Normalization and development of the United States-Vietnam’s relations in 1990s

Keywords: U.S.-Vietnam’s relations, United States’ foreign policy, Vietnam’s foreign policy, G. H. W. Bush administration, W. Clinton administration

Abstract

The authors study the normalization of the U.S.-Vietnam’s relations under G. H. W. Bush and W. Clinton administrations, the factors that influenced the process, and the major events and spheres of American-Vietnamese interactions after the normalization, in 1995-2000. The developments are studied in a chronological order at the background of shifts in the U.S. and Vietnam’s politics, and transformations in the international system. The research is based on a study of primary sources, including materials of the U.S. Department of State, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Vietnam and Vietnam’s Embassy in the United States; remarks, interviews and publications of the U.S. Presidents, Secretaries of State, diplomats, Congress reports, bilateral and multilateral agreements, media news, et cetera.

The paper reveals that the major theme of the normalization process was two nations’ cooperation in the POW/MIA issue. The normalization was not a high priority of G. H. W. Bush and W. Clinton’s administrations for many reasons, including reluctance of American society. However, it was promoted by some influential groups in the U.S., including Senators and Congressmen who were the veterans of the Vietnam War, and the American corporations, which were seeking for new economic opportunities. Establishment of diplomatic relations with Vietnam in July 1995 was one of the hardest President Clinton’s decisions. The driving force of the U.S.-Vietnam’s relations after normalization was the Bilateral Trade Agreement, signed in July 2000. However, mutual distrust, human rights issue and many other inherited from the Vietnam War issues hampered the progress in other spheres. The President Clinton’s visit to Vietnam in November 2000 summed up 1995-2000 introductory period of the bilateral relations, the most important result of which was freeing both nations’ politics from the negative impact of the Vietnam War.

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Published
2020-03-27
How to Cite
Gorodnia, N., & Pidbereznykh, I. (2020). Normalization and development of the United States-Vietnam’s relations in 1990s. Acta De Historia & Politica: Saeculum XXI, (01), 72-86. https://doi.org/10.26693/ahpsxxi2019.01.072
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Articles