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Monday, October 19, 2020, 10:10 (GMT+7)
70 years of the People’s Army Newspaper’s following of Uncle Ho’s teachings

Being imbued with our beloved Uncle Ho’s teachings

President Ho Chi Minh always regarded the press and journalists as part of the country’s revolutionary cause and a sharp weapon of our revolution. In his revolutionary life, he wrote more than 2,000 press works of various types with the sole aim of serving the labouring people, socialism, our struggle for national unification, and world peace. At the second Congress of the Vietnam Journalists’ Association, he instructed that “our press should serve all people instead of a small number of citizens, our main aim is to build socialism, unify the country, and preserve the world’s peace; each newspaper, such as peasants’ newspaper, workers’ newspaper, youth’s newspaper, and women’s newspapers should have its own particularities; as for our journalists, pens serve as powerful weapons  and articles must be revolutionary proclamations to encourage the masses to fight against colonialism of both old and new types and imperialism, especially the US imperialists for the sake of national independence, social progress and world peace.” Immediately after the establishment of the National Defence Army Newspaper on March 10th, 1947 (the present-day People’s Army Newspaper), President Ho Chi Minh sent a congratulatory letter, stressing that “the National Defence Army is an army of the people tasked with protecting the people and safeguarding the Homeland; the National Defence Army Newspaper is founded to bolster troops’ morale and discipline.”

Right in its first issue (October 20th, 1950), Uncle Ho instructed cadres and journalists of the People’s Army Newspaper (PAN) to “write what are really practical, succinct, simple and easy to understand under the political guidelines.” Being imbued with Uncle Ho’s teachings, over the past 70 years, cadres and journalists of the PAN have always adhered to the leadership and direction by the Central Military Commission (CMC), the Ministry of National Defence (MND) and the General Political Department (GPD). They have surmounted numerous difficulties and dangers, stood shoulder to shoulder with our forces on battlefields, and opportunely disseminated our troops’ combat activities, heroic examples and hostilities. It should be noted that during the Dien Bien Phu Campaign, the PAN organised a front-line newsroom that directly published 33 issues to opportunely encourage our troops and people to achieve the victory “resounding across five continents, shaking the globe.”

With the spirit of “readily fighting and sacrificing for independence, freedom and socialism,” generations of soldier journalists produced intrinsic articles on battlefields that touched our troops and people’s hearts across the country, promoted patriotism, and encouraged them to overcome all difficulties and hardships. At the same time, those articles helped the peace-loving people around the world to clearly understand the justice of our revolution, while prominently displaying war crimes committed by colonialism and imperialism. Journalists were also courageous soldiers on battlefields. Typical example was the Hero of the People’s Armed Forces, Senior Lieutenant Le Dinh Du, a war martyr and journalist of the PAN. On the front of Cua Viet, when being ordered to enter the bunker, he said that “a soldier can stand, knee and lie to shoot the enemy; journalists like us are only allowed to stand upright on the trenches and use cameras and pens to record our comrades’ feats of arms and the enemy’s crimes.”  Also in the period of national renewal, construction and protection, generations of soldier journalists of the PAN have always been imbued with Uncle Ho’s teachings, played a vanguard role in all fields, and adhered to directions by higher echelons and competent offices to conduct the work of propagation properly, analyse the nature of issues and events, and express their opinions clearly, thereby making contributions to orientating public opinion, creating a consensus within the society, and accelerating the country’s renewal, industrialisation, modernisation, and international integration.

Prime Minister Nguyen Xuan Phuc taking a photo with the PAN’s group of authors at the ceremony to present 2019 Golden Hammer and Sickle Press Awards

To maintain the political guidelines for a newspaper of our Party within the armed forces

As a political, military newspaper of our Party, country and Army, the PAN has always reflected the political views as its central principle and goal. In order that the PAN would always stick to the Party’s political guidelines, the CMC, the MND and the GPD have devoted special attention to building pure, politically, ideologically, morally and organisational strong party organisations within the newspaper as well as a contingent of cadres and journalists with political zeal, pure morality and great professional competence to meet their task requirements.

