 紹興, in what is now northern Zhejiang province, is one of China’s oldest recorded planned cities. At the time of its foundation in 490 BCE, the city was intended to function as the capital city of the independent and culturally distinct kingdom of Yue 越, at that time on the southern edge of the Chinese world. It was laid out by order of King Goujian of Yue 越王勾踐 (r. 496-465 BCE), the most famous monarch of that kingdom, who played a crucial role in the political life at the very end of the Spring and Autumn period (771-475 BCE). (Milburn 2007: 117)

There are fundamental problems with understanding any Yue text, in that many aspects of the cultural and linguistic background are unknown, and completely different from those recorded in other ancient Chinese texts. ” (Milburn 2007: 118)

It was only towards the end of the Spring and Autumn period that the people of the Zhou confederacy began to become aware of the Yue peoples in the south. The Yue peoples, related culturally and linguistically but not politically (and indeed often at war with each other) stretched along the coast from what is now southern Jiangsu province down the coast to northern Vietnam. (Milburn 2007: 118)

Photo by Suraphat Nuea-on on Pexels.com

Every reference in ancient Chinese texts to the people of the south, particularly to the kingdom of Yue, spoke of their unusual appearance and strange customs. The people of Yue were regarded as alien by the inhabitants of the Central States since they wore their hair cut short and they were tattooed. In addition to that they were a riverine and coastal people, travelling by boat rather than by horse and cart. They were highly bellicose, with a reputation for great bravery. This was enhanced by the widespread use in Yue culture of swords, generally admitted to be of unparalleled quality. To the people of the Central States (whose records provide virtually everything that is known of the Yue people prior to the archaeological discoveries of the last half century), the Yue were exotic and dangerous. (Milburn 2007: 119)

6. Hartmann, John, Wei Luo, Fahui Wang, and Guanxiong Wang. “Sinification of Zhuang place names in Guangxi, China: a GIS-based spatial analysis approach.” Transactions of the Institute of British Geographers, no. 2 (2012): 317-33.

Zhuang, the largest minority language in China, is the label given to a variety of Tai languages and dialects spoken mostly in Guangxi. As a result of the process known as Sinification or Sinicisation stemming from the influx of Han soldiers and settlers moving in from many directions, but primarily the north, many Zhuang place names (toponyms) were changed to Han or pronounced with a Han accent or spelled in Chinese in such a way as to obscure the original Zhuang form. (Hartmann et al. 2012: 317)

The origin of the Zhuang can be traced to the ‘Baiyue’ peoples in southern China, recorded in history as early as in the Eastern Zhou Dynasty (475-221 BC) (e.g. Pan 2005). Historically, the Zhuang were farmers who specialised in growing rice in irrigated fields called naa in Zhuang languages. They lived primarily in thousands of villages or small towns in the lowlands close to rivers and streams that were dammed to divert water into the naa. The history of the Zhuang, like other minorities in Chinese frontier regions (e.g. Herman 2007), is marked by a relentless series of violent conflicts with their northern neighbour, the Han (the Chinese majority). (Hartmann et al. 2012: 318)

7. Fu, Songbin, Pu Li, Xiangning Meng, and Yali Xue. “Study on the Distribution of the ‘MSY2’ Polymorphism in 9 Chinese Populations.” Anthropologischer Anzeiger, h. 1 (2005): 23-27.

The Buyi, who came from the ancient “Baiyue” and had the same predecessor with the Zhuang, were relatively closed by living in plains isolated by mountains. (Fu et al. 2005: 26)

8. Weinstein, Jodie L. Empire and Identity in Guizhou: Local Resistance to Qing Expansion. Seattle: University of Washington Press. 2014.

In northwestern Guizhou, the Lolo, known today as the Yi predominated, interspersed with small settlements of Han immigrants and Miao. The southwest had a high concentration of Zhongjia (Buyi)… (Weinstein 2014: 17)

To begin answering the question “Who are the Zhongjia?” it will be useful to first examine some modern demographic and ethnographic data. As noted earlier, the Zhongjia have been called the Buyi since 1953. Numbering around 2.9 million, the Buyi today constitute the eleventh-largest minority nationality in the People’s Republic of China. (Weinstein 2014: 19)

Photo by Q. Hung Pham on Pexels.com

The Buyi represent one of many Tai groups in southern China and Southeast Asia… Their closest kin in both ethnolinguistic and geographic terms are the Northern Zhuang, a subgroup within the much larger Zhuang nationality that is found mostly in Guangxi… The Buyi and Northern Zhuang share so many cultural and linguistic similarities that it is impossible to study one group without reference to the other… More distant relatives of the Buyi include the Southern Zhuang of Guangxi and the Nung and Tay of Vietnam. The Buyi also share some cultural and linguistic features with the Dai of southern Yunnan as well as the Thai, Lao, and Shan populations of mainland Southeast Asia. Their extended ethnic family also includes the Dong (Kam), Shui, and Maonan ethnic groups dispersed throughout Guizhou, Guangxi, and Hunan, and the Li of Hainan. (Weinstein 2014: 19)

Archeological findings, linguistic data, and DNA evidence suggest that these Tai-speaking populations all descended from the Hundred Yue (Baiyue) peoples who occupied a vast area of eastern, central, and south- ern China as early as 2000 B.C.E. Two Baiyue civilizations in particular have been linked to the Buyi of Guizhou and their Zhuang neighbors. The Buyi and Northern Zhuang seem to share ancestral ties to the Xi’ou people who inhabited the West River basin along Guangxi’s present-day border with Guangdong. The Southern Zhuang, along with the closely related Nung and Tay, may have descended from the Luoyue people who lived in the area extending from Guangxi’s current provincial capital of Nanning to the Red River basin of northern Vietnam. Like their contemporaries in other Yue societies, the inhabitants of Xi’ou and Luoyue relied primarily on rice farming and other agricultural activities for their livelihood. (Weinstein 2014: 19-20)

9. Ruan, Xing. Allegorical Architcture: Living Myth and Architectonics in Southern China. Honolulu: University of Hawaii Press. 2006.

The Dong are an ancient but little-known ethnic group who today number more than 2.9 million, a little less than the population of, say, Jamaica. All existing historical records on the Dong are in Chinese, which, as mentioned earlier, was based on various “travel notes” from adventurous Han literati like Lu You. (Ruan 2006: 14)

Photo by Thach Tran on Pexels.com

Generally speaking, the Dong are believed to have originated from a branch of the ancient Luoyue, who are known to have lived in Guizhou at the end of the Eastern Han dynasty (25-220). The Luoyue were native people of the area now inhabited by the Dong. The historically recorded Luoyue customs—tattoos, bronze drums, men and women bathing together in rivers, and the like—are still alive in today’s Dong social life. In some places, even mountains and clans are named Luo. Through time, the ancient Baiyue migrated into this region, mingling with the native population. Other propositions regarding the origins of the Dong associate them with the ancient Yue, the Ouyue, the Ganyue, the Jinyue, and others. In all of these cases, the Dong are thought to have derived from these people. (Ruan 2006: 22)

10. Wang, Feng. “Report of Conference in Evolutionary Linguistics (2012).” Journal of Chinese Linguistics, no. 1 (2013): 246-53.

