Ho Chi Minh: Bio, Vietnam War, Book, Facts, Education, Ideology, Legacy (2000)

Ho Chi Minh: Bio, Vietnam War, Book, Facts, Education, Ideology, Legacy (2000)



William J duiker who was Ho Chi Min Ho Chi Minh of course to most Americans was the leader of the Vietnamese revolutionary movement a movement of course that caused us enormous difficulty for 15 20 years I think most Americans see in that way I think to the rest of the world he's also for many people living in Asia Africa Latin America he's a symbol of the national liberation movement and of course within the what used to be known as the Communist world he was one of the international figures of that movement along with Stalin and Mao Zedong was he an iceless or communist or bah he was both he started out certainly with strong patriotic leanings but in the course of his early maturity became convinced that capitalism was a system that was very oppressive to not only two peoples like the Vietnamese but to the working class around the world and he became well in France he became a convinced Marxist and stayed that to the end of his days what year did he die 1969 how old was he 79 years old and what did he die of I think he died probably like many people of a combination of things but basically basically a form of congestive heart failure when we were there in 92 we had some video shot of the mausoleum and I want you to talk through why this kind of a mausoleum have you been there yes I have he'll be on the screen just a second and what's the origin of this in fact the the origin of it has to go back to Ho Chi Minh's testament which he drafted over a period of years in the last few years of his life and he indicated in his Testament that he wanted to be cremated and he wanted to have his ashes distributed both North Center and south so that the people of all Vietnam would have a chance to venerate him but after his death the Vietnamese leadership decided that they needed some physical symbol and they undertook a fairly comprehensive study of the kind of symbol they wanted they looked at Lenin's Mazel they looked at the Lincoln Memorial and a number of other memorial buildings around the world and they settled on this one which I would have say many people including myself feel is singularly inappropriate for his memory because it's very heavy and Lenin esque it's very moving I would say when you go through it did you go through the it yeah and you see his his remains there but it doesn't seem to fit his personality and I think a lot of people have been a little disappointed are those his remains there yes mm-hmm the area was it called Baden my squared n square correct supposedly and when we taped this you never know how it's going to come out by the time it airs but that area is supposedly been blocked off for cleanup during the time that President Clinton is there for this visit mm-hmm coming up this week and what's that all about do you think I wonder if the cleanup is meant as a more or less a kind of a political statement or you think it's just generally well I wonder what you know that the reports when it first came out were they didn't want the president going there to pay homage to Ho Chi Minh what would it a man if he did you mean to the Vietnamese or dust or to us yeah I would obviously be a controversial statement there are many Americans and certainly many Vietnamese immigrants living in the United States you see Ho Chi Minh is a symbol of oppression and brutality and I think if he does go there and it's a it's televised and shown back in the United States it will arouse a good deal of debate from his standpoint I certainly couldn't try to anticipate how he feels about it he may feel this is sort of symbolic statement embracing the idea of reconciliation of the two people's what are the Vietnamese people think of me it can be a divisive issue but my experience in traveling there on many occasions is that the certainly the vast majority of people living in the North still venerate him his reputation is a lot more controversial in the south where some people feel that he's a representative of a repressive system interestingly enough for many young Vietnamese he has no more particularly nning than say Abraham Lincoln to the average American he's some old guy you know that they look back on and say this is one of the founders of our country but many Vietnamese I talked to who are of course much too young to remember the war will say we don't really remember the war we're ready to get on with our lives you've got some photos in your book and there's the first one we want to show is it looks like it's odd I don't know you'll see in just a moment it's the one where he is very young and it's on the screen here now you can see it over there on that monitor if you look one with the top hat yeah yes I some of these pictures are hard to to locate precisely because there are pictures that were in the French archives and they're not really identified but in the course of analyzing some of his activities in Paris this was a picture that I believe was taken by the French security services simply to be able to identify them and as you can see there he's very dapper and top hat and so forth and it's an interesting picture in some ways because it's so out of character for the image that he projected in the last years of his life the simple Uncle Ho who wore a kind of a bush jacket and that sort of thing why did he go to Paris he went to Paris originally in the years before World War one probably to contact some friends of his father's who were engaged in the what we might call the Vietnamese independence movement and he was already at that time very much dedicated to doing whatever he could deliberate his country and I think he hoped to link up with these people and perhaps get and get involved in the national liberation struggle later on he left France before the war and then came back at the end of World War one and immediately came to the attention of the entire nation of France because he submitted the famous petition to the victorious Allies meeting in Versailles at the Versailles peace conference in which he and a demanded that Woodrow Wilson live up to the promise of the fourteen points involving self-determination of people's and that brought him to the attention of the entire country and of course word eventually seep back to Vietnam there's a picture in here when he was arrived in the Soviet Union in 1923 what are the circumstances for this picture mm-hmm it's you can't see it's over there on I see it yes that was probably taken in the Soviet Union but there again it's not quite clear exactly one of course very clean shaven at that time two of the things that show up there that are interesting actually three one I think you can tell in this picture how singular are his eyes it's the one thing that so many of his acquaintances would say back in those days that he was a very unprepossessing young man very unassuming modest and demeanor and demeanor of course he didn't dress in a and certainly in any imposing way but the eyes were the type of eyes that would penetrate into your soul a second thing I notice here is that he's wearing a tie and he claimed in his later years that he'd never worn a necktie in his life so this is one of the many instances where he he in effect used his images that kindly old Uncle Ho to sort of make a point which of course his life will often show is not the case the Third Point interestingly there is the shape of his ear the French security services for many many years we're trying to identify Ho Chi Minh and because he was living and working under an assumed name when he joined the French Communist Party and they were very concerned to find out where he came from and what his background was and they they suspected that he was a young man who had been evicted from high school back in 1980s was before his foreign travels who had gotten involved in an anti French demonstration and they'd evicted him from school and he disappeared from view and then eventually went to France and what they determined was that the information they'd had on him that he had a certain type of deformity in his ear and they from pictures like this they were able to say indeed that's the same young man he would have been about 34 in 1924 that's correct there's some debate over when he was born but based on what I've been able to determine on his movements he was probably born in 1890 so he would have been about 34 at that time how big was Vietnam in the 1890 to 1920 era physically you mean physically and population mm-hmm the total population perhaps at that time may have been about 15 14 15 million in terms of the size of the country at that time it wasn't even a country it was divided up into three separate sections by the French two sections were technically under the authority of the Vietnamese imperial court although under French protection and the southern part of the country was actually a French colony so there literally was no Vietnam at that time how did the French get control how did they manage to take it over it was part of the was part of that thrust outward of European capitalist countries in the 19th century when they were looking for cheap raw materials and markets and the French had been involved in Indochina for 200 years primarily a Christian missionary work so when the British began to penetrate into Burma to the west and of course there was a great interest in the China market at that time the French felt in a competitive manner that they needed to build their own colony in the area and they looked upon Vietnam and neighboring Laos and in Cambodia is their best opportunity we have another picture from 1924 after leaving Moscow for South China mmm-hmm well what were the circumstances that day looks a lot different here than he did that other picture he does doesn't he looks very serious and somber and all it looks like a different hairdo he had gone to to Moscow in 1923 at the invitation of the Soviet leadership and they they wanted him to perform in Moscow basically as a kind of