The new system of law-and-order in the streets of Saigon--South Vietnam's capital, renamed locally Ho Chi Minh City -- is one of the more visible signs of the Provisional Revolutionary Government at work.
GV Youth Patrol cleaning streets (5 shots)
GV Armed militia mixing with crowd
GV Saigon street with bicyclists & girl directing traffic (2 shots)
GV Building with flags
GV Street scene
GV Young armed militiaman directing traffic
GV Cinema (Ho Chi Minh poster over) PAN TO street)
GV People hurrying through bicyclists in street
GV Man being arrested and led away through angry crowd by armed militiamen PAN TO another man being taken away (4 shots)
Initials BJB/1535 BJB/1555
Script is copyright Reuters Limited. All rights reserved
Background: The new system of law-and-order in the streets of Saigon--South Vietnam's capital, renamed locally Ho Chi Minh City -- is one of the more visible signs of the Provisional Revolutionary Government at work.
The authorities have also called for a campaign to clean up the city, and teams of students can be seen at work wielding brooms -- although their earlier enthusiasm would seem to have worn off.
There are military police patrols, but the national police force was disbanded immediately after the communist takeover five weeks ago. So, young men and girls now direct the traffic.
The streets are still festooned with flags of both the South Vietnam. Posters on the cinemas remind all that they had participated in the liberation of the city.
Street arrests are common. But summary executions -- a daily occurrence during the early days after the communist takeover--have been largely replaced by quickly-convened justice through the peoples' courts.
SYNOPSIS: It's been five weeks since the communists took control of Saigon--renamed locally Ho chi Minh City. And, already, the tempo and quality of life can be seen to have changed radically. Teams of students take to the streets every day on the clean-up campaign called for by the Provisional Revolutionary Government. And the city's noticeably cleaner for it -- even if their earlier enthusiasm's worn off a bit.
There are military police patrols, but the national police force was disbanded immediately after the end of the war.
So, young men and girls now direct the traffic in the capital.
Saigon's the most densely-populated major city in the world. But--with much of the population returning to the bicycle--traffic control is less difficult. In any case, the girls seem to handle this essential task very well.
The streets are still festooned with flags of both the South Vietnamese Revolutionary Government and North Vietnam.
Some young men have been given weapons-training, and now fill in the self-defence role -- really a home-guard-style police force.
Posters on cinemas remind the young people that they participated in the liberation of Saigon.
And it's not unusual to see a citizen's arrest take place.
The alarm went up, and -- within a minute -- the young robber had been caught by the local students' self-defence unit. There have been a number of street executions in similar circumstances. This young man was lucky .. the crowd had called for his immediate death. He was taken to the nearby self-defence office and was quickly followed by another would-be thief caught in the act right outside. Their trial by a peoples' court would come within hours. This summary justice is something few South Vietnamese had benefited from in the past.