Friday, May 4, 2007

Wall Street Journal May 4: Memo to Hanoi

May 4, 2007

Memo to Hanoi

A Catholic priest who has already spent over 13 years in prison is rearrested and sentenced to eight more years for serving as an advisor to a democracy movement and a new political party. A woman, whose husband had recently been released from jail after serving time for spreading pro-democracy material, is hit by a car -- believed to be driven and occupied by plainclothes police officers -- in an effort to intimidate her and prevent her from meeting with the U.S. Ambassador. A lawyer who travels to the U.S. to serve as a Fellow at the National Endowment for Democracy is arrested within a week of his return home, and charged with engaging in activities aimed at overthrowing the government.

While these stories sound like they were lifted from the files of the KGB, they are, in reality, all events that have recently taken place in Vietnam.