Continue to comprehensively and synchronously implement the Fatherland Protection Strategy, the National Defense Strategy and the Military Strategy in the new period

General, Politburo Member, Member of the Central Military Commission’s Standing Committee, Chairman of the General Department of Politics of the Vietnam People's Army
Wednesday, December 7, 2022 09:03

Communist Review - Fatherland Protection Strategy, National Defense Strategy and Military Strategy inherit the nation's tradition, which crystalizes the wisdom of the entire Party and army and all Vietnamese people. This contributes to the successful implementation of the two strategic tasks, namely building and defending the Vietnam Fatherland Socialist in the new period.

Party General Secretary, State President Nguyen Phu Trong, Secretary of the Central Military Commission attended a meeting with advanced typical representatives of the nation in building a strong national defense at the headquarters of the Party Central Committee in the period of 2009 - 2019 _Photo: VNA

On October 25th, 2013, the 8th Plenum of the Central Committee tenure XI issued Resolution No. 28-NQ/TW, "On the Strategy for Fatherland Protection in the new situation". This is a particularly important resolution, demonstrating the Party's new thinking on defending the Fatherland. On that basis, the Government promulgates the Action Program, and central departments, ministries and agencies concretize it with specialized strategies, programs and schemes. The Central Military Commission and the Ministry of National Defense shall formulate and submit to the Politburo for promulgating the National Defense Strategy, Military Strategy, etc. As well as develop plans, schemes and serve as the core in the process of implementation.

Over the past time, the Party, State, all levels of authorities and armed forces, especially the Army as the key, have thoroughly organized, mastered the guiding views and comprehensively implemented drastic solutions to put the strategies into practice, raise the awareness and responsibility of the whole political system, the army and the public in order to defend the Fatherland. The focus is on building a strong national defense, researching and developing military art, implementing the National Defense Strategy under the leadership of the Party and achieving many important goals. This contributes to the defeat of plots and countermeasures of hostile forces and protect the regime independence, sovereignty, unity and territorial integrity of the Fatherland, thus maintaining a peaceful and stable environment for national construction and development and enhancing Vietnam's international position and prestige, as General Secretary Nguyen Phu Trong affirmed at the XIII Congress of the Party: "Vietnam has never had the opportunity, potential, position and international prestige as today"(1). The strategies have marked a new development in strengthening national defense and security and defending the Fatherland in the new period. 

In the coming years, peace, cooperation and development will remain the main trend, but the situation in the world and the region will change complicatedly and unpredictably; the fundamental conflicts of the times persist. Non-traditional security issues, especially cybersecurity, terrorism, natural disasters and epidemics, continue to worsen. Although the global economy has recovered from the COVID-19 pandemic, it is not without problem. The Fourth Industrial Revolution made breakthroughs in many fields, creating both opportunities and challenges for countries around the world. Local conflicts can take place in many places; the world situation continues to change according to the multipolar, multi-center trend. Strategic competition between major countries and the gathering of forces is more complicated and intense; many countries promoted military modernization and strengthened military capacity; In particular, there are many new forms of war, changing the strategic environment. This context poses new challenges to peace and stability in the world and in the region. Asia-Pacific, including Southeast Asia, has become a key strategic competition area of major countries, potentially with many instabilities, territorial sovereignty disputes, frequent disputes of sea and island sovereignty, which will have a deeper and comprehensive impact on Vietnam.

Domestically, after more than 35 years of renovation, the position and strength as well as the national synergy and international reputation of Vietnam have been increasingly enhanced, which creates important premises to build and protect the Fatherland. However, the country still faces many difficulties due to the impact of the global economic crisis, the COVID-19 pandemic and non-traditional security challenges; the four risks identified by the Party through the congresses still exist and become more complicated. Hostile forces intensified their opposition to the Party, State and Army more and more openly, fiercely and directly. The Fourth Industrial Revolution created motivations, opportunities and challenges in national construction and development, and greatly impacted the construction of the people's national defense, the operation of the people's armed forces, the construction of the Army, strengthening the national defense and defending the Fatherland. The XIII Congress of the Party stated: "Continue to comprehensively and synchronously implement the Fatherland Protection Strategy, National Defense Strategy, Military Strategy and other specialized defense and security strategies"(2). Accordingly, it is necessary to promote the results achieved. At the same time, it is necessary to master the guiding views and continue to comprehensively, synchronously and effectively implement the Fatherland Protection Strategy, National Defense Strategy and Military Strategy, focusing on the following key issues:

Firstly, continue to strengthen the Party's leadership, improve the efficiency and effectiveness of the State's management in the implementation of strategies.

This is the guiding viewpoint, as well as the most important solution, throughout the process of organizing and implementing comprehensive and effective strategies; in order to strengthen the absolute and direct leadership in all aspects of the Party over the armed forces and the cause of national defense. It is also crucial to build a clean and strong Party, State and political system, improve the leadership capacity and fighting power of party committees and organizations, the efficiency and effectiveness of governments management at all levels and constantly strengthen the great national unity.

