In April of 1954 President Eisnhower stated that
"Indochina is the first in a row of dominos"....
and the 'Domino Theory' of Communist expansion in South-East Asia is born.
Vietnam's "Making of a Country"

Early life

Nguyen Sinh Cung (???) was born in 1890 in Hoàng Trù Village, Vietnam, his mother’s hometown. From 1895, he grew up in his paternal hometown of Kim Liên Village, Nam Đàn District, NgHo An Province, Vietnam. He had three siblings: his sister Bach Liên (or Nguyen Thi Thanh), a clerk in the French Army; his brother Nguyen Sinh Khiêm (or Nguyen Tat Đat), a geomancer and traditional herbalist; and another brother (Nguyen Sinh Nhuan) who died in his infancy. As a young child, Cung studied with his father before more formal classes with a scholar named Vuong Thuc Do. Cung quickly mastered Chinese writing, a requisite for any serious study of Confucianism, while honing his colloquial Vietnamese writing.[1] In addition to his studious endeavors, he was fond of adventure, loved to fly kites and go fishing.[1] Following Confucian tradition, at the age of 10, his father gave him a new name: Nguyen Tat Thành, “Nguyen the Accomplished”.

Cung’s father, Nguyen Sinh Sac, was a Confucian scholar, a teacher on a small scale, and later an imperial magistrate in the small remote district of Binh Khe (Qui Nhon). He was demoted for abuse of power after an influential local figure died several days after receiving 100 strokes of the cane as punishment.[2] In deference to his father, Cung received a French education, attended lycée in Hu?, the alma mater of his later disciples, PHom Van Đong and Vơ Nguyên Giáp. He later left his studies and chose to teach at Duc Thanh school in Phan Thiet.

In the USA

In 1912, working as the cook’s helper on a ship, Cung traveled to the United States. From 1912 to 1913, he lived in New York (Harlem) and Boston, where he worked as a baker at the Parker House Hotel. Among a series of menial jobs, he also has claimed to have worked for a wealthy family in Brooklyn between 1917 and 1918. During this time, he was influenced by Marcus Garvey in Harlem. It is believed that, while in the United States, he made contact with Korean nationalists, an experience that developed his political outlook.[3]

In England

At various points between 1913 and 1919, Cung lived in West Ealing, west London, and later in Crouch End, Hornsey, north London. He is reported to have worked as a chef at the Drayton Court Hotel, on The Avenue, West Ealing.[4] It is claimed that Ho trained as a pastry chef under the legendary French master, Escoffier, at the Carlton Hotel in the Haymarket, Westminster, but there is no evidence to support this.[3] However, the wall of New Zealand House, home of the New Zealand High Commission, which now stands on the site of the Carlton Hotel, displays a blue plaque, stating that Cung worked there in 1913 as a waiter.

Political education in France

From 1919-1923, while living in France, Nguyen Sinh Cung embraced communism, through his friend Marcel Cachin (SFIO).[citation needed] Cung claimed to have arrived in Paris from London in 1917, but French police only have documents of his arrival in June 1919.[3] Following World War I, under the name of Nguyen Ái Quoc (“Nguyen the Patriot”), he petitioned for recognition of the civil rights of the Vietnamese people in French Indochina to the Western powers at the Versailles peace talks, but was ignored. Citing the language and the spirit of the U.S. Declaration of Independence, Quoc petitioned U.S. President Woodrow Wilson for help to remove the French from Vietnam and replace them with a new, nationalist government. His request was ignored.

In 1920, during the Congress of Tours, in France, Nguyen Ái Quoc became a founding member of the Parti Communiste Français (French Communist Party)(PCF) and spent much of his time in Moscow afterwards, becoming the Comintern’s Asia hand and the principal theorist on colonial warfare. During the Indochina War, the PCF would be involved with anti-war propaganda, sabotage and support for the revolutionary effort.

