Archives par mot-clé : FBI

Terror in Little Saigon: A Second Exile by A.C. Thompson

[ndlr] Second volet de Terror in Little Saigon : le nouvel exil des victimes après les menaces de mort et tentatives d’assassinats. Cas de Doan Van Toai.

By 1989, Doan Van Toai had become a prominent commentator on the political affairs of Vietnam, his home country. Toai had witnessed the corruption of South Vietnam’s political leaders, and later suffered first-hand the brutality of the Communist victors after the war. Now, in America, he’d found cause for cautious optimism.

Toai wrote essays for publications including The Wall Street Journal. He’d done a stint as a researcher at Tufts University outside Boston, and launched an advocacy group called the Institute for Democracy in Vietnam. Working with a co-author, he had published a well-received memoir called The Vietnamese Gulag. He gave speeches around the world.

And then, on a summer morning outside Toai’s house in Fresno, California, a man armed with a .380-caliber pistol shot him. One bullet wrecked Toai’s jaw and destroyed six teeth before exiting beneath his left ear. Another ruined his intestines.

After the shooting, the Vietnamese Organization to Exterminate Communists and Restore the Nation took credit for the attempted murder of Toai. The FBI had long regarded the ostensible group — VOECRN — as a cover for the violent work of a very public organization founded years before by former South Vietnamese military officers. That group, formally known as the National United Front for the Liberation of Vietnam, had brought elements of the war back home to America. Its members wanted to re-take Vietnam and openly raised money to finance an army to do so. The FBI, over many years of frustrating investigation, had come to believe the group, known most commonly as the Front, was willing to kill or terrorize those in American who criticized its aims and operations.

Toai was one of those detractors, and his brush with death had an effect that doubtless pleased the Front. He gave up public writing. He abandoned the speeches.

Lire la suite / Read more : PBS, 01/12/2015.

Pour en savoir plus :

A.C. Thompson : Terror in Little Saigon [Frontline]

[ndlr] Mise en ligne le 03/11/2015 de l’enquête de A.C. Thompson : “Terror in Little Saigon, An Old War Comes to a New Country” publiée sur Frontline. Extraits :

The journalists were assassinated on American soil, one after another.

Duong Trong Lam was the first. He was 27 years old and ran a Vietnamese-language publication called Cai Dinh Lang, which he mailed to immigrants around the country. A gunman found him as he walked out of his San Francisco apartment building one morning and shot him, a single bullet piercing his pulmonary artery, just above the heart.

For magazine publisher Pham Van Tap, the end came more slowly. He was sleeping in his small office in Garden Grove, California, when an arsonist set fire to the building. He was heard screaming before he succumbed to smoke inhalation.

In Houston, a killer chased Nguyen Dam Phong from his home in his pajamas and shot him seven times with a .45-caliber handgun. The murder marked the end of Dam Phong’s twice-monthly broadsheet newspaper, which he had named Tu Do: Freedom.

All together, five Vietnamese-American journalists were killed between 1981 and 1990. All worked for small publications serving the refugee population that sought shelter in the U.S. after the fall of Saigon in 1975.  At least two other people were murdered as well.

FBI agents came to believe that the journalists’ killings, along with an array of fire-bombings and beatings, were terrorist acts ordered by an organization called the National United Front for the Liberation of Vietnam, a prominent group led by former military commanders from South Vietnam. Agents theorized that the Front was intimidating or executing those who defied it, FBI documents show, and even sometimes those simply sympathetic to the victorious Communists in Vietnam. But the FBI never made a single arrest for the killings or terror crimes, and the case was formally closed two decades ago.

Lire la suite : Frontline, 03/11/2015.

Image “à la une” : Hoang Co Minh, président du Front National Unifié de Libération du Viêt-Nam, en meeting avec la communauté d’Orange County en 1983 © Viet Tan