From Ho Chi Minh’s fictional Diary:

20 July 1969
Hanoi, Vietnam

The Americans continue to discard our peace overtures and actually claim that we want the war to go on. What a distortion of the truth! They continue to bomb our cities and all communications, and poison our land with chemical defoliants. Our own people are dying in hundreds of thousands not only from the physical onslaught but from starvation! How could anyone believe we want the war to continue?

Within sight of his 80th birthday, Ho died of a heart attack. A few weeks earlier, he had been able to tell his people. “The Americans are beaten,” instead of the customary “The Americans will be beaten!” In any event, Ho did not live to witness the Americans’ final ignominious departure.

World obituaries were lengthy, even in America, which had so recently defamed him. The New York Times, for instance, reported “...the veneration and respect which even his bitterest opponents could not help feeling for the frail and wispy ‘Uncle Ho’.” Time magazine found themselves, for the fourth surprising occasion, putting his face on their cover, and rendering this man, they had often designated as America’s number one enemy, this unreserved tribute:

“Ho Chi Minh’s life was dedicated to the creation of a united Vietnam, free from foreign control; the 19 million people of this tortured land suffered mightily from his total devotion to that vision. Even so, they affectionately knew him as ‘Uncle Ho.’ No national leader alive today has stood so stubbornly before the enemy’s guns.”
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