In May 1922, Quoc wrote an article for a French magazine criticizing the use of English words by French sportswriters.[5] The article implores Prime Minister Raymond Poincaré to outlaw such Franglais as le manager, le round and le knock-out.[5] While living in Paris, he had a relationship with dressmaker Marie Brière.[5]
[edit] In the Soviet Union and China

In 1923, Quoc left Paris for Moscow, where he was employed by the Comintern, and participated in the Fifth Comintern Congress in June 1924, before arriving in Canton (present-day Guangzhou), China, in November 1924. In June 1925, Hoàng Van Chí said that Quoc had betrayed Phan B?i Châu, the head of a rival revolutionary faction, to French police in Shanghai for 100,000 piastres.[6] Ho later claimed that he did this because he expected Chau’s trial to stir up anti-French resentment and because he needed the money to establish a communist organization.[6] But in Ho Chi Minh: A life, Duikers denied this hypothesis. Châu never denounced Quoc.

During 1925-26 he organized 'Youth Education Classes' and occasionally gave lectures at the Whampoa Military Academy on the revolutionary movement in Indochina. He married a Chinese woman, Tang Tuy?t Minh (Zeng Xueming), on 18 October 1926.[7] When his comrades objected to the match, he told them, “I will get married despite your disapproval because I need a woman to teach me the language and keep house.”[7] She was 21 and he was 36.[7] They married in the same place where Zhou Enlai had married earlier and then lived together at the residence of Comintern agent Mikhail Borodin.[7]

Chiang Kai-shek’s anti-communist 1927 coup triggered a new round of wanderings for Ho. He left Canton again in April 1927 and returned to Moscow, spending some of the summer of 1927 recuperating from tuberculosis in the Crimea, before returning to Paris once more in November. He then returned to Asia by way of Brussels, Berlin, Switzerland, and Italy, from where he took a ship to Bangkok, Thailand, where he arrived in July 1928. “Although we have been separated for almost a year, our feelings for each other do not have to be said in order to be felt”, he reassured Minh in an intercepted letter.[7]

He remained in Thailand, staying in the Thai village of Nachok,[8] until late 1929 when he moved on to Hong Kong, and Shanghai. In June 1931, he was arrested in Hong Kong. To reduce French pressure for extradition, it was announced in 1932 that Quoc had died.[9] The British quietly released him in January 1933. He then made his way back to Milan, Italy, where he served in a restaurant. The restaurant is now a traditional Lombard-cuisine temple and harbors a portrait of Ho Chi Minh on the wall of its main dining hall. [10] He then moved to the Soviet Union, where he spent several more years recovering from tuberculosis. In 1938, he returned to China and served as an adviser with Chinese Communist armed forces, which later forced China’s government to the island of Taiwan.[3] Around 1940, Nguyen Ái Quoc began regularly using the name "Ho Chí Minh",[3] a Vietnamese name combining a common Vietnamese surname (Ho,) with a given name meaning "enlightened will" (from Sino-Vietnamese ??; Chí meaning 'will' (or spirit), and Minh meaning 'light'), in essence, meaning “bringer of light”.
[edit] Independence movement

In 1941, Ho returned to Vietnam to lead the Viet Minh independence movement. The “men in black” were a 10,000 member guerilla force that operated with the Vi?t Minh.[11] He oversaw many successful military actions against the Vichy French and Japanese occupation of Vietnam during World War II, supported closely but clandestinely by the United States Office of Strategic Services, and also later against the French bid to reoccupy the country (1946-1954). He was also jailed in China for many months by Chiang Kai-shek’s local authorities.[12] After his release in 1943, he again returned to Vietnam. He was treated for malaria and dysentery by American OSS doctors. In the highlands in 1944, he lived with Do Thi Lac, a woman of Tay ethnicity.[13] Lac had a son in 1956.[13]

After the August Revolution (1945) organized by the Vi?t Minh, Ho became Chairman of the Provisional Government (Premier of the Democratic Republic of Vietnam) and issued a Proclamation of Independence of the Democratic Republic of Vietnam that borrowed much from the French and American declarations.[14] Though he convinced Emperor B?o Đ?i to abdicate, his government was not recognized by any country. He repeatedly petitioned American President Harry Truman for support for Vietnamese independence,[15] citing the Atlantic Charter, but Truman never responded.[16]

