For the first time since the end of the Vietnam War, a United States aircraft carrier is scheduled to make a port call in Vietnam on Monday, signaling how China’s rise is bringing together former foes in a significant shift in the region’s geopolitical landscape.
The vessel, the Carl Vinson, will anchor off Danang, the central Vietnam port city that served as a major staging post for the American war effort in the country.
“It’s a pretty big and historic step, since a carrier has not been here for 40 years,” said Rear Adm. John V. Fuller, the commander of the Carl Vinson strike group, whose father served in Vietnam.
“We hope to continue the same issue that we’ve always had,” he said, “and that’s to promote security, stability and prosperity in the region.”
The arrival of the Carl Vinson strike group’s 5,500 sailors will mark the first time such a large contingent of American military personnel has landed on Vietnamese soil since the last of the United States troops withdrew in 1975. [Continue reading…]