Showing the Maple Leaf in Vietnam (Canada Provided Humanitarian Aid to Vietnamese Civilians While Offering Refuge to US Draft Dodgers)
Levant, Victor, Compass: A Jesuit Journal
At the height of the National Liberation Front's Tet Offensive in February 1968, Alje Vennema, a Canadian doctor at the Quang Ngai tuberculosis centre, suggested to Ormond Dier, Canadian ambassador to South Vietnam and head of the ICC delegation, that "all voluntary medical personnel be withdrawn from Quang Ngai because they were risking their lives." Vennema later wrote:
"Dier's response was that we must have Canadians at Quang Ngai because it was very important for Canadians to be in Vietnam. Canadians had died for Canada before he said. I asked if it's that important why don't you send a civil servant there from the Department of External Affairs who can just sit there and wave the flag! But he put a lot of things in perspective for me. What was important in Vietnam was Canadian representation--to show we were here."
A similar view of the Canadian aid program in Vietnam was expressed by former External Aid Office adviser Dr. Michael Hall. Testifying before the House of Commons External Affairs Committee in November 1967, he said that "most of the aid given to Vietnam is not given because we want to give them this particular material or these particular people but it is a whole …
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Publication information: Article title: Showing the Maple Leaf in Vietnam (Canada Provided Humanitarian Aid to Vietnamese Civilians While Offering Refuge to US Draft Dodgers). Contributors: Levant, Victor - Author. Magazine title: Compass: A Jesuit Journal. Volume: 14. Issue: 1 Publication date: March-April 1996. Page number: 15+. © 1996 Compass Foundation. COPYRIGHT 1996 Gale Group.
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