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Monday, December 24, 2018, 07:01 (GMT+7)
Issues on building the Army rear in the new situation*

Realities have shown that building the strong Army rear to ensure our Military’s process of construction, development, combat and victory and its fulfillment of all assigned tasks is a matter of utmost importance. The current situation imposes the high requirements on the building of Army rear which should be executed via synchronous measures.

Grasping and flexibly applying Marxism-Leninism and Ho Chi Minh’s thought on the war and the military as well as learning from the lessons in the history, in the period of national reform, while building the Military and consolidating national defence, our Party and State have always devoted due attention to leading and managing the building of Army rear and attained significant achievements. There has been a fundamental change in the awareness of authorities and sectors towards this work from building the army rear to comprehensively support the front line with the subsidy policy for the Military to building the army rear comprehensively to support the Military in accordance with the conditions of the socialist-oriented market economy while necessary factors have been prepared for expanding the Army rear in the event of a war. The Party’s guidelines and the State’s policy and law have been supplemented and completed, thereby providing the basis for setting up the guidelines, targets and content related to the building of the Army rear. Authorities and sectors, particularly localities have always aligned socio-economic development strategies with the preparation and accumulation of resources and potential for the Army rear; built and mobilized economic, scientific-technologic, human, and politico-spiritual potential and national tradition to support the Military’s build-up, training and combat readiness operations as well as to ensure troops and their families’ life. As a result, the work of national defence support and the building of defensive zones, all-people national defence posture and people’s warfare posture have been actively carried out and ready for the extension, thus meeting the requirements of Homeland protection in all situations.

The movement of “piggy bank” to help military women in economic difficulty by the Women’s Union in the General Political Department Office

Nevertheless, there have been some weaknesses in building the Army rear. The public awareness has yet to be uniform; guidelines, policies and laws have yet to be synchronous; the assignment of responsibility and the mechanism for leadership, management and operation have yet to be clear; the synergy has yet to be promoted effectively; all of which have impacted on the building and mobilization of resources and potential for the Military and the Homeland protection cause, particularly in the early period of a war (if it occurred).

In the foreseeable future, the world’s political-security situation will change rapidly and witness unpredictable, complex developments; disputes over sea and island territory and sovereignty in the region and the East Sea will continue to be intense and complex. Our country’s position, strength and synergy have been ceaselessly raised; however, there remain many challenges and difficulties. Those conditions have imposed new higher, more complex requirements on the country’s reform and development as well as the protection of national independence, sovereignty, unification, and territorial integrity. Thus, our Party has determined that it is necessary to actively prepare a powerful force and detailed, scientific combat plans and projects to readily safeguard the national independence, sovereignty, unification, territorial integrity and security in all situations. In this regard, measures should be taken synchronously to make the Army rear comprehensively strong and create the synergy so that the Military could fulfil all tasks assigned by the Party, State and people. In this article, the author would like to propose several solutions as follows.

First, raise the awareness of authorities, sectors, and forces towards the building of Army rear. This is a matter of importance as in the peacetime and the market economy, a number of persons and organizations only pursue the economic interests and disregard the building of Army rear. Thus, it is vital to continue to propagate and clarify basic points of Marxism-Leninism, Ho Chi Minh’s ideology, the Party’s guidelines, and the State’s law and policy to render all people fully aware of the targets and tasks of building the Army rear in the new situation. Everyone should be aware that the Army rear is the place where material and politico-spiritual resources are built, reserved and maintained in order to make the Military revolutionary, regular, seasoned, gradually modern and capable of fulfiling the assigned functions and tasks as well as to better ensure military members’ and their families’ life both in peacetime and wartime.

The work of propagation must be renewed, diversified and must flexibly employ formats and measures and stay close to reality. In addition, it is important to actively draw lessons, multiply good examples, opportunely detect and fight against wrong, negative perceptions and disregard for this task.