token Asian they're not treating him entirely seriously but just having him there is a kind of symbol of the fact that the International communist move had its objective to help liberate the colonial people's and he stayed there in training and working at the communist international headquarters for a while and then he became very impatient and he said I need to go back and help organize my people and build a Communist Party in in Indochina as the French called their territory there and he had to he literally had to plead for permission to go back not to Vietnam where he would have of course been at that time he would have been under arrest so he went back to South China and created the first revolutionary movement out of the emigres community living there so that's one of the pictures that was probably taken around that time how often was he married interesting question it's not certain that he was ever married in the Western sense in other words that what we think of course is the wedding ceremony there's adequate evidence that he had serious liaisons on a number of occasions and that he had at least a Chinese marriage to a young Chinese woman while he was in Guangzhou Cantona's we used to know it and he established a relationship with a young woman there and lived with her for about two years and then when he was forced to leave the area after John kai-shek began to crack down on the Communists he and his then Chinese wife lost track of each other who is this lady in this picture that is a young man a young woman we know is wind team in KY who's probably the most famous female revolutionary in Vietnam she was a young woman who joined the party in the very late let's say around 1930 and was sent to Hong Kong because he had his headquarters there very briefly just at the time the Communist Party was first created and based on internal documentary evidence letters that were written to Moscow and that sort of thing it appears that the two developed a a I say sexual relationship certainly an intimate relationship and there are scattered letters that indicate that at that time he actually requested permission from Moscow to get married he didn't formally identify who the wife was but it's quite clear that this is a young woman and either they were formerly married or at least that they were at the point where they were about to be married and then both of them were arrested and were separated for several years the irony of all of this is that when they next meet each other again it was in Moscow at a major meeting of international communist parties and at that time she is listed as coming to Moscow as his wife and yet after she arrives there she becomes engaged to and marries one of Ho Chi Minh's chief lieutenants what happened to her eventually she went back to Vietnam with her new husband who was also of course the leading figure in the movement they were both arrested in the late 1930s and both were executed so she died in 1940 and it's it's frankly one of the great mysteries of the life of Ho Chi Minh is a puzzle in other words what was the relationship and how did how did the relationship come to an end why did you think that a book on Ho Chi Minh would sell I'm not sure you think of it that way but what were here and and why did the hyperion people think he would say I can go I guess in two or three different directions on this I first became interested in the book before the end of the war and I think at that time and so far as they thought of it in marketable terms I thought Ho Chi Minh would be a fascinating subject because he was the public image of our adversary I found out after the war was over that for many years Americans lost interest in Vietnam obviously was a humiliation for us and there really wasn't much of a market for the subject and I dropped it for that reason and some others and then it came back to it in the last decade or so because more and more information was coming out about him particularly from Russia and from China and from Vietnam itself and I have to say honestly I wrote it out of a strong impulse in myself that I wanted to understand this man and the fact that it came out as a book is almost secondary and I was delighted that Hyperion was interested in it I I think based on my conversations with the people there that that I think they hope that it will sell but I think they felt also that it was a topic that needed discussing and I think most of my friends in the Viet Nam field would agree we need we really need to understand how Chi Minh to understand the Vietnam War you write that the air of mystery around this man still remains intact after of all the research and the stuff that you've written well any author I guess would like to feel that he's answered every question and I do feel that I've I've certainly penetrated some of the mysteries around his life I think I've picked out his movements and pinned them down I personally feel that I have a fairly good idea of what made him tick if you work with someone long enough you know you feel like you've penetrated into that person's skin and and I feel I understand but I do see him as a very complex individual he's a man of enormous simplicity but enormous complexity he's a man who was very affable very friendly very unassuming he was very easy to like almost everyone who met him enjoyed him and and found themselves drawn to his personality and yet there was this fierce steely determination inside him that was driving this man and in those cases where where he found you know where he found it necessary either to utilize his image or to eliminate his rivals he was perfectly capable of doing that so I think that's the that's the hard thing to penetrate is just how these various factors in his personality tied in together and how he perhaps how he saw himself say he was in prison in Hong Kong and here's a picture of him right after he was released from the Hong Kong prison he was in prison there in the summer of 1931 he was captured by the British police as part of a general roundup of communist operatives all over East and Southeast Asia and they did not have anything concrete against him except the scattering of materials in his office that that suggested that he was engaged in revolutionary activity the problem was for the authorities was that his activities had nothing to do with colony of Hong Kong they had to do with Indochina so what they the British had to do was decide whether to extradite him and send him back to Indochina for the French to try and convict for treasonous activities and it became a very serious debate within the government in Hong Kong and in London over whether that was the proper thing to do and as it finally turned out various groups in Great Britain were able to persuade the government that he should be released because there was nothing concrete to charge him with and he should be allowed to go to the destination of his own choosing so he was finally spirited out of Hong Kong on a sampan out to awaiting Chinese steamship and the steamship took him up to coast and eventually dropped him off and around Shanghai and the French from that point on until World War Two weren't sure where he was in fact sometimes they thought he died in prison how long did you work on this book off and on probably for twenty-five years but I mentioned before that I had taken it up briefly at the end of the war and at that time I realised there was not sufficient material to write the kind of biography I wanted so I dropped it and finally got to the point about ten years ago when I could see more and more information coming out and I still had that fascination with him to me it's it's almost like a detective story it's almost like writing an Agatha Christie novel but you don't know the end of it when you started what is new in here that no one's ever gotten before of I think perhaps it's more sort of the overall picture I find as I go through this that I'm confirming a lot of things that I think certainly those of us who were acquainted with him know I think there are some things I've discovered that add nuances to our to our knowledge about him for example his very delicate relationship with the Soviet Union and the China and with the leaders of those two countries Stalin and Khrushchev and Mao Zedong Joe and I and that sort of thing and I can flesh out that relation ship and and it's a I think it's very clear that he was a very central figure in the International communist movement he tried to resolve the sino-soviet dispute I think I think I've clarified the issue of his attitude toward nationalism and revolution certainly to my own feeling I've clarified the fact that he was a genuine revolutionist he I wouldn't say he was that interested in Marxism but that he was very much a believer in revolution and those people who say he was just a patriot who was driven to the Soviet Union by the fact that America brushed him off is not entirely active I accurate I think he would have certainly tried to make a relationship with the United States but his commitment to to socialism and perhaps even in a very general sense the the concept of a communist utopia was genuine how long did he spend in the United States there's that's the gap that's the hardest to fill because we know primarily by his own statements that he arrived in the United States about 1912 or so while he was sailing on a steam French steamship liner and he left the ship either in Baltimore or New York and he spent by his own account several months in New York City living in Manhattan and perhaps Harlem and Queens Brooklyn maybe and then went up to Boston and worked there very briefly and then left at an unknown time and went back to Europe and with the help of some other people who were interested in and we've tried to locate something in the immigration records and there's absolutely nothing he must have just gotten off the ship you know sort of disappeared into the throng of immigrants living in the big cities in the East Coast spent some time here learned some English and then went back to England and it's not