Tue March 26, 2013
The Two-Way

China, Vietnam Clash Over Disputed Islands

Originally published on Tue March 26, 2013 3:23 pm

Aerial view of the city of Sansha on an island in the disputed Paracel chain, which China considers part of its territory.
STR AFP/Getty Images

China is once again at odds with a maritime neighbor over disputed islands, this time — as often — leading to a little shooting and a lot of posturing.

The latest confrontation is with Vietnam over the mostly uninhabited Paracel Islands in the South China Sea. Hanoi has accused Beijing's forces of firing on a Vietnamese vessel engaged in fishing near the islands, which both sides claim.

Vietnam did not say if anyone was hurt in the incident that occurred last Wednesday, but it described the matter as "very serious."

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Tue February 12, 2013

In A North Vietnamese Prison, Sharing Poems With 'Taps On The Walls'

Originally published on Tue February 12, 2013 7:12 am

Horst Faas Associated Press

The United States was fresh off signing the peace accords to end the long and bloody war in Vietnam when, on Feb. 12, 1973, more than 140 American prisoners of war were set free.

Among the men to start a long journey back home that day was John Borling.

An Air Force fighter pilot, Borling was shot down on his 97th mission over Vietnam on the night of June 1, 1966. He spent the next six years and eight months in a notorious North Vietnamese prison.

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Fri February 8, 2013

Show Me The Money In Your Lunar New Year Envelope

Originally published on Sun April 7, 2013 6:06 pm

A man counts yuan to fill red envelopes in Beijing. Many families celebrate the Lunar New Year by exchanging small envelopes filled with money.
Lizzie Chen NPR

Many Chinese, Vietnamese, Korean and other Asian immigrant families are preparing to celebrate the Lunar New Year by filling small envelopes with money.

Exchanging cash gifts with relatives and friends is an annual holiday tradition that can test one's cultural knowledge and, sometimes, bank account.

Allen Kwai, 36, and Debbie Dai, 31, first met a decade ago during church choir practice in New York City's Chinatown. They finally tied the knot last October.

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Sun January 27, 2013
The Picture Show

An Iconic 'Life' Image You Must See

Originally published on Sun January 27, 2013 4:08 am

U.S. Marine in Vietnam, October 1966.
Larry Burrows—Time & Life Pictures/Getty Images

"Larry Burrows made a photograph that, for generations, has served as the most indelible, searing illustration of the horrors inherent in that long, divisive war — and, by implication, in all wars."

That's according to Ben Cosgrove, editor of He is referring to the image above, made in 1966 and titled Reaching Out.

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Sat November 24, 2012
Author Interviews

A Refugee's Multilayered Experience In 'Ru'

Originally published on Mon November 26, 2012 8:31 am

Random House Canada

Vietnamese author Kim Thuy's new novel unfolds in the way a flower casts off petals: one small scene after another. Ru is an autobiographical novel in which memories are shuffled back and forth to tell the story of a 10-year-old born in Saigon during the 1968 Tet Offensive.

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