How to draw genetic trees of languages is an important area where methods and information from mathematics can be brought into evolutionary linguistics… Deng Xiaohua of Xiamen University applied molecular anthropology and lexicostatistics to obtain a genetic tree of Austronesian languages in Taiwan. Based on the analysis of this tree, the BaiYue-Austronesian group was thought to be formed around 4000 B.P. in southeastern China. (Wang 2013: 251)

11. Bush, Richard C. Untying the Knot: Making Peace in the Taiwan Strait. Washington, D.C.: Brookings Institution Press. 2005.

In May 2001, scientists in Taiwan announced the results of research on the genetic origins of the island’s Minnan (southern Fujian) majority. This is the part of the population known as Taiwanese, as opposed to mainlanders, Hakkas, and aborigines. The researchers found that they were in fact descended from the Yueh people, who were scattered along the southeastern coast of China during the later Zhou dynasty (770–221 B.C.). The political implication: Taiwanese were not ethnically Chinese.  (Bush 2005: 225)

Photo by Jimmy Chan on Pexels.com

Not to be outdone, PRC researchers announced in December 2001 that four aboriginal groups in Taiwan exhibited a specific chromosomal pattern characteristic of the Li ethnic group on Hainan Island and that all five groups were descended from the Baiyue people of eastern China. The Baiyue were said to have migrated to both Hainan and Taiwan, where they maintained the same lifestyle and customs. The Chinese message: even Taiwan’s aborigines had a connection with the mainland.  (Bush 2005: 225)

12. He, Yinan. “Competing Narratives, Identity Politics, and Cross-Strait Reconciliation.” Asian Perspective, no. 4 (2010): 45-83.

On prehistoric Taiwan, three theoretical models exist in the academic debate: theories of southern origin, arguing that Taiwan’s aborigines are the carriers of the Austronesian languages who originally lived on the islands in Southeast Asia and moved to Taiwan; theories of northern origin contending that the aborigines are descendants of the ancient Baiyue (hundreds of Yue tribes), people who came from southern China, although the Yue people remaining in China have since been assimilated by the Han; and theories suggesting that Taiwan is the land of the Austronesian languages and center of the southern islands culture. (He 2010: 50)

Two pieces of news caught peoples’ eyes in 2001. First, two students of Fudan University compared the gaoshanzu with the osseous remains found in a Yue relic in Maqiao, near Shanghai, and claimed that their chromosome match was 50 percent or more. In the other report, the Institute of Genetics of the Chinese Academy of Science concluded that the Li minorities living in Hainan Island today share ancestors with four gaoshanzu groups because their chromosome type is the same as the Baiyue people in Zhejiang province but differs from Southeast Asian people. (He 2010: 51)

Conclusion:

That’s all (for now), folks! As you can see, the Vietnamese people have an ancient ancestry. Our influence vast, and our historical impact immense. Hope you enjoyed the read.

Bibliography (standard and alphabetical):

Bush, Richard C. Untying the Knot: Making Peace in the Taiwan Strait. Washington, D.C.: Brookings Institution Press. 2005.

Cameron, Judith. “Textile Crafts in the Gulf of Tongking: The Intersection Between Archeology and History.” In The Tongking Gulf Through History, edited by Nola Cooke, Li Tana, and James A. Anderson: 25-38. Philadelphia: University of Pennsylvania Press. 2011.

Fu, Songbin, Pu Li, Xiangning Meng, and Yali Xue. “Study on the Distribution of the ‘MSY2’ Polymorphism in 9 Chinese Populations.” Anthropologischer Anzeiger, h. 1 (2005): 23-27.

Hartmann, John, Wei Luo, Fahui Wang, and Guanxiong Wang. “Sinification of Zhuang place names in Guangxi, China: a GIS-based spatial analysis approach.” Transactions of the Institute of British Geographers, no. 2 (2012): 317-33.

He, Yinan. “Competing Narratives, Identity Politics, and Cross-Strait Reconciliation.” Asian Perspective, no. 4 (2010): 45-83.

Holcombe, Charles. A History of East Asia: From the Origins of Civilization to the Twenty-First Century. New York: Cambridge University Press. 2011.

Milburn, Olivia. “A Virtual City: The ‘Records of the Lands of Yue’ and the Founding of Shaoxing.” Oriens Extremus, vol. 46 (2007): 117-46.

Murphey, Rhoads. East Asia: A New History, Fifth Edition. Boston: Longman. 2010.

Nguyen, Dieu Thi. “A mythographical journey to modernity: The textual and symbolic transformations of the Hung Kings founding myths.” Journal of Southeast Asian Studies, no. 2 (2013): 315-37.

Ruan, Xing. Allegorical Architecture: Living Myth and Architectonics in Southern China. Honolulu: University of Hawaii Press. 2006.

Wang, Feng. “Report of Conference in Evolutionary Linguistics (2012).” Journal of Chinese Linguistics, no. 1 (2013): 246-53.

Weinstein, Jodie L. Empire and Identity in Guizhou: Local Resistance to Qing Expansion. Seattle: University of Washington Press. 2014.

The Vietnamese-Cantonese Connection

Posted in Ancient History with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on July 7, 2020 by Ian Pham
Guangdong Province of China was once the place of the ancient Vietnamese kingdom of Nam-Viet in the late first millenium B.C. Photo by Irina Iriser on Pexels.com

The Cantonese language is a derivation of the Vietnamese language. If you didn’t know, then now you know.

A brief excerpt from Rhoads Murphey’s textbook, East Asia: A New History, 5th Edition, says the following (p. 60):

In Han [China] times, the southern people and culture of Yue [Viet] were regarded as foreign and were in fact very different from those of the north. More than traces of these differences remain even now, including the Cantonese language and cuisine… The people and culture of Vietnam were still more different, and they regained their independence from China after the fall of the Han.

The excerpt from Murphey above candidly shows that the Cantonese language and cuisine were part of Viet culture. This is further evidence demonstrating that the Vietnamese people’s role and influence in Asia during ancient times were larger and more prominent than is commonly believed in popular history.

