THE BLOG

Vietnam's Communism Rapped at 85

04/02/2015 10:28 GMT | Updated 05/04/2015 10:59 BST

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Rapper Nah Nguyen Vu Son was born in early 1990s in Ho Chi Minh city, more than 15 years after Saigon fell and 60 years after the birth of the Vietnamese Communist Party that turned 85 on February 3rd.

Unlike the Vietnamese Communist Party's boss, who is more than 70 years old, Nah hasn't lived through Vietnam's wars against France, the United States, the Khmer Rouge and China.

And contrary to the publicly expressed love to the party by party chief Nguyen Phu Trong, Nah openly said he hated the party.

In fact, he was the person who pushed the 'I dislike the Communist Party of Vietnam' to the limit with a song swearing at the party that had attracted more than 140,000 views on YouTube after two weeks.

The rapper's Facebook page had 14,000 likes while the 'I dislike the Communist Party of Vietnam' page garnered 7,000 fans.

The Communist Party celebrated its 85th birthday with a legitimacy crisis at least among sections of the youth and intellectuals.

'Hating the party'

In a recent open letter to the Communist Party, Nah accused the party of wishing to buy weapons from Washington to fight against Beijing on the one hand but also sold "land and natural resources" to China on the other.

He wrote:

"If [you] don't resign and apologise to the people, you'll be forced to shamefully leave the positions you're occupying and this will go down in history books.

People who dare to speak like me will be more and more numerous.

"Vietnamese people will reclaim freedom of expression, freedom of the press and the right to govern the country despite your obstinacy.

The rapper, who is now in the United States for studying, also wrote:

"Every political change starts with a change in understanding.

"The number [of people] who hate the Communist Party and [who] know the crime of the Communist [Party] has been increasing at a rapid rate.

"People who dare to speak like me will be more and more numerous."

'Change in understanding'

Indeed many people who join the 'I dislike the Communist Party of Vietnam' share Nah's way of thinking.

Dang Uyen Nghi told BBC Vietnamese that with various burning social issues and the hard lives faced by many people at the moment the Communist Party's "days were numbered" and party members would 'canibalise' each other.

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"There are countless reasons [for me] to dislike the Communist Party," Dang added.

"For me, the most prominent [reason] is that the Communist Party extensively carry out its policy to make people ignorant.

"Vietnamese people have very little knowledge of human rights."

Dang said her family and friends either publicly agree with her opinion or silently did so by reading and "liking" what she wrote.

She said changes in Vietnam could only come when the people understood that they were the masters of the country's destiny.

"It's a difficult thing [to achieve]. Many others and I have understood that and [we're] trying to make as many people to understand as possible," she said.

'Lack of patience'

People like Dang and Nah immediately have become targets of virtual attacks by pro-party members.

A blogger accused members of the former regime in Sai Gon of staging the "I dislike the Communist Party of Vietnam" campaign while Nah was accused of being under the influence of the US-based Viet Tan political party that the Communist Party disliked the most.

But the single party system only became dominant throughout Vietnam after the collapse of the multi-party regime in the south in 1975.

The system gives the Communist Party absolute power but the party also has to shoulder all the blames.

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Commentators say a series of mistakes by the party have led to a moral crisis, rampant corruption and the country with 90 million people only ranks 136/191 surveyed countries in per capita income.

A famous writer told the BBC that the party made its mistakes as early as in the 1950s with its land reform policy that "broke the basic social tissues" that were families, villages and communes.

Vietnam's political, economic and social policies in the 1970s also led to millions to leave by boats, many died trying to cross the sea to look for freedom.

In the same decade, Vietnam fought against the Khmer Rouge and China when the country's economy was in shambles.

The Communist Party has publicly acknowledged the existence of rampant corruption and abuse of power in its political system but there are no signs of impending major changes of policy ahead of the party's Congress that will take place in about a year's time.

And while many secretly cursed the Communist Party of Vietnam for current social problems, Nah has chosen to act in the way of the youth that, according to him, "seriously lack patience".

His rap song swearing at the party received 400 dislikes on YouTube but also achieved 2,000 likes.