President Ho Chi Minh presided over a meeting with political organizations to discuss the establishment of a coalition government, which would be announced at the meeting of the National Assembly afterwards.
President Ho Chi Minh: ‘If our entire people unite in our struggle, we are sure to successfully build up a Vietnam that is peaceful, unified, independent, democratic and prosperous.’
President Ho Chi Minh wrote a letter to Charles Fenn, an intelligence officer of the US Office of Strategic Services (OSS), who contacted the President when he stayed in Kunming, China, in March 1945, to set up an alliance against Japanese fascists.
In the letter, the President wrote, ‘We are moved and fired up by your goodwill to help Vietnam.’
After the President passed away in 1969, Charles Fenn wrote the first political biography of Ho Chi Minh in English. In 2004, when he was over 100 years old, Charles Fenn wrote: ‘Exemplary life, a consistent will for Vietnam’s independence and liberty, extraordinary achievements despite uncountable difficulties have all taken Ho Chi Minh, according to the final judgment of humankind, to the top of the list of leaders in the 20th Century.’
In his Tet greetings to the public, he wrote: ‘This year is the year of Buffalo and this Tet is called by our ancestor as ‘Tet of Buffalo.’ Buffalo plough well and fight well, too. If our entire people unite in our struggle, we are sure to successfully build up a Vietnam that is peaceful, unified, independent, democratic and prosperous.’
The President paid a visit to the temple of Nguyen Trai in the Con Son complex, Chi Linh District, Hai Duong Province.
Remembering the visit, his secretary, Vu Ky, wrote in his memoirs: ‘The President spent noon there carefully reading epitaphs about Nguyen Trai. Perhaps historians should have many pages for the event that was not accidental… The president’s visit to the temple was not by chance… They were born five centuries apart, but there was an uncanny coicidence between them. They were two preeminent military men and politicians, two great poets, and two great personalities. They were the same in that they had absolute confidence in the people’s power and devoted their heart for the people’s happiness…”
In his reply to the letter dated February 8 by US President L. B. Johnson, he gave trenchant arguments: ‘If your government really wants to have a dialogue, the US must unconditionally stop bombing and other war actions… The Vietnamese people determine not to yield to force and not to talk under the threat of weapons. Our struggle is a just struggle. It is hoped that the US government acts to reason.”
By Duong Trung Quoc* and co-writers
*The author is a historian and member of the National Assembly