One important note about Murphey’s book is that it is heavily skewed in favor of China. His coverage of Chinese history is presented with more enthusiasm and glorification than his coverage of Vietnamese history. Despite this point, there is still some useful information about Vietnam to be found in his work.

If taken with other sources on Vietnamese history (one recommendation are the works of Cornell University’s Keith W. Taylor), Murphey’s reluctant coverage may assist a newcomer in learning some introductory things about the Vietnamese nation and its people.

Prior to the invasion by the Chinese Han Dynasty in 111 B.C., there existed a Vietnamese kingdom named Nam-Viet in what is today Guangdong and Guangxi (Murphy 2010: 191). The capital of the Nam-Viet kingdom was located in what is today the city of Guangzhou (aka Canton) (Holcombe 2011: 9).

After the fall of the Han, the people of Viet would wrestle from the grips of Chinese control, occasionally breaking free, but ultimately being recaptured by a new Chinese dynasty. The Viet people’s fight for independence would eventually be achieved once and for all in 938 A.D., with Ngo Quyen’s victory at the Battle of Bach Dang River.

The people of Vietnam have ancient roots that stretch back more than 4,000 years.

Ancestors of the Vietnamese people are known as the “Hundred Viets” race. These Hunded Viets occupied a vast region in Asia that included today’s northern Vietnam and much of today’s China south of the Yangtze River.

Today, Vietnam is a nation in Southeast Asia, with a rich and proud history that is only beginning to truly be grasped by western observers.

Cited:

Holcombe, Charles. A History of East Asia: From the Origins of Civilization to the Twenty-First Century. New York: Cambridge University Press. 2011.

Murphey, Rhoads. East Asia: A New History, 5th Edition. Boston: Longman. 2010.

4,000+ Years and Counting: Essential Facts About the Vietnamese People

Posted in Ancient History with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on June 14, 2020 by Ian Pham
Photo by Dương Nhân on Pexels.com

Introduction:

There is already a lot of information out there about Vietnam and the Vietnamese people. Much of the following is common knowledge.

We are a nation in Southeast Asia.

We fought a bloody and destructive war in the 20th century, which took place between the 1950s and 1970s. The U.S. was involved in this war and fought alongside the good guys (the South Vietnamese).

Since the 10th century, we became an independent nation called Dai Viet (“Great Viet”) after 1,000 years of Chinese occupation, which started when the Han Dynasty took over in the first century BC.

Vietnam has some pretty incredible historical heroes, such as Lady Trieu, who led a valiant but ultimately unsuccessful rebellion against the Kingdom of Wu in the third century; General Tran Hung Dao, who crushed the mighty Mongol Yuan Empire invaders in the 14th century; and Emperor Nguyen Hue Quang Trung, who eviscerated the invaders from the Manchu Qing Dynasty in the 18th century.

These are just a few of the things that encompass the long and storied heritage of the Vietnamese people. They are a cornerstone of the Vietnamese identity, and are commonly known to anyone who is interested in Vietnamese history.

A statue of Emperor Quang Trung of the Tay Son Dynasty. Binh Dinh Province, Vietnam. Photo shared in accordance with CC BY-SA 3.0. (via Bùi Thụy Đào Nguyên / Wikimedia Commons).

As important and timeless as these truths are, however, they are things that happened relatively recently, within the last 2,000 years in the AD era (Anno Domini; also known as the Common Era [CE]; after the birth of Christ). Therefore, they do not explain who the Vietnamese people were in ancient times, in the BC era (Before Christ) of the western calendar.

And so, in pursuit of a deeper understanding of Vietnamese history, the following questions are raised:

  1. Did Vietnam exist before 2,000 years ago?
  2. If yes, what was Vietnam like before 2,000 years ago?
  3. Just how old are the Vietnamese people?

The proceeding sections of this article will present more detailed answers to the questions above. If you’re short on time right now, though, then the quick version of the answers, in their respective order, are:

  1. Yes.
  2. Pretty sophisticated and impressive.
  3. Really, really, really old.

Brief Answers:

1. Yes, a Vietnamese state did exist before 2,000 years ago:

It wasn’t called “Vietnam” during that time, but it did exist. And it existed in several forms in different time periods.

Vietnam had a number of names throughout its existence. Some (but not all) of these names include “Van Lang,” “Au Lac,” “Nam-Viet,” and “Dai-Viet.” It was not until the 19th century that the modern name “Viet-Nam” was adapted by the Nguyen Dynasty.

The Vietnamese state we will talk about specifically in the next section is Au Lac.

2. This Vietnamese state, Au Lac, was independent, sophisticated, and impressive.

In the first millennium BC, there existed the Vietnamese state of Au Lac. Its capital city was named Co Loa. As the next section will show, Co Loa was quite advanced and developed, signifying that the people who built it were socially, politically, and culturally sophisticated.

3. The Vietnamese people have existed for more than 4,000 years.

Besides the testament presented by the state of Au Lac, there is evidence that the Vietnamese people have existed in northern Vietnam and much of southern China for a really, really, really long time.

Read on to find more detailed explanations for these answers.

Co Loa Citadel and the Vietnamese state of Au Lac in the first millennium BC:

In his book The Origins of Ancient Vietnam (2015), Nam C. Kim presents valuable insight into the state of Au Lac. From Au Lac, the Vietnamese people can trace their heritage back to at least the first millennium BC.

Traditional accounts signify that the kingdom of Au Lac was founded through conquest by a man named An Duong Vuong (aka “King An Duong”) in the third century BC (Kim, 2015: 5). There is common agreement that in Vietnamese tradition, King An Duong is recognized as one of the early ancestors of the Vietnamese people.

Following his conquest, the newly crowned King An Duong ordered the construction of a large citadel in Tay-vu called Co Loa Thanh (aka “Co Loa Citadel”). This citadel, which may simply be called “Co Loa,” would be the capital city of Au Lac, and thus, the political and power center of this new kingdom (Kim, 2015: 5).

(Note: Be careful not to confuse “Co Loa,” the name of the capital city of Au Lac, with “Cao Lo,” the name of one of King An Duong’s advisors, who is also an important historical figure associated with the city’s founding.)

The statue of Cao Lo, builder of the mythical magic crossbow that, according to legend, allowed King An Duong to conquer countless enemies in battle. Hanoi, Vietnam. Photo shared in accordance with CC BY-SA 4.0. (via Julez A. / Wikimedia Commons).

What is significant about the city of Co Loa is its size and sophistication.

Kim’s account presents the fact that Co Loa was a large and heavily fortified city. This, he argues, is proof of significant complexity and consolidated authority that was present within this Viet society when the city was built (2015: 6).

The name “Co Loa” itself means “old snail city.” It comes from the city’s artful and intricate architecture, whose “walls appear to be laid out in concentric rings of earthen ramparts reminiscent of a snail shell,” (Kim, 2015: 5).

