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Vietnam War Memorial | by InSapphoWeTrust
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Vietnam War Memorial

The Vietnam War Memorial is located in Westminster, home to the largest Vietnamese community outside Vietnam as well as South Vietnam's government-in-exile.

 

Unlike the Vietnam Veterans Memorial on the Washington Mall which lists the names of the American war dead in Vietnam, this one, built by the Vietnamese immigrants, is about celebrating the efforts that America had put in to protect its "free, democratic" ally South Vietnam.

 

When South Vietnam fell, its elites had already settled in the US; the refugees were airlifted to El Toro Marine Corps Air Station nearby, and ended up making Westminster their main settlement. Similar Vietnamese settlements exist in other parts of the US, including northern Virginia. Today, Vietnamese migration to the US continues, though today's arrivals come in as normal immigrants, and do not share the intense McCarthyism of the wartime arrivals.

 

In and around Westminster, hatred of unified Vietnam (or, as they insist on calling, North Vietnam) is still the overwhelming mentality. Hinting, in any way, the inconvenient fact about South Vietnam having been made up of French colonial collaborators, is probably the fastest way to be ostracized or lynched. Additionally, the "flag of Vietnam" always refers to the flag of the defeated South Vietnam, seen here, and a number of cities in and around Westminster have passed civic resolutions to that effect.

 

Orange County, thanks to the Vietnamese, can often feel a lot like South Florida with its McCarthyist Cuban population. Southern California gets even further doses of immigrant McCarthyism from Korean immigrants (South Korea's own "Communist takeover" lasted from the democratic reforms of 1987 until the 2008 fascist restoration), and to a lesser extent, from Taiwanese immigrants.

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Taken on June 25, 2011