Brigadier General Tran Quoc Lich, a Victime of an Injustice

Brigadier Genearl Tran Quoc Lich, while holding the command of the 5th Infantry Division, after Brigadier General Le Van Hung, was sentenced for the trafficking of weapons and mililary equipment to the Viet Cong in the region of Phuoc Long province. He had to appeared before the military tribunal and was demoted to the rank of captain and detained until the fall of Saigon.

Brigadier General Trần Quốc Lịch

The affair was not simple as it appeared to the general public. There are two witnesses and victims still living: Brigadier General Tran Quoc Lich, currently residing in the state of Californi and Major Nguyen Van Tuoc, commander of the 5th Transport Battalion, currently residing in Falls Church, Virginia. The readers can verify the facts with them. Colonel Nguyen Chi Hieu, an assistant to Brigadier General Lich, also implicated in the affair, was demoted to the rank of lieutenant, died on December 5, 2007 in Canada.

Đại Tá Nguyễn Chí Hiếu

Why was Brigadier General Tran Quoc Lich daring in committing so big a sin: selling weapons to the enemy. At that time, it was thought that he needed money to feed his gambling addiction. But that was far from the truth. It did so to raise finance for President Thieu’s corrupt cohort. The go-in-between person was Madame Sáu Tuyết, one of the President’s aunt.

The illegal transaction was monitored and photographed by agent of G7/Joint General Staff. The photos were given to Colonel Luu Yem, who bypassed the III Corps Command, and submitted them directly to Prime Minister Tran Thien Khiem, Luu Yem’s uncle.

Đại Tá Lưu Yểm

When the affair was discovered, Brigadier General Lich was covered by President Thieu and was merely transferred to become the Director of IV Corps Inspector’s Office.

One year went by. One day, the chief of staff of the Inspector’s office notified that President Thieu was on the telephone line and wished to talk to him. Before picking up the phone, Brigadier General Lich uttered a four letter work and called the President ““thằng hời”, in reference to the President’s Cham ethnicity, which is equivalent to “the son of the bitch”. Right afterwards, he was dragged to appear before a military tribunal to be judged for a fault committed sometimes ago.

It was certain that Brigadier General Lich would be quite surprised in reading this lines, why in the earth –besides him and his chief of staff- is it possible that there is a third person who could have heard him used foul language against to the President, as to upset the latter and made him resort to a revengeful retribution in kind.

Nguyen Van Tin
04 July 2015