Encyclopedia of Anti-Revisionism On-Line

The New Voice

Countering Vietnam Aggression China Strikes Back

First Published: The New Voice, Vol. VIII, No. 6, March 19, 1979.
Transcription, Editing and Markup: Paul Saba
Copyright: This work is in the Public Domain under the Creative Commons Common Deed. You can freely copy, distribute and display this work; as well as make derivative and commercial works. Please credit the Encyclopedia of Anti-Revisionism On-Line as your source, include the url to this work, and note any of the transcribers, editors & proofreaders above.

On February 17, border forces of the People’s Republic of China launched a counter-attack against Vietnam. It came at a time when the Vietnamese were stepping up their program of armed provocation against Chinese civilians and border guards and seriously threatening the security and peace of China’s southern borders.

From January through December 1973, Vietnamese border forces crossed China’s border and created incidents more than 1,100 times. The Vietnamese harassed and persecuted members of the Chinese national minority living in Vietnam, attacked Chinese trawlers, civilians and military personnel. During this same period Peking Review published 34 articles, diplomatic notes, and editorials warning the Vietnamese authorities to cease their provocations and come to the negotiating table to settle differences between the two countries„ Vietnam’s only response was an increase in the frequency and severity of its provocations.


Vietnam is a small country and has a small population. Why should such a nation continually goad and antagonize a big neighbor like China? When little bullies act up it is because they have big bullies for friends. Vietnam’s cohort is the Soviet Union.

In the past year Vietnam’s longstanding ties with the Kremlin aggressors have been strengthened. On June 29, 1978, Vietnam officially joined the Council for Mutual Economic Assistance (CMEA). This is Russia’s way of bringing a country’s economy under complete Soviet imperialist control. Cuba has been a CMEA member since 1972. The Russians have forced the Cubans to concentrate all their efforts on producing sugar for the Soviet market. Cuba also serves as a dumping ground for Russian manufactured goods of inferior quality at inflated prices. CMEA membership is not a socialist relationship, it is imperialist.

On November 3, 1978, the Soviet Union and Vietnam signed a “Treaty of Friendship and Co-operation.” This is a military treaty, the same kind that Russia has signed with Cuba, Ethiopia and others. The Vietnamese have stationed 50,000 troops in Laos, launched a major invasion of Kampuchea (formerly Cambodia), and also began a series of provocations against China. If they had to depend on their own resources they could not lash out like this. It is well documented that the Soviet Union is giving the Vietnamese more military aid now than when they were fighting to throw out the U.S. imperialism.

The new tsars use stooges like Vietnam and Cuba to do the dirty work of securing strategic land base areas while the Russian military machine is built up for a third world war of conquest. By sapping the resources of other countries and their own people, the Soviet rulers have managed to surpass the U.S. imperialists in almost every category of military might. They have a larger standing army, more tanks and guns, faster and heavier armed naval vessels, and more nuclear weapons. They also have a large army stationed along their border with China.

In the face of near encirclement by aggressors to the north and south, China had no choice but to strike a blow in self-defense. China has no troops stationed in foreign countries and no warships patrolling international waters. China is a socialist country, trying to concentrate on modernization and increasing its standard of living. When the Chinese People’s Liberation Army crossed the border into Vietnam, China pledged to never occupy one inch of Vietnamese territory. All she wants is a peaceful international situation and stable border. Can the Soviet and Vietnamese social-imperialists say the same?


The Communist Party of China and the Chinese people know what Western imperialist powers like the U.S. try to hides appeasement never stops aggression, it only encourages it, When the Soviet Union or any other country has engaged in imperialist, expansionist activity, China has been the first country to call a spade a spade and label the aggressors for what they are. When any country has required aid to resist imperialist attacks, China has been among the first to give it, and with no strings attached.

On the other hand the United States sits on the fence uttering weak pleas for everybody to be nice and go home. Furthermore, Carter cannot wholeheartedly support a socialist country like China in its steadfast resistance to imperialist aggression, because he would then be asking the working class in this monopoly capitalist country of ours to defend socialism. When Carter tells us “We shall not get involved in wars between Asian communist countries,” he is covering up the true nature of Soviet social-imperialism and its clients in Asia. Imperialist leaders tried the same policy of non-involvement in the early days of World War II, when they hoped that Nazi Germany and the Soviet Union, then a socialist country, would destroy each other, allowing the U.S. to step in and clean up the spoils. It did not work then, and it will not work now.

So far China has resisted imperialist aggression by the Vietnamese to the south and defied the Russian threat to the north. As workers in this country we should learn from China: oppose all imperialist aggression by any of the superpowers, be prepared to defend our own interests, and when attacked fight back.