The leadership of the Party is the decisive factor in the victory of military, defense and national defense tasks. Under any conditions and circumstances, it is vital to uphold the leadership of the Party; continue to institutionalize the Party's leadership through the legal system and relevant legal documents. At the same time, it is also important to promote the roles and responsibilities of committees, heads of departments, ministries and branches at the central and local levels and committees, commanders of agencies and units of the armed forces in leading, effectively directing and implementing strategies, deeply and flexibly concretize and creatively apply the views in the Resolution of the XIII Congress of the Party to carry out the task of building and defending the Fatherland in the new period.

Renovating and improving the effectiveness and efficiency of state management and government system’s operation at all levels; strictly implementing the Constitution, the National Defense Law, the National Defense Strategy, the Military Strategy and consolidating organizations, apparatus and staff doing military and defense work in ministries, ministerial-level agencies and government-attached agencies. This is followed by supplementing and perfecting the legal system, policies and mechanisms on national defense; regulations on coordination between central and local departments, ministries and agencies, ensuring the full performance of functions and tasks, and strengthening effective state management and implementation of national defense by law.

Maintaining and strengthening the absolute and direct leadership in all aspects of the Party, the State's management of the armed forces, the core of which is the People's Army; ensuring that the Party firmly grasps the armed forces in all situations, which is the decisive factor in the maturity and victory of the armed forces. Implementing the Resolution of the XIII Congress of the Party on building the People's Army and People's Police to be revolutionary, regular, elite and modern; strong in politics, ideology, ethics, organization and cadre. Building party committees, organizations and cadres and party members in the Army and Police who are absolutely loyal to the Fatherland, the Party, the State and the people, consistent with the Party's revolutionary goals and ideals, ensuring the overall quality and high combat power meeting the requirements and tasks in all situations"(3), successfully perform military and national defense tasks in the new period.

Secondly, mastering the relationship between the Fatherland Protection Strategy, the National Defense Strategy and Military Strategy and continuing to concretize them during implementation.

The Fatherland Protection Strategy and the National Defense Strategy are national strategies. Military strategy is a specialized strategy, which has an organic relationship and impact but is not identical to those two strategies. The Fatherland Protection Strategy and the Socio-Economic Development Strategy are the two integral strategies. They are inclusive national strategies, a strategic guiding foundation for the development and implementation of specialized strategies. The National Defense strategy is a national strategy and plan to determine objectives, gather forces and choose feasible solutions, creating the greatest synergy to firmly defend Vietnam Fatherland Socialist.

The National Defense strategy is the strategy of national defense, protecting the country in early history and being ready to fight the war of aggression since the country was safe from invaders. This is a strategy of peace, self-defense, with the synergy of the whole nation combined with the strength of the times; based on the right political line as the decisive factor, national defense strength is the key, military strength is the combat power of the armed forces, with the core being the People's Army and building and strengthening strategic relations and trust with countries, especially strategic partners, to create a position to protect the Fatherland, which helps the nation to be ready to defeat all forms of war of aggression if it occurs. The National Defense strategy is the main part, concretizing the Fatherland Protection Strategy, along with other strategies to realize the objectives and tasks of defending the Fatherland. Military strategy is the core content, concretizing the National Defense Strategy, which is the basis for building and completing combat plans, postures, military organization, ensuring equipment, resources and training in order to be ready to deal with modern forms of warfare.

Thirdly, improve the quality of forecasting and advising the Party and State on military and defense in implementing strategies.

This is a key solution in planning and implementing the Fatherland Protection Strategy, National Defense Strategy and Military Strategy. The quality of forecasting research and strategic advice should be comprehensively improved in terms of organization, mechanisms, capacity. Advices on proposing guidelines, policies and solutions should be correctly and promptly provided in order to produce solid scientific arguments, meeting the requirements of leadership and directing the implementation of military tasks, national defense and Fatherland protection; strategic situations should be promptly and effectively handled in order not to be passive or unexpected. At the same time, it serves as research and development of theories on building the national defense, the people's armed forces and the military art of Vietnam.

It is vital to promote the leadership role of party organizations and the direction, management and administration of governments at all levels for strategic forecasting research activities. Leaders at all levels should be aware of the importance of research and forecasting national defense strategies; the relationship between socio-economic development and strengthening national defense and security. It is needed to improve the quality of education and foster knowledge of defense for the subjects according to regulations.

The study of strategic forecasts in the field of defense is under the leadership, direction, management and administration of the Central Military Commission and the Ministry of Defense; combined with regulatory documents of competent agencies, creating a legal basis for conducting strategic forecasting research activities in the field of defense. Accordingly, it is necessary to supplement and improve the system of legal documents and mechanisms for directing, administering, coordinating research and forecasting and advising on national defense strategies. It is also essential to determine the contents and develop research programs to forecast the 5-year and 10-year national defense strategies, in accordance with the new thinking on national defense and closely combine long-term forecasting research with short-term and ad-hoc ones. There should be a focus on developing and implementing a program to improve the capacity of research, forecasting and advising the National Defense Strategy for the period of 2020 - 2025 and the following years.

