Obama lifts ban on arm sales to Vietnam

Oh I suppose I am just being silly. How does Obama lift a ban on arms sales to Vietnam? I assume the ban was placed by Congress. Try as I might, I could find nothing regarding this little matter. I can’t imagine how the wounded and families who lost loved ones deal with this. We arm a Communist country. That is what we do. We have no clue what the turn of events will be and where Vietnam’s future will end up. But this is how we show our love.

vietnam

U.S. President Obama on Monday lifted a half-century ban on selling arms to Vietnam, a move that is raising concerns among some Vietnam War veterans.

“At this stage, both sides have established a level of trust and cooperation, including between our militaries, that is reflective of common interests and mutual respect,” said Mr. Obama during his first visit there, The Associated Press reported. “This change will ensure thatVietnam has access to the equipment it needs to defend itself and removes a lingering vestige of the Cold War.”

Every U.S. arms sale would be reviewed case by case, AP said.

More than 58,200 U.S. soldiers were killed in Vietnam before the fall of Saigon in 1975. But the administration saw advantages in easing the embargo, both as a warning to expansionist China and as leverage to compel the communist regime in Hanoi to improve its record on human rights.

“They are still a communist country,” said retired Army Maj. Wulf Linden, a Georgia resident who served two tours in Vietnam. “If it’s the cream of our crop [of weapons systems], obviously that would be a bad mistake. It would be nice if we’re not selling to a regime that’s a documented communist regime. That’s my concern.”

Bao Nguyen, the mayor of Garden Grove, California, has written a letter to Mr. Obama and to Secretary of State John F. Kerry about Vietnam’s “atrocious” human rights record, including its imprisonment of dissidents in solitary confinement without charges.

“While we have an arms surplus to deal with, I don’t think dumping those arms on developing nations is the most effective way to counter China,” Mr. Nguyen said. “That’s because there’s no way to know that the government won’t use those weapons against its own people. Especially a government as corrupt and autocratic as Vietnam.”

More Washington Times

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