The Tet Offensive and the Media
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Nguyen Van Thieu: address to National Assembly (1969)

Republic of Vietnam President Nguyen van Thieu stated the following points to the National Assembly in 1969 as a basis for the peace process in Vietnam.

Today, in this forum, I wish to solemnly confirm once more to the world, to our allies, to our fellow countrymen, and to our enemy that in our constant search for a constructive solution to the conflict, we consider that the following six points constitute a reasonable and solid basis for the restoration of peace in Viet-Nam:

1. Communist aggression should stop.

Communist North Viet-Nam should give up its attempts to conquer the RVN by force. It should stop violating the DMZ and the frontiers of the RVN, and stop its wanton attacks against the innocent population of the RVN.

2. Communist North Vietnamese and auxiliary troops and cadres should be completely withdrawn from the Republic of Viet-Nam.

As the military and subversive forces of Communist North Viet-Nam are withdrawn, infiltration ceases, and the level of violence thus subsides, the RVN will ask its allies to remove their forces, in accordance with the Manila joint-communique of seven nations in October, 1966.

3. The territories of the neighboring countries of the RVN should not be violated and used by Communist North Viet-Nam as bases and staging areas for aggression against the RVN.

Communist North Vietnamese troops and cadres illegally introduced and stationed in Laos and Cambodia should be withdrawn from these countries. Communist North Viet-Nam military installations in these countries should be dismantled.

4. The RVN adopts the policy of National Reconciliation.

Those now fighting against us, who renounce violence, respect the laws, and faithfully abide by the democratic processes, will be welcomed as full members of the National Community. As such, they will enjoy full political rights and assume the same obligations as other lawful citizens under the National Constitution.

5. The reunification of the two Viet-Nams is to be decided by the free choice of the entire population of Viet-Nam through democratic processes.

To establish the atmosphere conducive to national reunification, after peace has been reestablished, modalities of economic and cultural exchanges between the two Viet-Nams and other countries of this area, can be actively explored, together with other intermediary measures of peaceful coexistence so that, pending reunification, the two Viet-Nams can participate more fully and more constructively in the various undertakings of the international community.

6. There must be an effective system of international control and reliable international guarantees against the resumption of Communist aggression.

The control mechanisms should be freed from the paralyzing effects of the Veto system. It should have sufficient personnel and adequate means to detect any violation of peace agreement. When violations are committed, and aggression is renewed, there should be prompt and effective response from a reliable system of international guarantees, otherwise any peace agreement will be only a sham device used by the Communists to weaken our system of defense, and not a basis for long lasting peace and stability for this part of the world.

 

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