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Digital Archive International History Declassified

March 10, 1965

CABLE FROM THE CHINESE EMBASSY IN THE SOVIET UNION TO THE MINISTRY OF FOREIGN AFFAIRS, ‘VIETNAMESE STUDENTS' RESPONSES TO SOVIET POLICE SUPPRESSION OF THE PROTEST RALLY’

This document was made possible with support from the MacArthur Foundation, Leon Levy Foundation

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    The Chinese Embassy in Moscow reports that Vietnamese students have become more critical of the Soviet Union following the protests in Moscow.
    "Cable from the Chinese Embassy in the Soviet Union to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, ‘Vietnamese Students' Responses to Soviet Police Suppression of the Protest Rally’ ," March 10, 1965, History and Public Policy Program Digital Archive, PRC FMA 109-03628-04, 96-98. Obtained by You Lan and translated by Jake Tompkins. https://digitalarchive.wilsoncenter.org/document/119948
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Ministry of Foreign Affairs Cable

Level: Urgent / From the Moscow Desk / Received (65) No. 524

Vietnamese Students' Responses to Soviet Police Suppression of the Protest Rally

Ministry of Foreign Affairs

These are some of the Vietnamese students' responses to the suppression of the recent protest rally by Soviet police.

(1) They belive that this incident has lain bare the reality of revisionism. A Vietnamese student from Moscow University said that revisionists are all full of hot air. Their suppression of the crowds at the protest is the reality of their supposed "support" for Vietnam. Another Vietnamese student from the National Institute of Economics said that this protest was actually a huge victory, a major blow to revisionism. It opened our eyes to who really opposes imperialism and who is only pretending, whose support of Vietnam is real which whose is false. Now we recognize that in order to oppose imperialism, we must also oppose revisionsim. A Vietnamese student at A-li-ya [sic] said that Kosygin said in Hanoi not long ago that he would lend aid to Vietnam, but now he beats Vietnamese students. He said that during the rally he saw the Soviet police beating a female Vietnamese student and thought about how her parents were butchered in South Vietnam and now she's being beaten as well. Whose side are the Soviet police actually on?!

(2) They express intent to continue holding protest rallies. A significant number of Vietnamese students have said that if America bombs Vietnam again, they will continue to protest. A Vietnamese student from Moscow University said that when Johnson visits the Soviet Union soon, they intend to hold an even better rally.

(3) They think that experiences should be drawn from the good and bad points of this rally. A student from the College of Machinery said that their students did not prepare well enough for this rally. They didn't realize that there would be a clash with the Soviet police, so after the conflict they were slow to reorganize and were not able to cooperate with the Chinese students. Most of the Vietnamese students didn't rush the police barricade. A Vietnamese student from Moscow University said while the Vietnamese students are brave in the struggle, they lack experience and are disorganized. The Chinese students, on the other hand, are both experienced and organized and deserve to be learned from.

(4) Another Vietnamese student from Moscow University responded that the leaders of Vietnam are all very concerned with this event. In the beginning, the only people in Vietnam who knew about the incident were the party members, and it wasn't until the Chinese report was broadcast that everyone became aware. Everyone is furious with the Soviets.

(5) According to a Vietnamese student from Mendeleev University of Chemical Engineering, during the protest he saw the Soviet police grab a student from Laos and beat him severely. He said, once in Vietnamese and again in Russian, "Long live Mao Zedong!", and when the mounted police came charging, a group of Vietnamese students began singing, "The East is Red."

From the Embassy in the Soviet Union

March 10th 1965