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mous problems for socialist countries, they a joint fleet with China in order to control In 1959, Sino-Soviet relations were even have great difficulty in realizing their goal of China militarily; he also openly opposed our more strained and Sino-Soviet differences overthrowing socialist states. Therefore, Party's “Three Red Flags"4 and objected to even greater. In January, the Soviet Union imperialist countries are inclined to adopt a our just action of “shelling Jinmens.” (Chair- officially notified China that it would scrap “soft” method in addition to employing man Mao once said that whether we bom- unilaterally the agreement to help China “hard” policies. In January 1953, U.S. Sec- barded Jinmen or suspended our bombard- build nuclear industry and produce nuclear retary of States Dulles emphasized the strat- ment, our main purpose was to support the bombs. In September when the Sino-Indian egy of “peaceful evolution.” He pointed out Taiwan people and the Taiwan regime to Border Incident occurred, the Soviet Union that the enslaved people” of socialist coun- keep Taiwan (from being) invaded and an- announced neutrality, but in actuality it suptries should be “liberated,” and become “free nexed by foreign countries.-Bo's note). ported India. It openly criticized China after people," and that “liberation can be achieved The above events alerted Chairman Mao. the incident. At the Soviet-American Camp through means other than war,” and “the In the meantime, the United States ac- David Talks during the same month, means ought to be and can be peaceful.” He tively practiced its strategy of promoting a a Khrushchev sought to improve relations with displayed satisfaction with the "liberaliza- "peaceful evolution" of socialist countries. the United States on the one hand and vehetion-demanding forces" which had emerged In 1957, the Eisenhower administration in- mently attacked China's domestic and forin some socialist countries and placed his troduced the “strategy of peaceful conquest,” eign policies on the other.8 All these events hope on the third and fourth generations aiming to facilitate changes inside the So

convinced Chairman Mao that the Soviet within socialist countries, contending that if viet world," through a “peaceful evolution." leadership had degenerated and that the leader of a socialist regime "continues On October 24, 1958, in an interview with a Khrushchev had betrayed Marxism and the wanting to have children and these children BBC correspondent, Dulles asserted that proletarian revolutionary cause and had will produce their children, then the leader's communism “will gradually give way to a

turned revisionist. At the Lushan Conferoffsprings will obtain freedom.” He also system that pays more attention to the wel- ence held during July-August that year, when claimed that “Chinese communism is in fare of the state and people,” and that at the Peng Dehuaio criticized the “Three Red fatal danger," and "represents a fading phe- moment, “Russian and Chinese Commu- Flags," Chairman Mao erroneously believed nomena," and that the obligation of the United nists are not working for the welfare of their that this reflected the combined attack on the States and its allies was “to make every people,” and “this kind of communism will Party by internal and external enemies. Faceffort to facilitate the disappearance of that change."

ing such a complex situation, Chairman Mao phenomena," and "to bring about freedom in Considering the situation in both the felt deeply the danger of a “peaceful evoluall of China by all peaceful means."3 Soviet Union and at home, Chairman Mao tion.” Accordingly, he unequivocally raised

Chairman Mao paid full attention to took very seriously Dulles's remarks. In a the issue at the end of that year. these statements by Dulles and watched care- speech to the directors of the cooperation In November 1959, Chairman Mao confully the changes in strategies and tactics regions on November 30, 1958, Chairman vened a small-scale meeting in Hangzhou used by imperialists against socialist coun- Mao noted that Dulles was a man of schemes attended by Premier Zhou [Enlai), Peng tries. That was the time when the War to Aid and that he controlled the helm in the United Zhen, 10 Wang Jiaxiang, 11 Hu Qiaomu, 12 Korea and Resist America had just achieved States. Dulles was very thoughtful. One had among others, to discuss and examine the victory, when the United States was con- to read his speeches word by word with the international situation at the time. Before the tinuing its blockade of the Taiwan Straits help of an English dictionary. Dulles was opening of the meeting, Chairman Mao asked and its embargo, and when our domestic really taking the helm. Provincial Party his secretary, Lin Ke, to find Dulles's situation was stable, “the First Five-Year Committees should assign special cadres to speeches concerning “peaceful evolution" Plan” was fully under way, economic con- read Cankao ziliao.? Chairman Mao has for him to read. Comrade Lin Ke selected struction was developing rapidly, and ev- always insisted that Party leaders at all lev- three such speeches: Dulles's address titled erywhere was the picture of prosperity and els, especially high-ranking cadres, should “Policy for the Far East” delivered before vitality. At that moment, Chairman Mao did closely follow international events and the the California Chamber of Commerce on not immediately bring up the issue of pre- development of social contradictions on the December 4, 1958, Dulles's testimony made venting a "peaceful evolution." The reason world scene in order to be well informed and before the House Foreign Affairs Commitfor his later raising the question has to do prepared for sudden incidents. It is very tee on January 28, 1959, and Dulles's speech with developments in international and do- necessary for Mao to make that demand. titled “The Role of Law in Peace” made mestic situations.

