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Tuesday, May 21, 2019, 15:42 (GMT+7)
Strengthening the Party under President Ho Chi Minh’s Testament in order for the country to last forever (continued)

II. Making our Party “moral and civilized” for good

President Ho Chi Minh and comrades Le Duan, Pham Van Dong, and Vo Nguyen Giap meeting with senior-level military cadres on May 11th 1969
(file photo)

1. Only when it is pure is our Party strong

As the founder and trainer of the Party, President Ho Chi Minh paid special attention to Party building during his revolutionary life. From his viewpoint, it is necessary to regularly educate cadres and Party members on revolutionary morality, industry, thrift, integrity, uprightness, total dedication to the public interest and complete selflessness as well as tremendous spirit against individualism – the most dangerous “domestic invaders”.

The fight against individualism, which is the fight against ourselves, is to be on a regular, long-term and lifelong basis and inextricably linked with numerous hardships, challenges and innermost sufferings to be withstood. Only when all Party members, particularly those in authority, exercise revolutionary morality can “individualism be wiped out” and “red tape and corruption be erased”. Immediately after the victory of the August Revolution in 1945, Ho Chi Minh, with his sensitivity, put forward a grand idea that Party building is to be mainly dependent on the people; the Party’s flesh-and-blood relations with the people is to be

Forged; democracy, solidarity, self-criticism, criticism and the Party’s strict discipline is to be exercised. Doing so enables the Party to become truly pure and to fulfil its onerous task as the leader and the loyal servant of the people. Therefore, when it comes to their relations with the people, Party organizations, cadres and Party members must “earn the people’s trust, admiration and affection” in order for the people to feel proud of the Party and call it “the Party of their own”. This is the yardstick of the Party’s enormous prestige and powerful social influence, proving that “our Party is moral and civilized”.

According to Ho Chi Minh Thought, Party building runs in parallel with Party rectification in terms of politics, ideology, organization, revolutionary morality and culture. This truly serves as the cornerstone of Ho Chi Minh Thought about Party building and the morality and culture of a ruling Communist Party. Accordingly, the Party must stay close to the people, “stay respectful and courteous to the people”, trust, understand, learn from, deeply love and single-mindedly serve the people as they are “the roots of the country”. Enormous sacrifices that the Party makes are entirely in the people’s interests and for the sake of the latter’s right to mastery. Ho Chi Minh set a shining example of exercising democracy as well as respecting the people and the law.

A good heart is a must for every person. According to Ho Chi Minh Thought, a good heart is inextricably linked with the lifelong practice of revolutionary morality:  industry, thrift, integrity and uprightness. A person can not be a human in its true sense if they lack one of these qualities. In fact, not being godlike, every person has both strengths and weaknesses; “to err is human”. It is necessary to enable the “good part of each person to blossom like a flower in springtime and the evil part to gradually disappear”. Moral and cultural education aims to develop the good and repel evil, thereby directing people’s personality towards the true, the good and the beautiful. Communist Party members must have such personality all the more to truly set shining examples in order for the people to follow. He affirmed that “Party members must take the lead for the people to follow”, “a living example is more valuable than hundreds of propaganda speeches”. Good Party members strengthen Party cells. Strong Party cells make the entire Party strong, truly moral and civilized. The common thread running through Ho Chi Minh’s theoretical works and his actions was to make tireless efforts to develop standards of revolutionary morality, to wipe out individualism, to turn Party members into truly pioneering soldiers as well as to make the Party moral and civilized, the epitome of which was the Testament.

2. The idea of Party building under President Ho Chi Minh’s Testament

In the Testament that he left to his fellow compatriots and comrades, President Ho Chi Minh wrote about the Party first, emphasizing Party building and rectification. This is a matter of strategic importance, serving as a decisive factor in the victory of the Vietnamese revolution. In addition to Party building, particularly in moral terms, he also touched on the Party’s activities as a ruling party as well as its responsibilities towards the people.

Ho Chi Minh Thought is scientific, revolutionary and humane in nature as evidenced by his ideas on Party building, particularly on preserving intra-Party unity, establishing broad democracy and practising self-criticism and criticism regularly and seriously. His few written words introduced a grand idea on Party building, which was in political, ideological, organizational and moral terms. Ho Chi Minh maintained that unity, democracy, self-criticism and criticism result from politics, science and morality combined. It is also the cultural yardstick of the Party, Party organizations, cadres and Party members.

The cornerstone of Ho Chi Minh Thought on building a ruling Party in his Testament is as follows.

