Soviet archives, declassified shortly after the fall of the Soviet Union in 1990, indicate that in 1973 Yasser Arafat's PLO operatives were advised by North Vietnamese political trainers in Hanoi to promote the so-called "two-state solution" as a negotiating tactic, as opposed to their previous policy of calling for the complete destruction of Israel. Arafat admired the North Vietnamese for their ability to garner sympathy and support within the American left, and he sought to emulate that success. By 1973, it had become clear that the crude PLO rhetoric, which included calls to drive the Jews into the sea and slaughter them all, was not winning any friends. Ho Chi Minh's advice worked like a charm while the PLO terrorism against Israel nevertheless continued unabated.
Palestinian terrorist Abu Iyad, in his memoir published in Arabic and entitled "Palestinian Without A Motherland," recounts North Vietnamese political advisers suggesting to him that the PLO "stop talking about annihilating Israel and instead turn your terror war into a struggle for human rights. Then you will have the American people eating out of your hand." The North Vietnamese had experienced amazing success in terms of convincing the American left that they were not engaged in an aggressive war of conquest against South Vietnam but were rather spearheading an effort to liberate the South from American oppression and establish independence for Vietnam under their rule.
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The North Vietnamese propaganda failed to mention the fact that Ho Chi Minh, whose real name was Nyugen ai Quoc, had been a Soviet agent for 20 years before he became a public figure in North Vietnam in 1945. Hindsight indicates that the South Vietnamese people did not feel either liberated or independent due to the North Vietnamese conquest in 1975, as evidenced by the hundreds of thousands of South Vietnamese who braved shark-infested waters and pirates in their quest to escape the socialist paradise by getting on rickety boats. Neither did the people of Laos or Cambodia appear to appreciate the wonders associated with the communist takeover of their countries. The collectivization programs caused one of the worst genocides of the century, as radical Marxist Pol Pot collectivized Cambodia leading to millions of deaths.
The PLO was no doubt encouraged when the U.S. Congress, having elected a new crop of young liberals in 1974, including Patrick Leahy and Joe Biden, cut off all aid to South Vietnam in March of 1975, which led to a full-scale invasion from the north and the fall of Saigon two months later. This disgraceful betrayal of America's ally occurred two years after the signing of the Paris Peace Accord in January of 1973, a treaty that resulted in the end of the war and the full withdrawal of American troops. The sellout of South Vietnam by American liberals, both on the street and in Congress, no doubt fostered hope in the souls of the PLO and their allies that American liberals would one day also sell out Israel – and they had reason to be encouraged.
Ho's advise, which was to employ Marxist rhetoric when describing the Palestinian Arabs as oppressed and occupied, while referring to Israel in language that was probably borrowed from the chapters pertaining to Jews in Hitler's "Mein Kampf," a very popular book in the Arab world, was wildly successful in terms of garnering support from the international left including, to varying degrees, the Jewish left and even the Israeli left. The pressure in the ensuing decades led to the Oslo Accords, signed by Arafat and Israeli Prime Minister Yatzak Rabin in a White House lawn ceremony presided over by President Bill Clinton on Sept. 13, 1993. On that same day, in a pre-taped interview that ran on Jordan TV, Arafat explained in Arabic that: "Since we cannot defeat Israel in war, we do it in stages. We take any and every territory that we can of Palestine and establish sovereignty there, and we use it as a springboard to take more. When the time comes, we can get the Arab nations to join us for the final blow against Israel."
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Chuck Morse is the author of "The Nazi Connection to Islamic Terrorism: Adolf Hitler and Haj Amin Al-Hussein."