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Monday, June 15, 2020, 06:50 (GMT+7)
Development trend of the times: Viet Nam is consistent with its chosen path

When discussing about major matters of the revolution whether in the past or at present, President Ho Chi Minh and our Party all start with analysing characteristics, contents, and development trends of the times and judging the world situation to identify the correct path of Vietnamese revolution and lay out correct, creative domestic and foreign policies. Platform for national construction from the transitional period to socialism (supplemented and developed in 2011) clearly points out that “the salient feature of the times is that countries with different social regimes and levels of development coexist with both cooperation and competition for national interests. The struggle of people for peace, independence, democracy, development, and social progress will face many difficulties and challenges, but witness new advances. According to the laws of evolution, the humankind will definitely advance towards socialism.”

I. Current development trends of the times

Globalisation and international integration continue to unfold in both scale and nature. Globalisation, in its nature, is the process of accelerating and widening mutual relations, influence, and dependence of all regions and nations around the world. This is a trend and inevitable result of the development of the modern market economy, which promotes multifaceted relationships beyond national boundaries and cooperation for mutual benefits. Countries are both exposed to chances and cannot resist attraction of the globalisation process. It becomes an unavoidable process, which ceaselessly develops and draws the whole world to integration for mutual development, cooperation, and rivalry for national interests.

International integration is the process when each nation pursues its own benefits and goals through voluntarily cooperating with other nations and international organisations in many fields (economy, politics, culture, society, security, national defence, and so on) on the basis of shared awareness, benefits, values, resources, power, proactively accepting and participating in establishing common norms and standards within the frameworks of international institutions or organisations. International integration traced it back to the 1950s and has boomed since 1990s. A series of regional organisations came into being. The European Union (EU) has reached a high level of integration, which turns it into a strong super-national institution. The Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) is also broadening and deepening its comprehensive regional integration based on three pillars, namely Political-Security Community, Economic Community, and Socio-Cultural Community. On the global scale, the United Nations (UN) and its functional bodies started to exist and are increasingly expanded with the participation of almost countries on earth.

Rapid development of science and technology

The Fourth Industrial Revolution is taking place dramatically and becomes a new development trend today. It is characterised by merger and no boundaries between technology, physics, techniques, and biology. It is the trend of combining virtual and real systems and Internet of Things (IOT), which makes the world “flatter,” promotes new dramatic advances in the processes of globalisation and international integration, and brings about both new opportunities and challenges. Given high growth rates, rapid changes, and combination of different technologies, the humankind is offered sea changes and unprecedented development.

The trend of peace, cooperation, and development

The 20th Century saw two world wars with extremely catastrophic consequences. Nowadays, if another world war or a war between superpowers occurs, it will destroy the economic infrastructure of many countries completely. If it escalates into a nuclear war, the whole world will be exterminated. Therefore, peace and stability are demand and aspiration of the entire humandkind. No peace, no cooperation and development and vice versa. A stable world and increased cooperation and development will strengthen world peace. It is cooperation, international integration, interdependence, and intertwined interests between nations that make all instability and upheavals be resolved satisfactorily. Peace, cooperation, and development have been one of objective trends vital in international relations today. This is a trend and dream of all humankind to turn it into a long-lasting value. However, real peace is still far away in many places. Violence and coercion replace cooperation and risks are entailed in development.

II. Recognising and countering incorrect allegations about the times

After the breakdown of socialism in the Soviet Union and countries in Eastern Europe, hostile forces took advantage of this event to criticise and distort Marxism-Leninism and disparage the most fundamental theoretical point about the times. There is nothing new in their allegations but the ways of expression, thus requiring us to recognise and resolutely struggle to counter these allegations.

Regarding the first matter

They falsely claim that if today is a transitional period from capitalism to socialism, socialism has collapsed. Of course, this is the era of capitalism. If socialism and communism have come to an end, they cannot return in the next 100 years. Their way of thinking obviously shows a lack of historical knowledge and narrow-mindedness. The evolution and replacement of an era cannot happen quickly but is a long journey. This process is an inevitable social trend, but not an even path. It may undergo many upheavals, including great advances and setbacks. Of course, the breakdown of socialism in Eastern Europe and Soviet Union is a significant loss of the communist movement. That disintegration can be attributed to many reasons, but it does not belong to the nature of the socialist regime and does not lead to the loss of epochality. History has proven that it was not too easy for capitalism to replace feudalism. That transformation took place in several centuries and faced drastic opposition of feudal forces. Similar situation can be seen today when imperialist forces take all means with the aim of stopping communist movement. This further exposes complexity of the times today.

