Claim: Many Vietnamese Americans believe Trump is anti-communist because he is a member of the Republican Party, which many Vietnamese Americans perceive as being anti-communist.
Rating: This is HALF TRUE. While the Republican Party has been very adamant in its rhetoric that it is the anti-communist party, it is not clear that the party’s foreign policies have been more anti-communist than the Democratic Party.
Here are several notable actions taken by party leaders:
- President Harry Truman, a Democrat, implemented the Truman Doctrine starting in 1947 to contain the spread of communism. Truman also sent American troops to fight Communists in North Korea.
- President John Kennedy, a Democrat, ordered the Bay of Pigs invasion in Cuba against Communist leader Fidel Castro.
- Democratic presidents initiated anti-communist military actions in the 1960s, which cemented the US’s commitment to South Vietnam. Kennedy sent the first military advisors to South Vietnam to counter the spread of Communism in the region. President Lyndon Johnson continued by authorizing the first use of combat troops to defend South Vietnam, which we commonly refer to as the Vietnam War.
- Republican presidents disengaged the US from Vietnam. Republican President Richard Nixon withdrew US troops and signed the Paris Peace Accords in 1973, leading to the fall of Saigon two years later. In 1975, Republican President Gerald Ford declared the end of the Vietnam War.
Conclusion: There are numerous examples from history of presidents from both parties targeting communism. However, the belief that only the Republican Party is anti-communist is false and overshadows the many significant contributions from Democrats to the US’s foreign policy and military response to communist threats.