Second, enhance the Party’s leadership and the State’s management to ensure that the building of Army rear will be executed in accordance with political guidelines and law while encouraging the combined strength in the process. At present, several policies and laws on this task overlap the policies on military and defence missions. Therefore, the Party and the State should supplement and complete the guidelines, policies and laws stipulating the content and principles of the state management on the building of Army rear; set up the targets, viewpoints, mechanisms, tasks, measures, responsibilities, authority and obligations of sectors, organizations and individuals over this work. At the same time, it is essential to study and forecast new requirements under the condition that our country has to enter a war or armed conflicts or combat to protect the sea and island sovereignty when the enemy uses hi-tech weapons, with a view to adopting proper strategies and measures.

On such a basis, the Government, ministries, sectors and localities should supplement the guidelines and measures to build the Army rear in their annual and 5-year socio-economic development strategies and plans; determine the targets, tasks, rate of progress, forms and measures; promote the role of military offices in counselling and coordinating the implementation process; review the related policies and law and gradually build the law on the Army rear.

Third, build and develop potential of the Army rear. This is the greatest task and plays an important role in building the Army rear. Both theory and reality have proved the important role of politico-spiritual factor in the process of our Military’s construction, development and combat as well as in the struggle for national liberation and unification and the cause of Homeland construction and defence. Thus, the first type of potential which should be built is the politico-spiritual potential as the basis for stepping up the building of other types of potential. Accordingly, authorities and sectors should enhance propagation and education to make all cadres, party members and the masses remain steadfast in Marxism-Leninism, Ho Chi Minh’s ideology, the goal of national independence and socialism as well as today’s Homeland construction and defence cause. Besides, it is necessary to build pure, strong party organizations and strong organizations of the political system on a par with their missions; to make a contingent of cadres and party members both “red and expert” and attached to the people. It is important to build and encourage socialist democracy, consolidate a sense of discipline within the society, resolutely combat corruption, wastefulness, hostile forces’ “peaceful evolution” strategy, and prevent the signs of “self-evolution” and “self-transformation” from within, thereby achieving the unity within the whole Party, Military and people towards this important task. At the same time, it is essential to build the military, economic, scientific-technical, cultural potential and the high-calibre personnel. Only by doing so could we ensure that the building of Army rear meets the stated targets and the requirements of Homeland protection in the new situation.

Fourth, promote the combined strength to build the Army rear. Reality has proved that only when the whole political system, forces and sectors take part in the building of Army rear, does this work become effective. First and foremost, authorities at all levels should encourage their role and responsibility in the propagation and education work; well perform the work of local socio-economic and cultural development and defence-security consolidation; build strong unions and organizations as the hands of all-level party committees and authorities. As a result, the strength of the national great unity block could be promoted to well perform the task of building the Army rear.

To successfully implement the policy regarding the Army rear in the new situation, the CMC and the MND should continue to give good advice to the Party and the State; strengthen their direction over military offices and units; and promote the role of local military offices in counselling and coordinating the building of Army rear. It is important that offices and units should enhance the quality and effectiveness of mass mobilization to assist the people in natural disaster prevention and control, search and rescue, hunger alleviation and poverty reduction, and new countryside building, while well executing the policy regarding military families, thereby building up the image and virtues of “Uncle Ho’s soldiers”, keeping the people’s faith in and earning their support for the Military and the building of Army rear. Moreover, it is necessary to study and learn from lessons of other countries, enhance defence diplomacy and cooperation as the bridge to gather Vietnamese people abroad and the international support in the country’s cause of national reform and international integration.

Building the Army rear is an important, long-term task; in fact, it is the building of the country’s potential to assist the Military in its process of construction, training, combat readiness and combat. Things mentioned above are the basic solutions which forces, sectors and localities could apply to the building of strong Army rear to meet the requirements of building and defending the Homeland in all situations.

Maj. Gen., Dr Tran Van Minh

(*) In this article, the Army rear refers to the contributing factors to the Army’s combat power, such as material potential and politico-spiritual potential, etc.

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