Under the Party’s political guidelines, the PAN has kept developing itself in terms of scale, force, and category. Only three issues of the PAN were formerly released within the armed forces on a weekly basis; however, since November 1956, the PAN has been available for all people. Since May 19th, 1965, it has become a daily newspaper. It now has many other publications, such as Weekend People’s Army Newspaper, Event and Witness Monthly, and Communicators’ Bulletin. The PAN’s number of printed pages has been increased from 4 to 8. Moreover, the PAN has now become a multi-language online newspaper, with the English version (2005), the Chinese version (2012), the Laotian version and the Khmer version (2017). On the 129th anniversary of the birth of President Ho Chi Minh (May 19th, 1890 - May 19th, 2019), the PAN organised a ceremony to announce the Defence Minister’s Decision on the Project to develop the newspaper into a multimedia agency towards 2025, while officially launching its online radio and television programmes. With its principle and goal, the PAN has made contributions to translating the Party’s resolutions into life, arousing national pride and patriotism, fostering the values of “truth, goodness and beauty,” cementing national great unity, and sailing Vietnam into the great sea as our beloved Uncle Ho ever wished. Soldier journalists of the PAN have left their footprints all over the country, from the remote, isolated, border areas to the Homeland’s seas and islands. Weathering storms and floods, the PAN’s soldier journalists have proactively detected, disseminated, encouraged and multiplied typical examples and new, creative approaches in all social aspects, while actively fighting against the hostile forces’ “peaceful evolution” strategy and their plots to “depoliticise” our Military. It is worth noting that since the outbreak of COVID-19 pandemic, soldier journalists of the PAN and the Military’s competent units have bravely entered the regions hit by the epidemic to propagate our Party and Government’s social care and the country’s humanistic tradition, thereby making contributions to encouraging all people to actively join hands in “the fight against the epidemic like combating enemies” and minimising human and economic losses caused by the COVID-19. With those impressive achievements over the past 70 years, the PAN has been given the titles of Hero of the People’s Armed Forces and Labour Hero, the Ho Chi Minh Order, the Gold Star Order and many other noble rewards by the State.

To keep developing the PAN under Ho Chi Minh’s ideology

With the rapid development of the Internet and online newspapers all over the world, press agencies of various types are facing a competition and maintaining cooperation with one another for development. Besides, an outburst of social networks and new forms of media on the Internet have led to the birth of netizens as a new social group, particularly amongst the youth and the formulation of new concepts in journalism. On April 3rd, 2019, the Prime Minister signed the Decision 362/QĐ-TTg on the national press development and management planning towards 2025, according to which the PAN would be developed into a key multimedia agency. Amidst those opportunities and challenges, our revolutionary press in general and the PAN in particular should keep promoting their responsibility and self-reliance to overcome all difficulties, become our Party and State’s right arm on the political, ideological and cultural front, play a vanguard role in the fight against wrong, hostile viewpoints, and preserve the people’s faith in the country’s revolutionary cause selected by our Party and beloved Uncle Ho.

To continue well performing its function as an organ of the CMC and the MND and the voice of the armed forces and the Vietnamese people in the new period, the PAN will keep realising Uncle Ho’s teachings and develop itself under the President’s ideology, with a focus on the following measures.

First, it will strictly implement resolutions, directives, and guiding documents by the Party, the State, the CMC, the MND, and the GPD as well as President Ho Chi Minh’s instructions on journalism, while building itself into a key multimedia agency and maintaining its principle and goal.

Second, it will enhance “the study and following of Ho Chi Minh’s ideology, ethics and lifestyle” and the Campaign entitled “promoting tradition, devoting talent, deserving to be Uncle Ho’s soldiers” in the new period. Furthermore, it will well perform the work of education to raise its cadres and journalists’ awareness and responsibility for promoting the tradition of a newspaper which has been given the title of Hero of the People’s Armed Force two times, while encouraging the role of soldier journalists within the Vietnam People’s Army on the Party’s ideological and cultural front.

Third, it will provide political theoretical and professional education in order to build a contingent of “both red and expert” cadres and journalists who will always remain steadfastness in the Party’s guidelines and have political zeal, pure morality and great professional competence.

Emphasis will be placed on implementing the breakthrough set by the Resolution of the PAN’s Party Congress for the 2020-2025 tenure, according to which it will train its editors and journalists comprehensively. Young journalists will be trained to be versatile ones who are capable of writing articles, taking photos, and recording events (three in one) as well as gradually approaching and mastering modern journalistic techniques, technologies and trends to meet the requirements set by quick, timely, effective journalism in the digital technological environment. It will continue improving its soldier journalists’ political zeal and will and turning them into an elite force on the Party’s ideological and cultural front so that they will opportunely identify the hostile forces’ plots and acts of sabotage, especially on the Internet and social network and fight against wrong viewpoints and the plots to “depoliticise” and “civilise” our Military so as to defend the Party’s ideological foundation.

Sr. Col. DO PHU THO, Secretary of the PAN’s Party Committee

Managing Editor of the PAN

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August Revolution – Victory of the aspiration for independence, peace and development
Despite the time, the values of the August Revolution in 1945, the achievements of the cause of national construction and defence with the aspiration for independence, peace and development are still a great motivation for our people to step firmly on the way to build Vietnam with rich people, strong country, democracy, justice and civilisation.