November 17, 2006

Bush is in Hanoi

Hanoi, Vietnam, originally uploaded by HellonEarth2006.

President Bush is in Hanoi, but the Phantom beat him to it.

When I went to Vietnam last year, I saw a very interesting country filled with bright , curious children and adults. Most were and are extremely poor by US or European standards, but they wear clean clothes, and are working very hard to catch up with their richer Asian neighbors. Give Vietnam a couple of decades of peace, and they'll be in fine shape.

Visitors are welcome. I wandered all over Saigon and Hanoi, back streets and big avenues, and was greeted warmly everywhere.

The reconciliation between Vietnamese and Americans over the past 20 years has been nothing short of astonishing. There is so much bad news in the world--this is one of the world's good stories.


Anonymous said...


Tell the Troll of Philadelphia about your good news from Vietnam. He's been spreading a story that the Vietnamese government killed millions of its own citizens after we left in 1975.

The Phantom said...

Actually, the Commies were awful to the defeated South Vietnamese. They were very vengeful and kept them in reeducation camps for years. This wasn't Lincoln showing reconciliation to the South.

Also, in the years after the South fell, they implemented awful, unworkable Communist theories which kind of wrecked the economy.

But...after some years, they implemented "doi moi", an economic liberalization that has steadily headed in a capitalist direction...and which has been followed by a political liberalization...and friendship with the US.

So, Troll may be correct, but so am I. I'm happy that the war is truly over, and that the Vietnamese people have a shot at a better life going forward. That was really good to see.