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Communist Party of Vietnam

Communist Party of Vietnam

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The Communist Party of Vietnam (CPV) (Vietnamese: Đảng Cộng sản Việt Nam), formally established in 1930, is the governing party of the nation of Vietnam
Vietnam
Vietnam – sometimes spelled Viet Nam , officially the Socialist Republic of Vietnam – is the easternmost country on the Indochina Peninsula in Southeast Asia. It is bordered by China to the north, Laos to the northwest, Cambodia to the southwest, and the South China Sea –...

. It is today the only legal political party
Political party
A political party is a political organization that typically seeks to influence government policy, usually by nominating their own candidates and trying to seat them in political office. Parties participate in electoral campaigns, educational outreach or protest actions...

 in that country. Describing itself as Marxist-Leninist
Marxism-Leninism
Marxism–Leninism is a communist ideology, officially based upon the theories of Marxism and Vladimir Lenin, that promotes the development and creation of a international communist society through the leadership of a vanguard party over a revolutionary socialist state that represents a dictatorship...

, the CPV is the directing component of a broader group of organizations known as the Vietnamese Fatherland Front
Vietnamese Fatherland Front
The Vietnamese Fatherland Front founded February 1977 , is an umbrella group of pro-government "mass movements" in Vietnam, and has close links to the Communist Party of Vietnam and the Vietnamese...

. In Vietnam, it is commonly referred to as "Đảng" (the Party) or "Đảng ta" (our Party).

The CPV is formally directed by a National Congress held every five years. In practical terms the organization is lead by a 160 member Central Committee, which selects a Political Bureau (Politburo) headed by a General Secretary
General Secretary of the Communist Party of Vietnam
The General Secretary is the leader of the Communist Party of Vietnam. The activities of Politburo and Secretariat are directed by the General Secretary. The post holder also maintains the top position in the Party's Central Military Commission, which is considered the supreme military...

. The current General Secretary of the CPV is Nguyễn Phú Trọng.

The forerunner, Thanh Nien


Today's Communist Party of Vietnam (CPV) traces its origins back to 1925. It was in the spring of that year that a young man born Nguyen Sinh Cung — then using the pseudonym
Pseudonym
A pseudonym is a name that a person assumes for a particular purpose and that differs from his or her original orthonym...

 Nguyễn Ái Quốc (Nguyen the Patriot) but best known today by a later party-name, Ho Chi Minh
Ho Chi Minh
Hồ Chí Minh , born Nguyễn Sinh Cung and also known as Nguyễn Ái Quốc, was a Vietnamese Marxist-Leninist revolutionary leader who was prime minister and president of the Democratic Republic of Vietnam...

 (Ho the Enlightened One) — established a Communist
Communism
Communism is a social, political and economic ideology that aims at the establishment of a classless, moneyless, revolutionary and stateless socialist society structured upon common ownership of the means of production...

 political organization called the Vietnamese Revolutionary Youth Association (Vietnamese: Việt Nam Thanh Niên Kách Mệnh Hội — commonly: "Thanh Niên").

Thanh Nien was an organization which sought to make use of patriotism
Patriotism
Patriotism is a devotion to one's country, excluding differences caused by the dependencies of the term's meaning upon context, geography and philosophy...

 in an effort to bring the colonial occupation
Colonialism
Colonialism is the establishment, maintenance, acquisition and expansion of colonies in one territory by people from another territory. It is a process whereby the metropole claims sovereignty over the colony and the social structure, government, and economics of the colony are changed by...

 of the country by France
France
The French Republic , The French Republic , The French Republic , (commonly known as France , is a unitary semi-presidential republic in Western Europe with several overseas territories and islands located on other continents and in the Indian, Pacific, and Atlantic oceans. Metropolitan France...

 to an end. The group sought political and social objectives — both national independence and the redistribution of land
Land reform
[Image:Jakarta farmers protest23.jpg|300px|thumb|right|Farmers protesting for Land Reform in Indonesia]Land reform involves the changing of laws, regulations or customs regarding land ownership. Land reform may consist of a government-initiated or government-backed property redistribution,...

 to working peasants
Peasant
A peasant is an agricultural worker who generally tend to be poor and homeless-Etymology:The word is derived from 15th century French païsant meaning one from the pays, or countryside, ultimately from the Latin pagus, or outlying administrative district.- Position in society :Peasants typically...

.

The establishment of Thanh Nien was preceded by the arrival of Communist International functionary Ho Chi Minh in Canton
Guangzhou
Guangzhou , known historically as Canton or Kwangchow, is the capital and largest city of the Guangdong province in the People's Republic of China. Located in southern China on the Pearl River, about north-northwest of Hong Kong, Guangzhou is a key national transportation hub and trading port...

, China from Moscow
Moscow
Moscow is the capital, the most populous city, and the most populous federal subject of Russia. The city is a major political, economic, cultural, scientific, religious, financial, educational, and transportation centre of Russia and the continent...

 in December 1924. Ho was ostensibly sent to China to work as a secretary and interpreter to Mikhail Borodin
Mikhail Borodin
Mikhail Markovich Borodin was the alias of Mikhail Gruzenberg, a Comintern agent and Soviet arms dealer....

