Theory and Practice

The entire Army continues to accelerate and improve the effectiveness of “Gratitude” activities pursuant to the spirit of the Resolution of the 13th National Party Congress

7/27/2022 3:46:31 PM

Over the past years, the implementation of “Gratitude” activities has always been directed by the Central Military Commission (the CMC), the Ministry of National Defence (the MoD), and the General Political Department with numerous creative and effective contents and methods, which contributes to improving the living standards of policy beneficiaries, consolidating people’s confidence in the Party, the State, and the socialist regime as well as maintaining the socio-political stability. In response to the demanding requirements for the cause of building and safeguarding the Fatherland, all-level party committees and commands in the entire Army should continue to accelerate and improve the effectiveness of this crucial activity.

“Drinking water while remembering the source” and “paying debts of gratitude” are the tradition and moral principles representing humanity and the good culture of Vietnamese people. During his lifetime, President Ho Chi Minh always paid special attention to “Gratitude” activities and taking care of revolution contributors. He recommended that: “War invalids, sick soldiers, families of military men and martyrs are contributors of the Fatherland and the People. Therefore, it is our duty to express our gratitude, affection, and care”. Imbued with his teachings, the Party’s resolutions and directives, and the State’s law, in recent years, the Standing Committee of the CMC has issued numerous documents to lead and direct the entire Army to implement policy work and “Gratitude” policy. The focus has been placed on Directive No. 169-CT/QUTW issued on December 29th, 2020 on strengthening the leadership and direction of policy work toward the Army and Military family care in the 2021-2025 period, Plan No. 1085-KH/QUTW issued on November 24th, 2017 on implementing Directive No. 14-CT/TW issued on July 19th, 2017 by the Politburo (12th tenure). The Army’s “Gratitude” activities have contributed to improving the material and spiritual life of policy beneficiaries and revolution contributors and creating a positive social impact that widely spreads and is highly appreciated by branches and the people.

General Political Department inaugurates a House of Gratitude for Vietnamese Heroic Mother Nguyen Thi Tu

In the forthcoming time, the country’s socio-economic state is forecast to keep on developing; meanwhile, national defence and security remain stable, which facilitates the care of the contributors. However, the disadvantages of the market economy and the divergence between the rich and the poor in society have a direct impact on the lives of the contributors and their families; the workload and the task of policy work are enormous and complicated, especially the handling of the post-war backlog, etc. It is, therefore, required that the entire Party, people, and Army should continue to thoroughly grasp the viewpoints, guidelines, and policies of the Party and the State, promote the tradition of “drinking water while remembering the source” and intensify the effectiveness of “Gratitude” activities pursuant to the spirit of the 13th National Party Congress, which states to “well implement preferential policies for the contributors; accelerate “Gratitude” activities …; ensure preferential regime for the family of the beneficiaries and contributors in accordance with the country’s economic growth and social progress” to better take care of and ensure the material and spiritual life of the policy beneficiaries and create an enormous driving force for the cause of building and safeguarding the Fatherland. To that end, party committees, commanders, commissars, agencies, and units at all levels in the Army should focus on leading and directing the implementation of the following contents and measures.

Firstly, accelerating the work of propagation and education to heighten the awareness and responsibility of cadres and soldiers, especially party committees and cadres at all levels about “Gratitude” activities. Party committees, commanders, and commissars at all levels must thoroughly grasp the viewpoints and guidelines of the Party, the policies and laws of the State, the resolutions and directives of the CMC, the MoD, and documents of ministries, branches, and the General Political Department on the regimes and policies for policies beneficiaries and revolution contributors in general and “Gratitude” activities in particular. At the same time, it is necessary to propagate to cadres, soldiers, and people from all social strata, especially the young generations about the sacrifices and immense contributions of revolution contributors in the cause of the struggle for the nation’s liberation, reunification, national construction, and defence so that they can be fully aware of the position, role, purposes, political significance, profound human values, and the effectiveness of “Gratitude” activities. The implementation process requires the flexible and creative application of methods and measures that fit the actual situation and the leading role of news agencies inside and outside the Army to propagate, orient public opinion, and fully, exactly, and promptly convey information to all people.

Division 968 carries out healthcheck for revolution contributors in Quang Tri province (Photo:

Secondly, promoting the role and responsibility of party committees and cadres at all levels in leading and directing “Gratitude” activities. Party committees, commanders, commissars, and functional agencies at all levels should continue to popularise and strictly implement Directive No. 14-CT/TW issued on July 19th, 2017 by the Secretariat (12th tenure) on continuing to strengthen the Party’s leadership toward revolution contributors, Ordinance on preferential policies for revolution contributors (in 2020), and Directive No. 169-CT/QUTW of the Standing Committee of the CMC. It is also necessary to proactively propose guidelines and measures for leadership and design detailed, scientific, feasible plans and solutions for implementation which are close to the conditions of specific agencies, units, and localities. The role and responsibility of party committees and commands at all levels should be promoted in regularly keeping track of the situation and proactively coordinating with functional agencies inside and outside the Army and local authorities to well implement “Gratitude” activities. While implementing the current regimes and policies for the beneficiaries and contributors, agencies and units should flexibly handle and attach importance to caring for and ensuring the lives of policy beneficiaries, revolution contributors, families in remote areas, etc., in a transparent, open, and proper manner. Inspection and supervision should be regularly conducted to promptly find out good collectives and individuals for commendation, as well as surmount all shortcomings during the implementation process.