England and France and it's not entirely clear even by his own account exactly why he did this have you ever heard his voice I have I have heard his voice on tape his voice when he gave the famous declaration of independence at body and square in September of 1945 what's it sound like fairly high-pitched I'm tempted to say squeaky but it may be the quality of the tape it's a it's a very high sharp voice it reminded me a little bit of the voice of John kai-shek or even Mao Zedong when they speak and as I said that may have something to do with the quality of a you know of radio transcription and that sort of thing he had a very strong central Vietnamese accent what would have happened in your opinion in the Vietnam country and also the American war in Vietnam had Ho Chi Minh not been there uh at a minimum it wouldn't have been at all the same kind of revolution and I would say it for this for this way it was Ho Chi Minh who who devised the idea that the best way to approach the Vietnamese people and appeal to their instincts was not talk about communism and the classless utopia and collective farms and that sort of thing but to talk about two dramatic forces which were shaping Vietnamese Society in the 20th century and one would be the issue of national independence of course based on the French conquest of Vietnam in the 19th century and the other is a somewhat broader populist appeal that I tend to call social justice which means land to the tiller it means decent working conditions an opportunity for education he knew at that time that you couldn't appeal to the Vietnamese people 95% of whom were farmers with communist slogans you had to talk to them in the language that they understood and there was no one else in Vietnam at that time or I think even among his colleagues later on who could quite understand that gift that he had secondly I think his strategical instincts were very important I think to a degree he followed the what I think many people know is the Maoist idea people's war guerrilla struggle and that sort of thing but he was very good get in these context and he he discovered very early on because he already become a sophisticated observer of the international scene that for Vietnam to be liberated however he might define that it could not be done for example the way the Bolshevik Revolution had taken place or even the Chinese Civil War it couldn't be done entirely on a domestic basis because Vietnam was a small country controlled by a large powerful European country he had to have support on the international scene so he very early learned to sort of tie the liberation struggle in Indochina with international events and with trying to manipulate what we might call the great Power Balance when was the first time you went to Vietnam I was first in Vietnam in 1964 1965 at that time I was a foreign service officer and I was stationed with US Embassy and Saigon and it's where I first got interested in Ho Chi Minh what did you do at the Embassy I was an economic reporting officer I had prior to my assignment there I had been assigned to Chinese language training in Taiwan and when I was assigned to Saigon after my Chinese language training was over I was a bit puzzled then I discovered that in the economic reporting office they always wanted one Chinese speaker to deal with the large overseas Chinese business community in Saigon so in a light moment I will sometimes say that I was sent to Vietnam to win the support of the Chinese community to the South Vietnamese causes in the war in a footnote in the back you say that one weekend you went to Bangkok for the weekend by the time you came back the government that was in control when you left was out the government that took over was out and there was a third government in charge well that's right what's that story I don't know much about it from that because I've never followed it up at the time that during that period from 1964 to 1965 there were innumerable coos and some of them were act actually involve tanks going up into the presidential palace lawn and other case cases they were just you know reshuffling of the cabinet and that sort of thing and this was at a time when there was a kind of token civilian government in power in Saigon but the military was sitting in the background sort of moving the musical chairs around and I'd gone off to Bangkok just for a couple of days to see some friends and over the weekend there was some reshuffling of the cabinet in such a way that it was almost like a coup d'etat in other words it wasn't just an appointment and then I guess I came back on a Monday and by that time that particular group had been replaced by another group and that process which I always described as a kind of musical chairs game lasted for about a year and a half until the the rise of wind kalki and when van – about two months later they came in power in June of 65 who was the American ambassador when you were in the embassy I arrived just after Maxwell Taylor arrived general Taylor was there for about a year a little bit over a year and then he left in the early summer mid summer of 65 and Henry Cabot Lodge came back for a second tour of duty so I was there briefly when Henry Cabot Lodge had come back for a second term buried in your book is a reference to laid one who was he now hey there's a lot of them but there's one particular reference I want to ask you ladies Juan was a young Communist Party functionary from central Vietnam who had emerged during his early to mid 30s around the time of the Second World War into a position of leadership this was a time when there was enormous shake-up in the party because the number were captured and put to death and laid one began to emerge during the Second World War is a very effective party member and after the war was over because of his background in Central and South Vietnamese affairs he was assigned to the south to to command the party's political and military activities in South Vietnam he essentially stayed in the south right up through the mid-1950s in other words at a time when the United States had come in to support the new government in South Vietnam and in nineteen 1956 or early 1957 he was ordered north to Hanoi where the government had established its a power base after the Geneva Conference and became active acting general secretary which meant he was primarily the most powerful person in the and the end the Communist Party and the general feeling is and I certainly share it that he was given that position primarily because of his enormous commitment to unification and liberation of the south and it was more or less a symbolic statement that unification is going to be one of our top priorities for the next few years the reason I bring him up is that you know there are a number of issues that we still can get a good argument started about me and I says one of them is did the Vietnamese attack our destroyers there in the Tonkin Gulf or vice versa and who did what to whom you say that laid want old Mao I believe that it was a local decision to attack which I don't know was its eternal joy one of those yes the Maddox and I got excited Roy Wright is that new I don't believe so I think some other scholars have there are one or two major studies on the whole Tonkin Gulf incident and of course the consequences of it and I think that's I think that's something that is becoming clear some of the conversations that I report between the Vietnamese and the Chinese may be fairly new although these are this is information available to other people as well do you agree with that there was a local decision yes I think by my reading it was a local decision based on perhaps on the assumption that the US actions there the the two American warships were related to some South Vietnamese guerrilla operations taking place in the vicinity and the local authorities then reported it to the north and if I recall I'm not too precise on my knowledge on us that the northerners approved it the North Vietnamese insist and I think correctly that they had not that there had been no second attack that that may have been just electronic emissions or something where did you go for the new information the Ho Chi Minh I would say the bulk of my information came from Vietnam I was able to go back to Hanoi on several occasions to engage in research I had a little access to the archives I talked to a number of scholars I was able to interview some people who had known Ho Chi Minh and I think a lot of the information came from there I was able to find a good deal of information in the last few years from memoirs and collections of documents that have been published in China the Chinese are they don't open their archives to foreigners as a general rule certainly not in a matter of sensitive as sino-vietnamese relations but they have taken to publishing the reminiscences of some of their ambassadors and some of their military commanders and a lot of that is very useful the Russian archives have been open just peek and now it's possible to see some of that information and then finally certainly an enormous amount of information came from the French archives they during the colonial period they kept a very close watch on Ho Chi Minh when did their French get kicked out of Indochina out of Vietnam in 1954 at the close of the Geneva Conference which divided Vietnam temporarily in two separate zones with the yet men as they recall then the communist party in control in the north and pro-french or at least anti-communist Vietnamese settling in the south and the United States immediately decided to back the South Vietnamese government to stop the further spread of communism if you don't mind from 1890 until 1969 block out Ho Chi Minh's life I know thirty years he spent outside of Vietnam where were the major points nineteen eight I think when he engaged in that anti French demonstration in the imperial capital of way that's what that was his first open pledge galactic it it basically you might say it started him on a revolutionary career 18 years old that he was about 17 or 18 