< Back to S. 409 (113th Congress, 2013–2015)

Text of A bill to add Vietnam Veterans Day as a patriotic and national observance.

This bill was introduced on February 28, 2013, in a previous session of Congress, but was not enacted. The text of the bill below is as of Feb 28, 2013 (Introduced).

II

113th CONGRESS

1st Session

S. 409

IN THE SENATE OF THE UNITED STATES

February 28, 2013

(for himself and Mrs. Boxer) introduced the following bill; which was read twice and referred to the Committee on the Judiciary

A BILL

To add Vietnam Veterans Day as a patriotic and national observance.

1.

Vietnam Veterans Day

(a)

Findings

Congress finds that—

(1)

the Vietnam War was fought in the Republic of South Vietnam from 1961 to 1975, and involved North Vietnamese regular forces and Viet Cong guerrilla forces in armed conflict with United States Armed Forces, allies of the United States, and the armed forces of the Republic of Vietnam;

(2)

the United States Armed Forces became involved in Vietnam because the United States Government wanted to provide direct military support to the Government of South Vietnam to defend itself against the growing Communist threat from North Vietnam;

(3)

members of the United States Armed Forces began serving in an advisory role to the Government of the Republic of South Vietnam in 1950;

(4)

as a result of the Gulf of Tonkin incidents on August 2 and 4, 1964, Congress overwhelmingly passed the Gulf of Tonkin Resolution (Public Law 88–408), on August 7, 1964, which provided the authority to the President of the United States to prosecute the war against North Vietnam;

(5)

in 1965, United States Armed Forces ground combat units arrived in Vietnam;

(6)

by September 1965, there were over 129,000 United States troops in Vietnam, and by 1969, a peak of approximately 543,000 troops was reached;

(7)

on January 27, 1973, the Agreement Ending the War and Restoring Peace in Vietnam (commonly known as the Paris Peace Accords) was signed, which required the release of all United States prisoners-of-war held in North Vietnam and the withdrawal of all United States Armed Forces from South Vietnam;

(8)

on March 29, 1973, the United States Armed Forces completed the withdrawal of combat units and combat support units from South Vietnam;

(9)

on April 30, 1975, North Vietnamese regular forces captured Saigon, the capitol of South Vietnam, effectively placing South Vietnam under Communist control;

(10)

more than 58,000 members of the United States Armed Forces lost their lives in Vietnam and more than 300,000 members of the Armed Forces were wounded;

(11)

in 1982, the Vietnam Veterans Memorial was dedicated in the District of Columbia to commemorate those members of the United States Armed Forces who died or were declared missing-in-action in Vietnam;

(12)

the Vietnam War was an extremely divisive issue among the people of the United States and a conflict that caused a generation of veterans to wait too long for the United States public to acknowledge and honor the efforts and services of such veterans;

(13)

members of the United States Armed Forces who served bravely and faithfully for the United States during the Vietnam War were often wrongly criticized for the policy decisions made by 4 presidential administrations in the United States;

(14)

the establishment of a Vietnam Veterans Day would be an appropriate way to honor those members of the United States Armed Forces who served in South Vietnam and throughout Southeast Asia during the Vietnam War;

(15)

March 29 would be an appropriate day to establish as Vietnam Veterans Day; and

(16)

President Obama designated March 29, 2012, as Vietnam Veterans Day under Presidential Proclamation 8789 (77 Fed. Reg. 20275).

(b)

Vietnam Veterans Day

Chapter 1 of title 36, United States Code, is amended by adding at the end the following:

145.

Vietnam Veterans Day

The President may issue each year a proclamation—

(1)

designating March 29 as Vietnam Veterans Day;

(2)

honoring and recognizing the contributions of veterans who served in the United States Armed Forces in Vietnam during war and during peace;

(3)

encouraging States and local governments to establish a Vietnam Veterans Day; and

(4)

encouraging the people of the United States to observe Vietnam Veterans Day with appropriate ceremonies and activities that—

(A)

provide the appreciation veterans of the Vietnam War deserve, but did not receive upon returning home from the war;

(B)

demonstrate the resolve that never again shall the people of the United States disregard and denigrate a generation of veterans;

(C)

promote awareness of the faithful service and contributions of the veterans of the Vietnam War during military service as well as to the communities of the veterans since returning home;

(D)

promote awareness of the importance of entire communities empowering veterans and the families of veterans in helping the veterans readjust to civilian life after military service; and

(E)

promote opportunities for veterans of the Vietnam War to assist younger veterans returning from the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan in rehabilitation from wounds, both seen and unseen, and to support the reintegration of younger veterans into civilian life.

.

(c)

Conforming Amendment

The table of sections for chapter 1 of title 36, United States Code, is amended by adding at the end the following:

145. Vietnam Veterans Day.

.