The builders of the Co Loa settlement, which Kim calls the “Co Loa Polity,” is said to be an organized political entity. They were centralized, operated at the state level, and had longstanding political institutions (2015: 9).

All of this suggests that the founders of Au Lac, and its capital Co Loa, were people of military, political, and cultural sophistication. These early ancestors of the Vietnamese people were organized, civilized, and well-established.

In addition to Au Lac, the general Red River Delta region in northern Vietnam has been considered the “heartland” of Vietnamese civilization since at least the third millennium BC. (Kim, 2015: 18).

Further investigation into Vietnam’s past shows the existence of ancient peoples whose roots stretch further back than is commonly understood in popular culture.

Collectively, these peoples are known as the Hundred Viets, and had occupied the regions of northern Vietnam and southern China long before the Chinese came.

The Hundred Viets peoples who inhabited Southern China before the Chinese did:

One of the more commonly known examples of Vietnamese people occupying parts of southern China comes from Nam-Viet, another kingdom that also existed in the first millennium BC. Based on its founding year, Nam-Viet is newer than Au Lac.

Nam-Viet existed between 208-110 BC, and, like Au Lac, was a state of Vietnamese origin. It was located in what is today the city of Guangzhou, China (Holcombe, 2011: 9). The name “Nam-Viet,” if translated to English, means “Southern Viet.”

Earlier than this, possibly by a thousand years, there existed yet another Vietnamese kingdom. Charles Holcombe, in A History of East Asia (2011), talks about an early “Bronze Age kingdom called Viet,” which was “located even farther north [than Guangzhou], in the vicinity of the modern Chinese Province of Zhejiang, almost half way up the coast of what is today China!” (2011: 9).

Tellingly, it is also noted by Holcombe that, “Early Chinese texts, in fact, referred to most of what is now southeast China as the land of the ‘Hundred Viets,'” (2011: 9).

A snapshot of modern-day Zhejiang Province in southeast China. Notice the province of Anhui directly northwest. These locations were once the homes of several Viet groups before the arrival of the Chinese.

Holcombe also spends some time in his book briefly talking about one specific tribe of the Hundred Viets. These are the Mountain Viets (in Chinese, “Shan Yue”), who occupied the lower Yangtze River area, and who took their last stand against the Chinese kingdom of Wu before being defeated in the third century AD (2011: 62).

During the “Three Kingdoms” era in Chinese history, the Kingdom of Wu waged a military campaign against the Mountain Viets. This campaign started in the year 234 AD, lasted for three years, and culminated in the surrender of approximately 100,000 Mountain Viets at what today is modern Anhui Province in China (Holcombe 2011: 62).

From Holcombe’s account, it appears that the Mountain Viets were then assimilated into the Chinese population. After the Three Kingdoms period, the name “Mountain Viet” was not spoken of again (2011: 62).

The evidence here shows that before the Chinese came, much of what is today southern China was inhabited by the ancestors of the Vietnamese people. More specifically, it is proof that the Vietnamese people have a long and deep history that is much older and more sophisticated than is commonly believed.

4,000+ Years and counting:

Whether it be the kingdoms of Au Lac and Nam-Viet during the mid-late first millennium BC, or the Kingdom of Viet before that during the Bronze Age, it is clear that prior to the AD era, the Vietnamese people did exist.

The evidence shows that the various Viet kingdoms are connected to a larger family of ancient Viet peoples, which, together, comprise the “Hundred Viets” race.

The Dong Son Bronze Drum is a known symbol of Vietnamese antiquity. This photo was taken at the Vietnam History Museum, and posted to Wikimedia Commons on April 13, 2009 by Binh Giang (Public Domain).

The Hundred Viets occupied vast areas of both East Asia and Southeast Asia, reaching from what is northern Vietnam today, all the way through modern-day southern China up to the Yangtze River.

While further research continues to provide more clarity on just how old the Vietnamese people are, current findings show that they have existed for at least 4,000 years.

Not bad.

Cited:

Holcombe, Charles. A History of East Asia: From the Origins of Civilization to the Twenty-First Century. New York: Cambridge University Press. 2011.

Kim, Nam C. The Origins of Ancient Vietnam. New York: Oxford University Press. 2015.

Pacific This Week: Trump Calls Out “Wacko” China Official, Pompeo Defends Ally Australia, Hong Kong in Trouble

Posted in I. News with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on May 24, 2020 by Ian Pham

There’s a lot of stuff happening in the Pacific. Twitter is weirder than ever. Here are some things that happened in Pacific politics this past week. Thank God for President Trump.

China Tries to Blame Everyone But Itself for the Pandemic It Created. President Trump Calls Them Out.

On Wednesday morning, President Donald J. Trump sent out a tweet ripping an unnamed Chinese official for trying to shift blame to other countries for the COVID-19 pandemic.

The tweet came as a response to the latest blame-shifting statement by China, as part of its aggressive propaganda campaign to blind the world to the fact that the novel coronavirus, also known as the Chinese coronovirus and the CCP (Chinese Communist Party) virus, originated from China in the city of Wuhan.

Trump’s tweet reads:

Some wacko in China just released a statement blaming everybody other than China for the Virus which has now killed hundreds of thousands of people. Please explain to this dope that it was the “incompetence of China”, and nothing else, that did this mass Worldwide killing!

China has been condemned by the U.S. as negligent and incompetent in its handling of the spread of COVID-19. There is also evidence suggesting that China knew of the virus and decided not to inform the world when it could have.

China Threatens Australia for Wanting COVID-19 Investigation. Secretary Pompeo Says U.S. Stands With Australia.

Australia asked for an independent inquiry into the origins of the novel coronavirus, and for obvious reasons, China was angry about it.

In response to Australia’s call for the investigation, China threatened Australia with economic retaliation. Sanctions on Australian beef and barley were implemented by China, but the Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison is choosing not to interpret the act as economic retaliation by China.

U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo sounded off on China’s threats to Australia, saying that: “The Chinese Communist Party (CCP) chose to threaten Australia with economic retribution for the simple act of asking for an independent inquiry into the origins of the virus… It’s not right.”

Secretary of State Michael R. Pompeo delivers remarks to Stanford University students at The Hoover Institution, Stanford University, in Palo Alto, California on January 13, 2020. [State Department photo by Ron Przysucha / Public Domain]

On behalf of the U.S., Pompeo made it clear that: “We stand with Australia and the more than 120 nations now who have taken up the American call for an inquiry into the origins of the virus, so we can understand what went wrong and save lives now, and in the future.”

China Threatens Hong Kong with New “National Security” Measures. U.S. Pushes Back, Warns China of “Strong Response.”

