Viet Minh call to arms against the Japanese (1945)

In March 1945, the Viet Minh made the following call to arms to the Vietnamese people, urging them to struggle against Japanese occupation:


The fascist Japanese continue to despoil us: they have just seized more than 600 mau of rice paddies pertaining to the villages of the provinces of Phuc-Yen. Tens of thousands of peasants have been evicted from their villages and their houses. Gardens and rice fields have been occupied by the Japanese. Thousands of families are without hearths and wander about haphazardly.

Compatriots! Such is your lot. Do not lament uselessly. Everyone, arm yourselves with clubs, spears, knives, expel the Japanese brigands and recover control of your rice paddies and homes. The [American] bombs pour down wherever the Japanese are.

To avoid being in so dangerous an area, oust the undesirable hosts. Compatriots who live close to the Japanese, hide well your rice, your pigs, your chickens; don’t let them take these things.

Our blood boils. Our stomach is empty. Our belongings are plundered. Our hearths are destroyed. It is the Japanese who are responsible for all these disasters. There is only one way for us to save our lives; it is to prepare with all our compatriots to chase out the Japanese birds of prey.

Everyone, rise against the Japanese fascists, the seizers of lands. Long live Vietnam’s Independence!”