, but he actually set to work almost immediately attempting to transform the existing Vietnamese patriotic movement towards revolutionary ends. Ho managed to convert a small group of emigré intellectuals called Tam Tam Xa (Heart-to-Heart Association) to revolutionary socialism
Revolutionary socialism
The term revolutionary socialism refers to Socialist tendencies that advocate the need for fundamental social change through revolution by mass movements of the working class, as a strategy to achieve a socialist society...

, and Thanh Nien was born.

The headquarters of the Thanh Nien organization in Canton was made the directing center for the underground revolutionary movement in Vietnam. All important decisions regarding the strategy and tactics of the fledgling Vietnamese anti-colonial revolutionary movement during this interval were made in Canton.

Thanh Nien was designed to prepare the ground for an armed struggle
Revolution
A revolution is a fundamental change in power or organizational structures that takes place in a relatively short period of time.Aristotle described two types of political revolution:...

 against the French colonial occupation. Three phases were envisioned by Ho Chi Minh and his compatriots. In the first phase, an external center was to be established as a training center, source of unified political propaganda
Propaganda
Propaganda is a form of communication that is aimed at influencing the attitude of a community toward some cause or position so as to benefit oneself or one's group....

, and headquarters for strategic decision-making and the maintenance of organizational and ideological discipline
Ideology
An ideology is a set of ideas that constitutes one's goals, expectations, and actions. An ideology can be thought of as a comprehensive vision, as a way of looking at things , as in common sense and several philosophical tendencies , or a set of ideas proposed by the dominant class of a society to...

. Secret revolutionary grouplets called "cells" were to be trained in Canton and returned to Vietnam proper to conduct activity.

In the second phase, activity would move into a "semi-secret" phase, in which Thanh Nien cadres would initiate political and economic activities, including strike action
Strike action
Strike action, also called labour strike, on strike, greve , or simply strike, is a work stoppage caused by the mass refusal of employees to work. A strike usually takes place in response to employee grievances. Strikes became important during the industrial revolution, when mass labour became...

, boycotts, and protests, which might include conscious acts of political violence as a means of mobilizing the masses. This would be a third phase, one of insurrection, in which the unified organization would attempt to rise up and overthrow the established political regime by force of arms, establishing a new centralized revolutionary government.

Thanh Nien was conceived of as a relatively open mass organization, with the most trusted members part of a directing center called the Communist Youth Corps (CYC). At the time of the Thanh Nien's dissolution in 1929, the CYC is believed to have consisted of just 24 members. In addition to Thanh Nien, this small inner circle also directed two other mass organizations, Nong Hoi ("Peasants' Association") and Cong Hoi ("Workers' Association").

The CYC and Thanh Nien published pamphlets and newspapers, including a guidebook of revolutionary theory and practical techniques called The Road to Revolution, as well as four newspapers — Thanh Nien ("Youth") from June 1925 to May 1930; Bao cong nong ("Worker-Peasant") from December 1926 to early 1928; Linh kach menh ("Revolutionary Soldier") from early 1927 to early 1928; and Viet Nam tien phong ("Vanguard of Vietnam") in 1927.

Factional split of 1929


In 1928 the headquarters of the Thanh Nien organization in Canton were forced underground by forces of the Chinese Nationalists, the Kuomintang
Kuomintang
The Kuomintang of China , sometimes romanized as Guomindang via the Pinyin transcription system or GMD for short, and translated as the Chinese Nationalist Party is a founding and ruling political party of the Republic of China . Its guiding ideology is the Three Principles of the People, espoused...

 (KMT). The center which issued directions to the cells inside Vietnam had to be moved repeatedly to avoid repression — first to Wu-Chou and then to Hong Kong
Hong Kong
Hong Kong is one of two Special Administrative Regions of the People's Republic of China , the other being Macau. A city-state situated on China's south coast and enclosed by the Pearl River Delta and South China Sea, it is renowned for its expansive skyline and deep natural harbour...

. Making matters worse, top leader Ho Chi Minh departed from Canton in May 1927 and was incommunicado with the Vietnamese movement. The lack of contacts with a unified headquarters proved the start of an organizational split, with radicals in the movement beginning to take instructions from the Comintern via the Communist Party of France and others following a different path.

In September 1928 the radical Bac Ky Regional Committee of Thanh Nien held a conference at which it affirmed the Comintern's new Third Period
Third Period
The Third Period is a ideological concept adopted by the Communist International at its 6th World Congress, held in Moscow in the summer of 1928....

 analysis, positing a new revolutionary upsurge around the world. Noting the growth of the organization among intellectuals in urban centers, the conference determined to send its largely petty bourgeois membership into the countryside and to urban factories in an attempt to bring communist ideas to the poor peasantry and the numerically tiny working class
Working class
Working class is a term used in the social sciences and in ordinary conversation to describe those employed in lower tier jobs , often extending to those in unemployment or otherwise possessing below-average incomes...