After two years of two years of pro-democracy protest in Hong Kong, the despotic Chinese Communist Party has decided to take heavy action against the semi-autonomous city and its people.

This past week, China announced that it will be “reviewing” a new law allowing the communist government to crack down on freedom of expression and other fundamental freedoms in Hong Kong.

Beijing describes the dictatorial measures as “establishing and improving the legal system and enforcement mechanisms for the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region to safeguard national security.”

The U.S. has rebuked China’s actions, with State Department spokesperson Morgan Ortagus saying, “Any effort to impose national security legislation that does not reflect the will of the people of Hong Kong would be highly destabilizing, and would be met with strong condemnation from the United States and the international community.”

Furthermore, National Security Advisor to the Trump Administration, Robert O’Brien, on Fox News’ “The Story,” gave a lengthy condemnation of China’s attack on Hong Kong’s freedom:

The Communist Party of China agreed with the United Kingdom back in 1997 that for 50 years after the turnover of Hong Kong to China that the people of Hong Kong would enjoy a capitalist system and their way of life that encompasses rule of law, freedom of speech... Unfortunately, some 27 years early, the Chinese Communist Party has decided that there's too much freedom in Hong Kong and they don't want to allow them to have their way of life or their capitalist system... If China moves forward and takes strong action under this new national security law against the people of Hong Kong, America will respond. I think other countries in the world will respond, including the United Kingdom and many other of our allies and friends.

President Trump himself has commented on the matter, saying that, in regards to the measures themselves, “nobody knows yet” how things will play out, but, “If it happens, we’ll address that issue very strongly.”

Trump has often expressed support for the people of Hong Kong in their opposition to the Chinese Communist Party.

In late November of 2019, in the midst of pro-democracy protests in Hong Kong, Trump sent Beijing into a panic by signing the Hong Kong Human Rights and Democracy Act, which would allow the U.S. to sanction officials in China and Hong Kong if they violate human rights in Hong Kong.

Trump also signed a second bill prohibiting the “export to Hong Kong police of certain nonlethal munitions, including tear gas, pepper spray, rubber bullets, water cannons, stun guns and tasers.”

Responding to Trump’s signing of the bills, protesters in Hong Kong held a special “Thanksgiving Rally,” honoring the President and his support for their cause. Protestors at the rally waved posters of Trump’s face, superimposed on Sylvester Stallone’s body in the role of Rocky Balboa.

As humorous as the photo was, Hong Kong protesters attached significant meaning to the posters, declaring the image as a “depiction of American resolve against China.”

Naturally, Trump tweeted the picture to troll his haters.

And naturally, his haters got offended, outraged, mad, and sad.

Thank God for President Trump.

*****

TYPO CORRECTION: I mistakenly wrote “province of Wuhan” when I meant to write “city of Wuhan.” The typo has been fixed 🙂 .

200,000+ Italians Have Signed a Petition Urging G20 Nations to Join Trump Cut Funding to WHO

Posted in I. News with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , on May 19, 2020 by Ian Pham
The headquarters of the World Health Organization in Geneva, Switzerland. Photo unedited and shared in accordance with Creative Commons license CC BY-SA 4.0. (© Yann Forget / Wikimedia Commons)

According to Breitbart News, more than 200,000 Italians have signed a petition calling on the G20 nations to stand with President Donald Trump in cutting funding to the World Health Organization (WHO).

The reasons for this petition (which is in Italian) include the WHO’s abject failure in handling the spread of COVID-19, also known as the novel coronavirus, the Wuhan virus, the Chinese coronavirus, and the CCP (Chinese Communist Party) virus.

Below are excerpts from Breitbart, citing the petition:

“We humbly ask you to join U.S. President Donald J. Trump to stop sending funds to the World Health Organization,” reads the CitizenGO petition, which is addressed to the heads of G20 nations.

“To compensate for the loss of funds from U.S. contributions, W.H.O. and its ideological allies are calling for an increase in voluntary donations from other countries. And the G20 countries are at the top of the list,” it reads.

“We don’t need a global ‘health’ organization that pumps billions out of our society every year to harm children,” it declares. “And President Trump’s plan to cut funding to the W.H.O. offers us a real opportunity to start seeing the end of their global agenda, that same agenda that does nothing but trample on human dignity and its true value.”

Many have criticized the WHO for their inadequacy and incompetence throughout the pandemic.

The WHO failed to warn the world of the COVID-19 threat as it emerged, downplayed its significance when cases were rising, and overall, acted as mouthpieces and waterboys for the Chinese Communist Party in their quest to cover up the outbreak and spread of the deadly, destructive, and virulent disease.

According to the petition, other reasons for defunding the WHO include the organization’s questionable agendas including promoting abortion as a worldwide human right, pushing for legalization of prostitution, forcing doctors to perform sex-change operations on children, and advocation of teaching small children how to masturbate. 

President Trump holds the WHO responsible for their role in the coverup and spread of COVID-19, and said that if “major substantive improvements” to the organization are not made within the next 30 days, then the organization can say goodbye to the $419 million from the U.S.

Trump referred to the WHO as “China-centric” and “a puppet of China.”

Sign This Petition to Reconvene the Paris Peace Conference

Posted in IV. Columns, Modern History with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on May 11, 2020 by Ian Pham

There’s a petition out there right now that calls on the White House and Congress to reconvene the Paris Peace Conference that took place during the Vietnam War.

It’s a good idea, and here is why you should sign it and tell your family and friends to sign it as well.

For anyone who is interested right this second, click HERE for the petition.

The Rundown:

The Paris Meetings, 1973:

On January 27, 1973, the U.S. (naively), South Vietnam (reluctantly), and North Vietnam (maliciously, in bad faith, and with no intention to comply), came together to sign the Paris Peace Accords (the “Jan. 27 accords”). The agreement infamously declared a ceasefire truce and an end to the Vietnam War. As events will show, the agreement was trash from beginning to end (we’ll get to that part later in this article).

Then a couple months later, on March 2, 1973, these signatories, along with a collection of other nations involved in the talks, came together to sign the Act of the International Conference on Vietnam (the “Mar. 2 agreement”). This agreement recognized and affirmed the Paris Peace Accords (fully known as “the Paris Agreement on Ending the War and Restoring Peace in Viet-Nam”) that was signed on Jan. 27 (Article 1; p. 1).

The Mar. 2 agreement reiterated the terms of the Jan. 27 accords, which included a ceasefire, respect for territorial boundaries, and the South Vietnamese people’s right to self-determination (Articles 1-7; p. 1-5).