In 1945, in a power struggle, the Viet Minh killed members of rival groups, such as the leader of the Constitutional Party, the head of the Party for Independence, and Ngô Đ́nh Diem’s brother, Ngô Đ́nh Khôi.[17] Purges and killings of Trotskyists, the rival anti-Stalinist communists, have also been documented.[18] In 1946, when Ho traveled outside of the country, his subordinates imprisoned 25,000 non-communist nationalists and forced 6,000 others to flee.[19] Hundreds of political opponents were also killed in July that same year, notably members of the Viet Nam Quoc Dan Dang and the Dai Viet Quoc Dan Dang.[20] All rival political parties were banned and local governments purged[21] to minimise opposition later on.
[edit] Birth of the Democratic Republic of Vietnam

On 2 September 1945, after Emperor Bao Đai’s abdication, Ho Chí Minh read the Declaration of Independence of Vietnam,[22] under the name of the Democratic Republic of Vietnam. With violence between rival Vietnamese factions and French forces increasing, the British commander, General Sir Douglas Gracey, declared martial law. On 24 September, the Vi?t Minh leaders responded with a call for a general strike.[23]

In September 1945, a force of 200,000 Chinese Nationalists arrived in Hanoi. Ho Chí Minh made arrangement with their general, Lu Han, to dissolve the Communist Party and to hold an election which would yield a coalition government. When Chiang Kai-Shek later traded Chinese influence in Vietnam for French concessions in Shanghai, Ho Chí Minh had no choice but to sign an agreement with France on 6 March 1946, in which Vietnam would be recognized as an autonomous state in the Indochinese Federation and the French Union. The agreement soon broke down. The purpose of the agreement was to drive out Chiang’s army from North Vietnam. Fighting broke out with the French soon after the Chinese left. Ho Chí Minh was almost captured by a group of French soldiers led by Jean-Etienne Valluy at Viet Bac but was able to escape.

    “The last time the Chinese came, they stayed a thousand years. The French are foreigners. They are weak. Colonialism is dying. The white man is finished in Asia. But if the Chinese stay now, they will never go. As for me, I prefer to sniff French shit for five years than to eat Chinese shit for the rest of my life.”-Ho Chí Minh, 1946[24]

In February 1950, Ho met with Joseph Stalin and Mao Zedong in Moscow after the Soviet Union recognized his government. They all agreed that China would be responsible for backing the Viet Minh.[25] Mao’s emissary to Moscow stated in August that China planned to train 60-70,000 Vi?t Minh in the near future.[26] China’s support enabled Ho to escalate the fight against France.

According to a story told by journalist Bernard Fall, after fighting the French for several years, Ho decided to negotiate a truce. The French negotiators arrived at the meeting site: a mud hut with a thatched roof. Inside they found a long table with chairs and were surprised to discover in one corner of the room a silver ice bucket containing ice and a bottle of good Champagne which should have indicated that Ho expected the negotiations to succeed. One demand by the French was the return to French custody of a number of Japanese military officers (who had been helping the Vietnamese armed forces by training them in the use of weapons of Japanese origin), in order for them to stand trial for war crimes committed during World War II. Ho replied that the Japanese officers were allies and friends whom he could not betray. Then he walked out, to seven more years of war.[27]

In 1954, after the important defeat of French Union forces at the Battle of Đi?n Biên PHo, France was forced to give up its empire in Indochina.

Becoming president

Ho Chí Minh (right) with Vơ Nguyên Giáp (left) in Hanoi, 1945

The 1954 Geneva Accords, concluded between France and the Vi?t Minh, provided that communist forces regroup in the North and non-communist forces regroup in the South. Ho’s Democratic Republic of Vietnam relocated to Hanoi and became the government of North Vietnam, a communist-led single party state. The Geneva accords also provided for a national election to reunify the country in 1956, but this provision was rejected by South Vietnam’s government and the United States.[28] The U.S. committed itself to oppose communism in Asia beginning in 1950, when it funded 80 percent of the French effort. After Geneva, the U.S. replaced France as South Vietnam’s chief sponsor and financial backer, but there never was a treaty between the U.S. and South Vietnam.
Main article: Operation Passage to Freedom

