Saturday, March 11, 2023, 09:06 (GMT+7)
Solutions for building a cultural environment in the Vietnam People’s Army

On grasping the Party’s resolutions and directions, the Politburo’s plans and basing on the summary of 30 years of implementing the “Campaign on building a cultural environment in military units”, the General Department of Politics has issued the Plan on implementing the Strategy of culture development to the year of 2030 in the Vietnam People's Army VPA. This is a large and thorough policy with many contents, in which building a beautifully and soundly cultural environment is the important one, which needs to be thoroughly researched to propose many practical and effective solutions.

Over the past few years, the Central Military Commission, Ministry of National Defence, General Department of Politics, party committees and commands in offices and units in the whole army have attentively led and directed the serious and effective implementation of the mission of building the military cultural environment with plentiful and practical methods. The military cultural, as a result, has been completely developed, bringing about positive meanings in many aspects like: building an educational environment to nurture and develop campaigns encouraging cadres and soldiers to strive for standards of new people of the Socialist Republic of Vietnam; bringing into play and beautify the tradition of “Uncle Ho’s Soldiers” in the new situation. The cultural and spiritual life in offices and units has been sustainably developed, creating more new cultural values to be the basis to strengthen the qualities for the revolutionary soldiers. The whole army has been proactive and determined to prevent and fight against the social evils, virulent cultures penetrating the soldiers’ life. The building and maintenance of barracks which are regular, bright, green, clean, scenic, harmonious and environmentally friendly has been widely implemented in the whole army, through which, to create a new cultural face in all military units; firmly connect the cultural and spiritual activities between soldiers and people and improve the army and people unity; effectively struggle against the plot of “depoliticising the military” and wrong viewpoints in the fields of thought and culture, making contribution to the improvement of the political quality and combatting strength for the Army.

In order to continuously build the military cultural environment, on 18/8/2022, the Minister of National Defence issued the Decision No. 3087/QĐ-BQP approving the Plan No. 1349/KH-CT, dated 15/8/2022 by the General Department of Politics on implementing the Strategy of culture development to the year of 2030 in the VPA with a view to developing the culture of the VPA in order to build the quality of “Uncle Ho’s Soldiers”; simultaneously, taking this quality as the key content, standard and characteristics of the VPA’s culture. This has considered the building of a beautifully and soundly cultural environment connected with the movement of “the whole people building the cultural life” as an important content which needs to be effectively implemented by the party committees and commands in all units. From the research angle, we suggest some basic solutions as follows:

Firstly, raise the awareness and responsibility for cadres, soldiers, organisations, forces in building the military cultural environment. President Ho Chi Minh once said that “Not until is the thought right, the actions are right and the revolutionary mission are correctly carried out”. Therefore, raising the awareness and responsibility for all participants in building the military cultural environment is the main factor, which aims to continuously educate and thoroughly grasp the resolutions, directions, guidelines by the Party, State, Central Military Commission, Ministry of National Defence and General Department of Politics on culture and building the cultural environment; attentively grasp and clarify the viewpoints of the 12th Party Congress on building and bringing into play the traditional values, strength of Vietnamese people, etc. in order to enhance the awareness for party committees and commands, cadres, party members and people of the position and roles of culture in the cause of building and protecting the Homeland; strengthen the responsibility in leading, directing and guiding the implementation of building the military cultural environment. Propaganda and education methods and solutions should be diverse, plentiful and suitable with units and subjects such as: including the educational contents on culture in the annual political education program; holding forums and seminars on the cultural values of “Uncle Ho’s Soldiers”; building specific pages and columns onto radios and newspapers; propagandising and popularising cinema works on the armed forces and revolutionary wars to soldiers and people, etc. Together with the education, grasping and orientation on the awareness, it is necessary to enhance the investigation and evaluation the situations, especially the shortcomings, limits to timely make correction; firmly struggle against the cultural viewpoints and trends which are disoriented and reactionary, disregarding the position and roles of culture and building the military cultural environment.