Communists Violate the Agreements:

The agreements allowed the U.S. to withdraw its forces from Vietnam, thereby freeing America from its commitment to the Vietnam War. With the exception of a few who stayed behind, the vast majority of U.S. troops were taken out of Vietnam as a result of the Paris Peace Accords.

Shortly after the U.S. withdrawal, the North Vietnamese launched a new invasion of South Vietnam, thereby violating the agreements, and starting a new phase in the war.

In the U.S., after the impeachment of President Nixon in 1974, the U.S. Congress and Senate, run by Democrats, voted to cut all U.S. funding to South Vietnam. As a result, the South ran out of weapons and money, and eventually, was overrun by the North. By April 30, 1975, the capital city of Saigon fell, and with it, all of South Vietnam.

So, in a nutshell, the U.S. government, with the help of the communist North Vietnamese, pressured South Vietnam into a bullshit agreement in Paris that nobody intended to enforce. The U.S. used it to get out of Vietnam, the North blatantly violated it right after the U.S. exit, and the South was left holding the bag and deal with all of the consequences afterward. Thus, the Jan. 27 accord and the following Mar. 2 agreement are, for all intents and purposes, trash. Simply trash. Trash.

However, despite them being trash, they are still things that exist, and may still be used as tools to combat Red China and Communist Vietnam today. If supported, honored, and enforced by capable people, the agreements may actually be of some use (and thus, stop being trash) going forward. Read on to see how.

The Act of the International Conference on Vietnam, Revisited:

Why the March 2 agreement is worth revisiting:

Since the communists violated the Paris Peace Accords and the subsequent Mar. 2 agreement, it may be argued that, according to international law, the communists acquired the southern part of Vietnam illegally, and therefore do not have a rightful claim to all of Vietnam.

Furthermore, and this is the kicker, by virtue of this illegal invasion, it may be argued that, legally, South Vietnam still exists, and is currently under illegal military occupation by the communist forces.

“Article 7” of the March 2 agreement leaves room for reconvening:

“Article 7” of the Mar. 2 agreement has two parts that allow for reconvening. They are as follows:

7 (a): In the event of a violation of the Agreement or the Protocols which threatens the peace, the independence, sovereignty, unity, or territorial integrity of Viet-Nam, or the right of the South Vietnamese people to self-determination, the parties signatory to the Agreement and the Protocols shall, either individually or jointly, consult with the other Parties to this Act with a view to determining necessary remedial measures.

7 (b): The International Conference on Viet-Nam shall be reconvened upon a joint request by the Government of the United States of America and the Government of the Democratic Republic of Viet-Nam on behalf of the parties signatory to the Agreement or upon a request by six or more of the Parties to this Act.

So, if the U.S. wanted to reconvene the conference, it can actually do so by invoking Articles 7 (a) or (b) of the Mar. 2 agreement.

Article 7 (b) would require getting the communists to agree on a reconvention, or convincing six or more of the signees of the Mar. 2 agreement to get on board with a reconvention. This method is unlikely to work, but it’s there.

The better way would be to use Article 7 (a), which says that “individually or jointly,” remedial measures for a violation may be determined by a signee of the agreement.

I’m looking at the “individually” part, because, in the event that the other signees are too scared and weak to stand up to China, then America and the Trump administration could simply and “individually” determine “remedial measures” on its own, and to handle the dirty communists however America sees fit.

Whether any of this happens, however, is up to you.

The Petition:

Why the petition is worth signing:

By reconvening the Paris International Conference, we can put everything back on the table, and question the legitimacy of communist control over the Vietnamese nation today.

At the very least, pushing for the reconvening of the conference may spark conversation among world leaders, and provide a nonviolent method, not only to pressure the communists into accepting some form of democratic compromise with the Vietnamese nation, but also to challenge China’s aggression in the Pacific region.

The petition says that “China is encroaching on the boundaries of a number of nations, including Vietnam. The conflict in the South China Sea raises the spectre of armed conflict with China…” and that reconvening the Paris conference is a viable method to avert a breakout of war, and to resolve conflict in the Pacific.

China is also a signatory to the Mar. 2 agreement in Paris, and their encroachment on Vietnamese territory is thus a violation of the agreement.

There is no better time than now because of President Trump:

During the times of Bush and Obama, something like this would not work. These past presidents were weak, incompetent, and lacked the courage to look China in the face. Things are different now under President Donald J. Trump.

President Trump has stood up to China repeatedly, slapping them with tariffs, trade restrictions, and a fearless dose of truth (e.g. China’s dishonest and unfair trade practices, theft of American intelligence and intellectual property, Communist Party corruption, meddling in U.S. elections, threatening of Hong Kong protestors, weaselling out of a new trade deal, origination of COVID-19, etc.) on a daily basis.

If anyone had the guts to reconvene the Paris conference, it’s Trump. This is not to say that he will, but it is saying that with Trump, we actually have a shot. So why not? It only takes a minute to sign the petition, it costs nothing, and you have nothing to lose.

It literally takes a minute. It took me two minutes because I took my sweet time.

How To Sign the Petition:

It’s really easy.

Step 1: Go to the petition’s website, which is hosted by the U.S. government’s We the People online petition service.

Step 2: Sign the petition by filling out three fields indicating your first name, last name, and email.

(Remember to un-check the subscription box if you don’t want emails from the website).

Step 3: Go into your email and click on the verification link, which is only to make sure that the email you provided is actually yours.

Step 4: There is no step four. YOU’RE DONE.

Share the petition with your family and friends, and ask them to share it with their family and friends.

For some of the older folks, help may be required to open their emails and click on the verify link. If your older relatives need help, then please give them a hand.

This is literally one of those times where if a whole bunch of us took one minute out of our day to do this simple task, something great might come of it.

Once again for your convenience, click HERE for the petition.

It costs nothing, takes one minute, and it can spark something great. Please sign!

*****

Cited:

Act of the International Conference on Viet-Nam. Paris, March 2, 1973. United Nations Archives. Reference Code: S-0901-0004-07. https://search.archives.un.org/uploads/r/united-nations-archives/f/5/2/f52a682fbbc8ce1c431a1b83acdf9d2d1944b1ca94e67d3a030a86b71ac6901b/S-0901-0004-07-00001.pdf.

History.com editors. "Paris Peace Accords signed." Last modified January 23, 2020. https://www.history.com/this-day-in-history/paris-peace-accords-signed.

T. N. "Reconvene The Paris International Conference on Vietnam to resolve conflicts in South China Sea" Petition. Created April 28, 2020. https://petitions.whitehouse.gov/petition/reconvene-paris-international-conference-vietnam-resolve-conflicts-south-china-sea.

