Hanoi (VNA) – Officers and soldiers of Brigade 955 are loyal to the Party, the homeland, and the people and are dedicated to firmly safeguarding sovereignty over the Truong Sa ( Spratly ) archipelago, contributing to ensuring Vietnam’s sovereignty over its seas, islands, and continental shelf regardless of circumstances. Brigade 955 is assigned the key task of delivering aid to, conducting search and rescue efforts around, and transporting guests of the Party, State, army and navy to islands in Truong Sa , which belongs to the central coastal province of Khanh Hoa; protecting the exploration and exploitation of oil and gas; and patrolling, managing, and protecting waters in the Cam Ranh military base.
Many facilities of the provincial military command were built in 2016, such as the barracks of the military commands of Hai Ha, Co To, and Binh Lieu districts, Quang Yen town, and Mong Cai city, to name but a few.
The new buildings have contributed to improving the troops’ living conditions and accelerating the emulation drive of “Building and managing regular, green, clean and beautiful barracks” in each unit.
On this occasion, General San acknowledged and spoke highly of the unit’s building progress over the past time. He urged the provincial military command to embrace higher levels’ instructions, implement projects as scheduled, and closely monitor the construction quality, contributing to meeting the task requirements in the current context.
Previously, the delegation inspected building missions at Brigade 242 of Military Region 3.
Translated by Trung Thanh
This was part of a program of the Ministry of National Defense to celebrate the 46th anniversary of the liberation of the South and national reunification (April 30, 1975).
The event was co-chaired by Senior Lieutenant General Nguyen Tan Cuong, Deputy Minister of National Defense and Co-head of the Seminar Steering Committee; Nguyen Phu Cuong, Secretary of the Dong Nai Provincial Party Committee, Chairman of the Provincial People’s Council, Co-head of the Seminar Steering Committee; Senior Lieutenant General Tran Quang Phuong, Deputy Director of the General Department of Politics, Deputy Head of the Seminar Steering Committee, as well as Chairman of Dong Nai Provincial People’s Committee Cao Tien Dung, Deputy Commander of Military Region 7 Major General Du Truong Giang, Commander of Army Corps 2 Major General Pham Van Hoa, Director of the Vietnam Military History Institute Major General Nguyen Hoang Nhien.
Present at the seminar were also former Chairman of the General Department of Politics Senior Lieutenant General Pham Thanh Ngan, Deputy Head of the Party Central Committee’s Commission for Mass Mobilization Nguyen Hong Linh, as well as representatives of departments, ministries, central branches, defense agencies, military units, general-ranks, historical witnesses, and domestic and international scientists.
Highlighting the sound leadership and proper policies of the Party
Speaking at the opening of the seminar, Senior Lieutenant General Nguyen Tan Cuong emphasized, in the last days of April 1975, Army Corps 2 was assigned to fighting the enemy in Dong Nai, southeast of Saigon – one of the five directions of attack in the Ho Chi Minh Campaign. Army Corps 2 was one of the units that opened fire to begin the Ho Chi Minh Campaign. Along with local armed forces and people, units of Army Corps 2 engaged in fierce battles against the enemy in southeastern Saigon. They smashed the enemy’s southeastern perimeter defensive line, facilitating our general uprising and offensive on the center of Saigon – the hideout of the U.S.’s henchman government, to completely liberate the South and reunite the country.
The victory in the southeastern direction of attack shows the strength of synergistic combat and close, effective coordination among revolutionary forces, namely the people and armed forces of Dong Nai province and regular military units of Army Corps 2. It also affirms the important position and significant contribution of our forces in the southeast direction in the Ho Chi Minh Campaign.
Highlighting major subjects of the seminar, Senior Lieutenant General Tran Quang Phuong suggested delegates, scientists and historical witnesses analyze and clarify the circumstance in South Vietnam prior to the historic Ho Chi Minh Campaign; situational developments in favor of the revolutionary side; the enemy’s situation; the strategic vision, right policy and sound leadership of the Politburo and the Central Military Commission; the smart direction, and excellent command and control of the campaign from strategic staff agencies under the Ministry of National Defense. General Phuong also requested former commanders and scientists to explain the situation of the revolutionary forces; Southern people and armed forces’ preparations for the Ho Chi Minh Campaign, force organization and the position of the revolutionary forces, including local forces and Army Corps 2, in southeastern Saigon.