Thirdly, actively renewing the contents, methods, and forms of “Gratitude” activities. Grasping and performing the resolution of the 13th National Party Congress on “… well implementing the State laws and policies for revolution contributors on the basis of the resources of the State and society to ensure that the contributors and their families have good living standards or higher in their neighbourhoods”, agencies and units should check and add appropriate, practical contents to programmes and plans to ensure the adherence to requirements and assigned tasks. It is necessary to promptly find out and duplicate fine models, good deeds, and new and creative methods to bring about practical effectiveness. This not only encourages policy beneficiaries but also signifies patriotism, affection, and responsibility of the entire Army and people toward “Gratitude” activities. During the implementation process, agencies and units should proactively check and find out difficulties, drawbacks, inappropriate or ineffective contents, etc. to overcome, adjust, and enhance the effectiveness of “Gratitude” activities. Besides, attention should be paid to seriously and promptly implementing Ordinance on preferential policies for revolution contributors, mobilising resources from society and units, effectively managing and using “Gratitude” Fund; promoting activities of caring for the contributors, Heroic Vietnamese Mother, and policy beneficiaries in revolutionary base, remote and border areas and places badly affected by natural disasters and the pandemic; supporting Centres for nursing the contributors and families of military men who are wounded or fallen when performing military-defence tasks or preventing criminals, natural disasters, and pandemics. “Drinking water while remembering the source” and the “Gratitude” movement should be well implemented; this includes lighting candles to pay tribute, embellishing martyrs' graveyards and war memorials, etc. Administrative reform at agencies and units should be focused on to prevent difficulties and troubles for policy beneficiaries. Leaders and commanders at all levels must attach importance to closely combining the work of “paying debts of gratitude” with mass mobilisation and the Movement of “The entire people take care of war invalids, families of martyrs and revolution contributors”, “Determine to win” Emulation Movement with the Campaign of Promoting tradition, devoting talents, deserving to be “Uncle Ho’s Soldiers” in the new period. It is also necessary to promptly commend, study, and follow role models of war invalids, collectives, and individuals that well perform “Gratitude” activities and cause spillover effects on the entire Army and society.

Fourthly, bringing into play the synergy of organisations, forces, and the whole political system in implementing “Gratitude” activities. Based on the functions and tasks, the functional agencies of the MoD including the Military Policy Branch should continue promoting their role as the presiding agencies that provide close coordination and solution to maintaining the rapport with agencies, units, and local authorities to generate unity in leading, directing, and performing tasks. At the same time, appropriate regimes and policies should be formulated to make the best use of the roles, responsibilities, positives, and initiatives of agencies, units, local authorities, echelons and branches in the political system, and the whole people to create consensus in performing “Gratitude” activities and ensuring its effectiveness and practicality. The Policy Department should coordinate with the MoD’s functional agencies to survey, advise, and propose the promulgation of the guiding document and instruction on implementing Ordinance No. 02/2020/UBTVQH14 of the Standing Committees of the National Assembly, Decree No. 131/2021/NĐ-CP on the responsibility of the Ministry of Defence toward the Preferential treatment of revolution contributors. Besides, they should also coordinate to establish the national database of martyrs, martyrs’ graves, martyrs’ families, and martyrs’ graveyards, complete documents systems of searching, gathering, and determining the identity of martyrs’ remains in the 2021-2030 period and years to come, and actively determine unidentified martyrs’ graves by positive vetting. The Steering Boards for searching, gathering, and identifying martyrs’ remains in military regions, provincial and cities under the Central Government should promote their roles and responsibilities in closely coordinating with the specialised agencies of Laos and Cambodia to step up the search, gathering, and repatriation of the remains of Vietnamese volunteers and experts; close coordination with Vietnam War Veterans’ Association should be conducted to propagate and encourage them to provide information so that the effectiveness of searching and gathering martyrs’ remains, especially domestic localities can be heightened. Military regions and Hanoi Capital High Command should direct their agencies in localities to closely coordinate with local committees, branches, associations (especially the branch of Labour, Invalids, and Social Affairs), agencies, and units to keep track of the number of policy beneficiaries and the situation of performing regimes and policies. Hereby, their work of surveying and advising will assist party committees and local authorities to lead and direct the implementation of “Gratitude” activities to match the requirements of tasks and situation of agencies, units, and localities so that the synergy of organisations, forces, and the whole people can be promoted to actively respond and contribute to sweeping the ”Gratitude” activities.

Along with the above-mentioned measures, agencies and units should constantly pay attention to building strong and transparent agencies and contingents of cadres in charge of policy work with high sense of responsibility, scientific methods, working manners, and qualities of “being united, whole-hearted, proactive, creative, thorough, and affectionate” to advise leaders and commanders of agencies and units to effectively direct and organise the implementation of policy work and “Gratitude” activities.

Playing a key role in the Army, “Gratitude” activities are of deeply socio-political and humane significance. The 75th anniversary of War Invalids and Martyrs’ Day (July 27th, 1947 – July 27th, 2022) is a great event for the country as well as an occasion for the entire Army to accelerate and better implement “Gratitude” activities, contributing to reinforcing the country’s tradition and moral principle of “Drinking water while remembering the source” and illuminating the image and lofty qualities of “Uncle Ho’s Soldiers” in the new period.

Senior Lieutenant General DO CAN, Deputy Chairman of the General Political Department of the Vietnam People’s Army