Archives par mot-clé : offensive du Tet

Séminaire de recherche exceptionnel sur le Viêt-Nam avec Olga Dror & Keith W. Taylor – Inalco, 22 mai 2018

[ndlr] Séminaire de recherche exceptionnel en études vietnamiennes à l’Inalco, mardi 22 mai 2018, 13h30-17h00. A ne pas manquer.

L’Inalco et l’Université Paris Diderot sont heureux de vous inviter à une séance exceptionnelle de leur séminaire de recherche en études vietnamiennes, avec deux invités :

– Olga Dror, Associate Professor, Texas A&M University :

« Oublier et se souvenir du massacre de Huế, Tết 1968 »

 

★ ★ ★

– Pr. Keith W. Taylor, Cornell University :

« Autour du poème ‘Tứ Thời Khúc’ en caractères démotiques du lettré Hoàng Sĩ Khải (XVIe siècle) »

 

La séance aura lieu le mardi 22 mai 2018, de 13h30 à 17h00, dans les salons de l’Inalco, 2 rue de Lille, 75007 Paris.

Évènement ouvert à tous. Soyez les bienvenus !

Image « à la une » : Huê, le 14 avril 1968, la vie reprend son cours dans les décombres de l’offensive du Têt © Bettmann/CORBIS sur le site de Manh Hai

Sean Fear : How South Vietnam Defeated Itself

[ndlr] Article intéressant de la série Vietnam’ 67. Un regard sur la politique intérieure de la République du Viêt-Nam à la suite de la déflagration du Têt 1968.

In the early hours of Jan. 30, 1968, the first Communist rockets struck provincial capitals across South Vietnam. A nationwide ground assault followed, and by morning the next day, much of the urban South was besieged, including Saigon’s radio station, the South Vietnamese military headquarters and even the American Embassy. What local papers dubbed the “Year of Sand” — referring to the ubiquitous sandbags appearing in front of the nation’s doors and windows — was well underway.

In the United States, the attacks, which came to be known as the Tet offensive, are remembered as a psychological turning point, the moment when President Johnson is said to have lost the faith of CBS broadcaster Walter Cronkite — and by extension, the public at large. Indeed, though Communist forces suffered substantial losses in manpower and morale, the contradiction between American officials’ buoyant promises and weeks of astonishing televised carnage was never reconciled. But Tet’s political impact in South Vietnam proved equally significant, and no less critical, in determining the outcome of the war.

Still routinely mischaracterized as an American client regime, South Vietnam was home to millions of fervent but factionalized anti-Communists, mostly concentrated in urban centers and provincial capitals. Reacting to the shock of Tet, they set aside longstanding quarrels and rallied in a rare display of solidarity. But the outpouring of constructive energy following the Tet attacks was hastily squandered. Instead, President Nguyen Van Thieu used the opportunity to undertake naked power grabs, compromising the constitutional basis on which his legitimacy was premised, and driving even the most dedicated anti-communists to despair. Post-Tet resolve succumbed to cynical resignation, while military confidence and commitment eroded.

As a result, a moment that could have been a turning point for the country became the beginning of the end. When the government finally surrendered to Communist tanks in April 1975, the South’s political fate had long since been sealed.

Lire la suite : New York Times (23/02/2018)

Illustration « à la une » :A family fleeting fighting in Saigon in 1968. ©Tim Page/Corbis, via Getty Images

Ông Bùi Tín lý giải các góc độ trận Tết Mậu Thân [BBC]

Alors que le débat fait rage sur la toile sur le cinquantième anniversaire de l’Offensive du Têt et en particulier sur le rôle de quelques intellectuels communistes pendant le massacre de Huê, le colonel Bui Tin a donné dans un entretien avec la BBC (programme en vietnamien) quelques clés de compréhension de cet événement majeur de la guerre du Viêt-Nam.

Lien : Ở Hà Nội ‘không có sự đồng nhất về Mậu Thân’, BBC Vietnamese, 19/02/2018.

Pour en savoir plus :

  • Thụy My, « Vì sao Việt Nam ít đề cập đến Tết Mậu Thân 1968« , RFI (Vietnam), 21/02/2018. Theo ông Nguyễn Quang A, 72 tuổi, một doanh nhân về hưu và cựu đảng viên đã trở thành một nhà ly khai ở Hà Nội, ký ức về Tết Mậu Thân chỉ được công khai nói đến bằng những từ ngữ mơ hồ. “Tôi nghĩ rằng Đảng muốn chôn vùi mọi kỷ niệm cũ, vì nó làm suy yếu tính chính danh của họ”.
  • Voir aussi le dossier sur le programme vietnamien de la BBC : 50 năm trận Tết Mậu Thân

Ý kiến về lễ kỷ niệm 50 năm Mậu Thân ‘rầm rộ’ [BBC Vietnamese]

[ndlr] Une chronique intéressante sur la commémoration officielle par la RSVN de l’Offensive du Têt 1968, à lire comme illustration de la persistance d’une des fractures vietnamiennes.