In his speech, Major General Nguyen Duc Huy, former Deputy Commander of Division 325 (Army Corps 2), former Acting Commander of Military Region 2 and one of the historical witnesses, underlined, “To ensure the victory of the Ho Chi Minh Campaign, the Party Central Committee mobilized four army corps and Grouping 232 (equivalent to an army corps) along with the local military units and local people. The Politburo and the Central Committee of the Party set requirements and assigned specific tasks to the forces undertaking each direction of attack. The Politburo and the Party Central Committee also instructed the Defense Ministry to focus forces on the east and southeast of Saigon to destroy the enemy’s important targets in the southeastern provinces of Long Khanh and Ba Ria – Vung Tau before tightening siege around Saigon city. Following higher-level instructions, the Ho Chi Minh Campaign Command assigned Army Corps 2 to attacking from the southeastern direction. Alongside the local forces, Army Corps 2 successfully accomplished its assignment, contributing significantly to the great victory of the Ho Chi Minh Campaign.
Assoc. Prof., Dr. Ha Minh Hong (University of Social Sciences and Humanities of Ho Chi Minh City) emphasized that, among the five especially important targets that must be conquered, the Independence Palace was the most important. Our forces in all five directions of attack on Saigon completed the combat plans on April 30, 1975. Army Corps 2 from the southeast was the first to enter Saigon and took the Independence Palace.
Lessons about the coordination of forces
Reports at the seminar underlined, in people’s warfare, regular military units will never separate from local armed forces and people. To clarify the thesis, Head of the Education and Information Commission of the Dong Nai Provincial Party Committee Pham Xuan Ha stated, “The Party Committee, the local army and people of Dong Nai with the spirit of self-reliance actively conducted people’s warfare and coordinated with Army Corps 2 in fighting and capturing the enemy’s Nuoc Trong base, Armored School, Infantry School, Long Binh warehouse, and Long Thanh Military Sub-command. Especially, local people actively mobilized enemy troops to turn to the revolutionary side, rose up to take over the local governments from the U.S. henchmen, and provided human and material support for armed forces to combat enemy military troops.”
Senior Colonel Vu Van Dien, Chief of the Dong Nai provincial Military Command, shared a similar view, saying that to pave the way for a contingent of Army Corps 2 to jab deep into the enemy’s den in Saigon city, the armed forces of Bien Hoa were assigned to fighting the enemy and controlling the route, particularly bridges, leading to central Saigon. Meanwhile, the local people and armed forces rose up and seized power, creating more motive power for the regular army to fight the enemy in southeast Saigon.
Senior Colonel Nguyen Van Thuat, Deputy Commander of the Armored Corps, stated, “The effective coordination among forces was evidently demonstrated in a number of battles. Thanks to the effective coordination and support of ground infantry units, Tank Brigade 203 (Army Corps 2) defeated enemy garrisons in Nuoc Trong base, at Thai junction, and at the commando airfield. Meanwhile, the local armed forces protected bridges and roads for Army Corps 2 to quickly maneuver into Saigon city as planned. In particular, local people transported nearly one division of Army Corps 2 across the river under fierce enemy bombardment.
Applying and promoting historical and traditional values
During discussions, delegates highlighted academic and practical values of scientific studies and reports delivered at the seminar. They all agreed that research of battles in the past war is needed as lessons from the old battles can be applied to military training for cadets at military schools and troops of military units.
From the perspective of a military expert, Assoc. Prof., Dr., Lieutenant General Nguyen Ngoc Ca, Rector of the Army Officers Training School No.2, affirmed that lessons drawn from the past battles will help the school improve the contents of its training programs for officers and cadets, contributing to building a modernized military by 2030 according to the Resolution of the 13th National Party Congress.
Concluding the seminar, Senior Lieutenant General Nguyen Tan Cuong highly appreciated the scientific findings of presentations and fruitful results of discussions at the seminar, saying that the organizing panel of the seminar received more than 80 reports from high-ranking military and civilian officials, scientists and historical witnesses who engaged in the war.
He affirmed that the reports at the seminar are valuable documents for historians, researchers, military people and people from all walks of life to learn more about the historical Ho Chi Minh Campaign, particularly details of battles in southeastern Saigon in April 1975.
General Cuong noted that the seminar has elicited national pride and patriotism while lessons drawn from the Ho Chi Minh Campaign and battles in southeast Saigon have contributed importantly to the cause of building and firmly defending the Socialist Vietnam Fatherland and building the Vietnam People’s Army into a modernized military by 2030.