Following the Geneva Accords, there was to be a 300-day period in which people could freely move between the zones of the two Vietnams. Some 900,000 to 1 million Vietnamese, mostly Roman Catholic, as well as many anti-communists, intellectuals, former French colonial civil servants and wealthy Vietnamese, left for South Vietnam, while a much smaller number, mostly communists, went from South to North.[29][30] This was partly due to propaganda claims by a CIA mission led by Colonel Edward Lansdale that the Virgin Mary had moved South out of distaste for life under communism. Some Canadian observers claimed that some were forced by North Vietnamese authorities to remain against their will.[31] During this era, Ho, following the communist doctrine initiated by Stalin and Mao, started a land reform in which thousands of people accused of being landlords were summarily executed or tortured and starved in prison.[32] With the backing of the U.S., the 1956 elections were canceled by Diem. Ho Chí Minh's regime oversaw clumsy land reform in the North, causing thousands of deaths and starvation.

At the end of 1959, Lê Duan was appointed acting party leader and began sending aid to the Vietcong insurgency in South Vietnam. This represented a loss of power by Ho, who is said to have preferred the more moderate Giáp for the position.[33] The so called Ho Chi Minh Trail was built in 1959 to allow aid to be sent to the Vietcong through Laos and Cambodia, thus escalating the war.[34] Duan was officially named party leader in 1960, leaving Ho a figurehead president and symbol of Vietnamese Communism.

In 1963, Ho corresponded with South Vietnamese President Ngo Dinh Diem in the hope of achieving a negotiated peace.[35] This correspondence was a factor in the U.S. decision to tacitly support a coup against Diem later that year.[35]

In late 1964, North Vietnamese combat troops were sent southwest into neutral Laos.[36] During the mid to late 1960s, Lê Du?n permitted 320,000 Chinese volunteers into northern North Vietnam to help build infrastructure for the country, thereby freeing a similar number of North Vietnamese forces to go south.[37]

By early 1965, U.S. combat troops began arriving in South Vietnam to counter the threat imposed by both the local Viet Cong and the North Vietnamese troops in the border areas. As the fighting escalated, widespread bombing of North Vietnam by the U.S. Air Force and Navy escalated as Operation Rolling Thunder. Ho remained in Hanoi for most of the duration of his final years, insisting on demanding nothing but an unconditional withdrawal of all foreign troops in South Vietnam. By July, 1967, Ho and most of the Politburo of North Vietnam met in a high-level conference where they concluded that the war was not going well for them since the American military blunted every attempt by the Peoples Army of Vietnam to make gains, and inflicted heavy casualties. But Ho and the rest his government knew that there was one weakness, that American public opinion was not wholeheartedly in favor of the war. With Ho's permission, the North Vietnamese army and politicians planned to execute the Tet Offensive as a gamble to take the South by force and defeat the U.S. military.

Although the offensive was a huge tactical failure which resulted in the decimation of whole units of Viet Cong, the end result was a moral victory. It broke the U.S. will to fight the war and public opinion in the U.S. turned against the government. The bombing of North Vietnam was halted, and negotiations with U.S. officials opened to discuss how to end the war.

By 1969, with negotiations still dragging on, Ho's health began to deteriorate from multiple health problems, including diabetes among other ailments, which prevented him from participating in further active politics. However, he insisted that his forces in South Vietnam continue fighting until all of Vietnam was reunited under his government, regardless of the length of time that it might take, believing that time and politics were on his side.


Ho Chí Minh mausoleum, Hanoi
Ho Chí Minh statue outside Saigon City Hall, Ho Chí Minh City

With the outcome of the Vietnam War still in question, Ho Chí Minh died at 9:47 a.m. on the morning of 2 September 1969, at his home in Hanoi at age 79 from heart failure. His embalmed body is currently on display in a mausoleum in Ba Dinh Square in Hanoi.