at the time three years later he sailed from Saigon to Europe I say Europe because he stopped in France but he went elsewhere as well spent three or four years working on an ocean liner or as I said settling briefly in in the United States most of World War one he was apparently in Great Britain although it's hard to pin down his activities 1917 1918 he arrived in Paris and that's where he joined the Socialist Movement and a founding member of the Communist Party 1923 ordered to Moscow for training late 1924 on to China I have a joke with my wife that we really ought to we should have put a pedometer on him so that we should have kept track of his activities because he must have been the most peripatetic man you can see lake 24 to china 1927 he was evicted or forced to leave China because of Zhang kai-shek's crackdown on communists he went back to Moscow and travelled in Europe the late 20s he went back to Southeast Asia lived in Thailand for a few months went to Hong Kong to found the Communist Party arrested two years in prison in Hong Kong after release he went back to the Soviet Union where he spent five years do I go on sure I came back and when I get to the point where he's in charge right in nineteen in nineteen nineteen thirty-eight he was permitted to go back to China to re-establish contact with his party and finally was able to do so in nineteen sometime in the spring of 1940 and that from that point on literally until his final days he was in direct contact with his close followers and and if not the leader of the Communist Party certainly its most influential public figure and from 41 to 45 he was early in neither in South China or northern Vietnam organizing his revolutionary movement the fall of or late summer of 1945 when the war was over he and a ragtag group of 5,000 troops marched in Hanoi raised the flag of the new Democratic Republic of Vietnam that's where he made his famous speech and body ins and square for the next 18 months he was engaged in negotiations with a French in order to gain some form of autonomy or independence trying to appeal to the United States for some measure of recognition or legitimacy those negotiations broke down in late 46 and from December 46 until 1954 he was back in the bush leading his movement against the French after Geneva his party came back to Hanoi and he spent his last or the last 15 years of his life as president of the country where is this photograph from he's there with this that that was a photograph taken in late 1945 perhaps early 1946 when he had been named a president of a Democratic Republic of Vietnam and that's a more formal photo photograph of him obviously a fairly posed one I have here instant in your book the document that you reprinted it says via the War Department Ho Chi Minh president provincial government of Vietnam transmitted our harry s truman mm-hmm and it reads mr. president on behalf of vietnam people and government i wish to express to you our sincere gratitude for the decorations in twelve points you've made on the US foreign policy that decoration is enthusiastically welcomed by our people as the opening of a new era for the apposed nations all over the world what's this and why is it important it is one of it is one of several communications that he sent either to President Roosevelt or President Truman or one of our secretaries of state it was part of a long process that began in late 1944 early 1945 when he he he realized at the end of the war that this was a marvelous opportunity to liberate his country because Japanese surrender would create a vacuum in Indochina and the French had been French authorities had been in prison by the Japanese so there would be this short window when the job when the yet men might be able to seize control but he recognized that for that for that process to succeed he needed to gain international recognition of his new government and he was well aware of the fact Soviet Union had relatively little interest Stalin never did care much about Indochina and what he deduced from the situation was that given the circumstances at the end of the war with the United States allied with the Soviet Union and Great Britain and the grand alliance and with of course Roosevelt's reputation as being anti French in an anti-colonialist he hoped somehow that he would be able to induce the United States to support the legitimacy of his government rather than support a return of the French and this is one of the later messages that he set off to Washington in the hope that somehow the Americans would see some benefit in supporting his movement when was he no longer involved really involved in the decisions it generally in in the political scene it's probably hard to be overly specific because in his last few years he he suffered from a number of physical ailments and also I think I couldn't give any kind of a medical diagnosis on it but from people I've known who saw him in operation at that time occasionally mentally he would sort of drift out of the picture they would see him for example in important international conferences and he'd be sort of staring off into space and that process was sort of an ongoing process I had interviews with the Vietnamese in particular who insists that up to about 1964 90 sixty-five he was very active in helping to direct the Vietnamese political activities but from 1965 on apparently he went downhill quite rapidly and I think one of the one of the one of the things I'm able to bring out in this book fairly clearly is the degree to which he began to lose control or influence over his movement not only after 1965 but to a certain degree beginning in the early to mid 1950s there's a story in here that he wanted to go south during the American War I believe from the north to the south surreptitiously mm-hmm but didn't get to why and what's that story it's a very moving story this would have been about 1967 1968 when this was around the time of the Tet Offensive and he had he had been in Beijing for medical treatment he was quite weak at the time and as I said I think perhaps some of his mental acuity had begun to drain away at this point and he always wanted to visit the south and he felt very strongly about his symbolic importance to the people in the south and the fact that they had struggled so long for their own liberation and I think he was very sensitive to the fact that many southerners complained that he had sold them out at the Geneva Conference because he'd allow the division of the country and he wanted to go south obviously to travel through NLF held areas and raised the spirits of the people but his physical condition my sense is simply didn't permit it so that he was being very unrealistic at this time so that what his colleagues had to do many of many reviewers of course will remember Ladak toes Henry Kissinger's opposite number during the Paris treaty he went to Beijing I think after the Tet Offensive to report the Ho Chi Minh Anh what had happened at at and tell Ho Chi Minh that negotiations were beginning hope who hadn't been involved in these and it may have been about that time when ho said I want to go south now because things are looking better and later tow more or less pom damoff and said we can't take you there you'd be recognized and you might be you know and you might be arrested and and Tochi men said well maybe you could take me secretly by sea down around to southern Cambodia and sneak me in that way but he also said he won that he can he be willing to shave his beard he be willing to shave his beard so he wouldn't be recognized it's a really it's quite a moving story and if you if you if you become in a sense sort of attached to Ho Chi Minh as an individual whatever you know whatever one thinks of his is a political ideology it's it's almost pathetic to see this man desperately wanting you know to get uh sort of hands-on relationship with the people on the south but you also said that then I may be late Actos said this but if you shave off your beard the people in the South are gonna who you are that's right where did that story come from um it came from it came from two or three different reminiscences have been published in the last few years reminiscences by Vietnamese and I think to a certain degree may be comments made by later Tom self but not I might say for for broad public dissemination in Vietnam because it you know it obviously undercuts the image of Uncle Ho is firmly in charge of the country right to is the end of his days how many times have you been to Hanoi uh probably somewhere between five and ten times first trip 1985 for a research visit last year nice trip last trip last trip the must have been about 1996 or 97 if I count right this is your 14th book somewhere in that range I I'm always a little imprecise about it not not by any means trying to say I've written so many I don't even think about it but some of the things that that I might think of as a book are relatively short and they might be considered you know research papers or something of that type so it's somewhere around that 700 pages $35 it's a lot of pages big book a lot of dollars yeah are you worried that it's too big if the if my editor isn't worried about it I guess I'm not worried about where's the picture from that's a picture that was taken about nineteen early nineteen or mid nineteen fifty four just at the end of what we call the Franco Viet Minh war when the French were fighting against the revolutionary forces and from what I've gathered from the context this was a moment of general repose when the war was just about one and he's in his again his bush jacket waiting to go back to Hanoi how many names did he have in his life somewhere between 50 and 100 and indeed there are undoubtedly more that we don't know about what was he born name his name his first name was what the Vietnamese call a milk name which is just the name the infant is given to begin with and his name was Winston Cohen at age 11 or 12 it's at that point where adolescence begins and then the parents will give a young man or a young woman a