ARVN: Reflections and Reassessments After 30 Years

March 17-18, 2006

The Vietnam Center's 2006 annual conference will be held at the Holiday Inn Park Plaza in Lubbock (the same hotel as this year's symposium), Friday and Saturday, 17-18 March. The theme for the conference is, "ARVN: Reflections and Reassessments after Thirty Years." While we have used the term ARVN, as it is most widely known, we encourage proposals for papers dealing with any of the branches of the Armed Forces of the Republic of Vietnam (RVNAF): Army, Air Force, Marine Corps, Navy, Rangers, etc. Such papers might be from an American point of view, as, for example, the views/experiences of advisors who served with Vietnamese units, or purely academic papers produced by a younger generation who are studying this topic, or from Vietnamese veterans. Papers are also invited that deal with the fate of RVNAF veterans after the fall of Saigon, including papers relating to the so-called "reeducation" camps, and resettlement experiences in foreign countries.

We anticipate and encourage papers that deal with the ARVN's successes and strengths, such as their performance at An Loc and Xuan Loc; however, we also urge the submission of papers that critically analyze those areas in which RVNAF were less successful. It is not enough simply to blame the failure of the RVNAF on the withdrawal of US support, though that, of course, was one contributing factor. What, for example, was the impact of politicization of the senior officers of the RVNAF? How did corruption in some Province Chiefs, District Chiefs, etc., affect efforts to win the loyalty of the peasants for the South Vietnamese government?

This conference will offer academics, advisors, former leaders and members of the RVNAF an opportunity to reflect and reassess; however, it is exceedingly important that suchreassessments be balanced by presenting weaknesses and their implications as well as strengths.

Deputy Director Steve Maxner will serve as conference organizer for the 2006 conference. Please address paper proposals to him at or (806) 742-9010.