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Interview with Sai Nou Vang

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  • General Vang Pao’s Personal Bodyguard and House Manager
  • Captain, SGU, CIA Secret War in Laos 1961-1975

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00:53:56

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SAI NOU VANG

• General Vang Pao’s Personal Bodyguard and House Manager
• Captain, SGU, CIA Secret War in Laos 1961-1975

Regarding the Vientiane Agreement of 1973, we were low ranking soldiers. So, we have no part in knowing or dealing with the affairs of the agreement itself. There were a few important items in the agreement. In February or March, the Paris Accord was signed in Paris, France. Then, in correlation to that, there was the Vientiane Agreement of 1973. The main goal was to call for cease-fire, to cease fire and stop the fighting in 1973. Other than that, the Communist Pathet Lao and the Royal Lao were to form a coalition government with a joint effort to build up Laos. That’s basically the summary of the Agreement. But, the Agreement also called for the removal from Laos, all foreign forces allied to each side. However, the other side was clever. They said one thing but did another. They talked about the back, but did what’s in front. They talked about the front, but did what’s in the back.

For us, whatever was said in the Agreement that was what we did. So, General Vang Pao was required to pull out all the Thai military forces and CIA personnel in Military Region 2. All foreign forces were to pull out by the end of 1974. So, after the Agreement, General Vang Pao pulled out all the Thai Forces back to Thailand. Most CIA personnel were out. Only a few advisors remained temporarily. Jerry (Daniel) and Bert were the only two that remained permanently. But, the communist did not pull out their allied forces as agreed. So, the reason there were more battles afterwards was because the communist sent more troops instead of pulling out. They began invading areas that belongs to the Royal Lao Government and the General. So, the General was upset and appealed to the King and Souvana Phouma regarding the invasions. He questioned them as to why the Pathet Lao did not honor their part of the agreement. Instead, they sent more troops to invade our land. The King said he did not know. This was according to what I’ve heard from the General. So, the King told the General to go and see Souvana. The General was frustrated and not sure what to do. No matter what, they were invading and kept on coming instead of withdrawing. We withdrew but they didn’t. They did not honor the Agreement by sending even more troops. He commissioned GM-24, which Colonel Moua Kao commanded, and sent them to that area. Colonel Moua Sue’s battalion also went down there to assist. So, when this happened, the communist accused the General of wanting a war. They accused him of that. At the time, the General’s military leaders were meeting with him constantly. I was a low ranking soldier so I was not in any of the meetings. But each time they came out, everyone had a sad face. There were times when I would serve them drinks or stood by the door listening. They were talking about resistance. Resist because this was the General’s thought. He didn’t want us to be a people without a country. Therefore, we must resist and fight because there is an Agreement there to negotiate. So, Colonel Soua Yang asked where we would locate our resistance base. Long Cheng or somewhere else. That was how it concluded with relocating to Xieng Lom for the resistance effort. If we lose the war, we can just cross over into Thailand and ask them to open the door for us. That was the plan. All of these events happened between January and April.

Around February, the General called me up to his office and said he wants to talk to me. So, I went up to his office. He said to me, take your wife and go up to my in-law Phicha Fachue and Khoua Mai Thao in the Xieng Lom area and tell all the Hmong to rise up. And I will relocate the soldiers and all the Hmong in Long Cheng to that area and we will resist the communists. All I said was, yes, Sir! He said, I’ll give you a plane. I will be sending Amasat to Thailand to talk to the Thai government and see if they are willing to join hands. I will ask Colonel Vang Ger to go to Cambodia and see if they are willing to assist as well. He commissioned Commander Zang Teng to go to Palakemthau and meet with a prophet down there. From there, they will meet with the Thai resistance army and request their assistance as well. If they all agreed to join hands, then we will relocate into one town and resist the communists. And negotiate for terms based on the Agreement. All I said was, yes, Sir! So, I waited day after day but he didn’t commission any plane to send me on the mission. It was more than a month. Then I asked him. He said, there is a change of plan. There will be no resistance. There are no more support from the Americans. There are many groups who want to destroy us. The Americans have said. Both the Pathet Lao and the Royal Lao, the Vietnamese, and the Chinese are trying to destroy us. Where can we draw the strength to resist? The Americans have withdrawn their support. Therefore, let us stand down.