name representing their aspirations for their child and at that point he was called win tun which means a win which is one of the familiar family names in Vietnam tucked on meaning he who will succeed or he who will become he kept that name until he left Vietnam and it was when he left Vietnam that he began using various aliases where do you come down in the Vietnam War give a position after all this I have a position but it's a it's somewhat of a conflicted one and I've always been very honest about it it may have to do in part with my age in my background I grew up at a time when Americans still believe very strongly in the correctness of our foreign policy objectives I believed in us containment policy I believe that it was necessary although I I might say I thought I'd been much to militarize I went into the State Department almost literally at the time John Kennedy entered the White House and felt many of the same feelings of enthusiasm that that generation felt so when I was sent to Vietnam when I was in the Foreign Service I sort of carried as a badge of honor the idea that I was doing a noble service and then by the time I by the time I got to Vietnam I for whatever reason I was already quite skeptical that we could win I had no particular pleasure in seeing America lose I certainly didn't glorify the revolutionary movement in any particular way I had no particular liking for communism but I just thought it was a mistake I thought we were in effect throwing money into a lost situation it's almost like a military campaign if you're very exposed in a military campaign you don't throw all of your your troops into that point you back up and you establish a you establish a more defensible security perimeter and I just felt based on my experience there and perhaps my study of Chinese history because there were some similarities there I just felt that we were unlikely to be successful in Vietnam and from that point on I in whatever way I could I was hoping that we would find some way of extricate ourselves from Vietnam with honor and as much as possible a minimum of bloodshed for the Vietnamese people when did you leave the Foreign Service after the Vietnam assignment in the fall of 1965 how old were you then 33 and where did you go next I my doctoral studies at Georgetown University I had started them before I went overseas and after I finished my doctorate on my name out for a job and was accepted for a position in the history department at Penn State how long did you spend at Penn State 30 years full for career what are you done now I retired a couple of years ago and just cited last year to move down to the Outer Banks the hurricane alley as we call it in North Carolina and Lovett down there where were you from originally I bounced around a lot I was born in Chicago spent many years in Washington DC every time I come to Washington I see a house I lived in or a friend's house spent some time during my adolescence in Philadelphia lived in Miami Indiana went to school at Dickinson College in Carlisle Pennsylvania there's a series of pictures in the book of where he lived and I wanted to ask you which one you think represents the Ho Chi Minh that you've come to know in this book is it the one here on top which is the palace right near Baden square correct or is it this near Budden square the stilt house and how much times he's right next door to the presidential palace and how much time did he spend in both places the presidential palace on top was a very impressive late 19th century building built by the French to represent the grandeur of the French colonial empire he moved there very very briefly after the war I think that is 1945 1946 for symbolic reasons it was very important for the Vietnamese that they control the presidential palace rather than the French during that period after 1945 when they were negotiating with each other but from the start he was very uncomfortable with living there because it was much too ostentatious so he did not live there personally during that particular period he lived in an administrative office over toward the center of town then when the the the Viet Minh movement that is the party leaders came back to Hanoi in October of 1954 he refused to occupy that residence and he moved into the gardeners quarters on the grounds of the presidential palace and this would have been the mid to late 50s that's correct that's the fish pond that he often was seen sitting there feeding the fish right beside it and it was while he was living in the gardeners quarters that the party arranged to have this house built in the style of the mountain minorities and he lived there for most of the remainder of his life during the during the bombing campaign 65 to 68 and he often lived in a bomb shelter also adjacent to these quarters almost everything that's been written about your book is positive except one thing and I don't know if you've seen this review have you seen this in the amazon.com profile the one from the Vietnamese yeah yes ban fom and I just wanted to ask you about this because he goes in these yeah it's it's a little stilted English because he obviously knows English pretty well but it's but he he says I was eagerly awaiting this book believing that it contains information from the Russian French and Vietnamese archives I was thoroughly disappointed mm-hmm what bottom this me about this book was not so much the information the author convey but the information that he either through a coincident or on purpose deliberately hide from his reader mm-hmm do you want to just take that you know it was this guy on track it at all I think in fairness to him I probably would like to talk with him and see whether he has information that wasn't available to me because there's an enormous amount of information and misinformation about Ho Chi Minh out around the world and certainly in the internet and what I have tried to do is to corroborate everything that I have seen certainly anything that's controversial so that I didn't find myself simply repeating stories that for which there wasn't any proper evidence or maybe it was something put out as a false and I I think what public puzzled me a little bit about that about that letter was that one of the things he quoted is the case of a young woman who apparently became ho chi minh's concubine toward the end of his life and there was a very messy story about the fact that she was raped by Ho Chi Minh's Minister of the Interior and later her body was found in the suburbs of Hanoi with the assumption that she had been assassinated perhaps because she'd given birth to Ho Chi Minh's child and wanted and wanted to marry him and of course this would have been unacceptable given the image of Ho is the celibate the fact is I do report that story I don't dwell on it unnecessarily because it's a little hard to corroborate and I I don't want to accentuate things where there may be more that I don't know about but I do report it and I certainly I I gather from the kind of things that he's saying that I downplay the degree of cruelty and the degree of bloodshed that occurred in Vietnam maybe the difference there is that I don't I don't deny the brutality and the bloodshed that took place as I see it somewhat on both sides but I certainly can see the Leninist character of his government and I can see is I think I mentioned to you before that there are times when he was quite willing to commit actions or order actions that could involve very high degree of casualties among his supporters as well as among his enemies and there were times when some of his colleagues committed what to me are quite brutal acts and the suppression of their enemies and I find myself very aware of that in some cases Ho Chi Minh appeared to lack the political courage to stop it you point out in your book that ho Chi Minh wrote two autobiographies under an assumed name yes about himself and this upset this reviewer who he quotes in here he says many that this is tran dan 10 who is an alias of Ho Chi Minh saying this is what he wrote many Viet and foreign writers and journalists have tried to write biographies of the president of the Democratic Republic of Vietnam he's talking about himself but so far they have not had little success they have had a little success the reason is simple again he's writing about himself the modest president ho doesn't like to be talked about too much later on the book when the question of biography is mentioned Howe replies biography that is that is a good thing but at present our people still live in poverty after 80 years of slavery our country is in ruin and we have a big task of reconstruction let's do what is most urgent first as from my biography it can wait a quote within a quote within an article that I'm having trouble following yeah but in other words Ho Chi Minh wrote these phony biographies or autobiographies under an assumed name writing about himself in the book that he wasn't interested in biography what did he take on what's your take on that well I think that's part of Ho Chi Minh image making he certainly began to see himself at some point as a symbol of his cause and I think he realized his talent and in in effect making himself the public image of the movement and he saw in fact that it was the appeal to his personality and his character that was a large part of the success of his movement do you read Vietnamese I read it reasonably well I do keep a dictionary handy and this book Ho Chi Minh a life has there ever been a book written like this not one of this length and not one that I think delves as much as as I have into his movements there may be some people who say you're talking along awful lot about where he went and when and I do that in part because that's been part of the mystery of Ho Chi Minh is that he's seen everywhere and it's important I think to tie down his you know hit where he went and why he did what he did and I've tried to let the story speak for itself here's the book it's called Ho Chi Minh by William J duiker we thank you very much for joining us thank you Brian