Chairman Mao read Cankao ziliao every before the New York State Bar Association In 1956, at the 20th Congress of the day. For us leading cadres, we should con- on January 31, 1959. Chairman Mao had Soviet Communist Party, Khrushchev at- sider not only the whole picture of domestic read these three speeches before. After retacked Stalin, causing an anti-Communist politics but also the whole situation of inter- reading them, he told Comrade Lin Ke of his and anti-Socialist wave in the world and national politics. Thus we can keep clear- opinions about them and asked him to write triggering incidents in Poland and Hungary. headed, deal with any challenges confidently,

headed, deal with any challenges confidently, commentaries based on his views and insert In 1957, a tiny minority of bourgeois Right- and “sit tight in the fishing boat despite the them at the beginning of each of Dulles's ists seized the opportunity of Party reform to rising winds and waves.” This is a very statements. After Comrade Lin Ke had attack the Party. In 1958, Khrushchev pro- important political lesson and a leadership completed the commentaries, Mao instructed

, posed to create a long-wave radio station and style.

him to distribute Dulles's speeches, along plication. We will only expose the American deception and lay bare the nature of the so-called “peace" by the United States.

with the commentaries, to the members at- couraging a "peaceful evolution" tending the meeting.

inside socialist countries. For exThe three speeches by Dulles all con- ample, at his testimony before the tained the theme of promoting a "peaceful House Foreign Affairs Committee evolution” inside socialist countries. The on January 28 Dulles remarked that three commentaries based on Chairman basically the U.S. hoped to encourMao's talks highlighted the key points in age changes within the Soviet world. Dulles's remarks and warned of the danger By the Soviet world, Dulles did not of the American "peaceful evolution" strat- mean just the Soviet Union. He was egy. The first commentary pointed out: referring to the whole socialist camp. “The United States not only has no intention He was hoping to see changes in our to give up its policy of force, but also wants, camp so that the Soviet world would as an addition to its policy of force, to pursue no longer be a threat to freedom on a peaceful conquest strategy' of infiltration the globe and would mind its own and subversion in order to avoid the pros- business instead of thinking about pect of its being surrounded.' The U.S. realizing the goal and ambition of desires to achieve the ambition of preserv- communizing the world.... ing itself (capitalism) and gradually defeating the enemy (socialism).” After noting In commenting on Dulles's statement of the main theme of Dulles's testimony, the January 31, 1959, Chairman Mao asserted: second commentary contended: Dulles's words "demonstrate that U.S. imperialists Dulles said that justice and law are attempting to restore capitalism in the should replace violence and that war Soviet Union by the method of corrupting it should be abandoned, and law and so as to realize their aggressive goal, which justice should be emphasized. Dulles they have failed to achieve through war.” also argued that the abandonment of The third commentary first took note of force under the circumstances did Dulles's insistence on the substitution of not mean the “maintenance of the justice and law for force" and his contention status quo,” but meant a peaceful that the abandonment of force did not mean "change." (laughter) Change whom the “maintenance of the status quo," but peacefully? Dulles wants to change meant a peaceful "change.” Then it went on countries like ours. He wants to subto argue that “Dulles's words showed that vert and change us to follow his because of the growing strength of the so- ideas.... Therefore, the United States cialist force throughout the world and be- is attempting to carry out its aggrescause of the increasing isolation and diffi- sion and expansion with a much more culties of the international imperialist force, deceptive tactic.... In other words, it the United States does not dare to start a wants to keep its order and change world war at the moment. Therefore, the our system. It wants to corrupt us by United States has adopted a more deceptive a peaceful evolution. tactic to pursue its aggression and expansion. While advocating peace, the United Chairman Mao believed that States is at the same time speeding up the Khrushchev's speeches reflected the “peaceimplementation of its plots of infiltration, ful evolution” advocated by Dulles and that

