On March 26th the governments of the United States of America and the Socialist Republic of Vietnam, in partnership with the United States Institute of Peace, hosted a landmark event examining the transformation from enemies to partners by the two countries since the end of the war in 1975.
In the thriving industrial city of Bien Hoa, about 20 miles east of Ho Chi Minh City, the former Saigon, there is a large air base, just beyond a sweeping bend in the Dong Nai River. During the American war in Vietnam, it was said to be the busiest airport in the world. Since the war ended in 1975, a dense cluster of four residential neighborhoods has grown up around the base. Their total population is perhaps 111,000, while the base itself, now home to advanced long-range fighter-bombers of the Vietnam People’s Air Force, has another 1,200 permanent residents. Continue reading “Fifty Years After, A Daunting Cleanup of Vietnam’s Toxic Legacy”
On a mild, sunny morning last November, Chuck Searcy and I drove out along a spur of the old Ho Chi Minh Trail to the former Marine base at Khe Sanh, which sits in a bowl of green mountains and coffee plantations in Vietnam’s Quang Tri province, hard on the border with Laos. The seventy-seven-day siege of Khe Sanh in early 1968, coinciding with the Tet Offensive, was the longest battle of what Vietnamese call the American War and a pivotal event in the conflict. By the off-kilter logic of Saigon and Washington, unleashing enough technology and firepower to produce a ten-to-one kill ratio was a metric of success, but the televised carnage of 1968, in which 16,592 Americans died, was too much for audiences back home. After Tet and Khe Sanh, the war was no longer America’s to win, only to avoid losing. Continue reading “The Lethal Legacy of the Vietnam War”
English after Vietnamese
Các nữ đại sứ thăm đội rà phá toàn nữ của RENEW-NPA
Đội rà phá hiện trường giao tranh toàn nữ RENEW-NPA và bốn nữ đại sứ, hàng trước (từ trái qua phải Deborah Paul, Canada; Wendy Matthews, New Zealand; Grete Løchen, Na Uy; và Beatrice Maser Mallor, Thụy Sĩ). Hải Lăng, Quảng Trị, 09/5/2019. © Hien Ngo / RENEW-NPA.
Hải Lăng, Quảng Trị (9/5/2019) – Bốn nhà lãnh đạo của cộng đồng quốc tế ở Việt Nam, các nữ đại sứ của Thụy Sĩ, Na Uy, Canada, và New Zealand (được biết đến là Nhóm G4) tại Việt Nam, hôm thứ Năm đến Quảng Trị để xem một đội rà phá hiện trường toàn nữ làm việc.
Đoàn gồm có Đại sứ Deborah Paul (Canada), Wendy Matthews (New Zealand), Grete Løchen (Na Uy), và Beatrice Maser Mallor (Thụy Sĩ). Chuyến thăm chính thức dài hai ngày của họ là để trực tiếp tìm hiểu về hậu quả chiến tranh ở Quảng Trị, đặc biệt là nỗ lực đang diễn ra để khảo sát và rà phá bom mìn còn sót lại sau chiến tranh mà còn đe dọa cuộc sống của người dân địa phương. Các đại sứ cũng thăm các dự án phát triển do các nước nhóm G4 tài trợ. Continue reading “Các nữ đại sứ thăm đội rà phá toàn nữ của RENEW-NPA – Women Ambassadors Visit RENEW-NPA’s All-Woman Clearance Team”
The toxic legacy of the Vietnam War
The US has launched a multi-million dollar clean-up operation at an air base in Vietnam it used to store the notorious chemical Agent Orange.
The ten-year programme, unveiled more than four decades after the end of the Vietnam War, will cost $183m (£141m).
The site at Bien Hoa airport, outside Ho Chi Minh City, is considered the most contaminated in the country. Continue reading “Agent Orange: US to clean up toxic Vietnam War air base”
April 14, 2019
At age 30, Nguyen Thi Thuy has started in a job that everyone in Vietnam believed that only men could do. This mother of one daughter now leads an all-female clearance team of 16 members for clearing cluster munitions and other explosive remnants of war contaminated land in Quang Tri Province.
The youngest from a family of eight children in Gio Chau Commune, Gio Linh District, Nguyen Thi Thuy has been working with the Survey and Clearance Program of Project RENEW and Norwegian People’s Aid (RENEW-NPA) in Quang Tri Province since 2013.
TUESDAY, APRIL 16, 2019
President of the Vietnam Union of Friendship Organisations (VUFO) Nguyen Phuong Nga (R) presents the Friendship Order to Susan Marie Hammond. (Photo: VNA)
Hanoi (VNA) – President of the Vietnam Union of Friendship Organisations (VUFO) Nguyen Phuong Nga on April 16 presented the Friendship Order, a notable distinction of the Vietnamese State, to Executive Director of the War Legacies Project (WLP) Susan Marie Hammond.