News of his death was withheld from the North Vietnamese public for nearly 48 hours due to not wanting to announce his death on the anniversary of the founding of the Democratic Republic of Vietnam. He was not initially replaced as president, but a "collective leadership" composed of several ministers and military leaders took over. They took control of North Vietnam to continue Ho's goal of finishing the war with South Vietnam and uniting it under his founding government.

Six years after his death, after the communists were successful in the war against South Vietnam, several North Vietnamese tanks in Saigon displayed a poster with the following quote; "You are always marching with us, Uncle Ho"

The former capital of South Vietnam, Saigon, was officially renamed Ho Chí Minh City on 1 May 1975 shortly after its capture which officially ended the war.

Ho Chí Minh's embalmed body is on display in Hanoi in a granite mausoleum modeled after Lenin's Tomb in Moscow. Streams of people queue each day, sometimes for hours, to pass his body in silence. This is similar to other Communist leaders.

The Ho Chí Minh Museum in Hanoi is dedicated to his life and work.

Chilean musician Victor Jara references Ho Chi Minh in his song "El Derecho de Vivir en Paz" (The Right to Live in Peace).

Cult of personality

In Vietnam today, he is regarded by the Communist government with god-like status in a nationwide cult of personality, even though the government has abandoned most of his economic policies since the mid-1980s. He is still referred to as "Uncle Ho" or just "Uncle" (Bác) in Vietnam. Ho's image appears on the front of every Vietnamese currency note, and Ho's portrait and bust is featured prominently in many of Vietnam's public buildings, classrooms and even temples, many of which are devoted to him. In 1987, UNESCO officially recommended to member states that they "join in the commemoration of the centenary of the birth of President Ho Chí Minh by organizing various events as a tribute to his memory", considering "the important and many-sided contribution of President Ho Chi Minh in the fields of culture, education and the arts" and that Ho Chí Minh "devoted his whole life to the national liberation of the Vietnamese people, contributing to the common struggle of peoples for peace, national independence, democracy and social progress."[38]

Publications about Ho's non-celibacy are banned in Vietnam. A newspaper editor in Vietnam was dismissed from her post in 1991 for publishing a story about Tang Tuyet Minh.[39][40] William Duiker's Ho Chi Minh: A Life (2000) presents much information on Ho's relationships.[41] The government requested substantial cuts in the official Vietnamese translation of Duiker's book, which was refused.[42] In 2002, the Vietnamese government suppressed a review of Duiker's book in the Far Eastern Economic Review.[42]

In contrast, some Vietnamese who lived through the war[who?] accuse Ho Chí Minh of bringing chaos to the country and causing the deaths of millions of Vietnamese on both sides, both soldiers and civilians. Some Vietnamese people living outside of Vietnam[who?] (commonly known as Overseas Vietnamese, who fled communist rule after 1975 from the former Republic of Vietnam), and some political dissidents[who?] have hostile opinions of Ho Chí Minh. Some[who?] even view Ho as a murderer because of the persecution of tens of thousands during the land reform in North Vietnam. Overseas Vietnamese sometimes organize pro-democracy protests, opposing Ho Chí Minh and criticizing the current communist regime in Hanoi and its policies.[43]