” corruption, and subversion in order to re- our principle should be: verse the decline of imperialism and to fulfill its objective of aggression."

Under the existing complex internaAt the meeting on November 12, Chair- tional conditions, our policy is to man Mao further analyzed and elaborated resist the pressures head-on-preson Dulles's speeches and the commentar- sures from two directions, ies. He said:

Khrushchev and Eisenhower. We

will resist for five to ten years. ToComrade Lin Ke has prepared for

ward the United States, we should three documents—three

do our best to expose it with facts speeches by Dulles during 1958

and we should do so persuasively. 1959. All three documents have to

We will not criticize Khrushchev, de with Dulles's talks about en

nor will we attack him through im

This is the first time that Chairman Mao clearly raised and insightfully elaborated on the issue of preventing a "peaceful evolution.” From that time on, he would pay more and more attention to the matter. In a series of meetings that followed, he would repeatedly alert the whole party on the issue and gradually unfold the struggle against the socalled revisionism both at home and abroad.

From 1960 forward, differences between the Chinese and Soviet Parties increased. On April 22, an editorial titled “Long Live Leninism” published by the journal Hongqi13 denounced Comrade Tito of Yugoslavia by name and criticized Khrushchev of the Soviet Union without mentioning his name. On internal occasions, we unequivocally pointed out that the Soviet Union had become revisionist and that we should learn the Soviet lesson. We also felt that “revisionists” already existed in China and that Peng Dehuai and some other comrades were examples. We warned against the emergence of revisionism in order to prevent a “peaceful evolution.” In his meeting with Jespersen, 14 Chairman of the Danish Communist Party, on May 28, 1960, Chairman Mao said: “There are also revisionists in our country. Led by Peng Dehuai, a Politburo member, they launched an attack on the Party last summer. We condemned and defeated him. Seven full and alternate members of our Central Committee followed Peng. Including Peng, there are eight revisionists. The total number of full and alternate members in our Central Committee is 192. Eight people are merely a minority."

At the "Seven Thousand Cadres Conference”15 held in January 1962, Comrade [Liu] Shaoqi delivered a "written report” on behalf of the Party Central Committee. He made a special reference to the question of opposing contemporary revisionism. In his remarks concerning the issue of practicing democratic centralism, Chairman Mao stated: “Without a highly developed democracy, there cannot be a high level of centralism. Without a high level of centralism, we cannot establish a socialist economy. What will happen then to our country if we cannot create a socialist economy? China will become a revisionist country, a bourgeois coun


13. Hongqi (Red Flag) is the official journal of the CCP
Central Committee.
14. Knud Jespersen, leader of the Danish communist
15. The conference was held between January and
February, 1962 to review methods of Party leadership
and examine problems caused by the Great Leap For-
16. Hysni Kapo, a leader of the Albanian Labor (Com-
munist) Party.
17. Bequir Balluku, Defense Minister and a Politburo
member of the Albanian Communist Party.
18. Palmiro Togliatti, leader of the Italian Communist
19. Maurice Thorez, leader of the French Communist

Qiang Zhai teaches history at Auburn University at Montgomery (Alabama) and is the author of The Dragon, the Lion, and the Eagle: Chinese-British-American Relations, 1949-1958 (Kent, OH: Kent State University Press, 1994).