Before the evacuation, the General went to Luang Prabang to talk to the King. But the King was not willing to deal with the problems. So, he told the General to go and meet with Souvana. So, it was the 5th or the 6th of May, 1975 that the General went down to Vientiane to meet with Prime Minister Souvana. He said to Souvana, according to the Vientiane Agreement, all foreign forces were to pull out. But the Pathet Lao continued adding more forces instead. As the Prime Minister, what do you have to say? He told the General, I can’t do anything about that. They are operating within their own boundaries. They have not brought any war to you. It was you that had bombed them and created problems. So, the General was very upset. He took off his stars and put them on Souvana’s table. He said, I give back you today, the authority and power you bestowed on me to oversee Military Region 2. But I believe that from tomorrow on, you and the country will fall as well. Then, he stepped out and came back to Long Cheng along with a CIA advisor and Vang Bee, the pilot. Then, I believe it was on the 9th, a Colonel came up from Vientiane and asked the General to go down for a meeting. Souvana had also called him to go down and meet on the 11th of May in Vientiane. Basically to talk about the concerns the General had voiced. The General was prepared and ready to go down for the meeting on the 11th. The meeting was to be held at 11:00am. Then, in the very early morning of the 11th, there was a Hmong man named, Chia Doua Kue who was blind in one eye and wore a red hat like mine here. He came early and said to Doctor Chu, you have to tell the General to stay home all day today. He cannot go anywhere today. You have to tell him. If you don’t tell him, you are responsible. So, he went to the General and said, Genera, Chia Doua came and asked me to tell you not to go anywhere today. The General yelled at him and said, Chu, have you gone crazy as well? The country is about to fall and you are telling me crazy stuff like that? Get out! Doctor Chu was the General’s personal doctor ever since they were still in Xieng Khouang. So, Chu just went back into his office.

A bit later, I drove by and Doctor Chu saw me through the window. He waved at me and asked me to stop. So, I parked the car at the kitchen house and came to him. I asked him what he needs. He said to me, uncle Cher Cha is not here. Therefore, you go and talk to the General. Chia Doua came and asked me to tell him not to go anywhere but he insisted on going down to the meeting. Maybe he should not go. You have to go and tell him. I answered him…I can’t. You are his personal doctor and you got yelled at. He will do the same to me. He said, you have to tell him. If uncle Cher Cha is here, he would be the one to tell him but he is not. So, you do it. I ignored what he asked and just went inside the house to converse with some of the people in there. After a while, I thought to myself, I really should tell him just in case there might be something bad happening. So, I went up and salute him, like this. At that time I wore a hat just like this. This was the kind of hat I was wearing back then. The General said, Nou….what it is that I want. I said, I’m here to tell what Doctor Chu told you. He said, Chu told me already. I said to him, General, you are a brother and a Hmong leader. Sometimes, people are your savior. You always have someone who saved you. If someone came and tell you something like this, you should listen and not go. He said the same thing to me as he did to Chu. You don’t know anything at all. Our country is about to fall. These crazy people are from the communist. They came here to trick us. That’s the communist tactic. Those are just crazy people. Get out! So, I stepped out. I went back downstairs for about 20 or 30 minutes. Then he came down, put his hand-gun on the table and getting ready to go to the meeting. Then he asked if anyone had told pilot Vang Bee to get ready with the plane. It was chaotic, so some of the soldiers had left. There was only Vang Moua, Cher Yang, and Fai Dang. They told him, someone had notified Vang Bee already. So, the General climbed back upstairs. I sat for a while and kept thinking, he is a very tough and strongwill person, if I don’t stop him, something terrible may happen. My heart was troubling and I just didn’t have a good feeling about him going. I thought, I had to try my best to convince him not to go. If he goes and gets killed, at least I have done my part. So, I went back and stood straight saluting him. He asked, you have something else to say? I said to him, I’m here to prevent you from going. At this time he was in his first wife’s bedroom. He slammed his fist in anger on the wife’s bed. You idiot, you have no idea what is going on. Stop standing there. There are lots of thing do. Get out! I didn’t get out. I sat right down and lean against the door instead. I said to him, General, you are the leader. You’ve always said you love the Hmong people. Win or lose does not depend on you going to the meeting today. I believe if you go, you lose. But if you stay, you win. I cannot let you go. If you must insist on going go ahead and kill me right here. Otherwise, I have to prevent you from going. He got really mad at this point. He didn’t care what I had to say. I cried at this time. I didn’t move. He yelled at me really loud. Chue heard it. So, he knocked on the door hard. I asked, who it is. Chue responded. I opened the door and he asked what was going on. I answered him, nothing. I was just trying to prevent your dad from going to the meeting. He said to me, get out, I’ll stay with my dad. So, I stepped out. I thought to myself, he didn’t listen, so forget it. So, I stepped out with tears and drove home. I stayed home for about 40 or 50 minutes. But no plane was flying out. So, I came back. When I got back, his stuffs were still on the table. But pilot Vang Bee was there already. I sat down for a few moments then I heard him calling for me from the second stairs. He called, Nou…Nou! But I didn’t answer. Lt. Vang Neng, who now lives in France, said to me, the General is calling you. I told him not to worry about it. The General called one more time. So, Neng said, let’s go. We both went up to see the General. When we got there, he was pacing around emotionless. Neng said to him, uncle Pao, Nou’s job is to protect you. That was why he tried to stop you. Please forgive him. Then the phone rang and Neng picked it up. I was Nyia Ying, calling from Vientiane. First thing he asked was, has 215 flew out yet? Neng answered, no. He is still here. You want to talk to him? The General interrupted and said, tell Nyia Ying I knew about all of that already. So, Lt. Vang Neng told Nyia Ying that the General knew already. Then Neng asked the General what that was about. But he didn’t answer Neng. He just continued pacing around. He was emotionless. Whenever the General has a straight and emotionless face, it is frightening, whether he is smiling or angry. I’ve been with him long enough to see many things that happened when he gets angry. I have not even mentioned those to you. The things that I have seen with my own eyes. I was really afraid already. So, I didn’t say anything. Then, he turned and said to me, Nou! That’s all he said. Then I answered, yes, Sir! He said, I didn’t know you have that much courage to argue with me all morning! Then he didn’t say anything else. Now, I got even more afraid. So, I was thinking about finding ways to escape through the door because I knew that at moments like this, it’s either punch and kick or the sound of a gun. So, I was ready to either die or find ways to escape. Then he said, if it weren’t for you, I don’t know now I would have ended up in Vientiane. I didn’t know what was going on, so I didn’t say anything. Lt. Vang Neng asked the General, uncle Pao, what are you talking about? He said, Jerry (Daniels) called. The CIA agents at Wattay Airport in Vientiane warned for me not to go to the meeting in Vientiane. The meeting at 11:00am was set up by Souvana and the Communists to kill me. If they can’t capture me, then they will kill me in flight. That’s the CIA’s report. So, I know everything already. At this point, Neng and I were relieved. But I didn’t say anything.