. In a letter to the Comintern, the Thanh Nien itself estimated that approximately 90 percent of its membership consisted of intellectuals; a full-scale offensive to win mass support was desired.

The Central Committee of Thanh Nien called a National Congress of the organization, slated to begin on May Day
May Day
May Day on May 1 is an ancient northern hemisphere spring festival and usually a public holiday; it is also a traditional spring holiday in many cultures....

 of 1929. This gathering, held 1-9 May 1929 and attended by 17 delegates from each of the three main administrative districts of Vietnam, plus Hong Kong and Siam, would prove the occasion for a split between those who placed primary emphasis on the so-called "national question" (independence from colonialism) and those who sought a more radical movement placing emphasis on social revolution. Ho Chi Minh was not in attendance, still missing from the scene. The conclave was chaired by Nguyen Cong Vien, making use of the pseudonym Lam Duc Thu, who summarily ruled the question of formation of a proper Communist party
Communist party
A political party described as a Communist party includes those that advocate the application of the social principles of communism through a communist form of government...

 out of order, prompting a walkout of three members of the northern delegation, leaving only an informer working on behalf of the French secret police
Secret police
Secret police are a police agency which operates in secrecy and beyond the law to protect the political power of an individual dictator or an authoritarian political regime....

 at the session as the representative of Tonkin
Tonkin
Tonkin , also spelled Tongkin, Tonquin or Tongking, is the northernmost part of Vietnam, south of China's Yunnan and Guangxi Provinces, east of northern Laos, and west of the Gulf of Tonkin. Locally, it is known as Bắc Kỳ, meaning "Northern Region"...

.

The radical Northern delegates who walked out of the Congress were sharply critical of those who refused to split, charging the remaining Thanh Nien leaders were "false revolutionaries" and "petit-bourgeois intellectuals" who were attempting to build bridges with the "anti-revolutionary and anti-worker" Kuomintang. On 17 June 1929 more than 20 delegates from cells throughout the Tonkin region held a conference in Hanoi
Hanoi
Hanoi , is the capital of Vietnam and the country's second largest city. Its population in 2009 was estimated at 2.6 million for urban districts, 6.5 million for the metropolitan jurisdiction. From 1010 until 1802, it was the most important political centre of Vietnam...

, where they declared the dissolution of Thanh Nien and the establishment of a new organization called the Indochinese Communist Party (ICP).

The new Northern party published pamphlets detailing its organizational rules based upon the Comintern's "Model Statutes for a Communist Party" as well as the International program approved by the Sixth World Congress of the Comintern in 1928. Three new periodicals were also launched — the newspaper Co do ("Red Flag"), the theoretical journal Bua liem ("Hammer and Sickle"), and the trade union publication Cong hoi do ("Red Trade Union").

The other faction of Thanh Nien, based in the central and southern administrative districts of the country, were to rename themselves the Communist Party of Annam
Communist Party of Annam
Communist Party of Annam was a Vietnamese political party that existed from August 1929 until February 1930. It was created by leaders of the Communist Youth League. The Communist Youth League was formed by Ho Chi Minh in 1926 as a section of the Revolutionary Youth League...

 in the fall of 1929. The two organizations spent the rest of 1929 engaged in polemics against one another in an attempt to gain a position of hegemony over the radical Vietnamese liberation movement.

Adding to the complexity of the factional situation, a third Vietnamese Communist Party emerged around this time, a group unconnected with Thanh Nien called the League of Indochinese Communists (Vietnamese: Đông Dương Cộng sản Liên Đoàn). This group had its roots in another national liberation group which had existed in parallel to Thanh Nien, with the two groups seeing themselves as rivals.

The party unification of 1930


The two warring offspring of Thanh Nien joined with individual members of a third Marxist group founded by Phan Boi Chau
Phan Boi Chau
Phan Bội Châu was a pioneer of Vietnamese 20th century nationalism. In 1903, he formed a revolutionary organization called the “Reformation Society” ....

 at a "Unification Conference" held in Hong Kong from 3-7 February 1930. Ho Chi Minh, back in direct activity in the Vietnamese movement, was responsible for brokering the peace between the warring factions as well as writing the initial manifesto and statement of tactics of the group. The new party was named the Communist Party of Vietnam (CPV).

The Hong Kong conference (held in Kowloon City
Kowloon City
Kowloon City is an area in Kowloon, Hong Kong. It is named after the Kowloon Walled City, and is administratively part of Kowloon City District....

) elected a nine-member Provisional Central Committee consisting of 3 members from Tonkin in the North, 2 from the central region of Annam
Annam (French Colony)
Annam was a French protectorate encompassing the central region of Vietnam. Vietnamese were subsequently referred to as "Annamites." Nationalist writers adopted the word "Vietnam" in the late 1920s. The general public embraced the word "Vietnam" during the revolution of August 1945...

