North Vietnamese Army Newspaper January 2, 1970
$99.00Very Good Condition
The NVA and NLF were expert at propaganda. Their propaganda took the form of booklets, newspapers, posters, leaflets, and other printed materials.
In addition to publishing materials in English for American service members, they also printed a great deal in Vietnamese to sway the Vietnamese, both North and South, to their side. The NVA and VC also made propaganda for those men and women who were already serving in their ranks.
Propaganda, like this newspaper, was distributed through the Political Officer system. They were found in every military unit of Company or higher size throughout the NVA and VC. The unit Political Officer, as an extension of the Party, actually outranked the Military Commander. All orders had to pass through the Political Officer for approval to ensure the political goals were being met. Political Officer were responsible for the morale and fighting spirit of the unit and had to make sure the fighters were routinely indoctrinated in political matters, via propaganda. They would hold meetings to discuss the material, conduct self criticism sessions and proselytize continuously.
Because of the need to bring other military supplies on the long journey to the South, newspapers were not widely distributed. They were often delivered initally to the Political Officer. Because of the long trip from Hanoi to the Front, news would often be four to six months out of date, but was welcome by troops far from their home and family. A newspaper, such as this one, would be read to the unit by the Political Officer. It would then be passed around so that every member would have the opportunity to read and study it. Later the Political Officer would re-discuss the material that had been passed around.
Because of the wide variety of these issue materials and their constant use in the NVA and VC, having a piece or two is a must in every NVA or VC display.
This particualar 20 page newspaper is captioned “Art” and was published in Hanoi by The Literary League of Vietnam. The caption in the upper right of every paper is “For The County, For Socialism, For the Country, For Socialism.” The size is 15 x 10 1/2 inches.
Newspapers, like this one, all have anti-American propaganda cartoons and writings, songs, poems, photos, painting, and sketches from the Front etc. Much of this artwork was done in the war zones and was reproduced in various newspapers, postcards, posters etc. This material typically told the story of valiant fighters and units who overcame great odds on the battlefield. The material also extolled the virtues of communism over capitalism, described ARVN and American atrocities, their low morale, etc. In this way, the individual soldier could have role models to try to emulate as well as an enemy to vilify. In this particular paper, there seems to be a tribute to Ho Chi Minh on the second or third page, while the back cover typically has anti-American cartoons. You will find stories about Revolutionary Plays, heroic figures from history and the Front, and all manner of NVA and VC propaganda here.
NVA and VC troops would often cut photos and art out of the newspaper to carry in their wallet, hang in their bunkers etc. The final use of a worn out, cut up paper would be to start fires or as toilet paper. These were indeed prized items on many levels and for many reasons.
Add one to your display today, you’ll be glad you did!
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