April 30, 2020 Post: Hope, Prayers, and Re-emergence – Words of Wisdom from General Cao Van Vien

Posted in IV. Columns with tags , , , , , , , on April 30, 2020 by Ian Pham
South Vietnamese flag at the Vietnam War Memorial in Westminster, California. Photo shared in accordance with the creative commons license CC BY-SA 2.0. (via InSapphoWeTrust)

There is a passage in Lewis Sorley’s book A Better War (1999). It comes at the very last sentence, on the very last page of the last chapter, before the epilogue. Here, Sorley shared a quote from the late and great South Vietnamese general, Cao Van Vien.

General Vien’s words were optimistic (p. 386):

“... hope and with prayers for the reemergence of a free South Vietnam in the not too distant future, a South Vietnam led by men of talent and high morals – the truly great leaders of Vietnamese history."

For me, General Vien’s words are more than just wishful thinking. They are a roadmap for the future. These words envision the birth and rise of a new Vietnamese nation, one that is independent, strong, and free.

As Vietnamese people all across the world come together to commemorate South Vietnam, we should view this late great nation as more than just a relic of our past, but a foundation for the future.

South Vietnam (the Republic of Vietnam) was a free country. It had a multiparty democratic electoral system, a free press, and a rapidly rising market economy. The Republic of Vietnam was a nation that respected human rights, and championed the fundamental freedoms of all people.

In terms of economics, education, and culture, South Vietnam was a leader of the Southeast Asian region. Its capital city Saigon was lauded as the “Pearl of the Orient.” People from all over the world came to view and experience its wonder and beauty.

Simply put, South Vietnam was a nation that its people could be proud of. It was a place that someone would be happy to hail from, and to look at with reverence and say, “yes, I am Vietnamese.”

Making all of this possible were the courageous soldiers of South Vietnam, the United States, and their coalition of allies. They fought, they sacrificed, and they gave everything that they possibly could so that the people of South Vietnam could enjoy freedom, safety, and security.

It is all of this that we come together to remember on April 30: The great nation of South Vietnam and the heroes who built and defended it.

Thanks to the legacy of South Vietnam, with all of its accomplishments and history, there is much to build off of once the communists are overthrown. And yes, the communists will be overthrown.

For the past 45 years, since the communists took over, they have proven to be useless, impotent, and incapable of leading the Vietnamese nation in any way. I will save my myriad criticisms of the communist dogs for another day. For now, I will simply say that their days are numbered, and that sooner, rather than later, the communists will be extinguished from Vietnam once and for all.

On this April 30, 2020, we Vietnamese come together to mourn and remember South Vietnam and its heroes. We thank the heroes for their sacrifices, and we thank the boat people, the brave refugees, for making that dangerous journey across the ocean to ensure freedom for generations to come, and to carry on the Vietnamese legacy.

Not only must we remember South Vietnam and its heroes, we must also learn from South Vietnam and its heroes. We honor, we commemorate, and we take to heart all that they have given us, using it as fuel for a bigger, brighter, and better future.

South Vietnam may be gone for now, but it will never be forgotten. The legacy that it left behind will be the blueprint for a new Vietnam, one that is proud, strong, and free.

Take it from General Vien, and believe that one day, not far from now, Vietnam will be free.

In one form or another, the Republic will return.

We will return.

*****

Cited:

Sorley, Lewis. A Better War: The Unexamined Victories and Final Tragedy of America's Last Years in Vietnam. New York: Harcourt, Inc. 1999.

Keeping the Memory Alive

Posted in IV. Columns with tags , , , , , , on April 30, 2019 by Ian Pham
The Vietnam War Memorial in Westminster, California, USA. Photo shared in accordance with the creative commons license CC BY-SA 2.0. (via InSapphoWeTrust)

Another April 30 means another year has gone by since the fall of Saigon in 1975. On this day, 44 years ago, the capital city of the Republic of Vietnam (South Vietnam) fell to the communist forces, marking the tragic conclusion to the Vietnam War.

Every year on this day, Vietnamese communities all across the world come together to mourn the fall of the democracy, to commemorate the heroes who fought and sacrificed for freedom, and to show gratitude for those who escaped the communist takeover to find better lives for the future generation.

It is a day filled with sorrow and loss, but also a day full of love and appreciation.

We mourn because we lost our country, but we are also thankful for the lives we still have, made possible by all the brave soldiers who fought to defend us, and the selfless citizens who so courageously crossed the ocean to make sure that their families grew up far away from the grips of the murderous communists.

Today is an important day, bringing us all together to remind us of our hallowed past, and urging us to remember our South Vietnamese heritage, and all of those men and women who gave their lives in defense of that sacred ideal known as freedom.

We must never forget their sacrifice, nor should we ever forget our roots.

It is imperative that we remember, and that we work to make sure that future generations will continue to remember.

To this end, it is up to all of us, the old, the middling, and the younger generations to keep the memory alive. We must all keep the fire burning, doing so through the education of ourselves, and the education of others, especially the youth.

Learn the history of South Vietnam, its foundations, its ideals, and its wonderful accomplishments during the several decades of its existence. Know its people, its places, and even its flaws and shortcomings.

Know of the heroes who gave everything for that nation, in defense of its freedom, and the life, liberty, and dignity of its citizens.

From the brave soldiers of South Vietnam and the United States, to our allies who answered the call of duty, it is imperative that we know and tell their stories, so that they may find their rightful place in history. As the beneficiaries of their sacrifice, it is our duty to do so.

In order to honor the fallen, we must keep their memory alive, always and forever.

And so, on this Black April day, I leave you with this simple message:

Honor the fallen, keep their memory alive, and carry that fire with pride, in your heart, in your mind, and in your soul. To do that, just live, learn, and, above all else, never, ever forget.

Never forget.

Holiday Greetings 2018

Posted in Announcements with tags , , , on December 25, 2018 by Ian Pham

🎅🎅🎅

Hi everyone,

Another year has gone by, and another Christmas is here. As such, I would just like to drop in and wish you all another Merry Christmas, Happy Holidays, and Happy New Year.

It was my goal this year to be more involved with the blog, and while there is still much to do, I believe a great foundation has been laid. One year at a time, amiright?

I appreciate you all for visiting, reading, and commenting. You make all the difference, and you all are the reason that I continue to write. Looking forward to producing more for you in 2019.

Thanks again, and best wishes in the new year!

Sincerely,

Ian

🎄🎄🎄

South Vietnamese General Endorses Donald Trump, Encourages Voting Republican in the 2018 Midterms

Posted in Politics with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on November 3, 2018 by Ian Pham

Tran Quang Khoi Endorses Donald Trump(Chau Xuan Nguyen / Breitbart)

Earlier in September of this year, Brigadier General Tran Quang Khoi of the former Republic of Vietnam (South Vietnam) released a statement in support of President Donald J. Trump. In the statement, General Khoi, who now resides in the United States, urged Vietnamese-Americans to vote Republican in the upcoming midterm elections. The general warned in his statement of the sabotage and obstruction from the Democratic Party, Barack Obama, Bill Clinton, the fake news liberal media, and the liberal wing of the Vietnamese-American media who ride the mainstream leftist coattails in hopes of affirmation and relevance (Sad!).