, 2 from the southern district Cochinchina
Cochinchina
Cochinchina is a region encompassing the southern third of Vietnam whose principal city is Saigon. It was a French colony from 1862 to 1954. The later state of South Vietnam was created in 1954 by combining Cochinchina with southern Annam. In Vietnamese, the region is called Nam Bộ...

, and 2 from the emigré Vietnamese community in China. The latter group had previously been organized within the South Seas Communist Party
South Seas Communist Party
South Seas Communist Party was a communist party in South-East Asia established in 1925 when the Communist Party of China separated its exile branches in the region to make way for local communist parties...

.

The Comintern was sharply critical of the way in which the organization was unified, decrying the Vietnamese's party's failure to eliminate so-called "heterogeneous elements" from the organization. The organization's declared emphasis upon national liberation under the slogan
Slogan
A slogan is a memorable motto or phrase used in a political, commercial, religious and other context as a repetitive expression of an idea or purpose. The word slogan is derived from slogorn which was an Anglicisation of the Scottish Gaelic sluagh-ghairm . Slogans vary from the written and the...

 "An Independent Viet Nam" was criticized as a manifestation of nationalism
Nationalism
Nationalism is a political ideology that involves a strong identification of a group of individuals with a political entity defined in national terms, i.e. a nation. In the 'modernist' image of the nation, it is nationalism that creates national identity. There are various definitions for what...

, while the party's emphasis of its place in the international communist movement was deemed insufficient. A new conference was demanded, remembered to history as the "First Plenum of the Central Committee." The session was held in Hong Kong in October 1930 and renamed the organization the Indochinese Communist Party (Vietnamese: Đông Dương Cộng sản Đảng) (ICP) to mark the Comintern's imposed changes.

At the time it formally came into being, the ICP could claim to be a vanguard of only a microscopically small working class — a mere 221,000 people in a country of 17 million. Even of this minority, the lives of many was far removed from the workplaces of modern industry, with fully one-third of these employed in various capacities on rubber plantations and the like. The working class in the North was semi-peasant in nature, leaving work in the mines and factories for the Tết festival
Tet
Tet can mean:*Tết or Tết Nguyên Đán, the Vietnamese new year**Tet Offensive, a military campaign that began in 1968*Têt in Roussillon, France*Equal temperament, abbreviated as 12-TET, 19-TET and so on...

 that marked the start of the new year, often not returning. Working conditions were poor and labor turnover
Turnover (employment)
In a human resources context, turnover or staff turnover or labour turnover is the rate at which an employer gains and loses employees. Simple ways to describe it are "how long employees tend to stay" or "the rate of traffic through the revolving door." Turnover is measured for individual companies...

 high.

During its first five years of existence the ICP attained a membership of about 1500, plus a large additional contingent of sympathizers. Despite the group's small size, it exerted an influence in a turbulent Vietnamese social climate. Back-to-back bad harvests in 1929 and 1930 combined with an onerous burden of debt served to radicalize many peasants. In the industrial city of Vinh
Vinh
Vinh is a city in Vietnam. It is located in the northern half of the country, and is the capital of Nghệ An Province. Politically, Vinh is a municipality within Nghệ An Province. On September 5th, 2008, it was upgraded from Grade-II city to Grade-I city, the fourth Grade-I city of Vietnam after...

 May Day
May Day
May Day on May 1 is an ancient northern hemisphere spring festival and usually a public holiday; it is also a traditional spring holiday in many cultures....

 demonstrations were organized by ICP activists, which gained critical mass when the families of the semi-peasant workers joined the demonstrations as a means of venting their dissatisfaction with the economic circumstances which faced them.

As three May Day marches grew into mass rallies, French colonial authorities moved in the squelch what they perceived to be dangerous peasant revolts
Peasant revolt
Peasant, Peasants' or Popular is variously paired with Revolt, Uprising and War and may refer to :*Daze Village Uprising 209 BC*Yellow Turban Rebellion 184...

. Government forces fired upon the assembled crowd, killing dozens of participants and inflaming the population. In response local councils sprung up in various villages in an effort to govern themselves locally as the revolt spread. The inevitable attempt at repression by colonial authorities began in the fall, with some 1300 people eventually killed by the French and many times more imprisoned or deported as government authority was reasserted. While the ICP was effectively wiped out in the region, popular memory lived on.

The Popular Front period (1935-1939)


The First National Party Congress was held in secret in Macau
Macau
Macau , also spelled Macao , is, along with Hong Kong, one of the two special administrative regions of the People's Republic of China...

 in 1935. At the same time, a Comintern congress in Moscow adopted a policy towards a popular front
Popular front
A popular front is a broad coalition of different political groupings, often made up of leftists and centrists. Being very broad, they can sometimes include centrist and liberal forces as well as socialist and communist groups...

 against fascism and directed Communist movements around the world to collaborate with anti-fascist forces regardless of their orientation towards socialism. This required the ICP to regard all nationalist parties in Indochina
French Indochina
French Indochina was part of the French colonial empire in southeast Asia. A federation of the three Vietnamese regions, Tonkin , Annam , and Cochinchina , as well as Cambodia, was formed in 1887....

 as potential allies.

