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America Looks to Strengthen Ties With Vietnam

By 06/26/2023 9:30 PMNo CommentsBy YidInfo Staff


On Monday, two guided missile cruisers and an aircraft carrier from the United States paid a rare port call to Vietnam.

This comes as China and the United States are vying more and more for sway in Southeast Asia.

The guided missile cruisers USS Antietam and USS Robert Smalls, as well as the USS Ronald Reagan, arrived in Da Nang on Sunday for the visit.

Vietnam’s main commercial partner is its neighbor China, although tensions between Beijing and Vietnam, as well as Malaysia, Brunei, Indonesia, and the Philippines, have increased as a result of Beijing’s expansive territorial claims in the South China Sea.

In the meantime, the U.S. has been making diplomatic efforts to improve the Indo-Pacific region’s military and economic links.

The aircraft carrier’s port call follows U.S. trips to Vietnam this year, the third such visit since relations were restored following the conclusion of the Vietnam War.

USAID Administrator Samantha Power, U.S. Trade Representative Katherine Tai, and Secretary of State Antony Blinken

The Wilson Center’s Asia Program fellow Prashanth Parameswaran wrote in a research note that although aircraft carrier visits frequently garner media attention due to their highly visible nature, the more important question is how this will affect the development of ties, including Washington’s effort to improve relations.

After docking in Da Nang, a port that the United States built and enlarged during the war for its own use, the Ronald Reagan’s crew disembarked on Sunday and was welcomed by Vietnamese officers.

Some of the more than 5,000 sailors from the Ronald Reagan, according to Capt. Daryle Cardone, the ship’s commanding officer, will participate in various community service projects, play sports with local athletes, and engage in other professional and cultural exchanges from now until June 30.

In a statement from the United States, Cardone stated that while some Reagan sailors call Vietnam home, the majority will be making their first trip there. Navy.

In order to strengthen its position in the region, Washington has attempted to capitalize on Vietnam’s long-standing rivalry with its much bigger neighbor, China.

Hanoi is seen as a crucial component of Washington’s strategy for the area.

Following maneuvers in the South China Sea with the Reagan and other American ships, Japan, a staunch friend of the United States, also made a port call in Vietnam last week with its biggest destroyer, the Izumo.

A navy training ship from China made its own port visit in Da Nang a month ago as part of what it dubbed a goodwill trip that also took it to Thailand, Brunei, and the Philippines as part of its efforts to heal wounds.

The Reagan port visit was described by Vietnam’s Foreign Ministry as a “normal friendly exchange for the sake of peace, stability, cooperation, and development in both the region and the world.”

According to Parameswaran, Vietnam must strike a balance between its delicate relations with Beijing and local sentiment and outreach from the United States.

He said that polls show Vietnamese citizens to be among the most pro-American. Southeast Asian public opinion

The USS Ronald Reagan is the sole American aircraft carrier that is deployed forward, and it is based in Yokosuka, Japan. Next year, another Nimitz-class carrier, the USS George Washington, is scheduled to take its place in that capacity.


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