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Vo Quy, RIP

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Vo Quy, the pioneering Vietnamese environmentalist and communist who not only convinced Ho Chi Minh to create Vietnam’s first national park, but also played a critical role in bringing his nation and the United States to an agreement on dealing with the ecocide the Americans committed after the war, has died at the age of 87.

Here is more about him.

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  • Gareth

    In what sense was he a communist?

    • In the sense of being a long-time member of the Vietnamese Communist Party, a man who received training and education in Moscow, a close friend of Vo Nguyen Giap, a man who had the ear of Ho Chi Minh, a man who helped develop environmental policies for the Vietnamese government after the war, and a man who hosted shows on Vietnamese state television.

      • wjts

        But in what sense was he really a Communist?

        • dl

          lol.

        • Bootsie

          Was he a part of that splitter Communist Vietnamese Party?

      • Gareth

        In the sense of being a long-time member of the Vietnamese Communist Party,

        Winston Smith was a long-time member of the Party too.

        a man who received training and education in Moscow,

        Training and education in what? Was there any political content?

        a close friend of Vo Nguyen Giap, a man who had the ear of Ho Chi Minh,

        This is getter closer, but it’s still just palling around with Communists.

        a man who helped develop environmental policies for the Vietnamese government after the war, and a man who hosted shows on Vietnamese state television.

        Did those positions have ideological tests? How much effort went into enforcing them?

        I’d ask if he said anything that revealed his personal political beliefs, but he probably didn’t. Maybe because he wanted to live to 87.

        • wjts

          This is exceptionally stupid, even by your exacting standards.

        • Your knowledge of Vietnam is even less than your knowledge of other topics.

          • Murc

            I’m gonna maybe be overly fair to Gareth: it isn’t unreasonable to ask to what degree members of culture with rigidly enforced ideological litmus tests who are required to profess loyalty to that ideology if they wish to acquire and maintain access to power (or to, you know, not get shot) are actual, genuine adherents of that ideology.

            That’s not an insane question to pose. Like, Vladimir Putin was a KGB officer, which meant he was a party member in good standing, but that didn’t by any stretch of the imagination make him an actual communist, as later events have proven. So it isn’t nuts to point out that merely being a party member doesn’t prove anything.

            That said, I know jack shit about this guy, whereas Vietnam is an area of ongoing interest to you, so if you say he was an actual-factual communist I am inclined to take you at your word without being an asshole about it, given you have no reason at all to lie about it.

            • Gareth

              Yeah, the point is that “communist” can’t be a meaningful part of his biography.

        • Warren Terra

          a man who received training and education in Moscow,

          Training and education in what? Was there any political content?

          Yeah, I often wonder whether in the mid-1960s the Soviet Union educated students from the developing world as part of an organized program to further its political agenda, or just did it randomly.

          • Gareth

            It didn’t always work, though.

        • AdamPShort

          What is the point of asking this question? What purpose would be served by knowing whether a lifelong Communist was really a Communist in his heart?

  • keta

    Dr. Quy’s two-volume study, “The Birds of Vietnam,” remains a classic in the field, Professor McElwee said. He conducted his fieldwork during the war and published the book’s first volume in 1975, the same year that Communist forces toppled the United States-backed South Vietnamese in Saigon, later renamed Ho Chi Minh City.

    Just…wow!

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