World War II


The Second World War
World War II
World War II, or the Second World War , was a global conflict lasting from 1939 to 1945, involving most of the world's nations—including all of the great powers—eventually forming two opposing military alliances: the Allies and the Axis...

 drastically weakened the grasp of France on its colonial possession of Indochina. The fall of France
Battle of France
In the Second World War, the Battle of France was the German invasion of France and the Low Countries, beginning on 10 May 1940, which ended the Phoney War. The battle consisted of two main operations. In the first, Fall Gelb , German armoured units pushed through the Ardennes, to cut off and...

 to Nazi Germany
Nazi Germany
Nazi Germany , also known as the Third Reich , but officially called German Reich from 1933 to 1943 and Greater German Reich from 26 June 1943 onward, is the name commonly used to refer to the state of Germany from 1933 to 1945, when it was a totalitarian dictatorship ruled by...

 in May 1940 and the subsequent collaboration of the Vichy France
Vichy France
Vichy France, Vichy Regime, or Vichy Government, are common terms used to describe the government of France that collaborated with the Axis powers from July 1940 to August 1944. This government succeeded the Third Republic and preceded the Provisional Government of the French Republic...

 with the Axis powers of Germany and Japan served to delegitimize French claims to ownership. Preoccupation with the European war made colonial governance from France impossible and the country was occupied by the forces of imperial Japan.

Upon the eruption of war, the Indochinese Communist Party instructed its members to take to the rural regions of the country and to go into hiding as an underground organization. Despite this preventative measure, more than 2,000 members of the party were rounded up and arrested, including many key leaders. Party activists were particularly hard hit in the southern region of Cochinchina
Cochinchina
Cochinchina is a region encompassing the southern third of Vietnam whose principal city is Saigon. It was a French colony from 1862 to 1954. The later state of South Vietnam was created in 1954 by combining Cochinchina with southern Annam. In Vietnamese, the region is called Nam Bộ...

, where the previously strong organization was wiped out by arrests and killings.

Following the elimination of the old leadership by the authorities, a new party leadership emerged, which included Truong Chinh
Truong Chinh
Trường Chinh Trường Chinh Trường Chinh (pseudonym meaning “Long March”, born Đặng Xuân Khu (b. February 9, 1907 in Xuân Trường District, Nam Định Province, d. September 30, 1988 in Hanoi) was a Vietnamese communist political leader and theoretician. From 1941 to 1957, he was Vietnam's second-ranked...

, Pham Van Dong
Pham Van Dong
Phạm Văn Đồng was an associate of Ho Chi Minh. He served as prime minister of North Vietnam from 1955 through 1976, and was prime minister of a unified Vietnam from 1976 until he retired in 1987.- Early life :...

, and Vo Nguyen Giap
Vo Nguyen Giap
Võ Nguyên Giáp is a retired Vietnamese officer in the Vietnam People’s Army and a politician. He was a principal commander in two wars: the First Indochina War and the Vietnam War...

 — individuals who together with Ho Chi Minh would provide a unified leadership over the ensuing four decades.

Party leader Ho Chi Minh returned to Vietnam in February 1941 and established a military organization known as the League for the Independence of Vietnam
Viet Minh
Việt Minh was a national independence coalition formed at Pac Bo on May 19, 1941. The Việt Minh initially formed to seek independence for Vietnam from the French Empire. When the Japanese occupation began, the Việt Minh opposed Japan with support from the United States and the Republic of China...

 (Vietnamese: Việt Nam Ðộc Lập Ðồng Minh Hội, commonly "Viet Minh"). The Viet Minh originally downplayed their social objectives, painting themselves as patriotic organization battling for national independence in order to garner maximum public support against the Japanese military occupation. As the most uncompromising fighting force against the occupation, the Viet Minh gained popular recognition and legitimacy in an environment that would develop into a political vacuum.

Ho Chi Minh's personal fate was not an easy one. With his organization underarmed and its bases isolated, Ho traveled to China in August 1942 in an effort to win Allied military aid. Ho was arrested by the Nationalist Chinese government and subjected to 14 months of brutal imprisonment, followed by another year of restricted movement. Ho was unable to return to Vietnam until September 1944. The Communist Party and its Viet Minh offshoot managed to survive and prosper without him.

Despite its position as the core of the Viet Minh organization, the Indochinese Communist Party remained a very small organization through the war years, with an estimated membership of between 2,000 and 3,000 in 1944.

1945 dissolution and reformation


The Indochinese Communist Party was formally dissolved in 1945 in order to hide its Communist affiliation and its activities were folded into the Marxism Research Association and the Viet Minh
Viet Minh
Việt Minh was a national independence coalition formed at Pac Bo on May 19, 1941. The Việt Minh initially formed to seek independence for Vietnam from the French Empire. When the Japanese occupation began, the Việt Minh opposed Japan with support from the United States and the Republic of China...

