Roman Catholic Freedom of Religion In The 20th Century

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In order to understand more fully some history of the 20th century, we need to delve into who exactly Ngo Dinh Diem was. Let us find out:

Diem was a staunch Roman Catholic born in Viet Nam. His brother was the Archbishop of Hue. Early in his life, Diem wanted to become a priest, but then decided to become a monk and entered a Monastary at the age of 15. Diem was also anti-communist.

For some time, he lived in the United States, and got an introduction to Cardinal Spellman, who was a confidante of Pope Pius XII. Indeed, on a trip to Rome with his archbishop brother, Diem met Pius personally and had private conversations.

Diem eventually came to the attention of John Dulles (US Secretary of State) and Allen Dulles (head of the CIA), both of whom were ardently anti-communist and at the same time, ardently Roman Catholic.

While this was going on, the US signed an agreement with France to take control from France over Viet Nam. This was done in order to “help” Viet Nam from becoming a Communist nation. The Vatican at the time, supported this. Cardinal Spellman was in fact a “go between” for The Vatican and the US government.

During this time, it was feared that a true democratic election in Viet Nam would result in a “democracy” unfavourable to the US – a socialist government.

Diem was selected by American interests to become the leader of Viet Nam. It is now widely believed that the election that “elected” Diem was completely fraudulent, but nonetheless, Diem was installed as the Prime Minister of South Vietnam.

Because he did not always please his American handlers, America “allowed” for his eventual assassination. But in the meantime, Diem the staunch Roman Catholic did the following:

The next year, October 26, 1956, he promulgated a new Constitution. Imitating Mussolini, Hitler, and also Ante Pavelich of Catholic Croatia, (not to mention Franco of Catholic Spain, and Salazar of Catholic Portugal,) he inserted an article, Article 98, which gave him full dictatorial powers. The article read in part as follows: “During the first legislative term, the president (that is Diem) may decree a temporary suspension of . . . (there followed almost all the civil liberties of the nation) to meet the legitimate demands of public security, etc.” The article should have expired in April, 1961, but it was maintained indefinitely.

But even more dangerously ominous was a decree that Diem had issued before that. In January, 1956, he had already promulgated a personal presidential order, which was already portending the shape of things to come. The Order 46, read as follows:

Individuals considered dangerous to the national defense and common security may be confined by executive order, to a concentration camp.

Although, some American “advisors” had blinked at the decree, it was taken for granted. They were mere threatening words. Others, however, knew they were meant to be preparatory measures to be taken once the transformation of South Vietnam into a total Catholic State started to be put into force.

The campaign began with a mass denunciation of communism. That is, it was given a purely ideological undertone. It was officially called “The Anti-Communist Denunciation Campaign.” The operation was acceptable and, in view of the circumstances, was even a plausible one. Yet, behind its facade its real objective was the Catholicization of the country. It was McCarthyism transplanted into Vietnam. The campaign, in fact, had been inspired and promoted by the same elements which had supported McCarthyism in the U.S. Chief amongst these were the Kennedy brothers, Mr. Richard Nixon, Cardinal Spellman and certain factions of the CIA.

The Vietnamese McCarthyism turned even more vicious than its American counterpart. It was brought down to street and denominational levels. Sections of villages denounced other sections because they were not as Catholic as themselves, under the excuse that they were not as anti-Communist. Students, and indeed children, were encouraged to denounce their parents. School teachers instructed their pupils to listen and to report members of their families who criticized either Diem or the bishops, or the Catholic Church. Parents, grandparents, professors, monks, Buddhists were arrested without any warrant
or legal formalities. Soon searches and raids were organized in a systematic scale all over South Vietnam. A fearful pattern came quickly to the fore: denunciations and arrests of suspects, interrogations by the police, regroupings, the encirclements of whole villages, the disappearance of individuals, without leaving any trace . Brutal interrogations, deportations, and indiscriminate tortures were used wherever those arrested did not cooperate in denouncing others.

The jails were soon bursting with prisoners. The mass arrests became so numerous that finally it was necessary to open detention camps followed by additional ones euphemistically called internment camps. The reality of the matter being, that they were veritable death camps. To mention only one by name, that of Phu Loi, Thu Dai Mot province, where there occurred a mass poisoning of more than 600 people, there were over 1000 dead.

There followed massacres within and outside such detention sites, like those which took place at Mocay, Thanhphu, Soctrang, Canginoc, Dailoc, Duyxuyen, to mention only a few. Religious sects and racial minorities were persecuted, arrested and whenever possible eliminated. To save themselves from arrest or even death many detainees had to accept the religion, language and customs of the new South Vietnam, as did the minority of Chinese and the Khmer, whose schools were closed down. Minor groups were exterminated or accepted the Catholic Church to save their lives.”

~ Chapter 10, Vietnam: Why Did We Go? Avro Manhattan

Get that? Non Roman Catholics exterminated. No, not 500 years ago. Not during the Crusades. We’re talking about about 50 years ago. Do your own research, and find the truth if you don’t believe me.

More, soon.

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