The Hmong Used and Abused

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The Hmong Used and Abandoned
December 18, 2010

Did the United States “used and abandoned” the Hmong? There are many debates regarding if the United States used and abandoned the Hmong, but who really is using who? There are valid arguments on both sides and depending on whom you talk with, it varies. I believe the United States did use and abandoned the Hmong during the Secret War. In Paul Hillmer’s book, A People’s History of the Hmong, he made his statement clear about his position about whether or not the United States used and abandoned the Hmong. Through out each historical juncture he talks about this issue and what others have to say about it. Paul Hillmer opens his book with what the United States CIA’s proposition was. Already from here it sets the idea of where Paul Hillmer stands in this position although he does try to be neutral about it. Many people argued that from the day that the CIA made their proposition and Vang Pao accepted, was the day the contract between the Hmong and the CIA was signed – if you give me A, B, C, I will give you C, D, E. In a in class discussion, a student stated that, “the United States didn’t promise the Hmong people anything.” (Class Discussion, 8, November 2010) The United States didn’t promise anything, but they made an agreement, an exchange. If they had plans to take care of the Hmong, then they would have made the agreement more clear when they were talking to Vang Pao.

The United States initial goal was to get something greater then the aid of the Hmong. The United States wanted all of South East Asia to be allies of the United States, “the key to all of Southeast Asia,” for what reasoning, the end of communism? On January 19, 1961, a discussion between Eisenhower and Kennedy about the situation in Southeast Asia took place (which this meeting is still in debate if it really happened or not). The words exchange were, “a Communist victory there would place ‘unbelievable pressure’ on the rest...
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