Robert Shaplen: A New York Times Reporter Killed by Vietnamese Communists - Dân Làm Báo

Robert Shaplen: A New York Times Reporter Killed by Vietnamese Communists

Robert Shaplen and Pham Xuan An - a VC spy

It lost the war, with fifty-eight thousand soldiers killed 

"During the twenty years it fought the Vietnamese, the United States never understood the people or the culture of Vietnam. South Vietnam was to be remade in America’s image. 

Terra incognita preceded terra nova. America’s disregard for its enemy cost it dearly. It lost the war, with fifty-eight thousand soldiers killed and hundreds of thousands wounded, and it lost its naïveté about its invincible military might." (The Spy Who Loved Us, page 8)

The readers. 

Although writing is not our advantage, we try to write this book out of our responsibility toward 90 million of Vietnamese, our duty to the Truth, and our pride to follow our ancestors' teachings. We ask you to forgive our lack of writing skills and be content with this sentiment: “This is a good book to read, not because of its literary value but because of the truth revealed in it”. 

Due to the overwhelming load of facts, stretched along almost a century and spreaded over the country and abroad, and due to our limited time, we understand that, while some of those facts have been fully analyzed, some others have not. Please bear with them and help us to analyze further. However, there is one thing we are certain of: Our assessments are based only on accurate facts. 

This document on our website should be read as an investigation report on a murder, and attention should be paid to the truth that it reveals, because “One of the sublimest things in the world is plain truth” (Edward Bulwer-Lytton). Furthermore, what we discovered was a mystery case that only happened once in a lifetime, a unique event in the world. Given the fact that we are not professional writers but want to publish this document for you to read, our book must contain unavoidable mistakes. We expect you to help us improve it by contributing your analysis and providing supplemental documents, because “Whatever is reasonable is true, and whatever is true is reasonable” (Georg. W. Hegel) 


Ralph Waldo Emerson once said: “Truth is the property of no individual but is the treasure of all men”. 

The Vietnamese Communists recently boasted about their “super spies” like “Vũ Ngọc Nhạ - admired even by the enemy”, “Lê Hữu Thúy - a perfect spy”, “Phạm Xuân Ẩn and the myth of a reporter who “choked” the Americans”, “Phạm Ngọc Thảo's spy games”, “The secret spy with super espionages”... They even promulgated such insolent and vicious statements as “Phạm Xuân Ẩn compared Nguyễn Văn Thiệu to a monkey” and “Lansdale searches tinh hoàn hải cẩu (note: testicles of the seal, a make-believe sexual enhancement substance) for Ẩn”, etc... 

In reality, all their spy stories are just a bunch of baloney. Those “super spies” were among low level staffs of former South Vietnam government (not even communists and surely not North Vietnam communist spies). Pham Ngoc Thao, for example. was never a communist. The Communist Party just made up his story to deceive the Vietnamese people into believing that “we are the Best!” and that “we defeated South Vietnam by intelligence” and not by: 

“Roasting the less fortunate on the brutal flame
Burying the little infants under the disastrous tunnel.
Lying to the Almighty, cheating its people in numerous ways 
Causing resentment, bridging hostility for many years 
Turning human interaction sour, damaging the universe
Heavy taxes put an end to exploring swamps and mountains...!” 

The story-making of the Vietnamese Communists also serves another purpose, that is to hide their evil criminal Mafia activities! 

They took briberies from those former low-level South Vietnam government staffs and made them “super perfect spies”! Being promoted as Generals and Heroes with all kind of medals, those fake spies happily accepted fallacious titles attributed to them - instead of having to go to prison or “re-education” camps. 

An obvious example was Phạm Xuân Ẩn, whose true identity was a New York Times reporter. For some reason he could not escape from Vietnam in April 1975 and had to face a dilemma: either going to prison (or “re-education camp”) and being tortured - possibly to death, or following order from the communist government to become a Brigadier General and a decorated hero. He chose the second option. Contrary to his expectations, he never became a real general and hero, only a fake one. The government continuously monitored and treated him like a house arrest prisoner. As a matter of fact, having previously lived in a free country that gave him an education to become reporter of a big magazine, Ẩn soon realized he was trapped and would have to live a zombie life. He wanted to expose everything to public, but whenever he thought about his wife being kept hostage by the regime, he backed off. Also, the strict surveillance over Ẩn's activities did not give him any opportunity to speak out, but if he had a chance he would follow the instinct of a journalist and do it. That chance came when the communist government had to let him see a foreigner, Robert Shaplen, a long time reporter from New York Times, who requested a private meeting without being observed by the secret agency. Apparently eavesdropping devices were installed. No one knew what secrets Ẩn shared with Shaplen at their private meeting, but less than a month after bidding farewell with Ẩn to come home in the U.S., Shaplen had a heart attack. His heart stopped! 

Maybe Ẩn revealed to Shaplen his true deal with the regime, and that eavesdropped conversation led to the death of the reporter. Or maybe just a doubtful question raised by Shaplen was enough to explain why he must die. Maybe something like this: “I wondered, for example, why he had bothered having his family moved back and forth in the first place, with the help of the American publication he had worked for. Had he really been a communist all along, or had he decided to become one only after April 30, 1975, for one reason or another… Could he have been working as a double agent, or even a triple, and before throwing in his lot with the communists had he wanted to make sure that he had covered all his tracks? There was some reason to believe that this was possible,” wrote Shaplen.11. "(Perfect Spy, Chapter 7, Page 6/23) 

Around the world, nobody suspected. The Americans never knew the truth. That was a smooth story. 