try in fact. The proletarian dictatorship will last to July 1964, our Party used the name of
become not only a bourgeois dictatorship the editorial boards of the Renmin ribao and
but also a reactionary and fascist dictator- Hongqi to issue nine articles, refuting the
ship. This is an issue that deserves full Soviet open letter and condemning
attention. I hope our comrades will consider “Khrushchev Revisionism” by name. Thus
it carefully." (Selected Readings of Chair- the Sino-Soviet polemics reached a high
man Mao's Works, Vol. II, pp. 822-823.) point. In the meantime, the struggle to op-
Here Chairman Mao officially sounded an pose “revisionism” and to prevent a “peace-
alarm bell for the whole party. In his meeting ful evolution" was accelerated at home.
with Kapo16 and Ballukul7 of Albania on
February 3, 1967, Mao contended: At the
"Seven Thousand Cadres Conference" in 1. The Resolution on Certain Questions in the History
1962, "I made a speech. I said that revision- of Our Party since the Founding of the People's Repub-
ism wanted to overthrow us. If we paid no

lic of China was adopted by the Sixth Plenum of the

Eleventh Central Committee in June 1981. While attention and conducted no struggle, China

affirming the historical role of Mao Zedong, the resoluwould become a fascist dictatorship in either tion also blames him for the Cultural Revolution. After a few or a dozen years at the earliest or in an analysis of all the crimes and errors in the Cultural several decades at the latest. This address

Revolution the resolution describes it as, after all, the

error of a proletarian revolutionary.” It concludes that was not published openly. It was circulated

although Mao has made “gross mistakes” during the internally. We wanted to watch subsequent Cultural Revolution, “if we judge his activities as a developments to see whether any words in whole, his contribution to the Chinese revolution far the speech required revision. But at that time

outweighs his mistakes.” For the text of the resolution,

see Resolution on CPC History (1949-1981) (Beijing: we already detected the problem."

Foreign Languages Press, 1981). At the Beidaihe Meeting and the Tenth

2. I have previously translated the chapter in the first Plenum of the Eighth Central Committee volume concerning Mao's decision to make an alliance during August and September, 1962, Chair

with the Soviet Union in 1949-1950. It was first pub

lished in Chinese Historians 5 (Spring 1992), 57-62, man Mao reemphasized class struggle in

and later in Thomas G. Paterson and Dennis Merrill, order to prevent the emergence of revision- eds., Major Problems in American Foreign Relations: ism. On August 9, he clearly pointed out the Volume II: Since 1914, 4th ed. (Lexington, MA: D.C.

Heath, 1995), 332-34. necessity of educating cadres and training

3. Bo does not mention precisely when and where them in rotation. Otherwise, he feared that

Dulles made those remarks about Chinese communism. he had devoted his whole life to revolution, I have not been able to identify Dulles's speech to which only to produce capitalism and revisionism. Bo is referring On September 24, he again urged the party to

4. The “Three Red Flags" refer to the General Line of

Socialism, the Great Leap Forward, and the People's heighten vigilance to prevent the country

Commune. from going the opposite direction." The 5. Jinman (Quemoy). communiqué of the Tenth Plenum published 6. These refer to the economic cooperation regions on September 27 reiterated the gist of Chair

established during the Great Leap Forward. China was

divided into seven such regions. man Mao's remarks and stressed that

7. Cankao ziliao (Reference Material) is an internally “whether at present or in the future, our Party circulated reading material, which provided Party leadmust always heighten its vigilance and cor- ers with translations and summaries of international rectly carry out the struggle on two fronts:

news from foreign news agencies and press.

8. According to the U.S records of the Camp David against both revisionism and dogmatism."

talks, in his discussions with President Eisenhower, From the end of 1962 to the spring of Khrushchev actually defended China's position on 1963, our Party published seven articles in Taiwan. See memorandum of conversation between succession, condemning such so-called "con

Eisenhower and Khrushchev, 26 and 27 September

1959, in Foreign Relations of the United States, 1958temporary revisionists” as Togliatti of Italy,

1960, Vol. X, Part I: Eastern Europe Region; Soviet Thorez of France, 19 and the American Com

Union; Cyprus (Washington, D.C.: U.S. Government munist Party. On June 14, 1963, the CCP Printing Office, 1993), 477-482. Central Committee issued “A Proposal for a