39 thoughts on “Ho Chi Minh: Bio, Vietnam War, Book, Facts, Education, Ideology, Legacy (2000)

  1. – The real Nguyễn Ái Quốc died in 1932 in the jail in Honkong!
    – The wrong Hồ Chí Minh is Ho Quang, he is a Chinese (not a Vietnamese !!!). see :
    https://waymy0778.files.wordpress.com/2016/08/12814489_841641199292742_8845874371710089201_n.jpg?w=723

    https://waymy0778.wordpress.com/2016/08/18/bat-m

    – He is a spy and is build by China / by the Chinese communists.
    – China wants to occupy Vietnam, by use the Hồ Chí Minh to build the Vietnamese communist party in Nord-Vietnam, and the to occupy South-Vietnam !

  2. Ho Chi Minh is an animal! Ho Chi Minh killed and disabled million Vietnamese people. I hate HGo Chi Minh the most!!!

  3. "A Bright Shining Lie" – tạm dịch: "Một sự láo toét rực rỡ sáng ngời". Ký giả Neil Sheehan phơi bầy trong quyển sách này sự thật trần truồng về trận Ấp Bắc (tháng giêng 1963) và vạch trần mọi tuyên truyền láo toét của truyền thông Washington và Sài Gòn.

    “You can fool some of the people all of the time, and all of the people some of the time, but you can not fool all of the people all of the time." – tạm dịch: "Chúng bay có thể đánh lừa được một số người dân trong mọi lúc, và mọi người dân trong vài lúc, nhưng chúng bay không thể đánh lừa được tất cả mọi người dân trong mọi lúc.” (Abraham Lincoln)

    "… ont pû tromper quelques hommes, ou les tromper tous dans certains lieux et en certains tems, mais non pas tous les hommes, dans tous les lieux et dans tous les siècles." – tạm dịch: "… đã có thể đánh lừa được một số người, hoặc đã lừa dối được tất cả mọi người ở một số nơi nào đó và trong một số thời điểm nhất định nào đó, nhưng không phải được tất cả mọi người, ở tất cả mọi nơi và qua suốt mọi thế kỷ." (Jacques Abbadie)

