The Society for Historians of American Foreign Relations

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Ho Chi Minh Documents

Few figures from the Cold War era have inspired historiographical debates that match that of Ho Chi Minh. Was he a nationalist, driven primarily by a desire to create an independent nation for his people? Was he a communist, part of a greater movement that put a primacy on the spread of a political ideology above all else? Was he both? Neither? Students interested in wading into this thicket should consider the following speeches. The first one, Ho’s “Appeal Made on the Occasion of the Founding of the Indochinese Communist Party,” was delivered in February 1930 in Hong Kong. Fifteen years later, Ho offered a different interpretation in his “Declaration of Independence of the Democratic Republic of Vietnam,” delivered in Hanoi in September 1945. – M. Lerner, The Ohio State University