, which had been founded four years earlier as a common front
Common front
In politics, a common front is an alliance between different groups, forces, or interests in pursuit of a common goal or in opposition to a common enemy...

 for national liberation.

The Party was re-founded as the Workers Party of Vietnam (Đảng lao động Việt Nam) at the Second National Party Congress in Tuyen Quang
Tuyen Quang
-History:The French post at Tuyen Quang was defended for four months against 12,000 troops of the Yunnan Army and the Black Flag Army by two companies of the French Foreign Legion during the Sino-French War...

 in 1951. The Congress was held on territory in north Vietnam controlled by the Viet Minh during the First Indochina War
First Indochina War
The First Indochina War was fought in French Indochina from December 19, 1946, until August 1, 1954, between the French Union's French Far East...

. The Third National Congress, held in Hanoi in 1960, formalized the tasks of constructing socialism in what was by then North Vietnam
North Vietnam
The Democratic Republic of Vietnam , was a communist state that ruled the northern half of Vietnam from 1954 until 1976 following the Geneva Conference and laid claim to all of Vietnam from 1945 to 1954 during the First Indochina War, during which they controlled pockets of territory throughout...

, or the Democratic Republic of Vietnam (DRV) and committed the party to carrying out the revolution of liberation in the South. At the Fourth National Party Congress, held in 1976, the Workers Party of North Vietnam was merged with the People's Revolutionary Party
People's Revolutionary Party (Vietnam)
The People's Revolutionary Party was a political party in South Vietnam established in 1962. It provided leadership for the Vietcong uprising. In 1976, the party was merged with the Worker's Party of North Vietnam to form the Communist Party of Vietnam....

 of South Vietnam to form the Communist Party of Vietnam.

Ideology


The Communist Party of Vietnam has adopted Marxism-Leninism and Ho Chi Minh Thought
Ho Chi Minh Ideology
Ho Chi Minh Ideology ) is the political ideology adopted by the Vietnamese Communist Party. It is an adapted version of Marxism–Leninism applied and developed to meet the unique needs of the Vietnamese nation, as advocated by Ho Chi Minh, former leader of the Democratic Republic of Vietnam...

 as the ideological basis of the party and the Revolution. Though formally Marxist-Leninist, the Communist Party of Vietnam has moved towards market reforms in the economy (see also Đổi Mới, the Renewal launched by the Sixth Congress in 1986) and has permitted a growing mid-level private sector
Private sector
In economics, the private sector is that part of the economy, sometimes referred to as the citizen sector, which is run by private individuals or groups, usually as a means of enterprise for profit, and is not controlled by the state...

. However, the party retains a monopoly on power.

National Congresses


The Communist Party of Vietnam is organized according to the Leninist
Marxism-Leninism
Marxism–Leninism is a communist ideology, officially based upon the theories of Marxism and Vladimir Lenin, that promotes the development and creation of a international communist society through the leadership of a vanguard party over a revolutionary socialist state that represents a dictatorship...

 principle of Democratic centralism
Democratic centralism
Democratic centralism is the name given to the principles of internal organization used by Leninist political parties, and the term is sometimes used as a synonym for any Leninist policy inside a political party...

.

The supreme party organ is the National Congress, which has been held every five years since 1976. Due to war footing during the time of wars against France and the United States, the first four congresses were not fixed according to a common time schedule. Since the Foundation Conference, 10 national CPV congresses have been held:
National Congress Date Location Number of
participants
Number of total
Party's members
Notable events
1st Congress  27 – 31 March 1935 Macau (China) 13 600 Secret meeting as "Indochinese Communist Party". (This party was dissolved in 1945.)
2nd Congress 11 – 19 February 1951 Tuyên Quang 158 (53 alternates) 766,349 Party reestablished as Workers Party of Vietnam.
3rd Congress  5 – 12 September 1960 Hà Nội 525 (51 alternates) 500,000 Resolved to continue building socialism in North Vietnam and carrying on the unification struggle in South Vietnam.
4th Congress  14 – 20 December 1976 Hà Nội 1008 1,550,000 The first congress held after the unification. The Workers Party (North Vietnam) was merged with the People's Revolutionary Party
People's Revolutionary Party (Vietnam)
The People's Revolutionary Party was a political party in South Vietnam established in 1962. It provided leadership for the Vietcong uprising. In 1976, the party was merged with the Worker's Party of North Vietnam to form the Communist Party of Vietnam....