  4. I am a Vietnamese and I hate all the docus, books, films… that are written, made and filmed by the Vietnamese in the theme "Vietnam Wars"! It seems that our people never be able to think impartially or objectively about our own modern history! We are a developing country in the matter of techniques and natural sciences. And we are very underdeveloped in the social sciences, too! The French, the British and the Americans for example have offered magnificient masterworks in the theme. I just mention some most honourable authors/producers: Jean Lacouture, Bernard Fall, Stanley Karnow, Paul Mus, Joseph Buttinger, Emile de Antonio…. Our Vietnamese people with "our 4000 year long civilization" as we always more than often boast have none with a such high intellectual level. What a shame for our Vietnamese people! Are we the best idiots? Have the courage to recognize our own weakness, dear fellow countrymen/women! I am not a traitor or reactionaire.. according to your prompt reaction! Please mind it: "The True Story of Ah Q/A Q Chính Truyện" of Lu Xu/Lỗ Tấn describles very good the mentality of the Chinese people, -and our mentality, too! Since my age of 14 years I swore never to let be intoxicated again by the f…. intellectual products made by the stupid Vietnamese with their stupid intellect! I bought a transistor radio for myself and followed regularly the news of the BBC World Service, which I appreciated very much for its accuracy and impartiality! I still am a fan of the BBC -from the SW-radio era to the cable television one! Of course the other names were not unknown to me such as the VOA (Voice of America), ABC, Radio Peking, Radio Moscow, Radio Free Asia… which produced the much better and much more sophisticated propanda lies than the Radio Saigon or Radio Hanoi or the FNL Radio. Later via the internet I may admire lately the CBS or NBC with Walter Conkrite (for me they are my American BBCs besides the British one). I may offer a humble suggestion to anyone loving the Truth and searching the Truth in the matter of "scientifical Vietnam History": make a great distance away from any Vietnamese propanda lies! Please do not waste your intellect or time on f… trashes anymore. Colonel Bùi Tín for example vice-chief editor of the Vietnamese Communist Party´s daily newspaper Nhân Dân was/is just an "intellectual prostitute" serving two clients differently -depending on "who was/is paying in Hanoi-Vietnam or Paris-France". I wish I may translate or subtitle books or docus from French or English into Vietnamese for my fellow countrymen/women with no or little knowledge in these foreign languages. Of course free of charge! They may have the rights to enjoy the truth as other learned men/women in this era of propagandas of the "intellectual prostitution". "Truth shall triumph"! – "Who searches will find!"

  5. In the thumbnail, Hồ Chí Minh's eyes are deep and empty like there is no living soul behind them. I think people like him literally and consciously sell their souls to the devil for power and fame. I think that is what he did.

  6. What amazes me is that so many Vietnamese fought and died to make sure they stayed in bondage which they are to this day. In Hồ's opinion, the Vietnamese people as a whole aren't smart enough or wise enough to rule themselves. All those who died in the NVA or as a Viet Cong support that contention. The greatest tool that communists have is lies which they use better than anywhere in the free world because they control the press. The free world publishes their sins but the communist party makes sure that their atrocities are covered up. So many simple minded people only see what the free world says and are so stupid they don't understand that the communists did much worse but were sure that all of the people that oppose them are dead and forgotten.

  7. Fuck hochiminh communist hell forever fuck dog 💣💣💣💣💣💣💣💣💣💣💣🔫🔫🔫🔫🔫🔫🔫🔫🔫🔫🔫🔫🔪🔪🔪🔪🔪🔪🔪🔪🔪🔪🔪🔪🔪🔪😁😁😁😁😁😁😁😁😁😁😁😁😁😁💪💪💪💪💪💪💪💪💪💪💪💪💪👣👣👣👣👣👣👣👣👣👣👣👣👣👣👊👊👊👊👊👊👊👊👊👊👊👊👊

  8. Answer: Ho chi minh (Nguyen sinh cung) is/was a bastard, drifter, wannabe, deceptive, cheater, liar, deceiver, opportunist, terrorist, invader, thief, robber, murderer, thug and war criminal. He is/was a Chinese and Russian tyrant puppet and a Soviet Union loyal dog. He was an evil monster, he barks and bites the Vietnamese people all over Vietnam, whenever his communist masters told him to he pleased his evil monsters Mao Zedong and Nikita Khruschev. 86O4884W65

  9. Ho Chi Minh is a psychopath who caused the deaths and injuries of million Vietnamese! Ho Chi Minh is a person who sucks Chinese communists' dicks!

  10. Staline en Russie MAO en Chine Pol Pot au Cambodge les Kim en Coree du Nord Castro au Cuba HCM au Vietnam Dans le monde total Les communistes ont massacrés 100 milions victimes innocents

  11. HCM n"est pas 1 patriotique Il a simplement exécuté des ordres de Mao Il a tué son propre peuple Au moins 172000 citoyens Vietnamiens du Nord ont eté tués au courd de CCRD(land reform)le peuple vietnamien n'oublie jamais les crimes des communistes

  12. It "affected" americans until 1994 when the Last US POW was released. The NVA won the war. They held captives for 30 years and they held all the ground occupied by the United States after 1973. Ho Chi Minh was a very smart man and managed to defeat the most powerful country in the world in an armed conflict. Vietnam like the Russians in Afghanistan learned was, that just winning battles does not win the war. Bombing your enemy does not make him go away and killing his kids in a village sweep when he comes home and might stay there and now has nothing left to live for but killing who he relates to being responsible for that makes a larger enemy. Stupid tactics run by stupid men who decided a kill count would make communists give up. Well that simply won't work when they are willing to throw an infinite amount of bodies into that count and you think that's going to atrit the enemy force but really you're the one taking the casualties that are going to make the war impossible to keep fighting. They drained themselves and had to pack up and go home. The NVA still had millions of weapons and men ready to go while americans had south vietnamese trying to hang onto huey skids that would be executed for being traitors which they technically were as the NVA controlled that territory. What a way for Nixon to end a war. He fucked up everything he touched that guy. Unfortunately Ho died in 69 and gave the NVA a reason to keep fighting. They turned 18 and 19 year old americans into hamburger for fun. 60,000 casualties + that means the US was losing about 500+ men a day in combat around Vietnam. The NVA were losing about 4,000 a day says the paperwork but the reality shows us that number was much lower. That's why they won. No giving up and dedicated by all and every means when young americans just wanted to go home and buy a camaro. The NVA regular just wanted to kill someone holding an american made uniform or die trying.

  13. It is amazing.Wiki states ho is a peasant, uneducated man turned to communist and became the leader of communist Vietnam, brain washed vietnamese as seen here. What ashamed.

