Thursday, July 8, 2010

Vietnam after 1975

The sudden collapse of Saigon in April 1975 set the stage for a new and uncertain chapter in the evolution of Vietnamese society. Hanoi Govt. had to confront directly what communist have long called the struggle between the two paths of socialism and capitalism. At issue was hanoi's ability to translate its wartime success and socialist reevolutionary experience into postwar rehabilitation and reconstruction , now that it controlled the south territorially.
Foremost among the regimes imperatives was that of restoring order and stability to the war-torn south.The critical question, however, was whether or not the northern conquerors could inspire the ssouthern population to embrace communism.Initially, Hanoi appeared sanguine; the two zones had more similarities than dissimilarities, and the dissimilarities , were expected to be eliminated as the south caught up with the north in socialist organization.
In Dec 1975, Vietnam Courier , an official Govt Publication, portrait Vietnam as two distinct, incongruent societies. The south was reported to continue to suffer  from what communists consider the neo-colonialist  influences and feudal ideology of the United States, while the north was considered to serve as a progressive environment for growing numbers of a new kind of socialist human being, imbued with patriotism, proletarian internationalism, and socialist virtues. The class of social exploiter had been eliminated in the north, leaving the classes of workers collectivized peasant, and socialist intellectual, the last consisting of various groups. In contrast , the south was divided into a working class , peasantry, petty bourgeois, capitalist - or comprador-class, and the remnant of a feudal landlord class.
In Sept 1976, Premier Pham Van Dong declared that his compatriots, north and south, were translating the revolutionary heroism they (had) displayed in fighting into  creative labor in the acquisition of wealth and strength ."  In the south particularly , the old society was undergoing active changes as the result of " stirring revolutionary movements" by the workers, peasants, youth, women, intellectuals and other groups. In agriculture alone , millions of people  participated in  bringing hundreds of thousands more hectares under cultivation and in building or dredging thousands kms of canals and ditches.