Presented below is General Khoi’s statement, via Hoang Lan Chi (Note: The original Vietnamese statement is shown first, with an English translation following immediately after):

– Tôi tha thiết kêu gọi mọi người VN tỵ nạn CS trên toàn thế giới lên tiếng ủng hộ triệt để Tổng Thống Donald Trump đang bị đảng Dân Chủ đối lập đe dọa trầm trọng.

– Đặc biệt tôi kêu gọi tất cả người Việt Nam tỵ nạn CS trên toàn nước Mỹ hãy kêu gọi nhau đi bầu, dồn phiếu cho TT.Donald Trump và đảng Cộng Hòa của ông. Đây là vấn đề sống chết của dân tộc và đất nước VN chúng ta.

Bọn Tàu cộng phương Bắc, Tập Cận Bình đang giãy chết. Đừng nghe lời kêu gọi của cựu Tổng Thống Obama và cựu Tổng Thống Bill Clinton, và tất cả báo chí của Mỹ và của VN cánh tả, chống Tổng Thống Donald Trump.

Nên nhớ , Tổng Thống Donald Trump là vị cứu tinh của dân tộc VN và của nước VN độc lập, dân chủ và phú cường.

Xin hảy tin lời kêu gọi của tôi.

– Sau khi CSVN bị diệt vong, tôi ước mong được trở về sống ở VN, và sẽ tham gia vào việc đào tạo thế hệ trẻ VN trở nên những cán bộ quân sự kiệt xuất của một nước VN độc lập, dân chủ và phú cường ./.

Virginia, ngày 01 tháng 9, 2018

Chuẩn Tướng TGKB Trần Quang Khôi.

Here is the same statement in English, translated by yours truly:

– I humbly call upon all Vietnamese overseas people around the world to speak up and support President Donald Trump, who is facing serious sabotage by the Democratic Party.

– I especially call upon all Vietnamese-Americans to come out and vote, casting your ballot for President Donald Trump and the Republican Party. This is a life and death situation for the people and nation of Vietnam.

The Red Chinese of the North and [Chinese President] Xi Jinping are currently fighting for their last breath. Do not listen to the words of former president Barack Obama, or former president Bill Clinton, or any of the U.S. mainstream media or leftist Vietnamese-American media, who are all against President Donald Trump.

Let it be known, President Donald Trump is the savior of the Vietnamese people and a future Vietnamese nation that is independent, democratic, and prosperous.

Please hear my message.

– After the Vietnamese Communist regime is overthrown, I dream to be able to return to and live in Vietnam, and to participate in the development of a new generation of Vietnamese military officers for a Vietnamese nation that is independent, democratic, and prosperous.

Virginia, September 1, 2018

Brigadier General TGKB Tran Quang Khoi.

Regarding General Khoi’s point about Trump being the savior of the Vietnamese people, I have some thoughts.

Since Donald Trump became president, he has been relentlessly hammering China with bruising tariffs that, as we speak, are wreaking havoc on the Chinese economy. Among those affected is China’s Formosa steel company, the same Formosa that has been polluting Vietnamese oceans, killing off the fish and vegetation, and poisoning Vietnam’s water supply. Formosa’s deliberate destruction of Vietnam’s environment has caused starvation, disease, and death all across Vietnam, with zero response from the cowardly Communist Party in Vietnam. The tariffs imposed by Trump on Chinese steel have greatly damaged Formosa, and in the process is delivering some measure of justice for the Vietnamese people.

Furthermore, Trump has beefed up U.S. presence in the Pacific and increased regional stability, leading to a significant curbing of Chinese assertiveness in the area. Donald Trump has done more for Vietnam since taking office than the communist leaders of Vietnam could ever hope to accomplish. Moreover, Trump has done more in 16 months to handle Chinese international aggression than Barack Obama and Bill Clinton could in 16 years.

Therefore, while I would word things differently than General Khoi, I definitely agree that President Trump is an ally of the Vietnamese people, and a free and independent Vietnamese nation. President Trump doesn’t even do it on purpose. He simply does the right thing, doing what needs to be done, and by proxy his deeds benefit the Vietnamese people. He helps us and he doesn’t even try.

Obviously, as Vietnamese people, we should not rely on anyone but ourselves. In geopolitical terms however, weighing our interests between the Republicans and the Democrats, more specifically, between Donald Trump or the pro-communist left (John Kerry, Bill Clinton, Barack Obama, the liberal fake news media, etc.), there is no question that we are better off with a Republican President, Republican Senate, and Republican House of Representatives. It is therefore pivotal that we do not allow the Democrats to ever take back the government.

A Democrat victory in November would mean the illegal impeachment of President Trump, the reestablishment of Washington corruption, a re-weaponized FBI and DOJ (the Deep State), a re-energized and vengeful leftist fake news media, and the resurgence of a humiliated and bitter Communist China eager to avenge the glorious ass-kicking that President Trump has been raining down upon them ever since taking office in January 2017.

In other words, Donald Trump is on our side, and the Democrats are not.

A win for Trump is a win for the Vietnamese people, both inside and outside of Vietnam.

By contrast, a win for the Democrats is a loss for the Vietnamese people, both inside and outside of Vietnam.

Remember that it was the Democrats who voted to cut all funding to South Vietnam in 1974, that the current Democratic Party is composed of many of those antiwar, pro-communist “activists” of the Vietnam War era, and that it is Democrats like Bill Clinton, Barack Obama, and John Kerry who have been cozying up to Communist Vietnam for decades up to present day.

If you are a South Vietnamese legacy who loves your freedom and are proud of your roots, the Democratic Party is not your friend.

For these reasons, I stand with General Tran Quang Khoi, and I too urge the Vietnamese people all across America to get out and vote Republican this Tuesday, November 6, 2018.

Donald Trump’s name may not be on the ballot, but his ability to govern and continue this incredible change depends wholeheartedly on the victory of the Republicans in these midterm elections.

As Vietnamese people – who are under constant threat of Chinese invasion, ignored and hated by Democrat politicians since our arrival in 1975, and slandered by the leftist media since the 1960s to present day – we need this.

We need Trump to win, and so we need to vote Republican.

I’ve said it before, and I’ll probably say it a whole lot more between now and Election Day:

Vote Republican this Tuesday, November 6, 2018. It is imperative that we do.