9. Peng Dehuai, Defense Minister and a Politburo

member. General Line of the International Commu

10. Peng Zhen, Party Secretary of Beijing and a nist Movement.” On July 14, the Central Politburo member. Committee of the Communist Party of the 11. Wang Jiaxiang, Director of the CCP International Soviet Union (CPSU) published “An Open

Liaison Department and a Secretary of the CCP Central

Committee Secretariat. Letter to Party Units at All Levels and to All

12. Hu Qiaomu, Mao's political secretary and an AlterMembers of the CPSU," bringing the Sino- nate Secretary of the CCP Central Committee SecreSoviet dispute to the open. From September





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THE VIETNAM WAR AND SOVIET- his research into a far broader study of Soviet DRV and PRC. All those interconnected


CO AMERICAN RELATIONS, 1964-1973: involvement in the Vietnam conflict, utiliz- relations crucially influenced the relevant NEW RUSSIAN EVIDENCE ing sources in both Russian and American Soviet policies.

archives (the latter during a CWIHP fellow- The escalation of the conflict in Vietby Ilya V. Gaiduk

ship for research in the United States); that nam after the Tonkin Gulf incident in Au

study, The Soviet Union and the Vietnam gust 1964 and the February 1965 attack by The Vietnam War stands out among War, is scheduled for publication by Ivan R.

armed units of the National Front for the l The's Cold War crises for its scale, length, inten- Dee (Chicago) in Spring 1996.

Liberation of South Vietnam (NFLSV, also sity, and global repercussions. The litera- The SCCD archives contain materials known as the NLF) on the base of American

Skin In ture on the war and the American role in it related to a broad range of the former CPSU military advisers in Pleiku (triggering U.S. encompasses thousands of volumes, from CC's work, primarily correspondence with a aerial bombardment of North Vietnam in anted a mi political memoirs to soldiers' eyewitness wide range of Soviet organizations and es- retaliation), coincided with a certain cooling accounts to historical and journalistic stud- tablishments dealing with various socio-eco- in Soviet-North Vietnamese relations. This nastrati ies, to novels and political science trea- nomic, domestic, and foreign policy issues. chill between Moscow and Hanoi, in turn, avias tises. With the passage of time, ever more The archive collections (fondy) include a documents have been declassified, enabling considerable number of documents on the more thorough and comprehensive analy- subject of the Vietnam War and Soviet

This section of the Bulletin presents 10 ses. Now that there is substantial access to American relations which were sent to the

new evidence from Russian, Chinese, and liet archives in the former USSR, researchers CPSU CC-mostly to the CC International

Polish sources on one of the Cold War's have at their disposal a whole set of previ- Department and the CC Socialist Countries' most costly conflicts: the Vietnam War, which ously unavailable materials which shed new Communist and Workers' Parties Depart- consumed more than 58,000 American lives light on unresolved issues as well as on ment—by the Soviet Ministry of Foreign and, according to recent estimates, more ne Insti problems which have either escaped the Affairs, Defense Ministry, and Committee

than 3.2 million Vietnamese lives. Preattention of Western scholars or have not of State Security (KGB). Considerably less

sented here are articles by Ilya V. Gaiduk Kamal yet been analyzed in detail.

frequently encountered, alas, is documenta- (Institute of Universal History, Russian AcadOne of those problems relates to the tion illuminating recommendations, draft emy of Sciences, Moscow), who employs Soviet Union's participation in the Vietnam decisions, and top-level decision-making. documents from the CPSU Central Commitconflict, particularly the nature of Soviet- Thus, the top leadership's decisions and the tee archives to illuminate Soviet policy toAmerican relations during the war and mechanism of decision-making on this level

ward the Vietnam conflict (in a foretaste of Moscow's role as a potential mediator. are only indirectly reflected in the SCCD

his soon-to-be published book on the subAlthough many U.S. researchers have stud- materials. This unfortunate gap, naturally, ject), and by Zhai Qiang (Auburn University ied these problems and, on the basis of the creates problems for historians trying to de

at Montgomery), who uses newly released documents analyzed, drawn certain conclu- termine how policy was actually made by the