And when the Vietnamese Communists realized that it would be dangerous to let “super spies” like Phạm Xuân Ẩn, Vũ Ngọc Nhạ, Ba Quốc, etc... survive after their roles were accomplished, they all died one by one. That will remain a mystery forever! 

Who will suffer the same fate as reporter Robert Shaplen? Who will suffer the same fate as Phạm Xuân Ẩn, Vũ Ngọc Nhạ, Ba Quốc…? If that kind of mystery is not exposed, there will be many, many more reporters doing the same things, i.e. writing about those “super spies” and their Mafia bosses who orchestrated the spy games. If, by any chance, some other reporters find out other big secrets, what fate will fall on them? 

And there are so many “big secrets” waiting to be revealed! 

I will unearth them! 

The question is, why would the above-mentioned “once-in-a-lifetime” mystery case fail to catch the attention of all Vietnamese scholars and writers? Was it because of their indifference? Or was it because the Vietnamese Communists have “brainwashed” them all? To answer part of that question, I will quote a paragraph from an article recently broadcasted by RFA on April 4th, 2014, entitled “Live and Die under Socialist Republic of Vietnam”: 

“After 40 years ruling over both parts of Vietnam and after almost 70 years ruling over North Vietnam, the communist government managed to change every corner of the entire land into a communist area, and convert every Vietnamese citizen into a communist despite their dislike of the regime. A street noodle soup vendor would happily bribe the local police for a convenient location so he could get rid of other vendors and gain more profits for himself; a farmer would eagerly say “Yes, Sir!” to a village chief or an even lower cadre just to receive some flood relief money; a scholar or a writer would readily kneel down to the authorities for a sum of payment or a secret funding to publish his book… Such behaviors are fruits of communism. And the communist government expects no more than that: when the compromising behavior has spreaded all around, it means that the communist doctrine has infiltrated into every family of the whole country.” 

What's more dangerous, the Communists also succeeded in deceiving some foreign respected scholars who unintentionally supported the Vietnamese communist regime's dirty proganda by writing such books as “The Perfect Spy” (by Larry Berman, first published in 2007, reprinted in 2013), or “Z.21 - The Spy Who Loved US” by reporter Thomas A. Bass). 

I have discovered this “once-in-a-lifetime” mystery case after hearing blatantly false statements made by some “two-faced” Vietnamese communists, like Nguyễn Thị Doan (vice president of Vietnam), who said, “Socialism is a thousand times better then Capitalism” (if so, then why in my country there is no private media, no opposition party?); or like Hồ Chí Minh, who said, “...government cadres are servants of the people...” (if so, then why my people have no rights to elect good leaders or legally impeach bad leaders as people of other countries do?) 

Most importantly, I have discovered this “once-in-a-lifetime” mystery case because, as mentioned above, I have freed myself from being “brainwashed” by the Vietnamese Communists. 

About my method? I use the exact method of espionage, that is - In Anatomy of Spying - “successful espionage is derived from the piecing together of tiny items of information which, taken by themselves, appear to be unimportant, but which, when placed with dozens of other snippets, build up the picture from which commanders plan.” (Perfect Spy, Chapter 4, Page 8/27) 

It means: all documents I use were extracted from the orthodox documents published by the Vietnamese Communist Party, then were processed by “piecing together of tiny items” so they will “build up the picture”, then finally my readers will be “commanders to plan”.

About the structure of this book: Documents published by the Vietnamese Communist Party can be found in “Part II. Research Documents”, or titles of the extracted pages – so my readers can easily refer to. (Please follow the links to the resources and remember to download them before the communist government takes them down). 

Paragraphs of special interest can be found in “Part I. Proofs and Analyzes”, which were extracted from the documents right below, including analyzes and logical assessments of each event. 

The structure of the mystery case is divided into 4 parts, with 12 chapters. 

Now let's start our research of this “once-in-a-lifetime” mystery case! 

Note: For ease of reference, you should paging each chapter in the book: "perfect spy". Corresponding to the number of pages that we have identified. 



Robert Shaplen: A New York Time Reporter Was Killed by Vietnamese Communist. 



Part I. Phạm Xuân Ẩn - The imagined Perfect Spy (or the story of Larry Berman who was misled and innocent gave a hand to Vietnamese Communist's propaganda) 
Chapter 1. Strange stories. 
Chapter 2. Ẩn gave the untruthful stories 
Chapter 3. The communist bites the hand that feeds? No! The truth is something more than that! 
Chapter 4. An not communists! 
Chapter 5. Discuss about the evil’s doing 

Part II. "Super communist spies" who are they? 
Chapter 6. "Super communist spies" who are they? 
Chapter 7. Told lies too: "The attacks on the Presidential Palace" and "hit US Embassy". 
Chapter 8. "The Communist super spies" are suspected, be controlled = Pham Xuan An. And secret "Nguyen Ai Quoc Communist" 
Chapter 9. Pham Xuan An ... is based on the life of the character Quan - Novel by Nguyen Khai! And the completion of the play - starring must die! 

Part III. Robert Shaplen: A New York Time Reporter Was Killed by Vietnamese Communist. 
Chapter 10. Robert Shaplen: A New York Time Reporter Was Killed by Vietnamese Communist. 
Chapter 11. Bop Shaplen’s thyroid cancer did not cause his death but a high dose of radiation killed him. 

Part IV. Epilogue. The origin story "super spy" - The secrets must be unveiled.

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