In South Vietnam, the status of Chinese residents is undefined. The are not considered full?
WS Cholon market in Saigon
CU Market name in Chinese characters
CU Old lady
MS & CU Chinese dragon
WS Wall with election posters
WS & MS new hotel and shopping complex
WS Street in residential section of Cholon
MCU Girl skipping down road
MS Houses in street (2 shots)
MCU Old lady walking
MS Chinese man reading paper
MS Chinese man eating
MS Barbecue pork shop
CU Pork heads
CU Young Chinese children leave school (2 shots)
MS Children in schoolyard
WS Children in yard with pagoda in background
MS Chinese enter temple
MS Interior temple
MS Chinese light joss sticks (2 shots)
WS& CU fortune teller
WS Interior temple
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Background: In South Vietnam, the status of Chinese residents is undefined. The are not considered full Vietnamese and neither are they classified as a minority group. Whatever they are, the Chinese in Vietnam are virtually independent. Most live in Saigon's Cholon district here they've developed a political and socially self-contained society. There is friction between the Chinese community and their adopted country. One candidate in last months election of the South Vietnamese lower house ran on an anti-Chinese ticket stating that seats in the legislative body should belong to Vietnamese, not to "foreign Chinese". The Chinese businessman is also resented in the nation. Officially, the nearly two-million Chinese in Vietnam are classed as aliens and as a group they have never been fully accepted by the Vietnamese people or the government. Oppressive policies against the Chinese can be traced all the way back to the Diem regime which seized and controlled their property. Thus the Chinese in South Vietnam exist in a state of limbo and their future remains unclear.
SYNOPSIS: This is Cholon market is Saigon -- Cholon district is the home for the more than two-million Chinese who live in South Vietnam. Their status in Vietnam is uncertain.
They are a large group in Vietnam and the is widespread resentment against them. In recent election of the South Vietnamese Lower House, one South Vietnamese candidate running on an anti-Chinese platform, denounced the Chinese as foreigners.
In South Vietnam, the status of Chinese residents is undefined. They are not considered full Vietnamese, neither are the classified as a minority group. Whatever they are, the Chinese in Vietnam are virtually independent. The Cholon district is a politically and socially self-contain society. The friction between the Chinese and the Vietnamese has a long history and it appears in many forms. Officially, the Chinese are classed aliens and as a group they have never been fully accepted by Vietnamese people or the government. Oppressive policies against the Chinese began under the Diem regime which seized large sections of Chinese property and placed them under government control. In self-defence, the Chinese community drew closer together.
The Chinese now maintain their own associations which maintain hospitals, pagodas, schools, social welfare organisations and a system closely resembling a judiciary. All of these services are concentrated in the Cholon district.
Part of the current friction between the Vietnamese and the Chinese stems from the 1968 Tet Offensive. Cholon was the most devastated section of Saigon, more from American and South Vietnamese air strikes than from Viet Cong attacks. The local Chinese charged that much of the destruct was unnecessary. Vietnamese resentment against the Chinese can also be felt in the area of business -- much of which is in the bands of the Chinese community.
But the Chinese businessman here earns as much resentment as profit for his labour and the fortune tellers in Cholon's temples aren't too clear on what the future holds for their customers. Future relations between the Chinese and the Vietnamese is unclear.