chapter  11
56 Pages

1,670,000 Murdered The Vietnamese War State

WithR. J. Rummel, Irving Louis Horowitz

To the post-1975 Vietnamese war dead must be added those murdered by the triumphant communist regime. After victory, under the pretense of giving them a month or less of lectures, the communists rounded up former South Vietnamese government officials, military officers, party leaders, police, and supporting intellectuals and imprisoned them in "re-education" camps. But the camps were not limited to those who had been the South Vietnam government's "henchmen" and "puppets." They were also the destination of those former South Vietnam antiwar or antigovernment opponents who were arrested after the war. As far as the South Vietnamese regimes were concerned, their killing of probably 89,000 Vietnamese was in part surely driven by their anticommunism. But, unlike with Marxism, this is not separable from the imperatives of Power. The existence of the South Vietnamese government was at stake, as were the lives of at least its high officials and officers.