Archive for July, 2010

Prelude to the Heroes: 1000 Years of Chinese Occupation

Posted in Ancient History, Heroes of Vietnam Week with tags , on July 18, 2010 by Ian Pham

“Our nation, Dai Viet, was established long ago as an independent nation with its own civilization.  Our borders with China have been drawn…”

When China was first unified under the Qin Dynasty in 221B.C., the ancient civilization of Lac Viet (ancient Vietnam) lost an immense amount of land to the Chinese.  However, during this time, the ancient Vietnamese nation still salvaged a considerable amount of land for itself by the name of Nam-Viet.  It wasn’t until the overthrow of the Qin and the establishment of the Han Dynasty in China did Lac Viet become totally overrun by the Chinese.  This period marked the thousand years occupation of the Vietnamese nation by the Chinese invaders.

“Our customs and traditions are different from those of the foreign country to the North.  The independence of our nation has been established by the Trieu, Dinh, Le, Ly, and Tran Dynasties, concurrent with that of the Han, Tang, Song, and Yuan of China…”

For over 1000 years, starting with the Han invasion in 111B.C. and ending with the defeat of the Southern Han in 938A.D., Vietnam was forcefully integrated into the state of China.  Numerous struggles and rebellions erupted through this long period of Chinese occupation.  Many brave warriors fought to protect the Vietnamese way of life and revive the independence of the nation.  Although some leaders managed to bring freedom to Vietnam for a short period of time, like the Trung Sisters in the first century, it wasn’t until General Ngo Quyen’s victory at Bach Dang Bay were the Chinese permanently expelled.

“It is true that our nation has sometimes been weak and sometimes been strong, but never in time have we suffered from a lack of heroes.”

– Nguyen Trai, 1428 (The Great Declaration on the Victory Over China)

From that day forward, the people of Vietnam will defend their nation to the very death.  Though they have been liberated from China, the Viet people still lived in constant fear of invasion from the country to the north.  For the next thousand years, Vietnam and China would be engaged in a storm of perpetual warfare.  The successive dynasties of China, such as the Song, Yuan, Ming, and Qing, would continue to invade Vietnam, trying to recapture the land.  In response, the warriors of Vietnam would fight, giving their lives to defend the nation’s sovereignty.  It is from this ongoing struggle to defend the country against China that many heroic individuals emerge, leaving their mark in the history of Vietnam.  These men and women are the protectors of the Viet tradition, fearlessly risking their lives to protect the nation for more than 1000 years.  Strong, noble, and selfless, these individuals are proudly known and remembered as the Heroes of Vietnam.

Enjoy!

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‘Like’ this Blog on Facebook!

Posted in Announcements with tags on July 15, 2010 by Ian Pham

I recently created a page for this website on Facebook titled “Freedom For Vietnam: The Blog.”  I know it’s hard to keep track of all the websites you visit, but I know we never forget about our facebook accounts.  If you have the time, check out the fan page, feel free to ‘Like’ it too!

Check out the fan page here:

http://www.facebook.com/home.php?#!/pages/Freedom-For-Vietnam-The-Blog/139534379396490?ref=ts

Special Announcement: Heroes of Vietnam Week!

Posted in Announcements, Heroes of Vietnam Week, II. History with tags , on July 14, 2010 by Ian Pham

Dear Readers,

I noticed that the contents of my blog have alot to do with the Vietnam War and current issues, but not enough information on ancient Vietnamese history.  For this reason, I thought it would be fun to dedicate an entire week to the history of ancient Vietnam.  I have decided to call this event the “Heroes of Vietnam Week.”  For seven days, from July 19-25, 2010, I will pick out seven prominent heroes from Vietnam’s past and write a little bit about them.  It should be interesting, I hope you enjoy it!

– Ian Pham

P.S. Thanks for visiting all this time!

The VCP: Selling Out to China

Posted in Economics, IV. Columns, Politics, Society with tags , , , , on July 12, 2010 by Ian Pham

Piracy in the Southeast Asia Sea, detrimental mining on Vietnamese land, and the invasion of the Paracel and Spratly archipelagos.  All Chinese crimes, all condoned by the Vietnamese government.

