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Ho Chi Minh thought illuminates Vietnam’s revolutionary road forever

Ho Chi Minh thought is a comprehensive and profound system of views on fundamental issues of the Vietnamese revolution. It was resulted from Ho Chi Minh’s struggling years of practical activities, researching, learning, applying, and developing the Marxism-Leninism in a creative way into specific conditions in Vietnam. The thought will illuminate Vietnam revolutionary road forever.

During the second half of the 19th Century and the early of the 20th Century, under the domination of the French colonialists, Vietnamese patriots stood up to organize the national salvation movements with different stances such as Can Vuong, bourgeoisie, or petty bourgeoisie. These movements, however, all ended in failure. In that context, on June 5th, 1911, a young patriot named Nguyen Tat Thanh left his Motherland from Saigon to travel abroad with the aim of finding a way to liberate the nation. On his long journey, he met, read, and understood the great meaning of the First Draft of the Thesis on Ethnicity and Colonial issues of V.I. Lenin published in the L'Humanite newspaper of the Socialist Party of France on 16th and 17th July 1920. Reading the Thesis, he decided that Vietnam revolutionary road was the national liberation associated with the proletarian revolution.

In the 1920s, Nguyen Ai Quoc (changed from Nguyen Tat Thanh) propagated the Marxism-Leninism among labor and patriotic movements in Vietnam and prepared all conditions of politics, ideology, theory, organization, and cadres for the establishment of a truly revolutionary party. He creatively applied and developed Marxism-Leninism in accordance with the characteristics and reality of Vietnam. Through his famous works, such as: "The Judgment of French Colonialism" (1925) or "The Revolutionary Road" (1927), he built a featured revolutionary ideology which had a special impact on the revolutionary movement. He emphasized the great role of the revolutions in the Eastern countries. In addition,  he also affirmed that radical revolution, other than reform, had to be conducted and that revolution had to have a revolutionary party. Finally,  he believed that it was necessary to enhance internationalism to take advantage of international assistance, but due attention had to be paid to national self-reliance and self-strengthening with the motto "before being helped, we have to help ourselves first."

In the spring of 1930, leader Nguyen Ai Quoc founded the Vietnamese Communist Party. His revolutionary thought brought together the communist soldiers who shared the same will and determination to sacrifice for a noble cause. This thought was expressed in the first Political Credo at the Party's founding congress with a strategic objective of overthrowing the French Colonialism and feudalism to "make Vietnam completely independent" and "come to the communist society". On January 28th, 1941, Nguyen Ai Quoc returned to Vietnam to, together with the Party Central Committee, develop revolutionary ways for national liberation and the revolutionary cause. He thought that revolution had to start from the people as we could have all if we won the people’s heart and mind. He also attached great importance to the national unity, the priority of the national interests, and the construction of a firm revolutionary base, political force of the masses, and the people's armed forces. Ho Chi Minh (changed from Nguyen Ai Quoc) developed rich ideas of ​​revolutionary strategies and plots, national and class interests, revolutionary situation and moment, sense of self-reliance, self-strengthening, and taking advantage of international conditions, and science and art of the entire-people insurrection and armament. This was the decisive factor for the victory of the August Revolution in 1945 - one of the greatest achievements of the Vietnamese revolution in the twentieth century. The victory turned the national history into a new page in which the national independence is associated with the development of the country along the socialist path.

President Ho Chi Minh in Viet Bac in 1951 (A file photo)

After the country was independent, Ho Chi Minh's prominent idea was to build the true State of the people, by the people, and for the people and to construct a new regime for all people to be free and happy. According to Uncle Ho, “We must understand that governmental agencies from the central level to villages are the people's servants. That is to shoulder the common work for the people rather than oppressing the people as in the time under the domination of France and Japan. What benefits the people, we must do as much. What harms the people, we must avoid the most”. The State is responsible for dealing with internal affairs, enhancing the material and spiritual life of the people, building a new life, taking care of resistance to defend the independence, and developing diplomatic strategies. Ho Chi Minh’s diplomacy is to make more friends, reduce hostile, and open the door for sincere cooperation with other countries in the spirit of honesty and respect of each other. "Be friends with all democratic countries and do not make enemies with anyone", said Ho Chi Minh.

