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January 27, 1975 is the second anniversary of the signing of the Paris Agreements. The date marked the end of one stage in the liberation struggle in Vietnamese people--they had defeated the military power of the US government by forcing the withdrawal of US combat troops from Vietnam. It also marked a victory for the US people who, through mass actions which brought hundreds of thousands of people into the streets, demonstrated to the US government that is must finally abide by the demands of the Indochinese and American people and sign the agreements.
On January 27, 1973, while we were joining in celebration of the victory, we were also warning that US involvement in Southeast Asia would not end with the signing of the Agreements. The past two years have proved that prediction all too true--the US government continues to prop up the corrupt regimes of military dictators in Cambodia and South Vietnam, regimes that would have collapsed long ago if it were not for the US government support. The final victory of the Indochinese people is still waiting fulfillment. And, for the people of Cambodia, South Vietnam, and Laos, the fighting is still a daily part of their life.
January 27, 1973 also marked a change in the anti-war movement which had been growing in its resistance to the war. Many of us who were in the middle of that struggle have seen some of the errors which we made--that the anti-war movement often failed to identify the real enemy as the imperialist system which lay behind the war, not just the war itself. As a result, we did not mobilize the masses of people who were opposed to the war into the larger struggle against that system.
January 27, 1975, when VVAW/WSO chapters around the country will be carrying out actions to mark the anniversary of the signing of the Agreements, is one more opportunity for us to bring to the American people the message about the nature of imperialism: a system which makes wars like the Indochina war inevitable and, at the same time creates unemployment, exploitation and repression here at home. As we build for January 27th actions in our daily work, we reaffirm our unity and solidarity with the people of Indochina in the struggle against the enemy which oppresses us all: US imperialism.