Born: May 19, 1890 Nghe An, Vietnam Died: September 3, 1969 Hanoi, Vietphái nam Vietnamese revolutionary & president

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Ho Chi Minc was the founder & first leader of the Vietnamese Communist Party. He led the movement for Vietnamese independence and unity through struggles with France & the United States. He also served as president of the Democratic Republic of Vietphái nam from 1945 until his death in 1969.

Early life

Ho Chi Minch was born Nguyen Sinc Cung on May 19, 1890, in Nghe An province in central Vietphái nam. Nghe An had been the center of resistance khổng lồ the thousand-year Chinese control of Vietnam giới from 111 B.C.E. lớn 939 C.E. và the Ming Dynasty in the fifteenth century. Many of the leaders of the opposition khổng lồ French control in the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries also came from the province. Ho's father, Nguyen Sinch Huy, educated himself to pass the civil service exam and worked for the government. He eventually resigned in prothử nghiệm against French involvement in Vietnamese affairs. When Ho was ten years old, his mother died while giving birth. Ho had two older siblings, a sister named Thanh khô and a brother named Khiem.

Ho's opposition lớn colonialism (the rule of an area & its people by another country) began at the age of nine, when he worked as a messenger for an anticolonial organization. His father also introduced him khổng lồ several revolutionaries. Ho went on to lớn attkết thúc the National Academy in Hué, Vietnam. Dismissed from the academy after taking part in protests against the French in 1908, he traveled to lớn southern Vietnam in 1909 and worked briefly as a schoolteacher. Ho signed on as a cook with a French steamship company in 1911. At sea for two years, he visited ports in Europe, Africa, & the United States & began khổng lồ develop his language skills, eventually learning Chinese, French, Russian, English, và Tnhị in addition lớn his native sầu Vietnamese.

Committed to lớn communism

During World War I (1914–18), Ho worked in London, England, và Paris, France. This is when his lifelong commitment to lớn communism and Vietnamese independence began. Communism refers lớn a system in which the means of production (such as lvà, factories, & mines) are owned by the people as a whole rather than by individuals. Communists believe that such a system can be achieved only by revolution and government by a single các buổi party. In Paris, Ho adopted the name Nguyen Ai Quoc (Nguyen the Patriot) & attracted attention when he presented a written request to the Versailles Peace Conference demanding independence for Vietnam giới. Ho became a founding member of the French Communist Party in 1920. From 19trăng tròn lớn 1923, he was an outspoken leader of the Vietnamese community in Paris, participating in the Intercolonial Union formed under Communist sponsorship and publishing two anticolonial journals.

Ho was invited lớn Moscow, Russia, in 1923, where he studied at the University of Oriental Workers. In 1925 he was sent khổng lồ China khổng lồ organize a communist movement. He formed the Thanh khô Nien (Vietnamese Revolutionary Youth League), whose members


Ho Chi Minh. Reproduced by permission of

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were mostly Vietnamese students in the southern Chinese port đô thị of Canton. The league called for independence, redistribution of l&, fair taxation, and equal rights for men & women. In 1927 Ho was forced khổng lồ leave sầu Canton after a Chinese government crackdown on local communists. During his absence, the league began to lớn split inlớn different factions, or groups. Ho returned khổng lồ South China in early 1930 khổng lồ unite the factions as a formal Communist Party, drawing its members from Vietphái mạnh, Cambodia, và Laos. He continued his organizing in Hong Kong và Shangnhì but was arrested by the British in 1931 và imprisoned for two years. Released in 1933, he spent the next several years in the Soviet Union.

Return khổng lồ Vietnam

In 1940 Ho returned lớn South Đài Loan Trung Quốc and met with members of the Indochinese Communist Party (ICP). The following May, with most of Vietnam giới under Japanese occupation, he chaired a meeting of the party's Central Committee inside the Vietnamese border, marking his first return to lớn Vietphái mạnh in thirty years. Ho và the ICP. then announced the formation of the Viet Minc (League for Vietnamese Independence), an organization demanding independence from French rule and Japanese military occupation. From 1941 lớn 1945, although imprisoned again in China for more than a year, Ho led the ICPhường in seeking support for the Viet Minc, forming alliances with American diplomats and intelligence officers in South Trung Quốc, helping victims of a famine that killed over two million people in north and central Vietphái nam from 1943 to 1944, and building up the party's military forces.

In August 1945 Viet Minc forces attempted to lớn seize power in Vietnam. On September 2, 1945, Ho Chi Minch, as president of the Democratic Republic of Vietphái mạnh, stood before thousands of supporters in the đô thị of Hanoi. He proclaimed "that Vietnam has the right to lớn be a free & independent country—và in fact is so already." At the over of World War II (1939–45), the French tried to regain control of Vietnam giới. Although Ho reached a settlement agreement with the French in March 1946, calling for the creation of a Vietnamese "miễn phí state" within the French Union, the French changed their minds. In December, war broke out between Vietnamese and French forces. By 1954 the French had tired of war & sought a settlement at the Geneva Conference. In July an agreement was reached calling for a truce and division of Vietnam inlớn a Communist north và a non-Communist south.

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Later years

After 1954 Ho Chi Minh remained president of the Democratic Republic of Vietnam & chairman of the Communist Party but slowly turned over day-to-day responsibilities to lớn others. Ho was active sầu internationally, where he promoted Vietnamese interests within other countries và attempted khổng lồ prevent a split between the Soviet Union và Trung Quốc. A l& rekhung campaign from 1954 khổng lồ 1956 was a major failure. Modeled on lvà redistribution plans developed by Chinese Communists, the reforms were very unpopular among muốn Vietnamese peasants, some five sầu thous& of whom were killed by Ho's government in its determination lớn make the plan work.

Ho also oversaw the formation of the National Liberation Front (NLF) in 1960, a movement of resistance against the non-Communist government in southern Vietnam. Clashes between that government và the NLF led the United States military lớn step in on the side of the South Vietnamese. As the American military commitment increased, with the arrival of American ground troops and the beginning of a heavy bombing campaign against northern Vietnam in 1965, Ho sought lớn maintain good relations with the Soviet Union và Trung Quốc in order to obtain military assistance and supplies from both Communist powers.

Beginning in the mid-1960s, Ho Chi Minh's health declined, và he made only occasional public appearances. He never married, but he was widely viewed in North Vietnam giới as the father of his country & often referred khổng lồ in his later years as Bac (Uncle) Ho. He died of a heart attachồng on September 3, 1969, almost six years before the U.S.-backed South Vietnamese government was defeated & Vietnam was unified. The city of Saigon was renamed Ho Chi Minc City in his honor.

For More Information

Duiker, William J. The Communist Road lớn nguồn. Boulder, CO: Westview Press, 1981.

Duiker, William J. Ho Chi Minc. New York: Hyperion, 2000.

Halberstam, David. Ho. Thành Phố New York, Random House, 1971.

Kahin, George. Intervention. New York: Knopf, 1986.

Lloyd, Damãng cầu Ohlmeyer. Ho Chi Minch. New York: Chelsea House Publishers, 1986.