Promoting practical review, theoretical research, application of modern technology in forecasting and advisory research. Closely combining strategic forecasting research in the field of defense and military with scientific research. Building and standardizing information systems, synchronous and increasingly modern databases, ensuring convenience in sharing and linking between information agencies and documents in order to provide multidimensional, objective and reliable information from different sources.

Building and consolidating national defense strategy research agencies in the direction of focus, in-depth and proper functions, building coordination and assurance mechanisms to meet immediate as well as long-term strategic forecasting research needs. Focusing on building a team of specialized staff, especially the presiding officers at all levels, a team of experienced and highly educated experts with reasonable quantity and high quality. Paying attention to the regime, policies and activities of forecasting research and strategic advice in the field of defense. Promoting the selection, fostering, training and use of strategic forecasting researchers. Improving the effectiveness of cooperation and close coordination between strategic research agencies of departments, ministries and sectors in forecasting research and strategic advice.

Fourthly, continue to improve the effectiveness of international integration and foreign defense in the implementation of strategies.

Improving the effectiveness of international integration and foreign defense in the implementation of the Fatherland Protection Strategy, National Defense Strategy and Military Strategy is an important task as well as a solution, an "early" and "remote" national protection plan which ensures the highest interests of nation and people on the basis of the fundamental principles of the UN Charter and international law, equality and mutually beneficial cooperation. Strengthening the country's international position, independence and autonomy; maintaining a peaceful and stable environment for national development.

Thoroughly and consistently implementing the foreign policy of independence, autonomy, peace, friendship, cooperation and development, multilateralization and diversification of foreign relations. Strengthening foreign defense work along with party and state diplomacy as well as public diplomacy. Strengthening strategic trust, enhancing the nation's international position and prestige, firmly consolidating Fatherland protection, and national defense and security.

International integration and foreign defense should be promoted under the motto "Active, proactive, firm, flexible and effective". They must be  implemented comprehensively and developed in both width and depth to create a new strategic position. Defense cooperation should be strengthened and expanded reliably with partners, especially strategic and comprehensive partners, with major countries, neighbors and traditional friends; focusing on the strengths of the parties, building trust and creating international support and help to prevent risks and deal with wars of aggression. 

Actively and proactively participating in multilateral defense and security cooperation mechanisms on the basis of respect for independence, sovereignty, territorial integrity, and non-interference in the internal affairs of countries. Expanding the scope of participation in UN peacekeeping operations; jointing training and exercises on humanitarian assistance, search and rescue, disaster relief; international cooperation on overcoming the consequences of war; actively contributing to non-proliferation of nuclear and weapons of mass destruction efforts. Focusing on strengthening cooperation in border protection and friendly exchanges with bordering countries, such as cooperation in joint patrols, exchange of experiences in national border management and protection, preventing and combating terrorism and transnational crime, searching and rescuing, disaster recovery.  Strengthening the organization, focusing on training, fostering and improving the quality of human resources participating in international integration and foreign defense. Renovating the content and form of cooperation in organizing conferences, seminars and joint drills. Improving the effectiveness of information and propaganda work, creating high consensus among the whole Party, the whole people, the whole army and international public opinion on the defense policy of peace, friendship, cooperation and development of Vietnam. Supplementing and perfecting the coordination mechanism with foreign affairs agencies; connecting and attracting the spiritual and material participation and contributions of organizations and individuals, especially Vietnamese intellectuals at home and abroad with a view to building and defending the Fatherland.

Fifthly, focus on summarizing and supplementing the promulgated strategies; researching new specialized strategies to meet practical requirements in the field of military, defense and national defense.

The process of implementing strategies should reflect new changes and developments of the situation in a period of 5, 10 and 20 years, etc. It is necessary to focus on preliminary and summary to promptly supplement and adjust the strategy to suit the new requirements of the task of defending the Fatherland. In the preliminary summary of the implementation of strategies, it is necessary to evaluate honestly, objectively, comprehensively, deeply and seriously; specify the results achieved, limitations, causes, draw lessons learned, as a basis for adjusting goals, requirements, directions, tasks, solutions, breakthrough stages for the next stage to achieve higher efficiency. In the period from 2022 to 2030, with a vision to 2045, it is necessary to actively improve the quality of 40 years of innovation in the field of military, defense and national defense; summing up 10 years of implementation of the Resolution of the 8th Central Conference on the Strategy for National Defense in the new situation (2013 - 2023); preliminary conclusion of 5 years of implementation of the promulgated specialized strategies; perfecting the theory of building a "revolutionary, regular, elite and modern" People's Army. This is followed by continuing to study and develop other specialized strategies, such as the Civil Defense Strategy; digital transformation in the military and defense sectors; building high-quality human resources in the Army. On this basis, the next step will be to summarize the implementation of strategies to supplement, adjust the promulgated strategies, study and propose new specialized strategies to perform military, defense and national defense tasks./.


(1) Documents of the 13th National Congress, National Political Publishing House, Hanoi, 2021, Vol. I, p. 104

(2) Documents of the 13th National Congress, Ibid. Vol. I, p. 160

(3)  Documents of the 13th National Congress, Ibid., Vol. I, p. 158

This article was published in the Communist Review No. 991 (June 2022)