HA NOI (VNS) — The Tri Thuc Publishing House and the Austrian Embassy in Ha Noi yesterday released the Vietnamese version of a book by Austrian author Ernst Frey.
Viet Nam, Tinh Yeu Cua Toi (Viet Nam, My Love), translated by Nguy Huu Tam and Tran Vinh, is an autobiography by Frey who had participated in the Vietnamese struggle. He was a Jew from Vienna who served former President Ho Chi Minh.
In May 1950 when he left for Vienna, Frey received a letter from Ho Chi Minh, saying, "Dear Mr Nguyen Dan (Frey's Vietnamese name), I felt regret to have been unable to shake your hands. However, wherever you go I'm strongly convinced that you will use what you have in your hands to serve our common cause. I wish you bon voyage and good health."
Frey was born in 1915 in Vienna, Austria. In 1934, he enlisted to join the Communist Youth Union and was detained many times by Austrian fascists.
In 1941, he arrived in Indochina as a voluntary soldier. In September 1945, he was arrested by the Japanese forces but managed to flee to the Viet Minh (the League for the Independence of Viet Nam). First, he joined military training and later was promoted as a colonel. He died in 1994.
In the biography, Frey recalls the experience of fighting the fascists in Austria, his escapes and the hard-to-believe but interesting stories about his life in Indochina. — VNS