Translated by Thu Nguyen
In the last days of April 1975, the morale of the Saigon military in particular and Saigon Government in general was sinking. On April 25, President Nguyen Van Thieu fled Saigon and was soon followed by numerous senior civilian officials, and high-rankingmilitary officers afterward.
Meanwhile, from five directions, the Liberation Army laid a siege around Saigon, with Army Corps 3 from the Northwest, Army Corps 1 from the North, Army Corps 2 from the Southeast, Army Corps 4 from the East, Corps 232 and Division 8 of Military Region 8 from the West and the Southwest.
At 5p.m. on April 26, 1975, the operation started. Troops of the Liberation Army breached the outer defensive line of the enemy and blocked road and waterway transportation routes to the Southwestern region and to the sea.
From the East and Southeast, artillery batteries opened fire on targets in Trang Bom, Ho Nai, Bien Hoa, Nuoc Trong, Long Thanh, Duc Thanh, and Ba Ria. After the calculated barrage, infantry troops of Army Corps 2 and Army Corps 4 charged forward, beginning the offensive.
From the Eastern flank, Division 341 of Army Corps 4, supported by a tank battalion and an anti-aircraft artillery battalion, captured Trang Bom, one of the most important strongholds on the outer defensive line of the enemy. The battles lasted for hours with the engagement of tanks and armored vehicles of the two sides.
From the Southeast, on April 26, Army Corps 2 attacked and took hold of Duc Thanh military sub-district. After two hours of intense fighting, the Liberation Army captured Binh Gia, Ngai Giao, Nui Dat and then liberated Xuyen Moc and Long Le with the support of local forces. At 9 p.m. the same day, Infantry Regiment 141 and a tank company, with artillery fire support from the Army Corps, attacked Vung Tau town. The enemy troops launched a weak counter-attack and then fled the town.
Coming from the Northwest, the main attack direction, Army Corp 3 aimed to seize Tan Son Nhat Airport and the Saigon Joint General Staff. Accordingly, Division 10 was responsible for attacking and taking control of the two targets. Other units, including Infantry Division 316, Infantry Division 320A and Commando Regiment 198, supported the division by suppressing enemy troops in Trang Bang, Dong Du, Bong Bridge, and Sang Bridge on Road 1 and Road 15.
Army Corps 1 was responsible for opening the offensive from the Northern direction. Crossing a distance of 1,700km from the North, on April 14, 1975, Army Corps 1 reached the rendezvous point in Dong Xoai. On April 26, Army Corps 1 captured positions in northern Saigon and were ready to open fire. The Army Corps then exercised diversion tactics, forcing the enemy to order the 8th Regiment of its 5th Division to block Road 14.
From the West and Southwest, Infantry Division 5 of Corps 232 and Infantry Division 8 of Military Region 8 supported by Engineer Brigade 341 and local troops, attacked checkpoints along the two rivers of Vam Co Dong and Vam Co Tay in Long An province.
As a result, Road 4 was blocked and Saigon was completely besieged!
Translated by Huu Duong
Phu Quoc City with many resorts and tourist destinations has air routes linking with many provinces and cities domestically and internationally. So far military units stationed in the city have well carried out COVID-19 prevention and control measures, promptly detected and arrested illegal immigrants in line with the directives and plans of higher levels.
Currently, the Medical Center and barracks of Company 77 (Brigade 950, Military Region 9) in the city have set up quarantined zones with 60 beds and 100 beds respectively.
In addition, the Kien Giang provincial Military Command has also worked with local militiamen, border guards and police to run 30 anti-COVID-19 checkpoints.
Concluding the inspection, General Nam hailed the units’ efforts over the past time and asked them to boost information dissemination on COVID-19 prevention and control in the local community, promote patrols so as to control their designated waters and border areas while ensuring material lives for troops on duty at the checkpoints.
Translated by Khanh Ngan
Hủ Tiếu Mực Ông Già Cali in coastal Vũng Tàu City specialises in only one dish – hủ tiếu – served with a tasty signature broth that keeps diners, including Mỹ Duyên, coming back for more.
Along with bánh canh, a thick rice-noodle soup, hủ tiếu (thin rice-noodle soup) is a popular dish in southern Việt Nam and also happens to be my favourite.
The soup is served with different kinds of broth and either pork or seafood or a combination of both. It is one of the best dishes from the south and should not be missed. It can be eaten for breakfast, lunch, or dinner, or even as a snack.
During my last visit to the southern coastal province of Bà Rịa – Vũng Tàu, my twins and I sampled seafood delicacies, including hủ tiếu mực , or thin-rice noodle soup with fresh squid, which may have been the most memorable.
