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  • Don't Fly The Former Flag In Vietnam

    Vietnam jails three over protest with flag of former South



    HANOI (Reuters) - Three Vietnamese women who held a rally and waved national flags of the former South Vietnam were jailed on Wednesday for "anti-state propaganda" after a trial that lasted half a day, domestic media reported.

    The defendants, all in their late fifties, were found guilty of breaching an article of the criminal code that rights groups and Western governments say is routinely used by the communist country to stifle free speech, against its international commitments.

    State-run online news media said the women had previously protested about land disputes. They were arrested in July 2014 while demonstrating outside the U.S. consulate in Ho Chi Minh City, formerly known as Saigon, the capital of the now-defunct Republic of Vietnam.

    North Vietnam toppled the U.S.-backed democratic South in 1975 and formed one nation under communism, an event marked domestically as Vietnam's reunification.

    The prison terms handed down on Wednesday ranged from three years to four and a quarter years, plus two or three years of house arrest upon their release, media said.

    The verdict followed a similar case last year, when a man was jailed for 15 months for "disturbing public order" when he wore a uniform of the defeated army of South Vietnam.

    Rights groups and the United Nations expressed outrage last week over Vietnam's use of criminal laws to jail two political bloggers for "abusing democratic freedom". The United States embassy described it as "disturbing".


    http://ca.reuters.com/article/topNews/idCAKCN0WW12Q
    "War is hell, but actual combat is a motherf#cker"
    - Col. David Hackworth

  • #2
    Kind of like displaying the confederate flag here. No prison time yet, just scorn from all the politically correct.

    Comment


    • #3
      Not just from the PC crowd.
      "Ask not what your country can do for you"

      Left wing, Right Wing same bird that they are killing.

      youre entitled to your own opinion but not your own facts.

      Comment


      • #4
        I think this will give impetus for the Vietnamese to improve their government. Now they can go through all the protests and political fights we did to get freedom of speech and other rights. I can remember when they were putting people in jail here for printing pictures of nude people.(Google: Hugh Hefner)
        They got the government they wanted, they fought hard for it. Now they can live with it, or improve it. or not.
        I think the internet ultimately will be the death stroke for authoritarian governments. The toothpaste is out of the tube there now, they have internet, cell phones.
        I think and hope that they will move closer to being a democracy in my lifetime but if they don't, get someone else to insure they do. I still have scars from the last time someone tried
        Happy just to be alive

        Americans will always do the right thing.
        After they've tried everything else
        Winston Churchill

        Comment


        • #5
          Originally posted by exlrrp View Post
          I think the internet ultimately will be the death stroke for authoritarian governments. The toothpaste is out of the tube there now, they have internet, cell phones.
          China seems to have managed, not to mention NK
          Human history becomes more and more a race between education and catastrophe (H G Wells)
          Mit der Dummheit kaempfen Goetter selbst vergebens (Friedrich von Schiller)

          Comment


          • #6
            re
            Quote:
            Originally Posted by exlrrp
            I think the internet ultimately will be the death stroke for authoritarian governments. The toothpaste is out of the tube there now, they have internet, cell phones.

            Originally posted by MarkV View Post
            China seems to have managed, not to mention NK
            Interesting Q.

            Outa my league, so just popping off:
            I'd bet internet is key, but just not sufficient. Of course other very powerful factors are always in play/at work.
            Arguably China maintains its authoritarian gov, so far, despite its inability to restrict availability of mass international commo/the internet. It might just be a matter of more time, as noted by, and consistent with, the qualifier "ultimately".
            Arguably North Korea maintains it authoritarian grip, in part, among other things, by restricting availability of mass international commo/internet.
            The proportion of influence of mass commo on China's (albeit gov-controlled) move toward capitalism can be debated, but hardly the fact of it.

            Maybe the key to the rest of history going fwd is the degree to which the internet will be unrestricted by the bigger forces at the regional, nation-state, global level. No guarantees on whether things will get better or worse on account of it. (In case JK Galbraith turns out to be correct, and rule by corprorations supplants rule by nation states, the Q is probably the same. [In event of intergalactic incursion, all bets are prolly off.])

            Comment


            • #7
              With all due respect to exlrrp, only some of them got the government they wanted. And some got the government they did not want. This is not a democracy, and anyone believing it is needs to do a bit of study. Considering where it came from, an absolute mornarchy to a mixed colony and protectorates, the people here had less experience with democracy than the Russians did when the Kerensky government fell.