Tổng Bí thư Nguyễn Phú Trọng cùng các lãnh đạo cao nhất trong Đảng Cộng sản dự lễ kỷ niệm 50 sự kiện mà Việt Nam gọi là « Cuộc Tổng tiến công và nổi dậy Xuân Mậu Thân 1968 ».

Năm 1968, biến cố tổng tấn công trên khắp các địa phương của Việt Nam Cộng Hòa đã tạo ra bước ngoặt trong Chiến tranh Việt Nam.

Bí thư Thành ủy TP.Hồ Chí Minh Nguyễn Thiện Nhân phát biểu tại buổi lễ, nêu lập trường chính thức của Đảng:

« Cuộc Tổng tiến công và nổi dậy Xuân Mậu Thân 1968 mãi mãi là biểu tượng sáng ngời của lòng yêu nước, của ý chí quyết tâm sắt đá, tinh thần quyết chiến, quyết thắng của toàn Đảng, toàn dân và toàn quân ta để giành độc lập, tự do, được dẫn dắt, soi đường bởi sự lãnh đạo tài tình, đường lối đúng đắn của Đảng ta và Chủ tịch Hồ Chí Minh vĩ đại ».

Ý kiến ‘phi chính thức’

Tuy vậy, giáo sư Nguyễn Khắc Mai, cựu Vụ trưởng Vụ Nghiên cứu, Ban Dân vận Trung ương Đảng Cộng sản Việt Nam nói với BBC: « Tôi cho rằng không nên làm kỷ niệm Mậu Thân rầm rộ, nghiên cứu thì cứ nghiên cứu để tìm ra bài học ngăn ngừa chuyện ấy trong tương lai. »

« Không nên khoét sâu những nỗi đau của một cuộc chiến huynh đệ tương tàn như vậy. »

« Người nhà đánh nhau, nồi da xáo thịt thì oai hùng nỗi gì mà tưởng niệm. »

« Hơn nữa, tôi thấy bây giờ dư luận không để ý nhiều đến buổi lễ này. »

« Bây giờ không phải bất kỳ sự kiện nào Đảng làm thì người ta cũng theo dõi, hoan nghênh đâu, » ông Khắc Mai cho hay.

Hôm 1/2, nhà báo tự do Nguyễn An Dân bình luận với BBC:

« Đảng Cộng sản Việt Nam dùng chữ « tri ân », vậy lễ này tri ân những người nằm xuống vì cái gì? Vì họ chiến đấu cho đảng? Hay vì họ nội chiến với chính đồng bào của mình? »

Lire la suite : BBC Vietnamese, 01/02/2018.

Image « à la une » : April 1969: a South Vietnamese woman mourns over the body of her husband, found with 47 others in a mass grave near Hue © AP Photo/Horst Faas

Panel discussion : The Tet Offensive – Lessons from the Campaign After 50 Years (CSIS)

[ndlr] Annonce du CSIS sur un panel consacré à l’Offensive du Têt.

The Project on Military and Diplomatic History cordially invites you to

The Tet Offensive: Lessons from the Campaign After 50 Years

Continuer la lecture de Panel discussion : The Tet Offensive – Lessons from the Campaign After 50 Years (CSIS)

Conference Call for Papers and Panels : “1968 and the Tet Offensive”

[ndlr] Annonce du Vietnam Center & Archive.

Conference Call for Papers and Panels

“1968 and the Tet Offensive”

April 27-28, 2018, Lubbock Texas

The Vietnam Center and Archive (VNCA) and the Institute for Peace & Conflict (IPAC) at Texas Tech University are pleased to announce a conference focused on the year 1968 and the Tet Offensive. We expect in this conference to approach these historical events in the broadest possible manner by hosting presenters who examine diplomatic, military, international regional, and domestic aspects of the Vietnam War during that year, as well as the strategic and tactical decision-making and actions that led up to and followed the Tet Offensive. This will include presentations that look at all participants to include the US, RVN, DRV, NLF, and the numerous allies and other nations involved. We will also strongly encourage presentations that examine the antiwar and peace movements at home and abroad, the efforts to support the war effort, and the efforts to end the conflict through international diplomacy, as well as military and diplomatic means in Vietnam and Southeast Asia.

Recent and emerging scholarship on the Tet Offensive and on 1968, more broadly, is refocusing much needed attention on some of the pivotal events that took place during that fateful year. In late November 1967, General William Westmoreland publicly conveyed his optimism regarding eventual US victory in Vietnam, helping President Johnson to buoy flagging US popular and political support for the war effort. In the aftermath of the Tet Offensive, as fighting broke out in every major city throughout the entirety of South Vietnam, many started to doubt the veracity of those previous claims, including prominent politicians and members of the American media.

Attention within the US came to focus on some of the more brutal battles that emerged as US Marines fought to retake Vietnam’s ancient Imperial city in the Battle for Hue and they came under heavy fire during in the Siege of Khe Sanh. As the fighting intensified in Vietnam, so it did in the streets and on campuses across America, as critics of the war continued their calls for an immediate US withdrawal and an end to the war. So powerful was the effect of these events that on March 31, President Johnson announced that he would not seek reelection – adding to the leadership changes already in play with the departure of Robert McNamara as Secretary of Defense in late February and the emergence of General Creighton Abrams and departure of General Westmoreland as commander of US forces in Vietnam in June. The violence that year included some of the most horrific wartime atrocities committed against civilians in Vietnam, including the Hue Massacre and the My Lai Massacre, while violence in the US claimed the lives of nationally prominent figures, such as Martin Luther King, Jr., and Robert F. Kennedy. The presidential election that year witnessed last-minute attempts by the Johnson administration to end the war in Vietnam sabotaged by the Nixon campaign.