  14. Ho Chi Minh was Communist ideologue first & foremost, not the passionate nationalist so many see him as. He was conniving & ruthless w/little regard for anyone other than himself. He was a womanizer & liar extraordinaire. He is now part of the godless religion of state, a puke mummy in a glass box in Hanoi, may his name rot on the dung heap of history!

  15. As big an actor as Thomas Jefferson on the world's stage. I wonder if Ho had been larger and more menacing in appearance, if western power brokers would have taken him more seriously. So easily dismissed as irrelevant, but thousands would dance through the bombs of B-52s, Napalm and mine fields for him. Such bravery and dedication could only make westerners believe the Vietnamese were somehow less than human.

  16. message from alexi mingx valentine native born Saigon august 28 65 whers your helicopter's at? check out my pilot cert trained under Miriam petrovich k h 20 checkmate caaapsr was flying helicopters by 1978 good luck on you guys finding any thing I quit NATO UN from lRRS s a recovery by long live uncle ho

  17. I was born in Saigon 1965 aka ho chi mhin city went to milaterry school south south east south Vietnam training pavilion at time uncle ho was trying to get in NATO my father Alexandr Donald valentine native born India 1922 fought in war war two under morris shell name pilot etc was around ho in 69 forget what month calendar year was different at time I could be wrong but was taught tai chi in pavilion 400 persons at a time my best recollection is pole pot engaged north north east in 69 in Vincenty's of a downed air craft I was with a recovery group to pull out downed pilots uncertain which aircraft or who's country there were so many long time ago best I rembber uncle ho had look a like doubles group working with was lit up kidney liver and ankle he went till he dropped out side of north east saigon

  18. President Ho Chi Minh led Vietnam to the Independence, both in politics and economy situation. however, still, some South Vietnamese remain to be stuck in stuff that South Vietnam would have been richer than Japan and South Korea with the US's INTERVENTION (I must make an emphasis here). Huh, I burst laughing. lol. That such shame thoughts can never be strong enough to cover the power of Vietnamese Nationalism.
    Ho Chi Minh, the Great Patriot.
    https://www.quora.com/Was-the-Vietnam-war-a-mistake-Why-or-why-not

  19. Far away across the ocean,
    Far beyond the sea's eastern rim,
    Lives a man who is father of the Indo-Chinese people,
    And his name it is Ho Chi Minh.
    Ho, Ho, Ho Chi Minh…!
    Ho, Ho, Ho Chi Minh…!
    From VietBac to the SaiGon Delta
    From the mountains and plains below
    Young and old workers, peasants and the toiling tenant farmers
    Fight for freedom with Uncle Ho.
    Ho, Ho, Ho Chi Minh…!
    Ho, Ho, Ho Chi Minh…!
    Ho Chi Minh was a deep sea sailor
    He served his time out on the seven seas
    Work and hardship were part of his early education
    Exploitation his ABC.
    Ho, Ho, Ho Chi Minh…!
    Ho, Ho, Ho Chi Minh…!
    Ho Chi Minh came home from sailing
    And he looked out on his native land
    Saw the want and the hunger of the Indo-Chinese people
    Foreign soldiers on every hand.
    Ho, Ho, Ho Chi Minh…!
    Ho, Ho, Ho Chi Minh…!
    Ho Chi Minh went to the mountains
    And he trained a determined band
    Heroes all, sworn to liberate the Indo-Chinese people
    Drive invaders from the land.
    Ho, Ho, Ho Chi Minh…!
    Ho, Ho, Ho Chi Minh…!
    Fourteen men became a hundred
    A hundred thousand and Ho Chi Minh
    Forged and tempered the army of the Indo-Chinese people
    Freedom's Army of Viet Minh.
    Ho, Ho, Ho Chi Minh…!
    Ho, Ho, Ho Chi Minh…!
    Every soldier is a farmer
    Comes the evening and he grabs his hoe
    Comes the morning he swings his rifle on his shoulder
    This the army of Uncle Ho.
    Ho, Ho, Ho Chi Minh…!
    Ho, Ho, Ho Chi Minh…!
    From the mountains and the jungles
    From the ricelands and the Plain of Reeds
    March the men and the women of the Indo-Chinese Army
    Planting freedom with victory seeds.
    Ho, Ho, Ho Chi Minh…!
    Ho, Ho, Ho Chi Minh…!
    From VietBac to the SaiGon Delta
    Marched the armies of Viet Minh
    And the wind stirs the banners of the Indo-Chinese people
    Peace and freedom and Ho Chi Minh.
    Ho, Ho, Ho Chi Minh…!
    Ho, Ho, Ho Chi Minh…!

  20. Long live the Great Revoluntionary and Father of Vietnam Comrade Ho Chi Minh and his thoughts!Battre la sauvage Etat-Unis imperialiste loup!

  21. Its amazing how much America is willing to white wash away in order to fit a narrative to its own agenda.

    Ho Chi Mihn was key in helping American soldiers during WW2 fight the Japanese in the asian jungles in exchange Ho thought he was going to get help from the Americans to remove the French colonialists who were occupying Vietnamese land.

    That was under FDR, FDR believed in self determination of a nation and its people.
    Truman however couldnt care less.
    So when FDR died and Ho went to Truman hoping to ensure cooperation as was promised under FDR he was told to take a hike because Truman was more loyal to his nazi masters who he gave safe passage to. Rather than the people who werent 'white enough'.

  22. Why are there still many people criticizing Comrade Ho when he led the brave Vietnamnese to chase out the French and Yanks?Even as we Chinese are in conflicts with Vietnam we still revere Comrade Ho Chi Min as we revere our great leader.

  23. Bac Ho rat thich fucking dong chi gai tre. Xac minh rau (hcn) o Hanoi lam bang nhua o China dem ve. Toi co dem xem roi. Moi nguoi mat mo nem ko that ro. ko nem de y mat thoi gio

  24. This guy who listens to his superior which is Mao to killing his own people in the name of "land reform 1953-1956" the amount of Vietnamese that this guy had murdered are about 172,000 -500,000 souls, and he constantly lie like dog. He and his party painted himself as the guy who sacrificed his virginity by stay as singled for revolution, but the fact is he fuck a lot of girls some had been murdered after he got his way to silence them one of the girl by the name Nong Thi Xuan which is mother of Nong Duc Manh , Ho Chi Minh unwanted son, and latter become party chief. Alot western press specially "stupid American press" never do research on this bad ass before they publishing their paper so they just copied what ever vietnamese communist's propaganda had painted this guy like goddess figure, and hero….. that all ….. that all folk ! …..

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