Thích Trí Quang: 'Một trang lịch sử'

trích phỏng vấn Geoffrey Shaw, tác giả cuốn sách "The Lost Mandate of Heaven: The American Betrayal of Ngo Dinh Diem, President of Vietnam".

theo đó, tổng thống kennedy (do sợ bị kết án là điều hành một băng nhóm công giáo trong nhà trắng) đã chơi lá bài 'chống công giáo' là cử Henry Cabot Lodge (theo tân giáo) làm đại sứ mỹ tại sài gòn, ông này đã lừa dối (trắng trợn) diệm là mỹ đang tiếp tục ủng hộ, trong khi vẫn "phỉnh phờ" các tướng lĩnh do dự của miền nam tiến hành đảo chính - mà theo tác giả là: như cố "đẩy sợi bún", các tướng lĩnh ko thực tâm muốn, chỉ duy nhất tướng dương văn minh (béo) cực kỳ muốn trả thù vì minh béo bị ông nhu mắng nhiều năm trước khi phát hiện thụt quỹ lớn của chính phủ (nhưng ông diệm ko muốn nặng tay quá, mà "đá lên trên" (ngồi chơi xơi nước))...
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CWR: You don’t write much about it in the book, but did the long and deeply rooted American tradition of anti-Catholicism have anything to do with the Kennedy Administration’s abandonment of Diem? (There is irony in the question, considering that Kennedy was the first Catholic president—but the State Department, the media, and the American electorate remained predominantly non-Catholic.)

Shaw: Yes, I think you have hit the proverbial nail on the head (nói chính xác, đúng sự thật) in this question as Kennedy was greatly concerned about being accused (bị kết án) of running a Catholic cabal (bè đảng, phe đảng (chính trị)) in D.C. This was so much the case that he bent over backwards to create the opposite impression (ấn tượng ngược lại), which helped Diem’s foes (kẻ thù) substantially. For example, the ambassador sent out to replace Nolting, Henry Cabot Lodge, came from a prestigious (danh tiếng) New England family that was every-inch the upper-crust Episcopalian, non-Catholic Bostonian. In turn, he felt no particular restraint (kiềm chế, hạn chế) upon himself when he went out to Vietnam to usher (báo hiệu, mở ra; đánh dấu sự khởi đầu) in a coup (đảo chính, lật đổ) against Diem in 1963. He lied straight-faced to Diem about how America would keep on supporting him while he had reluctant (do dự, dao động) Vietnamese generals cajoled (phỉnh phờ, tán tỉnh) into coup-formation. He even gave an enemy of the state (kẻ thù của chế độ), Thich Tri Quang, asylum (tị nạn) in the U.S. Embassy, even while the devilish (ma tà, gian tà, quỷ quái; ác hiểm, hiểm độc, độc ác) monk (nhà sư, thầy tu) continued to orchestrate (dàn xếp cái gì cẩn thận (và đôi khi không ngay thẳng) để đem lại một kết quả mong muốn; sắp đặt; bố trí) insurrection (cuộc nổi dậy) against Diem. Kennedy knew that Lodge had “gone off the reservation” (hành động vượt rào) but felt helpless to recall him lest the “Catholic card” was played against him. It was a very odd, paradoxical playing out of the problem of politically correct (phải đạo chính trị) reverse discrimination as it would seem; had Lyndon Johnson been at the helm (lãnh đạo) at that critical hour—and we know he was not worried one iota about being accused of bias in favor of Catholics—the coup would have never happened.

Most Americans do not realize just how much Lodge and the Harriman cabal had to push the Vietnamese generals to embark on a coup. I remember reading one report—I think it was from CIA operative Lucien Conein to Lodge—stating that getting the ARVN (South Vietnam army) generals to plot against Diem was like trying to push spaghetti. The would-be Vietnamese coup officers were quite distinctly (dễ thấy) dragging their heels (trì hoãn, làm rất chậm chạp), and Kennedy’s men were trying to push them on. The only one who truly wanted to get Diem was General Duong Van (“Big”) Minh as he had been disgraced (sự ô nhục, sự nhục nhã, sự hổ thẹn; điều ô nhục, điều nhục nhã, điều hổ thẹn) by Nhu many years earlier when Nhu caught him stealing (ăn trộm) a vast sum from the government. Nhu wanted Minh tried and sent to prison (bỏ tù) but Diem, always reluctant to be harsh, simply had Minh “kicked upstairs.”

So, with little doubt, Kennedy’s reluctance to even appear to have played the “Catholic card” actually helped, and to a substantial degree, the overthrow (lật đổ) and murders (ám sát) of Diem and his brother, Nhu. I also think Harriman was keenly aware that he could bully JFK over the Catholic issue because that is what he most certainly did in their Oval Office (Phòng Bầu dục) meetings concerned with Diem.

Tags: history

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