So, Neng and I just came back down. At that moment, no one was able to see him. Later on that day, he called for me again. Then I went in and see him. He said to me, tomorrow afternoon I’ll be leaving for Thailand. I’ve made up my mind. So, don’t try to stop me like what you did before. Now, I got even more discouraged. I’ve guarded him in many good ways. But when it’s time for him to leave, he actually tells me not to do anything. I was very upset. So, I said to him, yes, Sir. That’s fine. And I said to him, if that’s all then I will have to go and tell my fellow soldiers to prepare to leave for Thailand as well. So, I stepped out and left. I came and asked Fai Neng, Tong Va, and Va Xeng to tell some of the soldiers to prepare. I said to them, if the General leaves, I’ll lead you and we will trek over to Thailand as well. So, the soldiers started packing up. The General saw the soldiers leaving and he asked Vang Moua to come and get me. He was asking why I had told all the soldiers to go home. So, I went back. He said to me, I told you I’m leaving but not today. Not until tomorrow.

Tomorrow, was the 12th. Wait until I get on the plane before you go anywhere. You can’t just tell the soldiers to leave! I said to him, they’re just going to my house to prepare some dry rice. He told me not to go anywhere and follow him to the bedroom. I followed him to the bedroom and he pulled out a case containing 10 million Kips. He gave me five million Kips and a car key. So, he told me to drive his blue car and take the money to a commander, which I don’t remember the name. He said to me, give him the money and the car so he may have money to spend and a car to drive if he flees to the Muang Mao area. I delivered the car and the money to that commander. Then I came back and he told me to divide the rest of the money among my soldiers. I said to him I will do that. So, I gave the money to Fai Neng and Tong Va to distribute. There were only 64 soldiers left at that time. So, they distribute the money among the soldiers. Then, the 12th came but he didn’t leave yet. There was a reason why he did not leave. It was because of his father in-laws, Nyia Chou and Cher Pao, the two people who he loved and cared the most. They refused to get on a plane to fly out to Thailand. They wanted special treatment. So, they would accept only a special plane to take just their families out. If they have to scramble to get in, they would not come because Cher Pao had been fighting hard for the country. So, to come and having to scramble for a place in the plane like the rest of the people, he did not want to do that. They continued refusing to get on the plane. So, there were no more planes to fly them out on the evening of the 12th. That was why the General called me to go and meet with him. So, we stepped into his second wife’s bedroom. We both sat down on the bed. He said to me, whether it be today, tomorrow, or the following day, if the in-laws are not going, I can’t leave. They have to be going first. Therefore, you are with me. Whenever I go, you go. Tell the soldiers to go and wait at Phuka. After we get to Thailand, I will send four planes to come and pick them up. There are sixty four soldiers left, correct? The General asked. So, let’s do that. Tell the soldiers to cut the barb-wire rolls behind the kitchen house. Cut and then put it back as is. When we are ready to leave, I’ll lift the barb-wire and get out while you drive to Moua Xue’s house and wait for me there. But, going where? I don’t know. That was all he said to me. He didn’t tell me the next step we were going to take. Maybe he didn’t trust me enough, I don’t know. So, I said to him I’ll do that. I then told Sergeant Tong Va, who now lives here and Fai Neng to go and cut the barb-wire fence. The fence consisted of three rolls of razor barb-wires. Two in the bottom and one on top. In the middle was a barb-wire fence. One roll of razor barb-wire was on the outside, one inside, and the one on top. It was fenced around the General’s compound. I put up that fence after I came back from my training (in Thailand.) They cut the fence and put it back to look as it was.