Speaking at the ceremony, Nga said that this is one of the highest decorations that the Vietnamese state presents to individuals and organisations who have made significant contributions to the friendship between Vietnam and countries worldwide. Continue reading “Vietnam honours US woman for Agent Orange relief work”
Vietnam and the US have together marked the transformation from enemies to partners since the end of the war in 1975 by overcoming war legacies, among priorities in the bilateral ties.
US expert helps Vietnam settle unexploded odnance. Photo: PeaceTrees
Tackling war legacies has required both time and efforts that neither Hanoi nor Washington have been reluctant to do over the past decades, making the relationship a case study of foe-turned-friend. Continue reading “How Vietnam, US heal wounds of war to build up comprehensive partnership”
|Unexploded ordnance littered the forest floor in Hà Giang Province. — VNS File Photo|
HÀ GIANG — Residents of Thanh Thuỷ Commune in Vị Xuyên District said they are still occasionally startled by an explosion somewhere in the mountains nearby, a cruel reminder of a bloody border war 40 years ago.
They first prayed that no one gets hurt by stepping on the unexploded ordnance (UXO) buried in the terrain throughout the north-eastern uplands, especially the northernmost province of Hà Giang, where the bloodiest battles were waged.
Bồn Văn Hòn lives just 10km from the centre of Thanh Thuỷ Commune but the journey easily takes more than two hours.
Having lost both of his legs in two separate incidents related to unexploded bombs, Hòn uses his arms to move around
The changeable weather at this time of the year causes him major aches all over and he could no longer rely on crutches. Continue reading “Unexploded bombs continue to haunt Hà Giang”
An ‘other’ reflects on the ways in which he and many others feel they belong, why Vietnam is home.
I have spent over 40 percent of my adult life outside of my home country, never content with having my soul controlled by geography, to paraphrase George Santayana. I carry a U.S. passport but it doesn’t define me. I am a U.S. ex-patriot and global citizen who calls Vietnam home.
It was during my first visit to Hanoi 23 years ago this month that this country – with its tragic yet inspirational millennia-long history – cast its spell on me. After moving here in 2005, I joined a select group of expats – an estimated 100,000 of them, according to official sources – who live in the midst of 97 million Vietnamese.
The Vietnam War, which tore this country apart and forever changed its politics and culture, has never been the subject of a Smithsonian exhibition. The nation managed to build a memorial in 1982 to those who died in the war, less than a decade after the fall of Saigon, and, in 2017, Americans watched an epic 18-hour PBS documentary about the war, without any substantial political controversy. The war is included within exhibitions at the National Museum of American History, is referenced in the National Museum of African American History and Culture and served as the backdrop to an anniversary exhibition about the Vietnam memorial in 2003. But it hasn’t been the subject of specific, focused curatorial reconsideration.
HO CHI MINH CITY, Vietnam — On May 25, 2016, Secretary of State John Kerry took the stage at the luxury Rex Hotel in downtown Ho Chi Minh City. Earlier on their trip together, President Barack Obama had announced a major development in a project Kerry had championed: The Vietnamese government had granted a license for Fulbright University Vietnam, the country’s first independent, private and nonprofit liberal arts university. About $40 million from the U.S. government would go toward the project, along with 25 hectares of rent-free land donated by the Ho Chi Minh City government. On this day, the two countries would officially mark the milestone. Continue reading “How a U.S.-Backed University in Vietnam Unleashed Old Demons”
Dec. 21, 2018
Decades after the war with America ended, Vietnamese families continue to search for the remains of their kin who are still missing in action.
By Joseph Babcock (Mr. Babcock, a teacher of writing, is working on a book about contemporary Vietnam)
A war veteran places incense on graves in Hanoi on the national Day for Martyrs and Wounded Soldiers. Credit Hoang Dinh Nam / Agence France-Presse — Getty Images
On July 27, the day a collection of remains believed to be those of American soldiers lost in the Korean War were flown out of North Korea, I was driving from Hanoi to Vietnam’s rural northern province of Yen Bai. My host that morning was Ngo Thuy Hang, the 42-year-old vice director of Marin, a local nonprofit devoted to helping Vietnamese families locate the remains of their loved ones. Continue reading “Vietnam’s Sad Hunt: 300,000 Missing Souls”
Hai nữ đạo diễn của Việt Nam vừa giành hai giải nhất tại Liên hoan Phim Singapore 2018, quy tụ các nhà làm phim tài năng khắp châu Á.
Phim tài liệu dài đầu tay “Mùa cát vọng” (The future cries beneath our soil) của nữ đạo diễn Phạm Thu Hằng giành giải Đạo diễn Xuất sắc nhất ở hạng mục Phim phóng sự châu Á. Continue reading “Việt Nam thắng hai giải lớn tại liên hoan phim Singapore”