Oanh Ngo Usadi : I saw and heard Saigon falling, 43 years ago today

[ndlr] La chute de Saigon dans la mémoire d’une famille exilée.

After three decades of bloodshed, Vietnam’s civil war abruptly ended 43 years ago today, on April 30, 1975. The events surrounding this date are seared into the minds of every Vietnamese person of a certain age.

I was not yet four years old, but these are some of my earliest memories. There was no longer a North and South Vietnam divided at the 17th parallel, only the Socialist Republic of Vietnam.

Days before, the radio inside our house in Saigon had been ticking off provinces that had fallen into North Vietnamese hands: some of them the hometowns of my relatives. As rumors of gory revenge preceded the communists’ advance, thousands of people abandoned their homes and fled to any place that was still free. Many, including my aunts, with husbands away fighting in the South Vietnamese Army, ended up at our house.

The presence of so many visitors had the feel of Tet, the Vietnamese New Year. But for this reunion, the mood was far from celebratory. I recall hearing the word hoa binh, meaning peace, sprinkled in conversations. My father explained that it meant the end of fighting and soldiers on both sides could go home. “For you, there would be no more hiding under the counters and staircases,” he said to me.

Lire la suite : Washington Examiner, 30/04/2018.

Commémoration du 30 avril 1975(« Black April ») en Californie :