On the 13th, the two in-laws were still at home, refusing to come. So, around 4:00pm, the General said to me, you go and pick them up. We will drop them off at the rice warehouse next to the runway. Do not let anyone know about it. Bring them here and then drop them off there and put them on the first flight out tomorrow. According to our intelligence, the communist came near to Na Su already. It would be difficult. And there were those who have surrounded us on these mountains ranges already. So, we will have to leave tomorrow. I went to pick up in-law Cher Pao’s family and dropped them off next to the rice warehouse. After two trips, I then went and picked up Nyia Chou’s family and dropped them off there as well. The two families were to get on one flight. So, tomorrow, the 14th, the first flight was to pick up Nyia Chou and Cher Pao. It didn’t matter which direction the plane comes in, it has to fly their families out first. After that, the second and third flights can pick up the rest of the seven groups of people. So, I picked them up and dropped then off there. I reported back to the General that I had dropped them off. It was not dark yet but there were no more planes flying out. But, later on Jerry brought eight lights. He told me to line up soldiers along the airstrip. I told Fai Neng and Tong Va to take the lights to the airstrip. Jerry said, the planes will fly people out all night. He said to the soldiers, when the plane comes wave your lights like this. So, when the planes fly in, they will know that the lights are the edge of the airstrip. That was the plan because the planes were to be evacuating people all night. That night, Mayor Neng Tong was scrambling to get on the plane as well. As people squeezed and stumbled onto each other, the old man got hurt in the process. He was brought over to the General’s house. The General’s house was packed with people. There wasn’t even any room to walk around. It’s full of people outside the gate of his house as well. Some people were there to collect their wages for working at the General’s farm. People were fleeing so some were afraid they might not get paid. So, there were a lot of people. After evaluating the situation, he said to me, we have to get out tonight. But, we cannot let anyone see. I asked him what he wanted me to do. He said to me, go up to the roof and tie a rope to the two water pipes and lower it down the other side of the house. When it’s time to leave, we will go down using the rope so no one can see us. SO, I found a rope and tied it but it reached only two levels down. I gave it some thought and knew it would be really hard to get down the rope. So, I came down and said to him, Sir, I don’t think you can get down the rope because of your injured arm. It would not be good if you fall and hurt yourself. Let’s not do that. Whenever you want to leave, just let me know and I’ll lead you out. Let’s not risk you getting injured. Then he asked, so how do you intend to get me out? I don’t want anyone to see me. I said, I intend to lead you out without anyone seeing. I’ll do what you’ve said, he responded. It was chaotic all night until 4:30 or 4:50 in the morning. Then he asked Chue to come out and get me. Those who are still with him closely, so we can communicate between me and him, are Neng and Chue. His bride came and married him because they were afraid they might not be able to if we fled. So, we went up to meet with them. He said to me, whenever you are prepared and ready, come and get me and we’ll leave. Go get ready, them come and get me, he said. So, I went out to my military vehicle and drove it right up to the front stairs of the house and left the door open. I went upstairs and told him everything is ready. Then I put on my hat. I put on a hat similar to this one, an old hat like this one, with a narrower edge. I said to him, if you’re ready, we can go. He said, people will see us! I said, they won’t. So, I took off my hat and put it on him. We came down and I hold him close to my side like this. There were a lot of people in the room. The door was right about there. We came down one and then two sets of stairs. Here was the living room and over there was the kitchen. The room was packed with Mayor Neng Tong’s people close to the door. We made a quick turn then stepped out the door and into the car. I closed the door and drove out, away from the gate. No one saw us. Then we drove out to the airport. He told me to take him to where his father in-law Cher Pao was. So, I drove him straight to where his father in-law was. But he didn’t get out of the car. There were no one else but him and me in the car. He had two other Japanese cars but we didn’t take those. We drove my military vehicle instead. So, when we got there, he told me to go and talk to his father in-laws. He said to tell them that they will get on the first flight when the plane comes. Tell them not to be worry. I won’t leave without them. So, I went and told them what the General wanted me to tell them. Then I turned around to walk back and father in-law Cher Pao said, Vang Nou, tell Vang Pao, if I don’t get to go on this flight, the next war will be between Vang Pao and Cher Pao. All I said was, yes, Sir, and came back to the car.

