Refugee Workers in the Indochina Exodus, 1975–1982


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About the Book

The fall of Vietnam, Cambodia and Laos to communist armies in 1975 caused a massive outpouring of refugees from these nations. This work focuses on the refugee crisis and the American aid workers—a colorful crew of malcontents and mavericks drawn from the State Department, military, USAID, CIA, and the Peace Corps—who took on the task of helping those most impacted by the Vietnam War. Experts in Southeast Asia, its languages, cultures and people, they saved hundreds of thousands of lives. They were the very antithesis of the “Ugly American.”

About the Author(s)

Larry Clinton Thompson was a diplomat for the Department of State in Southeast Asia during the 1970s and has worked in more than thirty countries worldwide as a refugee advocate and humanitarian aid worker.

Bibliographic Details

Larry Clinton Thompson
Format: softcover (6 x 9)
Pages: 283
Bibliographic Info: 21 photos, 2 maps, notes, bibliography, index
Copyright Date: 2010
pISBN: 978-0-7864-4529-5
eISBN: 978-0-7864-5590-4
Imprint: McFarland

Table of Contents

Introduction      1

1. The Dominos Begin to Fall      5

2. Saigon: April 1975      16

3. Cambodia: April 1975      32

4. The Hmong Escape Laos      47

5. Guam: Halfway to America      62

6. Resettlement      75

7. Indochinese Refugees in America      91

8. Leftover Refugees in Thailand      103

9. Before the Deluge      120

10. Cambodia: Holocaust Denial      130

11. Indochina: The Perpetual War      139

12. The Boat People Come Ashore      150

13. Solving the Boat People Crisis      161

14. The Push Back at Preah Vihear      171

15. Sa Kaeo and Khao I Dang Holding Centers      182

16. The Land Bridge and Cambodian Famine      200

17. Being a Refugee      217

18. The End of the Beginning      234

Chapter Notes      249

Bibliography      263

Index      269