              No one in Vietnam was ever fighting for democracy. It was a contest between nationalists and communists, both of whom had little faith in popular sentiment. Between authoritarianism and totalitarianism, and the latter won out for reasons we have all agrued over in this forum.

              The fact that it is totalitarian does not mean that the leaders of this nation do not realize that they have a constituency to whom, in the end, they will be answerable. They see it as "History". And that consitutiency does not presently hold the same cultural values we claim. They want a nation that is unified, prosperous, and strong enough to face off with their most dangerous neighbor. And I believe if you could poll the great majority, they would agree with that statement. Now, once it achieves those objectives, history suggests that the government will have to reform itself. But that day is a long way off for structural reasons I have touched on in previous related posts.
              dit: Lirelou

              Phong trần mi một lưỡi gươm, Những loi gi o ti cơm s g!

              Comment


              • #8
                By the way, the unanswered questions in the basic post is: when did the action take place, when were the women detained, and when where they tried.
                dit: Lirelou

                Phong trần mi một lưỡi gươm, Những loi gi o ti cơm s g!

                Comment


                • #9
                  Originally posted by TTownLarry View Post
                  Kind of like displaying the confederate flag here. No prison time yet, just scorn from all the politically correct.
                  I get mixed reactions when I wear this hat at the VA.
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                  • #10
                    Well, OP, is is the current flag of Vietnam. Red and gold as a color scheme has a long and illustrious history in East Asia, and culturally, Vietnam is East Asian with a mixture of SEA. Nowadays a lot of the tourist related businesses dress their female staff in Ao Dais cnsisting of red high collared tunics with gold yellow pants. A lot of the High School and junior Highs are now having their female students wear Ao Dais. Don't know if that's for certain days a week, or every day as in our time.

                    I'm having fun in Vietnam spotting the dfference between Vietnamese and Viet Kieu tourist groups. Yes, Vietnam has arrived at that point where a more prosperous middle class can take vacations in and out of the country. The skinny Viet tourists are natives, and most of the Viet Kieu (overseas) groups have definitely wider wastebands than the locals.
                    dit: Lirelou

                    Phong trần mi một lưỡi gươm, Những loi gi o ti cơm s g!

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      "Up the Rebs!" - and free speech and a bit of controversial flag waving. Mind you I do have big reservations about waving Nazi and ISIS flags!

                      The Japanese managed to slip the 'Rising Sun' past us, even after their Knights of Bushido had been waving it about during WWII.

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Originally posted by lirelou View Post
                        With all due respect to exlrrp, only some of them got the government they wanted. And some got the government they did not want. This is not a democracy, and anyone believing it is needs to do a bit of study. Considering where it came from, an absolute mornarchy to a mixed colony and protectorates, the people here had less experience with democracy than the Russians did when the Kerensky government fell.

                        No one in Vietnam was ever fighting for democracy. It was a contest between nationalists and communists, both of whom had little faith in popular sentiment. Between authoritarianism and totalitarianism, and the latter won out for reasons we have all agrued over in this forum.

                        The fact that it is totalitarian does not mean that the leaders of this nation do not realize that they have a constituency to whom, in the end, they will be answerable. They see it as "History". And that consitutiency does not presently hold the same cultural values we claim. They want a nation that is unified, prosperous, and strong enough to face off with their most dangerous neighbor. And I believe if you could poll the great majority, they would agree with that statement. Now, once it achieves those objectives, history suggests that the government will have to reform itself. But that day is a long way off for structural reasons I have touched on in previous related posts.
                        I never said it wasn't totalitarian. But totalitarian governments can end---consider the old USSR. The symptoms are there that caused the USSR to fall---mostly expansion of the instant communication age as shown by cell phones and internet usage. Once the government can't control the information, the seeds are planted. The world has gotten to be a smaller place now
                        They got the government the majority was willing to fight for. I sure agree none of them was fighting for democracy, we never really gave them that option any more than the Commies did
                        Happy just to be alive

                        Americans will always do the right thing.
                        After they've tried everything else
                        Winston Churchill

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Ex-LRRP, if you can find a copy of Tony Judt's book "Post War" in your local library, you might find his comments on Gorbachev's role in the fall of the USSR to be of interest. However, understand that the Asian communists have also drawn their conclusions from that experience. In countries where the national security services hold the keys to communications transmission, what the public can be allowed access to can be changed overnight. Alo, do not underestimate their day to day control of the content allowed on social media.