    ^ a b Dukier, William J. Ho Chi Minh. New York: Hyperion, 2000. Print.
    ^ Duiker p. 41
    ^ a b c d e Sophie Quinn-Judge, Ho Chí Minh: The Missing Years, University of California Press, 2002 ISBN 0-520-23533-9
    ^ "The Drayton Court Hotel". Ealing.gov.uk. Retrieved 2009-09-26.
    ^ a b c Brocheux Pierre (2007). Ho Chi Minh: A Biography, pp. 21, Cambridge University Press.
    ^ a b Davidson, Phillip B., Vietnam at War: The History: 1946-1975 (1991), p. 4.
    Hoang Van Chi, From Colonialism to Communism (1964), p. 18.
    ^ a b c d e Brocheux, Pierre (2007). Ho Chi Minh: A Biography, pp. 39-40, Cambridge University Press.
    Duiker, William J., (2000). Ho Chi Minh: A Life, p. 143, Hyperion.
    ^ Brocheux, Pierre (2007). Ho Chi Minh: a biography, pages 44 and xiii.
    ^ Brocheux Pierre (2007). Ho Chi Minh: A Biography, pp. 57-58, Cambridge University Press.
    ^ [1], [2]
    ^ Ho Chi Minh Was Noted for Success in Blending Nationalism and Communism The New York Times
    ^ Brocheux, Pierre (2007). Ho Chi Minh: a biography, page 198.
    ^ a b Brocheux, Pierre (2007). Ho Chi Minh: A Biography, pp. 39-40, Cambridge University Press.
    ^ Zinn, Howard (1995). A People's History of the United States: 1492-Present. New York: Harper Perennial. p. 460. ISBN 0060926430.
    ^ "Collection of Letters by Ho Chi Minh". Rationalrevolution.net. Retrieved 2009-09-26.
    ^ Zinn, Howard (1995). A People's History of the United States: 1492-Present. New York: Harper Perennial. p. 461. ISBN 0060926430.
    ^ Joseph Buttinnger, Vietnam: A Dragon Embattled, vol. 1. (New York: Praeger, 1967)
    ^ See: The Black Book of Communism
    ^ Cecil B. Currey, Victory At Any Cost (Washington: Brassey's, 1997), p. 126
    ^ Spencer Tucker, Encyclopedia of the Vietnam War: a political, social, and military history (vol. 2), 1998
    ^ John Colvin, Giap: the Volcano under the Snow (New York: Soho Press, 1996), p.51
    ^ "Vietnam Declaration of Independence". Coombs.anu.edu.au. 1945-09-02. Retrieved 2009-09-26.
    ^ Stanley Karnow, Vietnam a History
    ^ "Why Vietnam loves and hates China (Page 2 of 2)". Asia Times Online. April 26, 2007.
    ^ Luo Guibo, pp. 233-6
    ^ Russian Ministry of Foreign Affairs, "Chronology", p. 45.
    ^ Fall, Bernard, Last reflections on a War, p. 88. New York:Doubleday, 1967.
    ^ Marcus Raskin & Bernard Fall, The Viet-Nam Reader, p. 89; William Duiker, U. S. Containment Policy and the Conflict in Indochina, p. 212; Hu?-Tam Ho Tai, The Country of Memory: Remaking the Past in Late Socialist Vietnam (2001) p. x notes that "totalitarian governments could not promise a democratic future."
    ^ Pentagon Papers: Volume 1, Chapter 5, "Origins of the Insurgency in South Vietnam, 1954-1960"
    ^ United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees, State of the World's Refugees, Chapter 4, "Flight from Indochina".
    ^ Thakur, p. 204
    ^ Kinh nghi?m gi?i quy?t v?n d? ru?ng d?t trong cách m?ng Vi?t Nam (Experience in land reform in the Vietnamese Revolution) Communist Party of Vietnam, 10 june 2003
    ^ Cheng Guan Ang, Ann Cheng Guan, The Vietnam War from the Other Side, p. 21. (2002).
    ^ Lind, 1999
    ^ a b Brocheux, Pierre, Claire Duiker Ho Chi Minh: A Biography, p. 174 ISBN 0-521-85062-2.
    ^ Davidson, Vietnam at War: the history, 1946-1975, 1988
    ^ Chen Jian, "China's Involvement in the Vietnam Conflict, 1964-69", China Quarterly, No. 142 (June 1995), pp. 366-69.
    ^ "UNESCO. General Conference; 24th; Records of the General Conference, 24th session, Paris, 20 October to 20 November 1987, v. 1: Resolutions; 1988" (PDF). Retrieved 2009-09-26.
    ^ Ruane, Kevin, (2000), The Vietnam Wars, Manchester University Press, p. 26. ISBN 0-7190-5490-7.
    ^ Boobbyer, Claire, (2008) Footprint Vietnam, Footprint Travel Guides. p. 397. ISBN 1-906098-13-1.
    ^ Duiker, p. 605, fn 58.
    ^ a b "Great 'Uncle Ho' may have been a mere mortal". The Age. 2002-08-15. Retrieved 2009-08-02.
    ^ "Ho Chi Minh poster angers Vietnamese Americans." CNN. January 21, 1999. Retrieved on September 19, 2010.