Ho Chi Minh, together with the Party and the State, led two resistance wars for 30 years to defeat the attempt to invade, dominate of the strongest empires of the era and win with the historic victory of Dien Bien Phu (7/5/1954) and the great victory of Spring 1975 (30/4/1975) to unify the country. Ho Chi Minh’s military ideology was to create strength in people's war, build three-force army to serve as the core for the whole people to fight against the enemy. He advocated to determine to defend the national independence with the truth that “there is nothing more precious than independence and freedom”.

Ho Chi Minh's ideas of ​​socialism and the path to socialism were the creative application of Marxism-Leninism to Vietnam's reality. He stressed the inevitability of socialism and the necessity to grasp the greatest characteristic that, as an outdated agricultural country with a long war, socialism had to be built gradually unlike the other countries. It was necessary to find out distinct rules of the socialist revolution in Vietnam. Ho Chi Minh thought that "Socialism is about making people rich and powerful." and that “We cannot be like the Soviet Union as it has different customs and geographic history. Socialism is to bring the people with freedom, prosperity, happiness, and chances of education, medical care, and good accommodation. Under socialism, children will be nurtured, and the elderly will be cared for.” That thought has been thoroughly grasped by the Party in its Doi Moi policy since the Sixth Congress (1986) and realized in the development of a solid country in the direction of socialism, which has contributed to achieving historically significant results.

Since the preparation for the establishment of the Party and throughout the process of revolutionary leadership, especially in the context of the ruling party, Ho Chi Minh had highlighted the idea of building a truly revolutionary party - the Vietnam Communist Party - in terms of politics, ideology, theory, organization, and morals, imbuing with revolutionary virtues, and wiping out individualism. He stressed that “Our Party is ethical and civilized. The Vietnamese people must be brave, intelligent, civilized, and ethical".

With a deep school of thought, great contributions to the revolution, and model of life, in 1987, Ho Chi Minh was honored by the United Nations Educational, Scientific, and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) as the "Vietnam’s Hero of Liberation and Outstanding Cultural Celebrity". Although the hostile forces have deliberately misrepresented, Ho Chi Minh's thought will forever illuminate our Party and the people of Vietnam. It will live in the struggle of the peoples of the world for peace, national independence, democracy, and social progress. In the credo for building the country in the transitional period to socialism (Credo 1991, June 1991) and its supplementations and development (January 2011), the Party affirmed that "The Party takes Marxism - Leninism and Ho Chi Minh thought as a basis for ideology and a guideline for action. Through years of research, the Ninth Party Congress (April 2001) summarized and highlighted the basic contents of Ho Chi Minh's thought. On May 15th, 2016, the Politburo (12th Tenure) issued Directive No.05-CT/TW on "Promoting learning and following of Ho Chi Minh’s thought, dignity, and style", which have been  actively responded and implemented by the masses and people. That further affirms that His thought remains the torch light for our Party and people on the road of socialist-oriented reform with the goals of rich people, strong country, democracy, justice, and civilization.

Ho Chi Minh thought will illuminate the revolutionary cause of the Party and people of Vietnam forever. The Vietnamese revolutionary practice has increasingly affirmed the sustained scientific value and the reality of that immortal thought.

 Associate Professor, PhD. NGUYEN TRONG PHUC

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Over 70 years of establishment and development (April 1948 – April 2018), the National Defence Journal has strived to overcome hardships and ceaselessly renew itself, improved its quality and effectiveness, making contribution to the revolutionary cause of the Party through different stages, most directly the ideological and theoretical work.
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