Can Vietnam’s New Leadership Deliver on ‘Last Good Chance’ for Change?

Vietnam's Communist Party General Secretary Nguyen Phu Trong, Prime Minister Nguyen Tan Dung and Deputy Prime Minister Nguyen Xuan Phuc pay tribute to Ho Chi Minh, Hanoi, Vietnam, March 21, 2016 (AP photo by Tran Van Minh).
Vietnam's Communist Party General Secretary Nguyen Phu Trong, Prime Minister Nguyen Tan Dung and Deputy Prime Minister Nguyen Xuan Phuc pay tribute to Ho Chi Minh, Hanoi, Vietnam, March 21, 2016 (AP photo by Tran Van Minh).
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For most of 2015, it looked as though Nguyen Tan Dung, Vietnam’s prime minister since 2006, would succeed in his audacious bid to succeed Nguyen Phu Trong as the head of the Communist Party of Vietnam (CPV). In the end, however, he was outmaneuvered in skirmishes over party rules, and undone by a whispering campaign that painted him as a dangerous opportunist. The contest was over even before the party’s 12th Congress convened on Jan. 21, 2016. Contrary to the dominant narrative in international media coverage, the showdown in Hanoi had very little to do with how to handle ties […]

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