Southeast Asia after Withdrawal from Vietnam
Discusses the impact of American withdrawal from Vietnam on SEA countries. A rapid, scheduled removal of U.S. forces would probably be no more risky or costly than a continued presence, and may actually better promote SEA stability. Regardless of the outcome in Vietnam, SEA governments will have protracted internal security problems because they will continue to be undemocratic, militarized, and unstable. Moreover, all SEA countries have dissident internal movements in addition to the Communist insurgencies — which, unlike the Viet Cong, are mostly weak, disorganized, badly led, and popularly unsupported. The ethnic and tribal minorities and the racial and religious organizations are much more troublesome. In foreign policy, these governments will continue to honor formal and informal alliances so long as they are useful — e.,g., in military and economic aid — without abrogating national sovereignty, especially by any major power. Also, anticipating a reduced American presence, SEA countries have been discussing self-reliant defense cooperation.