 (South Vietnam) to form the "Communist Party of Viet Nam".
5th Congress  27 – 31/ 3/1982 Hà Nội 1033 1,727,000
6th Congress  15 – 18 December 1986 Hà Nội 1129 ~1,900,000 Promoted the Đổi Mới (Renovation) policy.
7th Congress  24 – 27 June 1991 Hà Nội 1176 2,155,022
8th Congress  28 – 1 July 1996 Hà Nội 1198 2,130,000
9th Congress  19 – 22 April 2001 Hà Nội 1168 2,479,719
10th Congress
Tenth National Congress of the Communist Party of Vietnam
The Tenth National Congress of the Communist Party of Vietnam was the tenth party congress of the Communist Party of Vietnam, the sole legal party of Vietnam; it occurred between April 18 and April 25, 2006, in Ba Ðình Hall, Hanoi. The party congress occurs once every five years. A total of...

 
18 – 25 April 2006 Hà Nội 1176 ~3,100,000 Party members, for the first time, were officially allowed to involve in capitalist economic activities.
11th Congress
Eleventh National Congress of the Communist Party of Vietnam
The Eleventh National Congress of the Communist Party of Vietnam was the eleventh party congress of the Communist Party of Vietnam, the sole legal party of Vietnam; it occurred between January 12 and January 19, 2011, at the My Dinh National Convention Centre, Hanoi....

 
12 – 19 January 2011 Hà Nội 1377 ~3,600,000


The National Congress elects the Central Committee, consisting of 160 full members and 21 candidates. The Central Committee usually meets twice a year.

Politburo


The Politburo, currently consisting of fourteen members, determines government policy, while the Secretariat, currently consisting of eight members, oversees day-to-day policy implementation. The Party's Central Military Commission
Central Military Commission
A Central Military Commission or National Defense Commission is an organisation typical of Communist one-party states, responsible for supervising the nation's armed forces....

, which is composed of select Politburo members and additional military leaders, determines military policy.

Despite efforts to discourage the overlapping of party membership with state positions, the practice continues. Currently, four Politburo members hold high positions in the government.

The current Politburo was selected in January 2011 and includes:"Ông Nguyễn Phú Trọng đắc cử Tổng Bí thư", BaoOnline.vn, 20 January 2011. Includes pictures of the entire leadership.
  1. Trương Tấn Sang
    Truong Tan Sang
    Trương Tấn Sang is the president of Vietnam and the senior member of the Politburo, the executive committee of the ruling Communist Party. He was ranked as the party's number one leader following the 11th National Congress held in Hanoi in January 2011."", BaoOnline.vn, January 20, 2011. Includes...

    , Standing Secretary of the Party Central Committee's Secretariat (State President since July 2011, Chairman of Security and Defense Council)
  2. Sr. Lt Gen. Phùng Quang Thanh
    Phùng Quang Thanh
    Phùng Quang Thanh is currently Vietnam's minister of defense and is ranked as the No. 2 leader in the country's Communist Party."", BaoOnline.vn, January 20, 2011. Includes pictures of the entire leadership. He is an officer of the Vietnam People's Army and a member of the Politburo of the...

    , Minister of Defence, Vice Secretary of Party's Central Military Commission
  3. Nguyễn Tấn Dũng, Prime Minister
  4. Nguyễn Sinh Hùng, Deputy Prime Minister (Chairman of the National Assembly since July 2011)
  5. General Lê Hồng Anh
    Le Hong Anh
    Lê Hồng Anh is the Minister of Public Security of Vietnam. He was conferred general by the president of Vietnam on January 9, 2005....

    , Minister of Public Security
  6. Lê Thanh Hải, Party Secretary for Ho Chi Minh City
  7. Tô Huy Rứa, chairman, chief of the Central Information and Education Committee
  8. Nguyễn Phú Trọng, Chairman of the National Assembly, named as Secretary-General of the Communist Party, Secretary of Party's Central Military Commission
  9. Phạm Quang Nghị, Party Secretary for Ha Noi
  10. Trần Đại Quang, Lieutenant-general, Deputy Minister of Public Security
  11. Tòng Thị Phóng, Deputy Chairwoman of the National Assembly
  12. Ngô Văn Dụ, chairman, CPV Inspectorate Commission
  13. Đinh Thế Huynh, Editor-in-Chief of the Nhan Dan Newspaper
  14. Nguyễn Xuân Phúc, Chairman of the Government Office

Secretariat


The current Secretariat, since February 2011, consists of:
  1. Nguyễn Phú Trọng, General Secretary
  2. Trương Tấn Sang
    Truong Tan Sang
    Trương Tấn Sang is the president of Vietnam and the senior member of the Politburo, the executive committee of the ruling Communist Party. He was ranked as the party's number one leader following the 11th National Congress held in Hanoi in January 2011."", BaoOnline.vn, January 20, 2011. Includes...

    , Standing Member of the Secretariat
  3. General Lê Hồng Anh
    Le Hong Anh
    Lê Hồng Anh is the Minister of Public Security of Vietnam. He was conferred general by the president of Vietnam on January 9, 2005....

