Monday, November 28, 2016, 09:07 (GMT+7)
Strengthening defence external information service in the new situation
Lieutenant General Nguyen Trong Nghia delivering speech at the conference on the work of defence external information (photo: bienphong.com.vn)

Over the past years, in accordance with the Party’s viewpoints and guidelines on diplomacy, particularly the Resolution of the 12th National Party Congress, the 11th Politburo’s Resolution 22-NQ/TW on international integration and the Resolution 806-NQ/QUTW of the Central Military Commission on international integration and defence diplomacy, the work of defence diplomacy and particularly the work of defence external information have been strengthened and developed, directly contributing to the cause of national construction and protection and the effective management of relations between our country and its partners, maintaining peace, stability and development in the region and the world. Facing complicated developments of international relations, Vietnam has expressed its clear, constructive stance and attitude for the sake of the benefits of the country and the international community, not affecting the relations between our country and the others and the international integration process, which has been highly appreciated by our friends and international opinions. The situation in the world, the region and particularly the East Sea continues to be complicated, rapidly changeable and unpredictable, directly affecting the country’s politics, economic development, defence and security. The cause of national construction and protection of the entire Party, the people and the military witnesses opportunities, advantages, challenges and difficulties. It thus sets new requirements for the work of defence external information, including our activeness and flexibility, and brings this work both advantages and challenges. To this end, in the time ahead, the work of defence external information should focus on the following points:

First, it is necessary to thoroughly grasp our Party and State’s guideline and policy on independence, self-reliance, peace, friendship, cooperation, development, openness, multilateralization and diversification of international relations in defence diplomacy. This is a matter of utmost importance to the work of defence diplomacy as it helps ensure orientation, quality and efficiency. Otherwise, the consequences would be really dangerous and terrible. Thus, it is important to continue thoroughly grasping the Party’s guidelines on defence diplomacy, demonstrated in the Resolution of the 12th National Party Congress, the Central Resolution No.8 (11th tenure) on “The Strategy to defend the Homeland in the new situation”, the 11th Politburo’s Resolution 22-NQ/TW on “International Integration”, the Resolution of the 10th Army Party Congress, the Central Military Commission Resolution 806-NQ/QUTW on “International Integration and Defence Diplomacy to 2020 and beyond” and the recent Central Resolution No.4 (12th tenure) on “Effectively implementing international integration process while maintaining political and social stability in the context of Vietnam joining new-generation free trade agreements". It is also vital to grasp the guideline “Vietnam is a friend, a reliable partner of all countries in the international community” to disseminate our viewpoint and policy of peace and self-defence in the field of national defence, not using or threatening to use force in international relations, resolving all differences and disputes with other countries by peaceful means on the basis of the UN Charter and international law.

Second, it is necessary to adhere to defence diplomacy activities to disseminate opportunely, exactly, sufficiently and effectively. This is a central task and an indispensable requirement for the work of defence external information. In the context of international integration, international relations and cooperation, including international cooperation in defence are being increasingly deepened. Moreover, our country’s prestige and status in the international arena have been unceasingly raised, its role and significant contributions to maintaining peace, stability and development in the region and the world have been proved. Thus, the work of defence external information should adhere to defence diplomacy activities to disseminate. Notably, it should stick to defence and security cooperation activities in the ASEAN community, ASEAN Regional Forum (ARF) and other mechanisms for multilateral and bilateral cooperation with the countries within and outside the region.

Defence external information should make contributions to strengthening defence diplomacy and cooperation between Vietnam and other countries, and to the Party and the State external affairs and to the public diplomacy. Accordingly, it should bring into play the internal force and the strength of the national solidarity bloc and the entire political system, take advantage of the strength of the international community and the times to create the combined strength of forces and defence and security diplomacy posture to serve the cause of Homeland construction and protection.

Third, there should be a close collaboration between organizations and forces in defence external information. Defence external information is the responsibility of the whole political system and the whole people, with the People’s Army as the core force. To successfully carry out this work, there should be a close collaboration between organizations, forces and the entire people to create the combined strength. Notably, propaganda and training, foreign affairs, press organs in the military should grasp their functions and tasks, raise a sense of responsibility, and closely work with one another and other organs outside the military to enhance the quality of defence external information.

During the process of collaboration in defence external information, it is necessary to follow the directions for propagation given by the Central Commission for Publicity and Education, regulations and statute of the Ministry of National Defence and the General Department of Politics. Moreover, it is important to promote the role of Vietnamese embassies, organizations and communities of Vietnamese patriots abroad to create combined strength for defence external information service.

Fourth, it is necessary to be active and proactive in combating wrongful and hostile views, making contributions to firmly holding the information “battlefield” in both internal and external affairs, especially for important, complicated and sensitive information. Hostile forces always try to sabotage the country’s reform with increasingly diverse and wicked tricks. They make use of our international integration process to destabilize our security, politics, economy and society and remove the leadership role of the Communist Party of Vietnam and the socialist regime. Thus, external information service must make contributions to foiling the “Peaceful Evolution” Strategy of the hostile forces, provide information opportunely, frequently, exactly and sufficiently to refute their distortions and accelerate our “offensive” in the field of diplomacy propagation. Moreover, it is important to fight “self-evolution”, “self-transformation” and the plot of “depoliticalized” People’s Army and People’s Public Security.

Fifth, it is important to enhance the Party’s leadership and the State’s management over the defence external information service. In the context of international integration, external information service and particularly that of the defence play a role of utmost importance; however, it is also very sensitive and complicated. Thus, it is necessary to enhance the Party’s leadership and the State’s management over the work of defence external information. This is a matter of principle to ensure the work be oriented and achieve high quality and practical efficiency. Therefore, it is vital to assemble a core force in charge of defence external information. This force should be improved in theory and expertise, first and foremost, Marxism-Leninism, and grasp the Party’s viewpoints and guidelines, the State’s policy and law.

In the upcoming time, the Ministry of National Defence will continue to work with other committees, ministries, sectors, and relevant organs and units to discuss and assess the situation in the world and the region, and strengthen the work of defence external information in light of the 12th National Party Congress, the Resolution of the 10th Army Party Congress, directives and resolutions of the Central Military Commission with the consistent aim of firmly protecting national independence, sovereignty, unification and territorial integrity, maintaining peace and stability for the country’s development, and making contributions to the stability, cooperation, development of the region and the world.

Lieutenant General Nguyen Trong Nghia

Member of the Party Central Committee, Member of the Central Military Commission

Deputy Director of the General Department of Politics, VPA

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