Episode 2529 of the Vietnam Veteran News Podcast will feature a story about the CIA finally recognizing the Hmong People of Laos and their valued assistance they provided to the U.S. during the American Vietnam War. The featured story comes from The Sacramento Bee and is titled: They served in the CIA’s first ‘secret war’ – and are finally being recognized. It was submitted by Michael Wilner and Darrell Smith.
The Hmong were indigenous people who lived in the highlands of Laos. They hated the communist invaders of their homeland. Because of this, they willingly joined the CIA secret war in Laos.
For many years the CIA would not acknowledge that the Agency was conducting a secret war in Laos against the communist forces. The denial was a big task to hide an operation that according to David Robarge, chief historian at the CIA, over 50,000 Hmong soldiers were involved in the operation over the course of a decade. Something that large is hard to keep under wraps.
Now, upon the occasion of the 75th anniversary of the start of the CIA, the agency is honoring the Hmong people and their contribution to the effort in the American Vietnam War to stem the tide of communism.
Wilner and Smith describe the developing situation with the Hmong by highlighting two Americans of Hmong descent.
One was Tony Yang. He escaped the hell of post American presence in Laos with his father who had been part of one of the most successful, expansive, and least-known operations in CIA history.
The other is Mia Foster. Her father, Wa Pao Yang, was a lieutenant in Lao guerrilla forces fighting alongside the CIA during the war. Both of her parents escaped Laos in 1975, after the U.S. operation had ended, trekking for two weeks through Laotian jungle convinced they had been left behind for dead..
Listen to episode 2529 and discover more about the CIA finally recognizing the Hmong People of Laos and their valued assistance they provided to the U.S. during the American Vietnam War.