January 2, 1991 |
The Vietnamese Communist war hero who accepted the surrender of Saigon in 1975 now pleads in radio broadcasts for democratic reforms in his homeland. Saying that Hanoi's leadership must escape from narrow Marxist-Leninist dogma, Col. Bui Tin offered a grim New Year's Day prediction from Paris. "If we don't change, there will be an explosion this year, because the people can't take it anymore," Tin said. "We must make a real opening, to do away with this bureaucracy, dogmatism, conservatism. . .
April 30, 1990 |
Saigon radio went dead at 10 a.m. on April 30, 1975. From the air traffic control tower at Can Tho, the only airport then still functioning in South Vietnam, Liem Huu Nguyen looked down and saw soldiers shooting each other for a seat on the last helicopters. Twenty minutes later, South Vietnamese President Duong Van Minh announced unconditional surrender. "I felt, I'm glad it's over," said Nguyen, then 18, now a Northern California attorney. "The killing has been going on for so long. . . .
April 29, 1990 |
They were generals and peasants, schoolteachers and spies, physicians and fishermen, and they became in America a poignant symbol of the refugee's will to succeed. Nearly 600,000 Vietnamese fled to this country to escape the long war that rampaged throughout Southeast Asia, tearing lives and the political order asunder. A few became millionaires. Many more have earned doctorates and found business success.
April 23, 2000 |
On this day 25 years ago, President Gerald Ford went before a crowd of 6,000 at Tulane University and announced that "the war in Vietnam is over as far as America is concerned." The audience erupted in wild applause and, in newspapers the next day, political and foreign-affairs commentators around the country praised the president's forthrightness. Most Americans seemed relieved that the Vietnam War had ended.
April 30, 1990 |
O n March 10, 1975, the North Vietnamese army launched what would turn out to be its last offensive against the South, sending more than 100,000 troops down the Ho Chi Minh Trail. In two days, the army was able to take Ban Me Thuot in the Central Highlands. By the end of March, the North Vietnamese army entered Da Nang unopposed, triggering an airlift of Americans and South Vietnamese. On April 27, 16 divisions of North Vietnamese troops began their final assault on South Vietnam's capital.
April 9, 2000 |
Finally, by April 1975, there was something about Vietnam that almost everyone could agree on. After a wrenching decade of bloodshed and protest, the end of the war was near. The Communist North Vietnamese army was sweeping south in violation of a treaty signed two years earlier in Paris, an accord President Nixon had heralded as bringing "peace with honor." America's combat role was over.