A Short History Of Vietnam And Palestine - Saigoneer
Relations between Vietnam and the Palestine have been strong and very friendly . Vietnam had established very close relations between the Palestinian. It is getting a bit disorienting on this trip to Vietnam, I admit. . process the current love-hate relationship of the Vietnamese and the Americans. The Vietnam/Palestine parallel should not be understood as a claim of of each country, as well as the specificities of relations to their regional.
The two experiences are each highly distinctive, reflecting many particular features of the cultural, historical economic, and political experience of each country, as well as the specificities of relations to their regional neighborhood and global setting.
At the same time, these two peoples do share defining experiences of prolonged victimization intertwined with bitter resistance struggles because their desired national narrative collided with the geopolitical ambitions and commitments of the United States. In Vietnam, the United States assumed responsibility for a colonial war already lost once by France inand pursued it with almost unrestrained fury for more than a decade before renouncing the quest in and slinking home in thinly disguised defeat.
Of course, the ideological and geopolitical motivations were packaged, as usual, with sleazy propaganda about the defense of freedom and the protection of South Vietnam against aggression from the North. This imposed division of Vietnam was itself a figment of the last stage of the Western colonial imaginary that tried to make the world believe that borders of geopolitical convenience took precedence over the the fundamental right of self-determination, which reflected the organic unities of history, tradition, and national identity.
Eventually, as in most other anti-colonial struggles the national movement eventually prevailed during the period afterenjoying in Vietnam the benefits of inspired political, military, and ideological leadership in the persons of Ho Chi Minh, General Vo Nguyen Giap, and Le Duan, and a historical tradition of many centuries of success in defending national territory against foreign invaders, especially the Chinese.
What is more, not only were the Vietnamese strengthened by this historical tale of victory. They were equally proud and sustained by an extraordinary record of post-conflict reconciliation with prior enemies that many other governments and societies could do well to heed.
Political leaders in Hanoi enjoyed telling foreign visitors during the war how the Vietnamese prepared a farewell banquet for their Chinese intruders once they opted for peace, and decided to return home with the obvious implication that if the Americans stopped the war, friendship could follow, not recrimination and bitterness. Never did I understand better the Communist slogan that our enemy is the government not the people than when I came to Vietnam in as an American peace activist.
What I felt with a depth that could not be staged was the genuineness of these sentiments, then strongly associated with the teachings and beliefs of Ho Chi Minh. I felt moved at the time because it seemed so sincere, and consistent with all that I felt during my two weeks in the country at a time of its great national hardship, including shortages of food and medicine.
The Vietnamese even in these dire circumstances were ready to give so much more than I was capable of giving! On the visit to India he stated that the country's "growing relationship with Israel is not a matter of concern for [the] Palestinians" as New Delhi's support for Palestinian independence remained clear. He was condemned for making an "utterly irresponsible, gratuitous statement" as "shameful" as it was "politically futile" and stood no chance to win the PA anything in return.
Without an apparatus of Palestinian democratic accountability by the representatives of the people the flood of official Palestinian concessions was "guaranteed to continue unabated" as it would cause further damage to the struggle for "inalienable rights.
We are not going to interfere. We know very well that India is supportive of the Palestinian struggle for achieving its own independence.
Palestine - Vietnam cooperation
It was also shown, through academic analysis, that "economic factors can have a profound impact efforts to resolve conflict peaceably. The remaining amount was utilised for a Human Resource Development Programme.
During the financial year38 more Palestinian officers utilised the facilities for training. Indian officials said it was the third such donation, adding that New Delhi was committed to helping other development projects. We had seen a few of this type of congenital malformation, what we doctors call phocomelia, on the streets of Saigon.
It is the aftereffect of dowsing the jungle with Agent Orange and other chemical defoliants. It makes Didi uncomfortable: When he arrives we ask about the large gathering of uneasy locals we saw milling on the sidewalk. As we pass there again on our way to the dock to take a boat up the river, he explains that the compound is relatively new.
The old one was destroyed in the last days of the war. It is striking, almost disappointing, to sense so little local enmity to Americans.
There is no air of seeking vengeance, of holding a grudge. Every one who knows enough English to interact with us foreigners is so damn polite it feels insulting. Yet there is little sense of subservience in the way all the tour guides, the waiters, the sellers manning the stalls in the downtown marketplace, the street food venders and all the entrepreneurs trying to make a living by offering us their wares and services.
Poverty seems to be the standard average state of affairs. Yet in this proud nation poverty does not dehumanize its subjects or rob them of dignity like it does in India or Egypt for example.VIETNAM: HANOI: PALESTINIAN LEADER YASSER ARAFAT VISIT
There are no beggars in the Vietnam we saw. Everyone is busy eking out a living, whether by boiling vegetables on the sidewalk with herbs and a strip of pork gut or of chicken skin for flavoring, or by ferrying fruits, vegetables or fish in their rowboats.
Or take the more picturesque bamboo stick on the shoulder with a hanging basket at each end: The weight of the transported produce from their farms forces those men and women with their petite figures to adapt to a dancelike up-and-down agile gait.
The ubiquitous balancing act and dance show is especially uplifting when viewed at a crossroad from a safe distance as the performers merge gracefully with the anthill like swarm of scooter and bicycle riders and emerge unscathed at the other side of the road, totally unaware of the magic they had just performed.
It is that seeming graceful total acceptance of their daily struggle that impels me to marvel at the ingenuity and steadfastness of the common Vietnamese citizen. Something in the acceptance and unawareness of the simple farmer or fisherman and woman of the miracle they have wrought fills me with pride and happiness.
And the way they scurry and scatter at the sight of the police inspectors brings back images of all those Palestinian village women with their hand-woven baskets full of farm produce on their heads melting away into the side alleys of the market place in East Jerusalem.
I know I admired and savored the simple elegance of the one-color tunics worn by Vietnamese women. But they show up in Palestinian outfits. And one of them, fully Vietnamese, is hugging a damaged olive tree as she faces the blade of a Caterpillar. I am unable to reconcile the Past of Vietnam with the present I am experiencing.
I asked him if anyone in his family was considered a local hero in the two-decade-long war with the Americans. He let out a depreciative yellow laugh: His family was on the side of the pro-American forces and his father spent three and a half years in a communist reeducation labor camp. Then, how come he was so proud of Vietnam as a whole?
Well, even in the South the true sentiment of the common folk was with their Northern brothers and sisters struggling for liberation. When you addressed the conflict as one between the Communists and the Americans, that was when you could separate North and South. It sounded confusing, which irked me. Spontaneously, I launched into an explanation regarding what goes on in my country of origin, Palestine. In fact its settler nature makes it more vicious to the native Palestinians than the French ever were to you.
The French wanted you to serve them, not to disappear from your own land. I felt sick to my stomach. It could have been the boat ride. No tip for this Zionist sympathizer, I decided.
Thin skin, you may think. Because of my upset stomach I arrived early.