Despite millions of Vietnamese having died during the Vietnam War, the Vietnamese are not highly pro-USA

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Despite millions of Vietnamese having died during the Vietnam War, the Vietnamese have nevertheless become highly pro-USA. So why, despite only about 35,000 Vietnamese dying in the Sino-Vietnamese War, have the Vietnamese become so anti-Chinese?
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Two things I could think of. One is simply modern politics. Regardless of the past, America currently is in no way seriously opposed to Vietnam nor is it particularly threatening to it. China on the other hand has been throwing its weight around in the region a lot in recent decades and has been angering many other east Asian nations as a result. This would in turn boosts relations between Vietnam and America by giving them a common rival.

Secondly is that the American war in Vietnam was just a Decade or so engagement, and both before and during that conflict America did try hard to befriend many Vietnamese, even if it did do lots of damage as well. On the other hand, the Chinese and Vietnamese have been enemies for thousands of years, it wasn’t just a short period of their history, it’s a dominating part of vietnam’s past that the Vietnamese and Chinese have been foes.

In other words, while the American war was bad, it was only about a decade and that was it. The Chinese on the other hand are more along the lines of an intrinsic and ancestral rival that goes back millennia.

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There is reason there. When Vietnam was fighting against USA in the USA-Vietnam War (or simply Vietnam War). China was requested to send reinforcements to help Vietnam from USSR.

But China was already having some conflicts with USSR by the time, plus it couldn’t get much benefits from helping Vietnam in against USA. So by the time, China just sent some service troops/force and radar troops, not so many force for not to intervene the war. Because the request was only confined sending force, no how many and what type.

In 1972, China’s president Mao Tse-tung met American president Nixon. Then in the end of 1978, China economic reform, by the time China was seen as a traitor for the socialism side.

In the same year, USSR and Vietnam signed a treaty to prevent the re-rise of China. By the time, the Cold War was net yet ended.

On the Christmas Day 1991, USSR collapsed, then US and China slowly turned into the opposite side. And to Vietnam itself, China no doubt is a bigger threat and they have conflict with China for years, there is a phrase: the enemy of my enemy is friend.

Then Vietnam becomes “pro-USA”, but Vietnam is like China, is also a communist-lead country. But the area of its territory confines it’s hard to become a superpower only.

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Question: Despite millions of Vietnamese having died during the Vietnam War, the Vietnamese have nevertheless become highly pro-USA. So why, despite only about 35,000 Vietnamese dying in the Sino-Vietnamese War, have the Vietnamese become so anti-Chinese?

Answer : Well, I think that your question is complex and also not related to each other between China and America.

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Firstly , I do not understand your logic because Vietnam-American relations and Vietnam-China relations are different stories. How you could use the amount of death between the American war (Vietnam war in America) and the Vietnam-China border war 1979 to indicate that Vietnamese is pro-China or Pro-America. You should learn more about Vietnam-China relation and also I doubt your definition of Pro-America in Vietnam.

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Secondly , I said above and also replied in another’s question about Why Vietnamese people are Pro-America despite millions of Vietnamese dead caused by America during/related to the Vietnam war. I have read the survey conducted by some in Vietnam that they ask Vietnamese people’s opinions about America. I am pretty sure that Almost Vietnamese people tend to like America and also give a favorable opinion of America. If studying more about Vietnam culture, they are pragmatic, hospitable, and also ceremonious , especially to strangers or foreigners. For example: If You take a visit to a Vietnamese house when they are eating, they often invite you to join eating with them. But You should know that it may not be the real invitation if you are not invited before. Inviting you is the way to show their courteousness and hospitality. Moreover, generally, even though they could like or dislike you, but often they shall talk politely and respectfully with you. So, If you ask some questions about some countries which are not the current threat of Vietnam, Vietnamese people tend to speak some favorable words which you love to hear. But it does not mean that they are pro which countries you asked. The gap between “Pro-America” and reality is quite big. So, I do not say that the survey is wrong but I really doubt the highly pro-America you said.

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Thirdly and Finally , the number of dead Vietnamese people you said in particular and the Vietnam-China border conflict 1979, in general, are only the small part in a few thousands of years of historical relation between Vietnam and China. Almost Vietnamese people dislike China but it does not mean that they hate or become anti-Chinese except China intends to invade Vietnam again. They could dislike you but it does not mean that they become anti-You and vice versa - They speak nice words to you but it does not mean that they become Pro-You.

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P/s: I write answers based upon the gist and requirement of the question. Readers are requested to read it with neutrality and rational approach. I throughout this answer has no intention of showing any disrespect towards any group of people or country.

Good Luck.

Lusia Millar.

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I think before 1975, only the echelon and soldiers of the RVN knew about and knew of the USA. After 1975, ordinary citizens in form of boat people have got the chance to live in the USA and retell their own experiences to their compatriots in Vietnam. They know who is their true friend now.

Likewise, before 1975, only top communists and few officers of the DRVN knew about China. After 1979 war and to this day, almost all Vietnamese know who their true enemy is.

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False premise. Most Vietnamese living today hold little or no animosity towards individual Americans. Also, two US Senators (one Republican, one Democrat) enabled the eventual “normalization of relations”, in order to foster trade.

Trade has governed American foreign policy since the Boston Tea Party.

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