    , charge of home affairs
  4. Tô Huy Rứa, chairman, chief of the Central Information and Education Committee (Chief of the Central Communist Party Committee Office, since February 2011)
  5. Ngô Văn Dụ, chairman, CPV Inspectorate Commission,
  6. Đinh Thế Huynh, Editor-in-Chief of the Nhan Dan Newspaper (Chief of the Party’s Committee for Propaganda and Education, since February 2011)
  7. Ngô Xuân Lịch, General Department of Politics of the Vietnam People’s Army
  8. Trương Hoà Bình, President of the People’s Supreme Court
  9. Hà Thị Khiết, Chief of the Central Committee for Public Relations
  10. Nguyễn Thị Kim Ngân, Minister of Labour, War Invalids and Social Affairs (Deputy Chairwoman of the National Assembly, since July 2011)

General Secretaries


The activities of Politburo and Secretariat are directed by the General Secretary, called "First Secretary" from 1960 to 1976. The General Secretary is considered the Party's leader, though between 1951 and 1969, the position of President of the Central Committee, held by Ho Chi Minh
Ho Chi Minh
Hồ Chí Minh , born Nguyễn Sinh Cung and also known as Nguyễn Ái Quốc, was a Vietnamese Marxist-Leninist revolutionary leader who was prime minister and president of the Democratic Republic of Vietnam...

, was considered supreme.
Name Term start Term end
Trần Phú
Trần Phú
Trần Phú was the first general secretary of the Indochinese Communist Party, later renamed to Communist Party of Vietnam. He was born on May 1, 1904, at the village an An Tho, now part of An Dan Commune, Tuy An District, where his father, Tran Van Pho, was as teacher...

1930 1931
Lê Hồng Phong 1935 1936
Hà Huy Tập 1936 1938
Nguyễn Văn Cừ
Nguyen Van Cu
Nguyễn Văn Cử was a lieutenant in the Vietnam Air Force, best known for being one of two mutinous pilots involved in the 1962 South Vietnamese Presidential Palace bombing on 27 February 1962, which aimed to assassinate South Vietnam's President Ngô Đình Diệm and his immediate family, who were his...

1938 1940
Trường Chinh
Truong Chinh
Trường Chinh Trường Chinh Trường Chinh (pseudonym meaning “Long March”, born Đặng Xuân Khu (b. February 9, 1907 in Xuân Trường District, Nam Định Province, d. September 30, 1988 in Hanoi) was a Vietnamese communist political leader and theoretician. From 1941 to 1957, he was Vietnam's second-ranked...

1941 1 Nov 1956
Hồ Chí Minh
Ho Chi Minh
Hồ Chí Minh , born Nguyễn Sinh Cung and also known as Nguyễn Ái Quốc, was a Vietnamese Marxist-Leninist revolutionary leader who was prime minister and president of the Democratic Republic of Vietnam...

1 Nov 1956 Sep 1960
Lê Duẩn Sep 1960 10 Jul 1986
Trường Chinh
Truong Chinh
Trường Chinh Trường Chinh Trường Chinh (pseudonym meaning “Long March”, born Đặng Xuân Khu (b. February 9, 1907 in Xuân Trường District, Nam Định Province, d. September 30, 1988 in Hanoi) was a Vietnamese communist political leader and theoretician. From 1941 to 1957, he was Vietnam's second-ranked...

14 Jul 1986 19 Dec 1986
Nguyễn Văn Linh
Nguyen Van Linh
Nguyễn Văn Linh was a Vietnamese revolutionary and politician. He was the general secretary of the Communist Party of Vietnam from 1986 to 1991 and a political leader of the Vietcong during the Vietnam War...

18 Dec 1986 27 Jun 1991
Đỗ Mười 27 Jun 1991 29 Dec 1997
Lê Khả Phiêu 29 Dec 1997 22 Apr 2001
Nông Đức Mạnh 22 Apr 2001 – 2011
Nguyễn Phú Trọng 2011 Incumbent

Further reading


External links


See also

  • Nhân Dân (The People)
    Nhân Dân
    Nhân Dân is the official newspaper of the Communist Party of Vietnam. According to the newspaper, it is “the voice of the Party, State and people of Vietnam.”...

  • Tenth National Congress of the Communist Party of Vietnam
    Tenth National Congress of the Communist Party of Vietnam
    The Tenth National Congress of the Communist Party of Vietnam was the tenth party congress of the Communist Party of Vietnam, the sole legal party of Vietnam; it occurred between April 18 and April 25, 2006, in Ba Ðình Hall, Hanoi. The party congress occurs once every five years. A total of...

  • Politburo of the Communist Party of Vietnam
    Politburo of the Communist Party of Vietnam
    The Politburo of the Central Committee Communist Party of Vietnam , formerly the Standing Committee of the Central Committee, includes the top leadership of the Communist Party of Vietnam...

  • Central Committee of the Communist Party of Vietnam
    Central Committee of the Communist Party of Vietnam
    The Central Committee of the Communist Party of Vietnam established 1930, is the highest authority within the Communist Party of Vietnam elected by the Party National Congresses...

  • List of Communist Parties
  • List of political parties in Vietnam