One of the great forces of the world in the early 20th century was the resentment felt by Asians towards the European powers that had seized their territories. Intelligent young people from these old, proud countries seethed with rage at their western oppressors. The other side of this anger was shame that one 's culture had proved too weak to resist the European onslaught. Many young Asians set out to expel the foreigners, and to reform their countries. The slogan of the May Fourth movement in Peking became their rallying cry: Da dao lie qiang! Zhen xing Zhong Hua!-"Down with the great powers! Strengthen the nation!" This was the intellectual and political environment in which Ho Chi Minh was raised.
Ho Chi Minh was born in 1890 into a relatively well-off family, in comparison to other families in Indo-China. Ho Chi Minh’s father, Nguyen Sinh Huy, was a teacher and aspiring politician. Minh’s father refused to learn French despite it being required by the ruling French government. Because of Minh’s father’s reluctance to adhe...
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...ming too central a position in affairs, perhaps as a result of having witnessed Stalin 's terror at first hand. Communism is a horrible, inhuman business, and the sufferings of the Vietnamese people under Ho 's party should not be understated; but as Communist regimes go, the Vietnamese was one of the milder varieties. Central decision making was always collegial, and senior figures who found themselves on the wrong side of the party line, like the odious Truong Chinh, rarely suffered more than demotion. There were no mass purges in the like that of Stalins regime. According to William Duiker, "There seems little doubt that for Ho Chi Minh the survival of his country was first and always his primary concern. Indeed, such views aroused the suspicion of other senior Party leaders in Hanoi, Beijing and Moscow, who sometimes questioned whether Ho was a genuine Marxist."
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