I have often expressed my disapproval and lack of respect for the contemperary Communist Party of Vietnam and the fifteen “leaders” calling the shots.  Aside from the tyrannical treatment of the Vietnamese people and corruption within the Party, the VCP seems content on allowing the Beijing government to enter Vietnam and terrorize the citizens.  Many actions taken by the Chinese Communists Party have been detrimental to the people of Vietnam.

The abuse of Vietnamese fishermen in the Southeast Asia Sea, destruction of Vietnamese forests and farms due to Chinese mining projects, and the invasion of the Paracel and Spratly archipelagos (Hoang Sa & Truong Sa) are the main problems posed by China today.  The Vietnamese government tries to conceal these crimes from the Vietnamese people, consequentially helping China continue these heinous crimes.  Many Chinese crimes today are defended by the Vietnamese Communist Party.  Their are numerous reasons why the Vietnamese government would perform such degrading acts, I will try to summarize them here.

The most obvious reason is the rampant corruption within the Communist Party of Vietnam.  Members of the VCP seek only to benefit themselves and could care less for the well-being of the population.  The Chinese exploit the greed of the VCP to further their own ends in Vietnam, paying off the leaders to implement pro-China policies and illegally lease Vietnamese land to the Beijing government.

Corruption emerges from the lack of integrity, and the lack of integrity often stems from cowardice, which is the other reason why the Vietnamese Communist Party allows China to run Vietnam into the ground.  The VCP is obviously unfit to govern the country, which is why they do everything in their power to monitor every piece of information flowing into Vietnam.  They are terrified that the Vietnamese people will one day realize what the Party has done to Vietnam and the inevitable consequences that follow: the total destruction of the Communist Party and the punishment at the hands of the people.  For this reason, the VCP continues to suppress the people of Vietnam, abusing them in inhuman ways and jailing them without evidence.

The VCP are not only scared of the people, but they are also scared of the Chinese.  The economic and military rise of China is obvious, which is why the VCP is so willing bowing down to them.  The cowardice of the VCP allows the Chinese government to control their actions and policies through bribery and coercion.

The Vietnamese Communist Party are the biggest betrayers of Vietnam, suppressing the Vietnamese people and selling out to China.  For over a thousand years, China has tried to conquer Vietnam, failing every time.  It looks like for the first time in Vietnam’s history, a government is actually willfully handing their country over to foreign invaders.  As severe as this may sound, it will never work.

Beijing may control the weak leaders of the Vietnamese Communist Party, but they do not control the army nor the population.  Some Vietnamese Generals are becoming increasingly agitated by the weakness of the Vietnamese Communist Party and are voicing their opinions openly.  Navy officials are beginning to resist the Chinese presence on the Spratly archipelago despite protests from the Vietnamese Communist Party.  Finally, the Vietnamese people are more frequently standing up to the Vietnamese government, ready to confront the Communist police.

From the way things are progressing, it’s only a matter of time before the leaders at the top lose their grip on power and ultimately be ousted.  It could be tomorrow, it could be next week, or it could be much longer than that.

It is possible that somewhere in the Communist Party, someone can make a change.  However, I believe that the real change will come from the Vietnamese people.  Sadly, from an objective point of view, it doesn’t look like anyone at the height of the Communist leadership possesses the intellect, integrity, or courage to lead the country in a positive direction.  The real change will come from the people, and hopefully, from within the Communist Party.

Giving Up the Paracel and Spratly Islands: Another Betrayal by the Vietnamese Government

Posted in Economics, Modern History, Politics, Society with tags , , , , , on July 7, 2010 by Ian Pham

The islands of Hoang Sa and Truong Sa (Paracel and Spratly) are located east of Vietnam in the South China Sea (or Southeast Asia Sea) and have been disputed between the countries in that region for several decades.  Over the past century, all the way up to 1974, the islands have been under Vietnamese control.

However, in early January of 1974, while the Republic of Vietnam was busy with the Communists in the North and the Americans in the South, the People’s Republic of China launched an invasion on the islands of the Hoang Sa (Paracel) archipelago.  Unsuccessful at first, due to the strength of the Republic of Vietnam’s resistance, the Chinese returned with a bigger fighting force on the coming days and successfully took the islands of Hoang Sa.

