Conditions under the French during the colonial period
Beep tone Vietnam/French, June 11, 1982
Vietnamese you are going to tell me why you joined the Resistance in
1945, not only I but all Vietnamese in
their twenties joined the Revolution. This was because after one hundred
years of French colonial
domination we wanted to have freedom, independence and a new life. We did
not want to be slaves any longer.
picture and continue sound.
1945, not only me, but everybody in Vietnam, you know teenagers, twenty or
twenty-five years old, you know, should go, should follow the resistance!
Because after one hundred years under the French colonialist domination,
everybody want to have...to be free. To have independence is the proud of
our nation. We want to have a new life.
Songwriting for the resistance
the revolution, I was a singer. I was a traveling minstrel going from north
to south. When the Revolution came, I joined the Revolution. Besides
carrying a gun to fight the French colonizers, I also wrote songs for the
soldiers, for young people and for the peasants such as peasant women and
children. For example, I wrote a song for the soldiers in the National
Defense League which was called "Xuat Quan (To the Front)":
Forward, brave soldiers! The nation is resounded with the words: "Fight to
the end!" March forth bravely under gunfire. The Vietnamese Army is carving
out the soul of its fatherland. March forth to victory. March forth with the
soul of the nation. March to victory. March forth to show them that we
Vietnamese are coming. The echoes of the resounding footsteps intertwine
with earnest trumpet calls, urgings from past heroes, shouts from fighters
and the thud thud of distant cannons. We are drunk with the blood of the
enemies which is flooding the battlefields. Enemies are all around us.
Swords flash, and their heads roll. (Refrain)
you describe to me how the soldiers would sing with you and how they would
wrote this song, I was no longer a professional musician. I was already a
soldier at the time. I fought with as well as sang for my comrades in arms.
They liked the song very much and they sang along with me. This song became
very popular. Later on, it became the official song of the military academy
in South Vietnam.
Besides the songs for the National Defense forces, I also wrote songs for
young people (thanh nien). Now, "thanh" means green and "nien" means age. So
I wrote a song called "Nhac Tuoi Xanh (Music for Green Age)":
Last autumn the Revolution
broke out. The Vietnamese nation is resounded with the shouts of thousands
of young people flashing their swords to break up the yoke and the chain of
slavery. Young men march forward and yell: "Fight to the end! Fight to the
end!" That Autumn day young people said goodbye to their daydreams and waved
the blood red banner in the fight for the hungry and the poor. Life is
always full of hardship. But we should fight for the nation while we're
still young (we're still green in age). Youth is like green rice stalks in
Youth has a bright future.
Victory is in its grasp. Come, march forth hand in hand and build a memorial
to glory. Let our singing fill up the sky: March forth and color the flag
with our blood. March forth and water the rice fields with our sweat. The
fields will be green and you and I will have Peace. Life will be rosy and
you and I will enjoy our youth (green age). Let's walk our own path, build
our own home, plow our own fields, bide our own time. Tomorrow life will be
plentiful, the French will be destroyed and we will laughing and singing for
you tell us why this became such a famous song? Why do you think people
really liked it?
reason why many people liked this song was because it is much more idyllic
than those blood and iron songs such as "Xuat Quan." It's bright and it's
resolute. For example, "Let's walk our own path, build our own home, and
plow our own fields." This is to say, it expresses very resolutely the
freedom that a colonized people is entitled to.
Besides the songs for soldiers and young people, I also wrote songs for the
peasants, for mothers, rice cultivators and young wives. Here is one such
song. It's called "Dan Do."
is what a husband says to his wife before going to battle: "I have to go and
fight the enemy. If I get killed, you'll have to avenge my death." I also
wrote a refrain for a father to his son: "I have to go and fight the enemy.
You must try your best to grow up right. If I die, avenge me with this gun."
And I also have a third refrain: "I have to go and fight for the nation. If
I die, my blood smeared gun waits for your hands."
Sound 6, Second Slate
wrote songs for the Resistance because I realized that the Resistant
fighters needed some kind of entertainment. But most important was the need
to build up the spirit of the people. This was because during the struggle
sometimes people lost their morale. So we had to build up their morale with
meaningful songs. These songs had to lift up their spirit. They should not
be songs which served to depress them and to make them afraid of the
So the reason why I make this song because at first because people want to
be entertained. And then the most important is we have to build up the moral
of the people. Because in the war people sometimes lose the morale. They can
become very easy anti-war. So I build up the morale. And I did not say,
I...it is successful. I cannot say that.
Rejection of the Viet Minh
us why you left the Viet Minh
1945 I responded to the call of the
Revolution to struggle for the independence of Vietnam. I thought that this
was the struggle of the entire people. But when I realized that this was a
Party which capitalized on the blood of all those Vietnamese who
participated in the struggle in order to build up this Party this Party is
the Communist Party, I left the Resistance because I did not want to become
a Communist stooge.
The signs which indicated the
true nature of the Communist Party to me and which forced me to leave the
Resistance were quite simple: First of all, Ho Chi Minh and his clique said that they were
going to disband the Communist Party. But the Communist Party remained
intact with its three men cells and Party cells in the Army as well as in
the entire administrative machinery. To me, this represented a lie. The
second thing was the land reform in which they arrested landlords and buried
them alive, executed them and killed many of them.
They created a class struggle
and revealed their true Communist nature to me. For this reason, I left. And
it should be remembered that when I left the Resistance area for the
Nationalist area I cried. But I did not have any other choice. I'd rather
leave for the Nationalist area with all its shortcomings than to remain with
the Resistance where I would be considered a hero and a good citizen but
where, in reality, I would only be a Communist stooge.