I’m a fan of bánh canh and hủ tiếu, and when I can’t find time to cook, I often go out for a bowl. Mostly, I eat rice-noodle soup with pork, so this was the first time I had squid and pork soup, which had a decidedly different taste.
It was a windy evening when we arrived at the Vũng Tàu beach city. Because it was late for dinner, we were terribly hungry and went straight to Hủ Tiếu Mực Ông Già Cali, a nearby rice-noodle restaurant just after checking in at our hotel.
Located on Lê Hồng Phong Street, one of the beautiful streets in the centre of Vũng Tàu City that leads directly to the white sandy beach, the restaurant is a familiar destination for travellers.
With a good city view, it is full of visitors in the daytime, especially during the high season when tourists flock to the beach city to spend time with family and friends relaxing, eating, and enjoy the seaside.
Renowned for its fresh squid noodle soup in a striking yet informal setting, the restaurant never disappoints its loyal clientele, who come back year after year for the specialty and its fabulous flavours prepared in a southern manner.
The restaurant is designed like a typical wooden southern country house filled with wooden furniture. Everything is finely arranged and tidy. Its outdoor space is decorated with small beautiful flower pots, creating an airy atmosphere and cosy ambience.
We ordered three bowls of the fresh squid noodle soup at VNĐ69,000 each.
As the restaurant’s slogan is “ Hủ tiếu mực — Fine cuisine of the Vietnamese people”, it makes the soup differently from other kinds of hủ tiếu I have had, such as hủ tiếu tàu (rice noodle soup Chinese-style) or hủ tiếu Nam Vang ( Phnom Penh-style rice noodle soup). The broth, however, is prepared with the same ingredients — pork bones.
As the waiter walked towards us with bowls of soup, my senses were awakened. When the bowl was placed in front of me, it looked irresistible. Finely arranged with fresh squid rings, meatballs, half-boiled quail egg, golden brown onion slices, and spring onions on top, the dish was eye-catching and with a nice aroma.
What impressed me first were the rice noodles, which were chewy and thin with a milky light white colour (while Chinese-style noodles are flat, soft and bigger, with a milky-white colour).
The pleasing savour came from the juicy slow-simmered bone broth, which was limpid and clear. It was surprisingly delicate in flavour, with a savoury umami and sweetness as well .
The secret of the soup was the quality of the squid and pork.
“The broth is the decisive element that made us famous,” a waiter told us. “We prepare our broth for several hours from the finest pork bones, and carefully select fresh squid using our own family secret. All of the steps in preparation are strictly controlled so that the soup we serve today and tomorrow has the same quality and taste.”
The fresh rice flour used for the noodles also contribute to its distinctive taste, and the meatballs delivered an especially fine taste like no other. It was a perfect combination of freshly minced pork, ground pepper, and diced onions. Notably, the squid was carefully selected so that they were neither big nor small, and were all the same size. The squid rings and meatballs were perfect complements.
To enhance the flavour, I added crown daisy and bean sprouts when the soup was still hot, and then mixed them. It was fantastic.
I next tried the squid rings with fresh green pepper sauce. Dipped in the homemade spicy sauce, the squid was irresistible. The rings were fresh, juicy and crunchy with a very milky white colour. The noodle soup, unlike any served in the city, was a delicacy that simply must be tried.
Meanwhile, my twins enjoyed the noodles without the vegetables and the spicy sauce. My son even begged for another portion. “I love the soup, please let me have more,” he said.
Besides hủ tiếu mực , guests can also order side dishes like squid, meatballs, or noodles with soup only.
After finishing a bowl of the squid noodle soup, I was almost full, but asked for two more bowls, one with squid and shrimp (VNĐ79,000 each) and another noodle with soup only (VNĐ15,000), for my children.
Five bowls of the squid noodles finally filled us up. It was quite late, so we walked back to our hotel and thought about returning there for breakfast before leaving for HCM City.
With its dedicated service and airy and cosy ambience, Hủ Tiếu Mực Ông Già Cali offers a perfect dining experience. VNS
Hủ Tiếu Mực Ông Già Cali Restaurant
Address: 3 Lê Hồng Phong Street
113 Hoàng Hoa Thám Street
Vũng Tàu City, Bà Rịa Vũng Tàu Province
Hotline: 0903 099 955
Comments: A southern Vietnamese delicacy at an affordable price. Cosy ambience and friendly, dedicated service.
Price: from VNĐ69,000 per bowl
Dine-in and delivery