It didn’t end there however.  Fourteen years later, in 1988, the Chinese stage another attack.  This time, the target was Truong Sa (the Spratly Islands), and instead of the South Vietnamese, it was against the Vietnamese Communists.  The invasion was easy this time, since the Vietnamese Communists hardly put up a fight against the Chinese government.  The soldiers were unarmed and unprepared for the Chinese attack.  As a result, some portions of the Spratly islands also fell into the hands of the Chinese.

Today, the Chinese are still steadily trying to control both of the islands with little resistance from the Vietnamese government who seem content on surrendering the islands to the Beijing government.  The Spratly Islands are partially occupied while the Paracels are completely occupied.  Fortunately, the people of Vietnam are not afraid to stand up to China, even if the cowardly government is.  But sadly, whenever the Vietnamese people voice the injustices of China’s invasion, the Vietnamese government immediately cracks down on them for fear of offending China.

The invasion of these islands by the government of China is another hot topic in Vietnam today, which is why the Vietnamese Communists Party try absolutely everything to silence the public from ever speaking of it.  Despite their efforts however, the people of Vietnam will not sit idly by while their land is being taken away.  Numerous demonstrations and protests have erupted in Vietnam against the Chinese invasion, all of them have been brutally crushed by the Vietnamese government.  Bloggers in Vietnam who dare bring up this subject of Hoang Sa and Truong Sa are (yup, you guessed it!) arrested by the Communist police.  The Vietnamese Communist Party are the corrupted puppets of the Beijing government, cruelly beating down on their own people but at the same time bowing down to the Chinese  Communists.  They are pathetic, plain and simple.

Chinese “Bauxite” Mining on Vietnamese Land

Posted in Economics, Politics, Society with tags , , , , , on July 6, 2010 by Ian Pham

For nearly three years now, since late 2007, the Vietnamese Communist Party has been allowing the Chinese government to undergo several mining projects on Vietnamese land.  These “Bauxite” mining projects are taking place in the Central Highlands of Vietnam, where many Vietnamese farmers were living before.  The mining project has devastated and continues to devastate the environment in these regions and the people that live there.

The tea, coffee, and crop plantations that were previously in this region have been replaced by factories and power plants, causing tremendous pollution to the the area.  As a result, the farmers of these crops have lost both their jobs and their homes.  Many of the trees and forests in these areas have been torn down to make space for more factories and equipment, further destroying the habitat and wildlife in that area.  The lakes where farmers once irrigated their crops are now being used to store “red mud,” toxic waste generated by the Chinese mining company.

General Vo Nguyen Giap strongly opposes the bauxite mining projects.

The “Bauxite” mining projects have been widely protested among the Vietnamese population.  Many environmentalists, scientists, and even army officials oppose the mining projects, but the most prominent voice of all comes from the famous General Vo Nguyen Giap, one of the original founders of the Vietnamese Communist Party.  Sending letters to the current Communist Party of Vietnam on three separate occasions, General Giap condemned the projects, pointing out the detrimental consequences that bauxite mining will have on Vietnam’s environment, economy, and population.  His words however, have been ignored by the new leaders of the Vietnamese Communist Party.

It is obvious that these current Vietnamese “leaders” are allowing these projects to continue due to the pressures of the Chinese government.  They claim that it’s a joint project with both Vietnamese and Chinese companies.  If that were true, then why do the Vietnamese companies also protest to this mining project?  Also, why are these detrimental and environmentally damaging projects only taking place on Vietnamese soil?  Finally, if this was a joint project, then why are the majority of the workers on this site coming from China?  The Chinese are aiming to destroy Vietnamese land and the Vietnamese government is letting them do it.

Bauxite mining is one of the biggest problems in Vietnam today and is one of the hot topics among Vietnamese bloggers.  The government cowards are trying everything in their power to silence these voices of discontent among the population.  However, the resentment is still there, and the people continue to oppose these bauxite mining projects.  Guess what happens to bloggers in Vietnam who bring up the bauxite mining projects?  That’s right, jail!

CNN Interviews Vietnamese Blogger

Posted in Politics, Society, Videos with tags , , , on July 5, 2010 by Ian Pham

CNN reporter Andrew Stevens goes to Ho Chi Minh City (Saigon) to interview Nguyen Ngoc Nhu Quyen, one of many Vietnamese bloggers constantly harassed by the Vietnamese government.

Check out the interview right here!