Secondly, continue preserving and bringing into play the military culture in the new situation. The military cultural values are plentiful, existing in many forms which are both tangible and intangible with the core of pictures and qualities of “Uncle Ho’s soldiers”. To make these values develop, it is necessary to continuously grasp and effectively implement the Direction No. 855-CT/QUTW, dated 12/8/2019 by the Standing Committee of the Central Military Commission on enhancing the implementation of the Campaign of promoting tradition, devoting talent, deserving to be “Uncle Ho's Soldiers” in the new situation; Resolution No. 847-NQ/QUTW, dated 28/12/2021 by the Central Military Commission on promoting the qualities of “Uncle Ho's Soldiers”, firmly preventing the individualism in the new situation connected with learning and following Ho Chi Minh’s thought, morality and style, etc. simultaneously promote the self-awareness of training for cadres and soldiers, especially the leading cadres in all levels in protecting and bringing into play the military cultural values. It also needs to closely organise the construction plans of barracks connected with the schedules of the cultural institutions, sceneries, cultural buildings, making sure the unity and practicality and creating the good environment and life conditions for soldiers; widen the cultural exchanges with foreign armies to promote our Army’s and people’s traditional values; acquire the cultural values which are advanced, progressive and sound from the outsides; firmly prevent the viewpoints which are disoriented, reactionary and distorted, especially the ones which are hostile to our Party, State and the Army’s functions, missions and cultural values.

Thirdly, build up good and right relationships in the Army. Culture in general and the military culture in particular is expressed numerously in the military environment, but the most obvious and typical relationships are the ones between leaders, commanders and being compliance with the leadership and commands; the seniors and the juniors; party members and the people; cadres and soldiers, and among soldiers, etc. In order to build up good and right relationships, it is necessary to build up an environment of democracy, openness, unity, agreement and mutual trust; research to build, add and complete the systems of rules and regulations on implementing the Democracy Regulations at the grassroots levels; promote the unions’ roles in building the party cells, enhancing all-level commanders’ efficiency. In the practical directions, there needs to correctly define the relationships, have suitable measures to build the right cultural relationships; make the military cultural relationships active with many solutions such as democratic debates, cultural exchanges, activities to connect soldiers with local people, preserving and promoting the traditionally and revolutionarily cultural values, the national values. It is also to strengthen the activities of “returning one’s favour”, “remembering its source when drinking water”, actively participate the emulation movement of “the whole country combining efforts to build the new rural areas”, “the whole country joining hands for poor people”, etc. In the management, it is necessary to overcome the expression of bureaucracy, authoritarianism, the discrimination between the seniors and juniors, cadres and soldiers, old soldiers and new ones.

Finally, complete and improve the effectiveness of the system of institutions and the action forms of the military culture. In order to have a nice, plentiful and sound military cultural environment, there should be a firm and active cultural institution. This raises a demand for building and completing the system of military cultural institutions according to the Decision No. 3672/QĐ-BQP, dated 24/12/2020 by the Minister of National Defence on Planning the system of cultural institutions in the Vietnam People’s Army in the period of 2021 – 2025, and the orientations to 2030. Scheduling the system of cultural institutions should be regular, elite, unified and suitably structures with the effective management and organisation; actively create new action methods due to the motto which is short, small, flexible, timely and suitable with the conditions and capacity in order to meet the soldiers’ higher demands for cultural and spiritual life. Besides, there needs to correct the cultural activities which are wasteful and no longer appropriate; repair the disease of display and formalism, at the same time, build up plans of education and further training for the high-quality cultural personnel resources; apply specific regulations and policies to forces doing their cultural and performance activities.

Building up the military cultural environment is a profound and great issue. As the above solutions do not cover all aspects, party committees and commands at all levels can make further research and flexible applications in order to issue policies and measures to effectively lead and direct the construction of the cultural environment in all units.

Senior Colonel, Dr. NGUYEN HUU HOAT, Academy of Logistics

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