April 30, 1975 will forever be remembered by freedom-loving peoples around the world as the day the heroic people of Vietnam defeated the colossal might of US imperialism and ended the imperialist-imposed division of their country.
This was the third successive war for national liberation waged by the Vietnamese people in under half a century against three different imperialist powers. They had successfully fought against Japanese occupation during World War II and liberated their country by 1945. After Japan’s defeat, when the French imperialists sought to reimpose colonial rule over Vietnam, the Vietnamese people under the leadership of the Communist Party of Vietnam and Ho Chi Minh and the National Liberation Front turned their guns on the French imperialists as well. The Vietnamese people decisively defeated the French imperialist army in 1954 in the historic battle of Dien Bien Phu.
However, the victory over the French was accompanied with the forced division of the country. A regime came to power in Southern part of Vietnam with US backing. This puppet regime reneged on the terms of the ceasefire, according to which elections were to be held in Vietnam in 1955. The imperialists feared that were elections to be held, the National Liberation Front would emerge victorious. The whole of Vietnam would break free from the imperialist chain, setting an example to other peoples of South East Asia who were fighting against colonial rule. The US imperialists wanted to keep South Vietnam under their occupation as the base for the savage plunder of the rich natural and human resources of all of South East Asia, as a base to ensure that the peoples of all countries of South East Asia remained under their jackboots. The US imperialists armed the puppet regime they had set up in South Vietnam with most sophisticated arms and weapons of destruction.
Following the end of World War II, US imperialism had assumed the mantle of leadership of world capitalism and its drive against socialism, and the peoples fighting for revolution and national liberation. In the name of combating the ‘menace of communism’, the US imperialists set up their network of collaborators and bases all over the globe, and forged alliances with the most reactionary forces in a large number of countries.
The heroic Vietnamese people led by their Communist Party refused to accept the forcible partition of their country. The patriotic people of South Vietnam rose up in an epic national liberation struggle, alongside of the people of the North. They inflicted defeat after defeat on the puppet regime in South Vietnam. Finally, fearing complete defeat, the US began direct military intervention in Vietnam in 1964. For 11 years after that, US imperialism conducted the most brutal military operations seen since World War II against the Vietnamese people, in the name of ‘saving’ the Vietnamese people from communism. Hundreds of thousands of US troops, and other allies of US imperialism, were poured into the country. They killed over three million Vietnamese people, and wounded millions more and carried out every kind of unimaginable atrocity against them. Large scale conventional and chemical bombing of both South Vietnam and North Vietnam by US fighter planes, was carried out and extended to Laos and Cambodia as well.
It is to their everlasting glory that the indomitable patriotic forces of Vietnam never gave up the struggle against the mighty US, and for this the world will always honour them. As their struggle gained strength, and as the US was forced to commit more and more armed forces and resources to their occupation war and resort to even more brutal atrocities, support for the liberation struggle of the Vietnamese people around the world, including in the US itself, also grew. Finally, on 30 April, 1975, the troops and tanks of the North Vietnam Army and the Viet Cong (National Liberation Front of Vietnam) rolled into the capital of South Vietnam, Saigon (now Ho Chi Minh City), while the US forces and their collaborators scrambled to flee the country by air. This was an epoch-making victory over imperialism, which hastened the liberation of Laos and Cambodia as well, and which inspired movements for progress and peace across the globe.
The brilliant victory of the Vietnamese people on April 30, 1975 led to the reunification of Vietnam. Once in control of their own destiny, the Vietnamese government and people have been successfully rebuilding their country, overcoming the terrible devastation caused by decades of imperialist occupation, plunder and indiscriminate U.S. bombardment.
The heroic national liberation struggle of the Vietnamese people is an example of inspiration to the peoples of the world, who are fighting against the monstrous activities of US imperialism and its allies today. The Vietnamese people showed the world that a people determined to defend their freedom and sovereignty are more powerful than the mightiest foreign army, the biggest imperialist power.