Further reading

    Bernard B. Fall, ed., 1967. Ho Chi Minh on Revolution and War, Selected Writings 1920-1966. New American Library.


    William J. Duiker. 2000. Ho Chi Minh: A Life. Theia.
    Jean Lacouture. 1968. Ho Chi Minh: A Political Biography. Random House.
    N. Khac Huyen. 1971. Vision Accomplished? The Enigma of Ho Chi Minh. The Macmillan Company.
    David Halberstam. 1971. Ho. Rowman & Littlefield.
    Ho chí Minh toàn t?p. NXB chính tr? Quoc gia
    Sophie Quinn-Judge. 2003. Ho Chi Minh: The missing years. C. Hurst & Co. ISBN 1-85065-658-4
    Ton That Thien, Was Ho Chi Minh a Nationalist? Ho Chi Minh and the Comintern Information and Resource Centre, Singapore, 1990

The Vi?t Minh, NLF and the Democratic Republic of Vietnam

    William J. Duiker. 1981. The Communist Road to Power in Vietnam. Westview Press.
    Hoang Van Chi. 1964. From colonialism to communism. Praeger.
    Truong Nhu Tang. 1986. A Viet Cong Memoir. Vintage.

The War in Vietnam

    Frances FitzGerald. 1972. Fire in the Lake: The Vietnamese and the Americans in Vietnam. Little, Brown and Company.

American foreign policy

    Christopher Hitchens. 2001. The Trial of Henry Kissinger. Verso.
    Henry A. Kissinger. 1979. White House Years. Little, Brown.
    Richard Nixon. 1987. No More Vietnams. Arbor House Pub Co.
Vietnam's "Making of a Country"
Portrait c. 1946
President of the Democratic Republic of Vietnam
In office
2 September 1945 - 2 September 1960
Ho Chi Sin
Preceded by Bao Đai (as emperor of Vietnam)
Succeeded by Tôn Duc Thang
Prime Minister of the Democratic Republic of Vietnam
In office
2 September 1945 - 20 September 1955
Preceded by Position established
Succeeded by Pham Van Đong
General Secretary of the Workers' Party of Vietnam
In office
Preceded by Lê Du?n
Succeeded by Truong Chinh
Personal details
Born 19 May 1890
Nghe An Province, French Indochina
Died 2 September 1969 (aged 79)
Hanoi, Democratic Republic of Vietnam
Nationality Vietnamese
Political party Workers’ Party of Vietnam

Ho Chí Minh, born Nguyen Sinh Cung and also known as Nguyen Ái Quoc (19 May 1890 - 2 September 1969) was a Vietnamese Marxist revolutionary leader who was prime minister (1945-1955) and president (1945-1969) of the Democratic Republic of Vietnam (North Vietnam). He was a key figure in the formation the Democratic Republic of Vietnam in 1945, as well as the People's Army of Vietnam (PAVN) and the National Liberation Front (NLF) during the Indochina Wars until his death in 1969.

Ho led the Viet Minh independence movement from 1941 onward, establishing the communist-governed Democratic Republic of Vietnam in 1945 and defeating the French Union in 1954 at Đi?n Biên PHo. He lost political power in 1955-when he was replaced as Prime Minister of the Democratic Republic of Vietnam-but remained the highly visible figurehead of North Vietnam-through the Presidency-until his death. The capital of South Vietnam, Saigon, after the Fall of Saigon, was renamed Ho Chí Minh City in honor of the nationalist leader.
Ho Chi Minh
From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia


    1 Early life
    2 In the USA
    3 In England
    4 Political education in France
    5 In the Soviet Union and China
    6 Independence movement
        6.1 Birth of the Democratic Republic of Vietnam
    7 Becoming president
    8 Death
    9 Legacy
        9.1 Cult of personality
    10 References
    11 Further reading
        11.1 Essays
        11.2 Biography
        11.3 The Vi?t Minh, NLF and the Democratic Republic of Vietnam
        11.4 The War in Vietnam
        11.5 American foreign policy
    12 External links