Chinese sources to explore Beijing's hansions, their analyses of the subject were far top Soviet leadership on important foreigndling of the escalation of the war in 1964-65;

allo from exhaustive and quite often insuffi- policy questions, and necessitates continued and a precis of a secretly-prepared memoir ciently corroborated by the necessary archi- efforts to increase access to materials in by Jerzy Michalowski, a Polish diplomat

a Foi val sources. Russian archives that remain off-limits, parwho was deeply involved in secret mediation

em F The present article assesses Soviet ticularly the so-called Kremlin or Presiden- efforts between the United States and North policy toward Vietnam and the war's im- tial Archives, known officially as the Archive

Vietnam in the mid-1960s. pact on U.S.-Soviet relations from 1964 to of the President of the Russian Federation However, recognizing that the most the early 1970s on the basis of materials (APRF).

important "other side" for Americans durbearing on this subject in the archive of the At the same time, the SCCD materials

ing the Vietnam War was, of course, the former Communist Party of the Soviet Union enable historians not only to reconstruct many

Vietnamese themselves, the Cold War InterCentral Committee (CPSU CC)—a reposi- events related to the Vietnam War during the

national History Project has launched an tory now known as the Storage Center for period in question, and to present matters Contemporary Documents (SCCD, or which were previously interpreted only in

was partly attributable to the growing differTsKhSD, in its Russian acronym)-located ferentially, but also to assess the develop

ences between the USSR and the PRC, the in the CC's former headquarters in Staraya ment of U.S.-Soviet relations in close inter

two chief patrons and supporters of the VietPloschad' (Old Square) in Moscow. This connection with the conflict in Southeast

namese struggle against the Saigon regime.? report was originally prepared for presenta- Asia. This last factor is of obvious import, Besides the impact of the Sino-Soviet split, tion at the January 1993 Moscow Confer- for one can hardly study U.S.-Soviet rela

the tension in Soviet-North Vietnamese reence on New Evidence on Cold War His- tions during the Vietnam War in isolation

lations during this stretch was also tied to the

US tory, organized by the Cold War Interna- from an understanding of relations between

relatively moderate stand adopted by the dich tional History Project (CWIHP) in coopera- the Soviet Union and North Vietnam (the

then Soviet government, under the leadertion with the Institute of General History of Democratic Republic of Vietnam, or DRV), ship of Nikita S. Khrushchev prior to his the Russian Academy of Sciences and between the Soviet Union and the People’s downfall in October 1964. Owing to the


dec SCCD. Subsequently, the author expanded Republic of China (PRC), and between the

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Hanoi? How and why did a close relation- does not explain why Giap had to make a CONFLICT, 1964-1965:

ship between Beijing and Hanoi turn sour second visit to China shortly after his first NEW CHINESE EVIDENCE during the fight against a common foe? tour and why the Soviet participants at the

Drawing upon recently available Chinese talks changed. Perhaps disagreement by Qiang Zhai

materials, this paper will address these ques- emerged during the discussions of Giap's

tions. The first half of the article is prima- first trip, leaving some issues unresolved. In The years 1964-1965 marked a crucial rily narrative, while the second half provides fact, according to the study by the researchperiod in the Vietnam War. The Gulf of an analysis of the factors that contributed to ers at the Guangxi Academy of Social SciTonkin Incident and subsequent U.S. esca- China's decision to commit itself to Hanoi, ences, the Chinese and the Russians differed lation of war against North Vietnam repre- placing Chinese actions in their domestic over strategies to reunify Vietnam. The sented a major turning point in the American and international context.

Soviet advisors favored peaceful coexistapproach to Indochina, as the Johnson Ad

ence between North and South Vietnam, ministration shifted its focus from Saigon to China's Role in Vietnam, 1954-1963 urging Hanoi to "reunify the country through Hanoi as the best way to reverse the deterio

peaceful means on the basis of indepenChina played an important role in help- dence and democracy.” The Chinese Com

ing Ho Chi Minh win the Anti-French War munists, conversely, contended that because effort to organize collaborative research

and in concluding the Geneva Accords in of imperialist sabotage it was impossible to with Vietnamese scholars and to collect Viet