First, ours is a party in power. The Communist Party of Vietnam is the force leading the State and society to achieve the goal of national independence associated with socialism. History suggests that this mission has been not only assigned to the Party by the people but also enshrined in the Constitutions, thus according the legal status to the ruling Party. Our Party leads the State and society in a legitimate, justifiable and deserving manner, recognized by the people and the Constitutions, particularly the 2013 Constitution.

Ho Chi Minh Thought on building a truly pure ruling Party in his Testament resulted from his previous theoretical works on the Party and Party building as well as his review of the leadership by the Party headed by him over the Vietnamese revolution. His generalized theory of a ruling Party had its roots in his 1947 publication “Correcting the way we work” touching on the building of a true revolutionary Party. In early 1949, he published “Our Party” for the purpose of enhancing the Party’s combativeness, attaching much importance to the quality of Party cells and Party members from the grass-roots level.

Second, a ruling Party must pay special attention to its members’ revolutionary morality and its morality building. The Party’s morality must be embodied in its relations with the people and the relations among its members, “comradely affection should prevail”. Democracy and unity driven by pure revolutionary morality makes the Party pure and worthy of its role as the leader and very loyal servant of the people. Ho Chi Minh emphasized the exemplary role played by leaders, cadres and Party members as the best way to earn the people’s trust, admiration and affection. This exemplary role also reflects the Party’s responsibility for the people’s life and the country’s development.

Third, Party building must be associated with Party rectification in the new situation in order to make it capable of its assigned tasks as well as to enhance its leadership capacity and combativeness. To this end, it is necessary to fight individualism and to take a can-do attitude. In his Testament, President Ho Chi Minh touched on reform as an epic struggle. He maintained that “revolution means replacing the old with the new, the bad with the good”.

At the end of his Testament, Ho Chi Minh mentioned his “ultimate wish” whereby the Vietnamese people led by the Party would succeed in building socialism in Vietnam. His “ultimate wish” for and our Party’s stance on the building of socialism in the interest of a prosperous, strong, democratic, equitable and civilized country has been enshrined in the 1991 Platform for National Construction during the Period of Transition toward Socialism (amended in 2011) and documents of the National Party Congresses X, XII & XII. To this end, the Party must be truly pure and strong while being built and rectified comprehensively in political ideological, organizational and moral terms.

3. 50 years of upholding sacred oaths since bidding farewell to beloved Uncle Ho

In the eulogy delivered by General Secretary Le Duan at the memorial service for President Ho Chi Minh at Ba Dinh Square on 9 September, 1969, the Party Central Committee took  5 sacred oaths of (1) raising the flag of national independence aloft as well as being determined to win the anti-American struggle, to liberate the South, to defend the North and to reunify the country in accordance with Uncle Ho’s wishes; (2) making maximal efforts to strive for the ideal of socialism and communism espoused by Uncle Ho for the sake of the prosperity of the country and  the happiness of fellow-countrymen; (3) devoting themselves single-mindedly to preserving the unity and oneness of mind within the Party as the pupils of the eyes so that the Party can enhance its combativeness and  serve as the nucleus of the great national unity, ensuring total victory for the revolutionary cause of the working class and the Vietnamese people; (4) constantly promoting President Ho Chi Minh’s pure internationalist sentiments as well as doing their utmost to contribute to restoring and developing solidarity and unity in the socialist camp and among fraternal parties on the basis of Marxism-Leninism and proletarian internationalism; (5) spending a lifetime emulating Uncle Ho’s morality and lifestyle and cultivating revolutionary morality, being fearless of difficulties and sacrifice to bring President Ho Chi Minh’s flag of “winning one hundred victories in one hundred battles” to the finish line.

Over the past 50 years, our entire Party, military and people have made every effort to follow his teachings in the Testament by upholding the above-mentioned oaths. Fulfilling his wishes, we “drove out the US and toppled the puppets”, completely liberating the South and reunifying the country via the victory of the General Offensive and Uprising in the spring of 1975 with the historic Ho Chi Minh Campaign as its pinnacle. Since the end of war, we have made sustained efforts to build a stronger and more beautiful country in accordance with his wishes, which are coming true. Those achievements result from enormous sacrifice and tireless efforts to defy all the odds by the entire people with the contingent of cadres, Party members and the armed forces trained by President Ho Chi Minh playing a core role. Following his teachings that the Vietnam People’s Army (VPA) was born from the people to serve the people, the VPA is always “loyal to the Party, pious to the people, ready to fight and sacrifice for national independence and freedom and for socialism, and willing to fulfil every assigned task, to overcome every difficulty and to defeat every enemy”. Meanwhile, under the motto of willingly “sacrificing themselves for the country and devoting themselves to serving the people”, the Vietnam People’s Public Security Forces have made enormous contributions to national construction and defense, maintained public order, etc. Joint efforts have been made to achieve the goal of a prosperous, strong, democratic, equitable and civilized country under the leadership of the Party. Notably, 30-year plus reforms have enabled Vietnam to raise its prestige and status in the international arena.

