Probably one of the most terrifying news stories in Vietnam is that of the burning monks. Many people have heard about the monks that are seen burning, but many people are also skeptical about it. However, there is some factual proof that the monks are really burning, and it is possible that they are the source of some haunting news in Vietnam.
During the American War, the 727 Tran Hung Dao Apartment was a trò chơi săn mồi luxury hotel and residence for US soldiers. Eventually it was converted into an apartment building for local government workers. It was a lavish affair that included a pool, gymnasium, and a park. However, it is now a ghost town.
The building was completed in 1960. It was the tallest building in Saigon, and it was a luxurious residence for military generals. It was also home to hundreds of US soldiers. One of the strangest things to happen here was that a house on the street was burned to the ground in 2001. The exact cause of the fire was unknown. It was ruled accidental.
The building had 13 floors. Most of the floor were used as dormitory rooms. But the building’s 13th floor was never occupied. And while the apartment is now abandoned, it isn’t all gone. Some of the walls still have graffiti on them. It is also littered with puddles of water.
During the first five days of December 2003, United States forces bombed Tora Bora, a mountain region in Afghanistan. The raid was the culmination of an offensive aimed at taking out Osama bin Laden, the world’s most wanted man.
The bombing campaign targeted al Qaeda positions, but it was also aimed at special operations teams. The B-52 bombers dropped around 30 bombs each. The bombs penetrated caves.
A large portion of the mountain was bombed out. The town of Tora Bora was devastated. The town had been a haven for bin Laden and his followers during the 1990s.
During the assault, US special forces reached a network of caves where they believed a quarry had been hiding. However, no one was found.
One American soldier disappeared. The US military refused to admit that it made tactical mistakes in Tora Bora. The Pentagon said it needed time to send more troops. However, Defense Secretary Robert Franks said it was not possible to know whether bin Laden was actually at Tora Bora.
Famous burning monks
Located on the very spot where Thich Quang Duc burned himself to death, the Burning Monk Memorial is one of the most powerful monuments in Saigon. Its significance goes beyond its aesthetic value, as it commemorates a moment in history that changed Vietnam’s history.
Thich Quang Duc self-immolated in Saigon on June 11, 1963, in protest of the oppressive government’s discriminatory policies against Buddhists. His actions brought Vietnam to the front page of almost every newspaper in the world. His act ignited a global revolution and may have been the reason America entered the Vietnam War.
While the photograph of Thich Quang Duc on fire fueled the revolution, it was not the only act of defiance. Tibetan monks were also protesting against the Chinese government by setting themselves on fire. The Washington Post, BBC, and New York Times all reported on the incidents.
As news of the burning monks spread, American policy in Vietnam changed. After the burning protests, America cut off aid to Vietnam, and its policies became hostile to Buddhists.
Regardless of the political context, ghost stories in Vietnam represent an active social engagement with contemporary Vietnam. These stories, which are often rooted in long cultural traditions, elicit personal aspirations and the collective existence of social actors.
The growing ritual intimacy with ghosts is intimately related to the recent historical experience of war. In the wake of Vietnam’s recent war, the moral hierarchy of death has changed. Moreover, it has also been influenced by the dislocation of human life.
Ghosts in Vietnam are not only concrete historical identities, but they are also vital sources of historical evidence. These stories have the potential to address pressing issues in society. The growing acceptance of ghost narratives is facilitated by Vietnam’s assimilation to global markets.
Vietnam’s growing ritual intimacy with ghosts is also grounded in its long cultural tradition. However, the market economy has transmuted spiritual practice in the Vietnamese community.
Ghosts in Vietnam are not allegorical, but they are part of a broader history of a bipolar order that is in the process of decomposition. This history, which is inextricably connected to social attitudes to death, creates an intimate relationship between displaced spirits and living.