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Letters to the Editor: Is the U.S. on a path to militarily defending communist Vietnam?

Vietnamese American protesters demonstrate in Westminster over human rights in Vietnam on Feb. 26, 2019.
(Los Angeles Times)

To the editor: After reading about Jeff LeTourneau’s apology and resignation from his Orange County Democratic Party leadership post for praising Ho Chi Minh, I wondered if the spirit of the former Office of Strategic Services agent was laughing.

After all, OSS Agent 19 (Ho Chi Minh) received assistance from the United States during World War II for leading the Viet Minh forces against the Japanese occupiers and for providing the Americans with important intelligence and assistance in the recovery of downed Allied air crew. The emerging Cold War led the U.S. to break its ties with Ho while providing France with aid in that country’s doomed effort to regain Vietnam as a colony.

Today, however, the U.S. has not only made extensive corporate investments in communist Vietnam, but under President Trump, the two countries have affirmed their commitment to increase defense cooperation. In political terms this military cooperation, like corporate investments in Vietnam, raises the question of just how “communist” the Vietnamese communists really are.

The present road of security cooperation is a road that in the future may lead to Americans fighting and dying in defense of Ho Chi Minh’s legacy: communist Vietnam. What will LeTourneau’s critics say then?

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Chuck O’Connell, Woodland Hills

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To the editor: So, the vice chairman of the Orange County Democratic Party shared a social media post glorifying the detested former communist leader of Vietnam. He got called out loudly from both sides of the aisle, resulting in his resignation.

Meanwhile, no one is calling out this current president, who waxes poetic about his love affair with the brutal North Korean dictator and who shows far greater loyalty to Russian President Vladimir Putin than to our own beleaguered intelligence agencies.

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I think I detect a double standard.

Penelope Burley, Santa Rosa Valley, Calif.


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