International authors write about President Ho Chi Minh: Hope to “decode” a great personality

  •  Tuesday, May 19, 2020

Having wholeheartedly devoted his life to the nation and its people, President Ho Chi Minh is not only the beloved leader of the Vietnamese people but he has also won the appreciation of many politicians, culturists and artists around the world, who have praised him as an outstanding figure and a great example of perfect personality.

The cover of the 1967 book entitled ‘Ho Chi Minh: A Political Biography’ by French journalist Jean Lacouture.
The cover of the 1967 book entitled ‘Ho Chi Minh: A Political Biography’ by French journalist Jean Lacouture.

According to incomplete statistics, more than 200 books, research works and thousands of articles on President Ho Chi Minh have been released by international historical and cultural researchers.

Prominent among the authors was journalist Jean Lacouture (1921 – 2015), an acclaimed French journalist who stood side by side with Vietnam in the country’s two resistance wars for peace and national independence.

Jean Lacouture’s attachment to Vietnam and President Ho Chi Minh was formed when he was appointed as the press attaché of General Philippe Leclerc de Hauteclocque, a French Commander-in-Chief of the French Far East Expeditionary Corps aiming to reestablish French domination in Indochina.

Two meetings with Uncle Ho in 1946 marked a turning point in the career of the French journalist as he had such a good impression of the Vietnamese President that he volunteered to devote himself to the struggle against colonialism.

Two years after his book entitled ‘Vietnam: Between Two Truces’ was released by the Le Seuil Publishing House in 1965, Jean Lacouture completed his book entitled ‘Ho Chi Minh: A Political Biography’ in 1967.

In his books, he provided readers with clear documents as well as his personal experience and comments about Ho Chi Minh City. The French author also explained why Vietnamese people love and admire Ho Chi Minh, and why they refer to the President as "Uncle”.

Another noteworthy book is ‘Ho Chi Minh, A Thinker’ by Japanese Professor Singo Sibata. In his 1972 book, he proved that President Ho Chi Minh was a brilliant theorist in all fields of politics, military, economy, culture and ideology.

"President Ho Chi Minh’s contributions opened a new phase in the theories of nationalism and colonialism,” he wrote. He concluded that President Ho Chi Minh's profound understanding of colonialism, imperialism and socialism significantly contributed to the global revolution.

On November 28, 2011, the New York Publishing House released a 704-page book entitled ‘Ho Chi Minh: A Life’ by US historian William J. Duiker, who served at the US embassy in Saigon (now Ho Chi Minh City) during the Vietnam War. He spent 30 years delving into Vietnamese and European archives and meeting with witnesses and his colleagues in the US, Europe, Vietnam, China, and Japan in order to write this definitive biography.

In his book, he described Ho Chi Minh as a "master motivator and strategist” and "one of the most influential political figures of the twentieth century”. He also detailed remarkable events relating to President Ho Chi Minh in 1945 when Japan formally surrendered to the Allies, as well as milestones in Vietnam’s resistance war against the French from 1945 to 1954.

According to many commentators, this long and revelatory biography is not just for ordinary readers, but for anyone who seriously cares about modern history. The book was voted a notable book by the New York Times and was listed as one of the Los Angeles Times’ Best Books of 2000.

It has been 51 years since President Ho Chi Minh left our world, but he is still in the hearts of the Vietnamese people. International authors have written about him with the hope to "decode” the towering figure in the world’s history. The President’s life and career will forever be a shining example of humanity, representing the dreams of people.


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