Update: As expected, Supporters of Viet General Secretary Trong Prevail

Update: As expected, Supporters of Viet General Secretary Trong PrevailOn January 25, supporters of Nguyen Tan Dung mounted a vigorous floor fight to add the two-time Prime Minister to the approved list of Central Committee candidates. According to reliable reports late in the day, they failed to muster a majority of the 1510 delegates.  Because only members of the Central Committee are eligible to…

Viet Party Conference Surprisingly Dumps Dung

Viet Party Conference Surprisingly Dumps DungHanoi is festooned with giant posters this week.  They welcome the Communist Party’s Twelfth Congress with the usual perfervid phrases. Well, perhaps “the Entire Party, People and Army” do indeed “Compete to Record Achievements to Welcome the National Congress Delegates,” though it’s hard to distinguish that activity from the normal hustle and bustle of the capital…

Viet Activist’s Harassment Continues After Leaving Prison

Viet Activist’s Harassment Continues After Leaving PrisonAlthough Tran Minh Nhat, a former prisoner of conscience who was freed in August* after four years in prison, it appears authorities are not letting up on him, he says.  In an email to Asia Sentinel, Nhat said that although he was able to spend Christmas and New Year with his family, he and other family…

Under Fire, Vietnam’s Dung Fires Back

Under Fire, Vietnam’s Dung Fires BackOn Dec. 18, while the Central Committee of the Vietnamese Communist party (CPV) was meeting in another effort to agree on who will lead the nation for the next five years, a document was leaked to Anh Ba Sam, a Vietnamese political blog that averages nearly 100,000 hits daily.  Nine pages long, it purports to…

Vietnam Must Reassess South China Sea Strategy

Vietnam Must Reassess South China Sea StrategyChinese President Xi Jinping’s visit to Hanoi this week comes at a time when Beijing’s efforts to change the status quo in the South China Sea through the construction of manmade islands has raised tensions across the region. Only Beijing sees the “nine-dash line” it uses to advance its claim to 90 percent of the…

Vietnam Eyes Greater International Integration

Vietnam Eyes Greater International IntegrationFor the first time since Vietnam opened up to the world in the late 1980s, the country’s trajectory could shape the geopolitics of Southeast Asia in significant ways. What that trajectory ought to look like has been a topic of intense discussion among Vietnamese leaders in recent months, as the country gears up for the…

Threat Rises of Another Viet-China War

Threat Rises of Another Viet-China WarThe risk of a military confrontation between China and Vietnam is rising over a long string of issues, according to Joshua Kurlantzick, a Senior Fellow at the US-based think-tank the Council on Foreign Relations, who points out that the previous half-dozen years have led to a growing arms race in the region that is exacerbating…

Following the leaders in Vietnam

Following the leaders in VietnamThe Vietnam Communist Party (VCP) is scheduled to hold its next national party congress reportedly in early 2016. There are signs, however, that consensus has not been reached on a number of issues including the South China Sea and relations with China and the selection of Vietnam’s future leadership. This could result in a rescheduling of the…

Vietnam, US Agree to Dance, if Not to Boogie

Vietnam, US Agree to Dance, if Not to BoogieA wave of euphoria – there is no lesser word for it – swept over Vietnam last week, triggered by a collective perception that, yes, Hanoi and Washington have truly buried the hatchet, some 40 years after People's Army tanks rolled into Saigon, 20 years after the two nations reestablished diplomatic relations. Communist Party General…

The Unsteady Path to US-Viet Relations

The Unsteady Path to US-Viet RelationsPrime Minister Shinzo Abe of Japan will return to Tokyo a satisfied man after opening the doors for greater involvement of his country in global security affairs. Although the extent to which Japan will contribute remains to be seen, the new US–Japan defense guidelines have nevertheless been described as “transformative.” Predictably, China has taken issue…
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