                          During the dark years, the US beat up on the ROK and Taiwan on their human right abuses and kept demanding that they recognize in principle the rights of other parties to contest elections. They did so, even while doing everything to undercut those parties and make them toothless. But as their economies grew and those parties developed into a true opposition, they began to step back. And yes, they still have violent fist-fights in both national assemblies on occasion.

                          The problem with single party dictatorships in that the Party is too embedded in the government, and retains functions in national defense and internal security that places it above the government itself. And that will be the largest stumbling block to any democratization in the East.

                          Modern communications can only function if governments allow them to function. And all the facebook and selfie postings in the world won't change that.

                          On a positive note, I certainly enjoy watching the crowds of young Vietnamese girls armed with selfie-sticks preening and posing for selfies. Makes my hart think it's 21 again.
                          dit: Lirelou

                          Phong trần mi một lưỡi gươm, Những loi gi o ti cơm s g!

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Originally posted by lirelou View Post
                            Ex-LRRP, if you can find a copy of Tony Judt's book "Post War" in your local library, you might find his comments on Gorbachev's role in the fall of the USSR to be of interest. However, understand that the Asian communists have also drawn their conclusions from that experience. In countries where the national security services hold the keys to communications transmission, what the public can be allowed access to can be changed overnight. Alo, do not underestimate their day to day control of the content allowed on social media.

                            During the dark years, the US beat up on the ROK and Taiwan on their human right abuses and kept demanding that they recognize in principle the rights of other parties to contest elections. They did so, even while doing everything to undercut those parties and make them toothless. But as their economies grew and those parties developed into a true opposition, they began to step back. And yes, they still have violent fist-fights in both national assemblies on occasion.
                            The problem with single party dictatorships in that the Party is too embedded in the government, and retains functions in national defense and internal security that places it above the government itself. And that will be the largest stumbling block to any democratization in the East.

                            Modern communications can only function if governments allow them to function. And all the facebook and selfie postings in the world won't change that.

                            On a positive note, I certainly enjoy watching the crowds of young Vietnamese girls armed with selfie-sticks preening and posing for selfies. Makes my hart think it's 21 again.
                            I'm only going on my own experience from my trip back in '03. We went everywhere we wanted to, there was no restrictions we rain into. Almost every village had at least one internet caf or similar, there was fax machines everywhere. I detected no lock or restriction on the internet.
                            when there's this much information nad communications, even if there are restrictions, the word gets out.....and in.

                            Of course the fall of the USSR is a complicated affair but once the Russians could gain information about the outside world, they wanted some of that and then more of that. Then they could see how the rest of the world was doing---and it wasn't the desolate wasteland theyre Commie bosses had told them.
                            Sure China is still authoritarian but look how much they've changed over our lifetimes--- in the 60s and 70s they were all wearing Mao jackets, tearing apart their country in Moa's cultural Revolution, the Red Book was their bible, mob rule reigned
                            You GOTTA say its different , and better, now.

                            And all the facebook and selfie postings in the world won't change that.

                            All these facebook and selfie postings ARE changing that. just the fact that theyr'e there---worldwide communications at their fingertips-- and they have access to it is a lessening of authority.
                            I also see English being the most popular language to learn there as being a great sign---shows you who they want to talk to and have their kids talk to.
                            get those kids talking to other kids and they get perspective on the world.

                            I see Vietnam (and China) as being in evolution (so are we). I see huge progress and liberalization, rationalization and reaching out to other countries, in both of them in my lifetime. There's still restrictions but we had some pretty noxious laws ourselves in our political evolution, for a long, long time, , like slavery and segregation.
                            regards, James
                            Happy just to be alive

                            Americans will always do the right thing.
                            After they've tried everything else
                            Winston Churchill

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              North Vietnam toppled the U.S.-backed democratic South in 1975 and formed one nation under communism, an event marked domestically as Vietnam's reunification.
                              South Vietnam was democratic? That's news to me. Somehow, I'm sceptical.
                              Mutare vel timere sperno

                              Nec Aspera Terrent

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