"My supervisor committed suicide in order not to be caught by VC. It is quite normal for a soldier to die in a battle or for a lay person to die in a war zone. Sometimes I thought that I could die in the battle-field. I was almost killed by a VC soldier, but fortunately, I was ignored. I was not wounded.
The Communist Government ruled the country strictly and imposed severity on people. It exercised a policy that suppressed Republic military officers and all Southern people who had any relation to the Republic government. Military officers like me were imprisoned in Concentration Camps, denaturalized, and tortured both mentally and physically. Many intellectual military officers felt at a stalemate; they did not see any light ahead for their future. More than three years later, I was released from the Camp, but still led a drifting life. Exercising discrimination, the communist government commanded military officers who finished “concentration camp education” to settle in remote rural areas, which were given a beautiful name “New Economic Zone”. The name sounded like a promise of a great development, but it was just a way to push people like me away from city life. I was sent in such a place, staying there to engage in manual tillage under government supervision for another few years before coming back home. Not until my New-Economic-Zone time ended was I allowed to come back home and re-naturalized. As a citizen, I should have been supported by the government to establish a stable life, but it was not true. My background of a former military officer was always scrutinized, and it blocked me from any opportunity. My college knowledge and skills were not used, and I could only find odd jobs to survive. Fortunately, the U.S. government issued a policy to help former Republic military officers who was kept in the Communist Concentration Camp for 3 years or more. I was sponsored to immigrate to the U.S.
I felt happy and safe to be in the USA. If my parents had brought me to the United States when I was young, I would get a good education, and my life would be better in the USA. The trip from Vietnam to the US was good, and it helps me to improve my life. I have been treated kindly since I was here."
-Hanh, Southern Vietnamese Soldier, American Immigrant