In November 2000, the author of these lines witnessed a truly historic event -the first official visit of the US President to Vietnam. Bill Clinton, who restored diplomatic relations between the two countries five years earlier, has put a nice end to his administration's foreign policy line on Vietnam. A new page has been opened in the difficult history of Vietnam-US relations. IN THE BEGINNING THERE WAS FRIENDSHIP Meticulous historians have found out that the beginning of contacts between two peoples living on different sides of the common Pacific Ocean lies at the turn of the XVIII-XIX centuries. There is information that Thomas Jefferson in 1787 met in Paris with the envoy of the Vietnamese dynasty Nguyen Prince Kan. American traders were the first to set foot on Vietnamese soil: in 1820, Captain John White arrived in Vung Tau on the ship "Franklin". Then he visited Da Nang and Saigon. He bought sugar there and left behind an interesting volume of travel notes in which he expressed his surprise at the large number of crocodiles in the Saigon River and the bureaucracy of local officials. And the first official US diplomatic mission was sent to Vietnam by President Andrew Jackson in 1832. And although the American president addressed the Vietnamese monarch with words of friendship and goodwill, it ended in vain. Overseas emissaries received from Vietnamese officials, as they say, "turn away from the gate". The first "military" incident between the two countries occurred in 1845, when an American warship under the command of Captain John Percival landed in Da Nang, capturing a group of local officials. The captain demanded the release of the French missionaries arrested by Emperor Thieu Chi in exchange for the captured Mandarins, but when refused, he left home, firing guns at the Vietnamese port with annoyance. Subsequently, US President Zachary Taylor sent a letter of apology to the Vietnamese emperor for the unfriendly action of the captain. The first Vietnamese t ... Read more

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China Online
Beijing, China
06.06.2024 (43 days ago)
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