October 23

Nguyen Ai Quoc joined a demonstration organized by the Social Party and the Federation of Trade Unions to protest against the execution of two social activists who had been sentenced to death by US authorities. 

A file photo of President Ho Chi Minh


At a Government Council meeting, participants agreed with President Ho Chi Minh that every meeting should spend half an hour to report and then discuss major issues.
On the same day, he visited the Northern Police Bureau. At a facility for detaining prisoners of the District 1 Police Department in Hanoi, he told officials: “[You] should take care of prisoners and try them immediately and carefully so that they are not unjustly punished.”
On the same day, he made an announcement to the people after returning from France.
He said: “I visited France at the French Government’s invitation to resolve issues about independent Vietnam including uniting the Center, the South and the North. Because of France’s current situation, the two issues have not been resolved and have to wait. But sooner or later I am sure that Vietnam will become independent. The Center, the South, and the North will be surely unified.”
To people in South Vietnam, he said: “The Center, the South and the North are all Vietnam. We have a common ancestor and are siblings. The country has [them] like a family has three brothers. No one can divide family members. No one can divide France; no one can divide Vietnam [either].”
“During the year of fighting, some of your houses have been destroyed, some have sacrificed their lives and some have been imprisoned and banished. But your patriotism has been enduring like stone and firm like copper.”
“The people, the nation, and the Government will never forget your faithfulness and unyielding resolve. I bow my head in respect to martyrs’ souls and apologize to people who have made sacrifices. “
“A day when the fatherland has yet to be unified and the people have suffered misery is a day I can’t eat or sleep well. I respectfully promise that with your and the people’s determination, the South will be unified with the North.”
At a conference to review the Border Operation, he said the review needed to focus on “heightening discipline, thoroughly implementing orders, loving team members, respecting people, preserving public facilities and the spoils of war, and criticizing and self-criticizing sincerely.”
He listed some lessons: 1. The Central Government’s leadership was lucid. Local authorities’ direction was proper. All military, civil, and administrative organizations showed solidarity, cooperated tightly, and acted unanimously. 2. Soldiers were ardent and brave. 3. People were very good. 4. The enemy was complacent.”
At a conference to discuss the Politburo’s organizational and personal work, he said: “First of all, organizational work is personal work. Government officials have to have responsibility towards people and the country, and go everywhere. Wherever officials are needed, they will be present. Wherever there are difficulties, they will come. [If you] want to build socialism, [you] have to work.”

By Duong Trung Quoc* and his assistants
The author is a historian and member of the National Assembly

Translated by Minh Loan

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