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SCR-59 Veterans of the Republic of Vietnam Armed Forces Day.(2019-2020)

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SCR59:v99#DOCUMENT


CALIFORNIA LEGISLATURE— 2019–2020 REGULAR SESSION

Senate Concurrent Resolution
No. 59


Introduced by Senator Umberg
(Principal coauthor: Assembly Member Daly)
(Coauthor: Assembly Member Diep)

June 17, 2019


Relative to veterans.


LEGISLATIVE COUNSEL'S DIGEST


SCR 59, as introduced, Umberg. Veterans of the Republic of Vietnam Armed Forces Day.
This measure would proclaim June 19, 2019, as Veterans of the Republic of Vietnam Armed Forces Day.
Fiscal Committee: NO  

WHEREAS, The Republic of Vietnam Military Forces, or South Vietnamese Armed Forces, were formally established on December 30, 1955, by Ngo Dinh Diem, the first President of South Vietnam; and
WHEREAS, The Republic of Vietnam Military Forces consisted of four branches: the Army of the Republic of Vietnam, the Republic of Vietnam Air Force, the Republic of Vietnam Navy, and the Republic of Vietnam Marine Division; and
WHEREAS, The duties of all four branches included: protecting the sovereignty of the free Vietnamese nation and that of the Republic, maintaining the political and social order and the rule of law by providing internal security, defending the newly independent Republic of Vietnam from external and internal threats, and ultimately, helping to reunify Vietnam, a country that had been divided since the Geneva Accords of 1954; and
WHEREAS, From 1965 to 1975, the Vietnam War brought about the loss of approximately 250,000 members of the South Vietnamese Armed Forces and 58,000 members of the United States Armed Forces; and
WHEREAS, More than 300,000 members of the United States Armed Forces and more than 1,000,000 members of the South Vietnamese Armed Forces were injured; and
WHEREAS, After the Fall of Saigon on April 30, 1975, more than 250,000 members of the South Vietnamese Armed Forces were sent to reeducation camps, where many spent up to 17 years in captivity and more than 20,000 died before they were released; and
WHEREAS, The end of the Vietnam War left the South Vietnamese Armed Forces in disarray. Many military personnel and their family members fled Vietnam to escape tyrannical authoritarian rule and oppression, and hoped to find democracy and freedom in the United States. They spent months at sea and in jungles, battling hunger, thirst, and separation from their families and loved ones; and
WHEREAS, Many of those who reached the United States found refuge in Orange County’s Little Saigon and in various states throughout the country. They faced socioeconomic challenges but determined to build entirely new lives here; and
WHEREAS, In the United States, these military personnel continued to fight for their home country and the people there. They have been a strong voice for democracy, religious freedom, and human rights in Vietnam and have contributed culturally and economically to our society and to the diversity of our nation; and
WHEREAS, All veterans who risked their lives fighting for freedom should be honored for their distinguished service in the Vietnam War and for the contributions they provide to the United States as American citizens, and it is the intent of the State of California to honor the sacrifices, commitment, dedication, and courage of everyone who fought for the freedom of the Republic of Vietnam; and
WHEREAS, Annually, Vietnamese Americans around the world commemorate South Vietnamese veterans on June 19, and 2019 marks the 54th anniversary of this annual commemoration of South Vietnamese veterans; and
WHEREAS, Thousands of veterans of the South Vietnamese Armed Forces now reside in the United States and participate in activities sponsored by American veterans, including Memorial Day, Veterans Day, and Independence Day, and today there are an estimated 100,000 veterans from the Republic of Vietnam living in California; and
WHEREAS, These servicemembers who paid the ultimate sacrifice for their nation and have contributed greatly to the development of our society deserve to be honored and recognized; now, therefore, be it
Resolved by the Senate of the State of California, the Assembly thereof concurring, That the Legislature recognizes June 19, 2019, as Veterans of the Republic of Vietnam Armed Forces Day, in memory of the soldiers who sacrificed their lives for freedom and democracy and the victims of the Vietnam War, and in honor of the survivors, activists, and freedom fighters of that war; and be it further
Resolved, That the Secretary of the Senate transmit copies of this resolution to the author for appropriate distribution.