Administering President Ho Chi Minh’s Testament, our Party has endeavoured to make itself capable of its assigned tasks as evidenced by its tireless efforts to review the reality and develop theories on socialism and Vietnam’s road to socialism on the basis of Marxism-Leninism and ho Chi Minh Thought. Much importance has been attached to Party building ideologically, politically, organizationally and even morally. Education on and practice of revolutionary morality has been promoted while individualism has been resolutely combated among cadres and Party members.  Since the 10th National Party Congress, the entire Party and people have put great store by emulating Ho Chi Minh’s thought, morality and lifestyle, particularly his exemplary morality whereby the vanguard and exemplary role by Party members, especially heads of Party committees and administrations, has been emphasized. This has given an added impetus to the purity and strength of the Party, its leadership capacity and combativeness, the consolidation of its flesh-and-blood relations with the people, its preservation of internal solidarity and unity as well as its care for the life of the people, particularly those in areas with especially difficult socio-economic conditions.

However, there remain shortcomings to be made good, particularly in Party building as stated in the Resolutions of the 11th and 12th Party Central Committees’ plenums. Promoting its sense of self-criticism and criticism, the Party has publicized the degradation in terms of political ideology, morality and lifestyle among a segment of cadres and Party members, including high-ranking officials. The Resolution of the 11th Party Central Committee’s 4th plenum on “some urgent issues in Party building at present” made clear that the worrying status quo is to the detriment of the survival of the Party and the regime, while proposing immediate and long-term solutions to Party building, particularly in moral terms. Documents of the 12th National Party Congress emphasized the importance of Party building associated with Party rectification. The Resolution of the 12th Party Central Committee’s 4th plenum pointed out 27 manifestations of degradation in terms of political ideology, morality and lifestyle as well as “self-evolution” and “self-transformation” among Party members while putting forth solutions for the sake of a pure, strong, moral and civilized Party.

4. A number of key measures for Party building and rectification, making the Party moral and civilized under President Ho Chi Minh’s Testament

It is necessary to popularize Ho Chi Minh’s thought, morality and lifestyle as well as the significance of his Testament for the people of all strata. President Ho Chi Minh’s Testament is our national treasure and an invaluable spiritual asset of the Party and the nation. Each of the Party members and Vietnamese people must be imbued with his teachings, do their utmost to practise industry, thrift, integrity and uprightness, resolutely combat individualism and put the benefits of the revolution, the Homeland and the people first. Cadres and Party members must effectively implement regulations on exemplary roles, particularly Regulation 08-QĐi/TW by the 12th Party Central Committee on “the responsibility for setting examples among cadres and Party members, firstly members of the Politburo, the Secretariat and the Party Central Committee”. This is a fundamental, long-term and strategic solution. When it comes to the Party’s relations with the people, it is essential to respect the people and the law while attention must be paid to mass mobilization in order to earn the people’s trust, admiration and affection. The people’s trust and satisfaction is the yardstick of cadres and Party members’ performance.

In addition, emphasis must be placed on the enhancement of the quality of Party meetings as well as the training of Party members. To this end, it is necessary to thoroughly grasp President Ho Chi Minh’s teachings in his theoretical publications, including “Correcting the way we work” (1947), “Mass mobilization” (1949), “Our Party” (1949), Testament, “Revolutionary Morality” (1958&1969). Furthermore, it is essential to resolutely fight corruption and wastefulness under the motto “no restricted areas”. Last but not least, Party building must be reliant on the people. Broad democracy must be established in order for the people to offer feedback and to supervise the Party’s performance as well as Party members’ behaviours and lifestyle. Those are key measures to be adopted for making the Party moral and civilized. (To be continued).

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Promoting the role of the Military in protecting the Party, State, people and socialist regime
For the past nearly 75 years of establishment, combat and growth, under the leadership, education and training of the Communist Party of Vietnam and President Ho Chi Minh, the VPA has become increasingly strong; achieved various feats of arms and outstanding achievements, making significant contribution to glorious victories of the whole nation in the cause of national liberation, construction and defense.