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Sacramento Bee: Hmong Americans recruited by CIA to wage a war seek recognition

International World Peace Rose Garden, Sacramento, CAThe CIA recruited Hmong to form a guerilla unit to fight off the North Vietnamese.

The jungle war went on for 15 years. Their efforts saved the lives of tens of thousands of US soldiers.

But the CIA’s Special Guerrilla Unit has never received US veteran status.

The Sacramento Bee reports an effort is being mobilized to change that.

“We’ve been building momentum and getting bipartisan support,” said Rep Jim Costa (D-Fresno). “There are less than 6,000 Hmong Special Guerrilla Unit fighters left alive today, and granting them burial rights alongside other veterans is about honor, it’s about dignity, it’s about paying back with respect those who stood with us,” Costa said. “We did the same for Filipino soldiers who fought with us during World War II.”

A monument to those veterans sits in the International World Peace Garden in Sacramento (Pictured).

“We want to preserve our legacy so our children know why we served and what we gained from this war,” said Charles Moua, a member of that guerilla unit.

You can read more about the effort and the generational gap between these veterans and their own children who some say don’t know about their fathers own history in the Sacramento Bee.


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