Commentary: As a Vietnamese national and a dual citizenship of French and American holder, I can offer a unique perspective on the Paris Peace Accords, which was signed on January 27, 1973.
The current regime Socialist Republic of Vietnam (SRV) is celebrating the “Paris Peace Accords” and gloating on the milestone of their diplomatic achievement. However it was a just great performance of world’s deception.
Vietnam’s history has unfortunately been known more wars than peacetime. Vietnam happened to be a pawn at center stage of the fightings during the cold war between leader of the free world, the United States and the leaders of international and permanent revolution, the Soviet Union and China.
Vietnamese communists, Ho Chi Minh and their marionettes Viet Cong, were fighting the Americans not for the independence of Vietnam, because Vietnam had already achieved full independence from France in 1954, they were fighting the worldwide communism. Vietnamese communists were just revolutionary agents on the order of Comitern or the Soviet Union and China. They would never have submitted themselves to a democratic and transparent general elections to allow the people to decide the destiny of the country. They have not done that for the past 38 years since their absolute rule over the whole country in 1975.
As an American, I totally understand and support the decision that the United States needed to cut the loss and get out of the quagmire that more than 58,000 young men and women had given their lives and financial resources in a civil war over 10 years. My attitude would have been if those Vietnamese wanted Viet Cong, let’s them have it, period.
The settlement included a cease-fire throughout Vietnam. It addition, the United States agreed to the withdrawal of all U.S. troops and advisors (totalling about 23,700) and the dismantling of all U.S. bases within 60 days. In return, the North Vietnamese agreed to release all U.S. and other prisoners of war.
Both sides agreed to the withdrawal of all foreign troops from Laos and Cambodia and the prohibition of bases in and troop movements through these countries. It was agreed that the DMZ at the 17th Parallel would remain a provisional dividing line, with eventual reunification of the country “through peaceful means.” An international control commission would be established made up of Canadians, Hungarians, Poles, and Indonesians, with 1,160 inspectors to supervise the agreement. According to the agreement, South Vietnamese President Nguyen Van Thieu would continue in office pending elections. Agreeing to “the South Vietnamese People’s right to self-determination,” the North Vietnamese said they would not initiate military movement across the DMZ and that there would be no use of force to reunify the country.
However, the truth needs to be recognized that Dr. Henry Kissinger sold out South Vietnam, a small pawn, in exchange of newly found strategic partner Red China against the Soviet Union bloc. The sad thing is that American leaders committed troops in harm ways without clear strategy of victory and exit. American leaders denied Vietnam American soldiers (Veterans) of their victory and denied the Vietnamese people (South) of their chance to fight a real war against the invasion of North Vietnamese Communists by vetoeing South Vietnamese military to take the fight in North Vietnam during the long years of war.
In signing the Peace Agreement, Dr. Henry Kissinger and Le Duc Tho were awarded with the Peace Nobel Prizes. However, Le Duc Tho declined the prestigious award because he knew that he and his communist government would not honor the agreement and would continue waging war until the final victory.
South Vietnam regime collapsed quickly in a panic in 1975 when the United States Congress and Administration refused to disburse the $750 million foreign aid to South Vietnam.
Dr. Henry Kissinger shamelessly collected his prize even though he had sold out South Vietnam and had instigated the deposition of King Norodom Sihanouk of Cambodia, which had led to the most horrific genocide committed by the Khmer Rouges.
The Paris Peace Accords represented a shameful act of international community for having abandonned South Vietnam when North Vietnam broke the agreement by invading militarily South Vietnam.
The sacrifices of Americans, Allied Forces and ARVN soldiers should always be remembered and thanked for defending the freedom of Vietnamese people.
Socialist Republic of Vietnam (SRV) is gloating for their masterful deception to the international community and to its own citizens as no clause of the peace agreement was respected. After 38 years of absolute rule in Vietnam, national reconciliation was not implemented, severe vengences were inflicted upon the officials of South Vietnam with years of imprisonment in re-education camps. Neither general election nor referendum on reunification and constitution was held.
The celebration of 40th anniversary of Paris Peace Accords reminds the world that SRV’s government is untrustworthy, uncredible and illegitimate.
On the morning of January 23, at the Hanoi Exhibition House, 29 Hang Bai, the exhibition “Celebrating 40 years of the date of signing the Paris Agreement on Vietnam” opened.
The ceremony was attended by Vice President Nguyen Thi Binh, former head of the delegation of the Provisional Revolutionary Government at the Paris conference, Deputy Minister of Culture, Sports and Tourism Huynh Vinh Ai and Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs–Nguyen Phuong Nga.
On display are many precious photos and memorabilia about negotiations between Vietnam and the U.S. and the sideline activities of Vietnam in the war of resistance to defense the country.
With 140 photos, 21 citations, 23 exhibits, three documents, 8 books, including the valuable artifacts on display for the first time in the last 40 years, such as the original text of the Paris treaty, this is the largest ever exhibition on the Paris Agreement in Vietnam.
The Agreement is a great event, a glorious victory in the struggle for national liberation of the Vietnamese people and is the culmination of Vietnam’s diplomacy in the Ho Chi Minh era.
The exhibition revives the images and events of the fierce years of the struggling that combined the political, military and diplomatic factors. It is also the most obvious evidence for the tough fight on the diplomatic front that lasted 4 years, 8 months and 16 days, with hundreds of public and secret meetings, to sign the Paris Agreement (27/01/1973), forcing the U.S. and other imperialists, colonialists to admit the independence, sovereignty, unity and territorial integrity of Vietnam.
01/27/1973 went into the Vietnamese national history as a milestone with the signing of the “Agreement on ending the war and restoring peace in Vietnam” in Paris, France. Under the agreement, the United States had to recognize the independence, sovereignty, unity and territorial integrity of Vietnam, to withdraw all U.S. and allied troops out of Vietnam, creating a turning point in the struggle of the Vietnamese people leading to the liberation of the South in 1975, to unify the country.
Precious photos of the Paris Agreement:
Minister Xuan Thuy and special adviser Le Duc Tho leaving a private meeting at the site of the Democratic Republic of Vietnam delegation at No. 11, Darthe Street.
A ping-pong match between Ms. Duong Thi Duyen and Ms. Nguyen Thi Binh in Paris
Special Adviser Le Duc Tho at an international press conference.
Special Adviser Le Duc Tho with a winning smile at the Paris Conference
Overview of the Paris conference on ending the war in Vietnam
The objects that were used at the signing of the Paris Agreement
Former Vice President Nguyen Thi Binh (middle), a witness of the historical Paris Conference was present at the exhibition.
Two seals of the Vietnamese People’s Army delegation and the Demilitarized Zone Joint Commission.
One of the two pens used to sign the Paris Agreement in 1973.
The notebook with signatures of the Cuban people supporting the Vietnamese people in the struggle for national independence and unification.
Signature of the Minister of Foreign Affairs of 12 countries in the Convention of the International Conference on Vietnam in Paris (02/03/1973).
Diplomat Pham Ngac, who was present in the signing of the Paris Agreement was present and was very moved when he looked at the exhibits of a hard time.
The delegation of the Vietnamese Democratic Republic in the Four-party Joint Military Central Commission.