1954.2 In the decade after the Geneva Con- reunify Vietnam through a general election namese sources on the international history | ference, Beijing continued to exert influence in accordance with the Geneva Accords, and of the Vietnam and Indochina conflicts. To

over developments in Vietnam. At the time that consequently North Vietnam should this end, CWIHP has begun contacts with of the Geneva Conference, the Vietnamese prepare for a protracted struggle. the Institute of International Relations (IIR) | Communists asked the Chinese Communist On 24 December 1955, the Chinese in Hanoi on the possibility of organizing an

Party (CCP) to help them consolidate peace government decided to withdraw the CMAG international scholarly conference on the

in the North, build the army, conduct land from Vietnam; Peng Dehuai notified Vo history of U.S.-Vietnam relations since World reform, rectify the Party, strengthen diplo- Nguyen Giap of this decision.

By midWar II. CWIHP, along with the National

matic work, administer cities, and restore March 1956, the last members of the CMAG Security Archive at George Washington

the economy. Accordingly, Beijing sent had left the DRV. To replace the formal University, is also collecting declassified Fang Yi to head a team of Chinese economic CMAG, Beijing appointed a smaller team of archival evidence from Vietnamese, Ameriexperts to North Vietnam.4

military experts headed by Wang Yanquan can, and other sources in connection with an

According to the official history of the to assist the Vietnamese, 7 oral history conference of senior former Chinese Military Advisory Group(CMAG), These developments coincided with a Vietnamese and American decision-makers

on 27 June 1955, Vo Nguyen Giap headed a major debate within the Vietnamese Com(including Kennedy and Johnson Adminis

Vietnamese military delegation on a secret munist leadership in 1956 over who should tration Defense Secretary Robert S.

visit to Beijing accompanied by Wei bear responsibility for mistakes committed McNamara), to be organized by the Council | Guoqing, head of the CMAG in Vietnam. during a land reform campaign which had on Foreign Relations, the Center for For

The Vietnamese visitors held discussions been instituted since 1953 in an imitation of eign Policy at Brown University, and the

with Chinese Defense Minister Peng Dehuai, the Chinese model. Truong Chinh, General TIR. (Agreement in principle to hold the

and General Petroshevskii, a senior Soviet Secretary of the Vietnamese Workers' Party conference was reached during discussions

military advisor in China, regarding the (VWP), who was in charge of the land rein Hanoi in November 1995.)

Democratic Republic of Vietnam's recon- form program, was removed from his posiCWIHP also plans to devote a special struction of the army and the war plan for the tion at a Central Committee Plenum held in issue of the Bulletin to new evidence on the future. The DRV delegation visited the September. Le Duan, who became General war, primarily from Vietnamese sources. Chinese North Sea Fleet before returning to Secretary later in the year, accused Truong -- Jim Hershberg, Editor

Hanoi in mid-July. That fall, on 15 October Chinh of applying China's land reform ex

1955, Vo Nguyen Giap led another secret perience in Vietnam without considering the rating trend in South Vietnam and to per

military delegation to China, where he talked Vietnamese reality. 8 suade the North Vietnamese leadership to

with Peng Dehuai and Soviet General Gushev The failure of the land-reform program

again about the DRV's military develop- in the DRV dovetailed with a growing realdesist from their increasing involvement in the South. How did Beijing react to

ment and war planning. The Vietnamese ization that the reunification of the whole of Washington's escalation of the conflict in

inspected Chinese military facilities and Vietnam, as promised by the Geneva AcVietnam? How did Mao Zedong perceive

academies and watched a Chinese military cords, would not materialize, primarily as a U.S. intentions? Was there a "strategic

exercise before traveling back to North Viet- result of U.S. support for the anti-Communam on December 11.5

nist South Vietnamese regime of Ngo Dinh debate” within the Chinese leadership over

The official CMAG history states that Diem, who refused to hold elections in 1956. the American threat and over strategies that China should adopt in dealing with the United during both of Giap's journeys to Beijing, he As hopes for an early reunification dimmed.

“reached agreement” with the Chinese and the DRV had to face its own economic States? What was in Mao's mind when he decided to commit China's resources to

the Russians “on principal issues.” But it difficulties. The rice supply became a major

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