As for the second matter

Our enemy publicly claims that the socialism in the Soviet Union came to end, thus values of the Russian October Revolution are also no longer valid. This is a hasty and irrational conclusion. Even though achievements brought about by the Russian October Revolution collapsed right at their source, it does not mean the end of lofty, beautiful ideals of the October Revolution. History has shown that no revolutions, even the greatest ones, could abolish the old society and complete building of a new society. It took hundreds of years to advance from feudalism to capitalism by means of many bourgeois revolutions such as the British Revolution in 1788 and French revolutions in 1830, 1848, 1871, and so forth.

The evolution of human society after the Russian October Revolution has demonstrated that its ideals not only serve as the guiding light but also make great practical contributions. The October Revolution served as an awakening bell with the history, which heralded a new page of the world history. The world before the Russian October Revolution had been a dark period or the era of capitalism. The October breakthrough shook most of the foundations of the world capitalist system. The whole world was awakened, which unleashed a new strength for the formation and development of the socialist system, leading to a complete collapse of the colonial system and liberation of societies and people. Achievements of the October Revolution enabled the humankind to prevent the capitalists’ abuse of power, changing internal factors of capitalism. The capitalism could not live on its own but tried to survive. Changes in economic, political strategies to survive as well as those in policies on social welfare in current developed capitalist countries result from struggle of the working people and influence of the October Revolution.

It can be affirmed that although the world situation is likely to witness many changes or even unpredictable upheavals in the coming time, nature of the times remains unchanged. There may be upheavals in a specific period, but they cannot change the nature of the times. The humankind is still in the transitional period from capitalism to socialism. Basic contradictions in the world still exist and are even deepened with new forms of expression. National and class struggles still occur in many forms.

III. Viet Nam is steadfast with its chosen path

Our country is in the transitional process to socialism. Although there is no longer aid from the Soviet Union and socialist countries like before, the scientific-technological revolution and globalisation make all countries become interdependent. No single country can attain development without interconnecting with other countries. Economic cooperation with countries by various dynamic means on the basis of equality, mutual benefits, respect for independence and sovereignty, and non-intervention in the internal affairs of other countries in any forms will enable Viet Nam to take advantage of capital, techniques, modern technologies, and management experience for economic development, acceleration of industrialisation, modernisation of the country, and establishment of material infrastructure of socialism. It is also the real capacity that our country is trying to leverage in order to integrate our economy into the regional and world economy. Besides opportunities, there are also challenges and risks. In the process of economic cooperation, especially with developed capitalist countries, they may exploit their advantage of capital, techniques, and modern technology to impose pressure on us to gain favourable conditions and make us deviate from the socialist direction. Although peace, cooperation and development are the main trend of the times, there is another opposite trend, namely power politics and coercion. Plots of aggressive forces, which are being exposed at flashpoints in many regions, are to dominate waters and islands and violate other countries’ independence and sovereignty.

These are challenges and risk we need to perceive thoroughly and exercise vigilance in order to have effective prevention strategies and response. We pursue a strategy of cooperation and struggle on the basis of firmly adhering to matters of principle regarding our strategic goals while exercising flexibility in stratagems. Struggle does not aim to undermine cooperation but promote cooperation. It is necessary to sensibly exploit contradictions of the capitalist system, especially those between major powers in terms of multipolar trend, to broaden cooperation. This brings us both benefits and essential capacity to respond to the worst scenarios, safeguarding independence, sovereignty, unification, territorial integrity and successfully accomplishing the two strategic tasks, namely construction of socialism and protection of the socialist Homeland.

Furthermore, Viet Nam faces both positive and negative impacts from regional and global economic integration. The positive impacts are when the region and the world enjoy stable economic growth. In contrast, when the region and the world enter periods of stagnation or crises, Viet Nam will suffer from negative influence. We need to have policies to make good use of positive side and minimise the negative one, contributing to maintaining economic stability and growth of our country. This is the lesson learnt from dealing with negative effects of the financial and economic crises in the region and the world over the past decades.

Despite being an underdeveloped country, if we successfully take advantage of opportunities and overcome challenges, we can take a shortcut to socialism without undergoing the capitalist regime. This is in line with the standpoint of Vladimir Lenin, who greatly contributed to “shortcut development path” and New Economic Policy (NEP). It has been tested by practice and is being applied in a creative and suitable manner by our Party.

In conclusion, we can believe that Viet Nam is poised to reach a new height, steadfast in its chosen path, able to advance with the world and the times, and sure to fulfil the goal of prosperous people and a strong, democratic, equitable and advanced country.

Professor, Doctor Vu Van Hien,

Vice Chairman of the Central Theoretical Council

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