By the end of 1968, approximately 550,000 Americans engaged in more than 200 major combat operations, dropped more than 500,000 tons of bombs, and the overall financial costs of the war for that year alone totaled approximately $20 Billion. 1968 resulted in the highest numbers of casualties in a single year with more than 16,000 Americans and approximately 100,000 Vietnamese killed on all sides. All the while, the North Vietnamese and NLF fought on. With a new president and leadership team preparing to take over in January of 1969, innumerable questions remained as to whether a US victory could be achieved in Vietnam.

This two-day conference will be hosted at the MCM Elegante Hotel and Suites in Lubbock, Texas. Conference organizers welcome both individual presentation proposals as well as pre-organized panel proposals that include a moderator/commentator and three individual presentations. Conference sessions will follow the standard 90-minute format to include 60 minutes for presentations (20 minutes per presentation) followed by 30 minutes for questions and discussion. Presentations by veterans are especially encouraged as are presentations by graduate students. Graduate student travel grants will be made available to select students. All presentations will be video recorded and made publicly available after the conference via the Vietnam Center and Archive website. Select papers may also be published in a collection by the TTU Press.

Proposal submission deadline is February 15, 2018

Please submit a 250 word abstract and separate two-page CV/resume to 1968vietnamconference@gmail.com. The program committee of Ron Milam, Steve Maxner, Justin Hart, Dave Lewis, and Laura Calkins will evaluate all paper proposals and develop a program that reflects the many remarkable aspects of 1968. If submitting a panel proposal, please include separate abstracts for each proposed presentation and CVs/resumes for each speaker.

Thank you for your interest in participating in this conference.

 

Contact Email: justin.hart@ttu.edu

Source : https://www.vietnam.ttu.edu/events/2018_Conference/

Illustration « à la une » : photo de couverture du magazine Life, 9 février 1968 : « A guerilla is taken alive during the Ambassy battle » © 1968 Life.

Nhã Ca : Mourning Headband for Hue. An Account of the Battle for Hue, Vietnam 1968 – Review by Gary Kulik

[ndlr] Signalement d’un CR de lecture en ligne de Gary Kulik sur l’ouvrage de Nhã Ca, Mourning Headband for Hue: An Account of the Battle for Hue, Vietnam 1968. Témoignage poignant sur massacre perpétré par le Viêt-Công (FNL Sud Viêt-Nam) à Huê lors de l’offensive du Têt.

NhaCa_MourningHeadbandForHueMourning Headband for Hue, originally published in Saigon in 1969 as Giải khăn sô Huế, was the first book-length account of the Tet Offensive. Its author, a prominent Vietnamese writer, Trần Thị Thu Vân, wrote under the pen name Nhã Ca. In late January 1968, she had traveled to Hue, where she was born, to mourn the death of her father. The North Vietnamese Army and the Viet Cong attacked the next day. She remained trapped in Hue with her family for more than a month, until US and South Vietnamese forces finally prevailed in bloody urban fighting. Returning to Saigon, she wrote a forceful, fearful, poetic account of the devastating impact of war on civilians; its title invokes the white headband worn by Vietnamese grieving their dead. The book attests to the communist forces’ horrendous killings of thousands of Vietnamese in the Hue Massacre. Olga Dror’s translation now makes it accessible to an English-speaking audience.

Born in 1939, Nhã Ca became a prominent poet and writer in Saigon in the early 1960s. Her themes were « love, passion, and longing » (xvi). Raised a Buddhist, she adopted her pen name after reading the Old Testament « Song of Solomon, » also known (to Catholics) as « Canticles » (the approximate meaning of « Nhã Ca » is « canticle »). In 1966, she joined the Voice of Freedom, a radio station broadcasting into North Vietnam. Her first major work, At Night I Hear Cannons, was reprinted six times and sold over 100,000 copies. It tells the story of a family waiting, in the end futilely, for a son and son-in-law to return from the war to celebrate Tet, the Lunar New Year. While decrying the cost of war, its author yet takes no sides.

Olga Dror (Texas A&M), a scholar of Vietnamese history, worked closely with the author to capture her « unadulterated voice from the time of war » (xi). Her long « Translator’s Introduction » sketches Nhã Ca’s life and work and explains how the special « staccato tempo » of Mourning Headband « dramatically and palpably [reflects] life in raw and desperate eloquence in the middle of the battlefield that was Hue » (xviii). Especially valuable is Dror’s detailed and fair-minded analysis of contemporary reports of the massacre, the political uses of that reportage, and the rare and little known personal comments on the atrocity from the communist side. The current Vietnamese government has never acknowledged or openly discussed the massacre and there is no serious scholarly study of it.

Lire la suite : Michigan War Studies Review