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Ho Chi Minh- Nationalist or Communist?

            Ho Chi Minh's rhetorical and physical campaign against foreign domination contained both socialist and fascist elements, thus labelling him as both a communist and a nationalist. Ho dedicated his life to liberate Vietnam and foresaw that a way of uniting the people against the Imperialist forces was by recruiting them to the ideals of communism as a strong peasant power base, which would be strong enough to overthrow the French imperialists. .
             From an early age, Ho strongly believed that his country should be liberated. This was most likely as a result of his father's nationalist preaching and behaviour. It was impressed upon him that he should reject French rule, and later Ho evidently did this by defying not only the French but also Japan, China and the United States. In doing this he was advancing Vietnam's independence. In short, Ho would oppose any nation to achieve his goal.
             Many historians such as David Kaiser (1998) proposed that Ho turned to communism subsequent to America's refusal to help him end French domination in Vietnam. After all, all of the other Nationalist parties in Vietnam prior to 1920 did not achieve their goal of overthrowing the French. Moreover, the Vietnamese Nationalist Party was suppressed in 1930, leading the Nationalists to believe that elements of communism needed to be introduced into their ideology to ensure victory over the French. .
             Ho Chi Minh was a member of varying communist groups, founded the French Communist party in 1920 and was notably a key player in the Communist Party of Vietnam, which has elements of Marxism-Leninism, thus Ho can be labelled both a communist and nationalist. Daniel E Teodoru (1998) summarizes Minh's plans as "to hold high the banner of national people's democratic revolution, develop it into a socialist revolution and build socialism bypassing the stage of capitalist development" (1998). Minh wrote in the early 1920's, "Only in socialism and communism can we find our liberation" (Teodoru, 1998).

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