Then I drove us along the airstrip and told him what father in-law Cher Pao said. He said, no need to worry, there are places for them. We came to where the groups of people were. He told me to say to them, no one is allowed to squabble and fight to get in. Whoever fights their way in will be ejected. Wherever the plane ended at, that group will get it first. Tell that to every group. So, I stopped at different groups and tell them that. After we went around, telling people, we drove to Jerry’s house. It was around 5 or 6 in the morning. Dawn was just about to break, early morning of the 14th. When we got to Jerry’s house, there was only Nyia and Jerry. There was only Nyia and Jerry. At the General’s house, there was Amusat, sleeping up in Tou Lue’s office. Lt. Vang Neng and his wife was up there as well. I’m not sure where Chue was at that time. They weren’t with us because no one knew we had left. No one knew. So, we stayed at Jerry’s house for a while. Then he said to me, he asked me how much money was left. How many cases left? Two cases, I answered him. He said, go get them. I came back to the house. I climbed up to his first wife’s bedroom and brought out the two cases of money. It was 10 million Kips in each case. I loaded the two cases of money into the vehicle. At this time, I exchanged vehicle to his Jeep. I loaded them up and transported them back to the General. Vang Neng and Chue were the General’s personal assistance and bodyguards. They had already came to Jerry’s house. When I got back, he said to me, take one case and distribute to your soldiers. Tell them not to screw up. Tell them to walk to Phuka Mountain. The moment you and I fly out, we will send four helicopters to pick them up. Do it today. We’ll fly out in the evening. So, I brought the case of money to Fai Neng, Tong Va and Wa Xeng to distribute among the soldiers. After I gave them that, I came back.

At this point, it was already dawn. The people in the General’s house didn’t see me going there anymore. So, they went upstairs to check and the General wasn’t there. They knew that he must be at Jerry’s house. So, they all came there and saw the car. Once they had found out that the General was at Jerry’s house, they all came there. The skyway in front of Jerry’s house was packed with about two hundred people. It was late morning now, because sunlight had covered all of Long Cheng. We were just waiting for the airplane to come and pick up the father in-laws anytime now. He asked me what situation was like outside. I told him all the people at this house were outside. He asked me, what should we do? I said to him, we may have to use the same plan. He said no, go get a shovel and break that window. We’ll get out through the window. Have Chue wait for us somewhere with the car. I said yes, and then used a stool to climb up and measure the window. It was about 8 by 12 inches. I said to him, it’s not going to work, General. It may fit your head but not your shoulder. Let’s get out as we did before. I will go and get all the soldiers to come here. He said, let’s do that. So, I went to talk to Fai Neng and Tong Va and they brought all 64 soldiers. The reason he did not trust anyone and was not confident going out was because reports came in that there were people among the crowd who were planning to assassinate him. There were those who had long coats on. So, we suspect these might be people with weapons. That was why he didn’t want to get out. So, I brought all the soldiers there. Then he asked me, what is your plan? I said to him, here is what we are going to do. I’ll place two soldiers on that hill. That way if anyone attempts to up there and shoot down at you, the soldiers will see and stop them.

As for the crowd, I will have one soldier guarding one person who has a long coat. When we come out, the soldiers are to shoot anyone who makes a move. What do you think? I asked him. Let’s go with that, he said. So, I came out and have three soldiers standing on each side of the door, like this. Guns drawn and holding them like this. The field was packed with people. After that, I took Chue along with me and showed him where to meet up with us after we get out. I had already scouted the route. So, I took him to the meeting point at an alley. I said to him, if I come out with no hat on, that means your father is behind me. At that moment, drive your car to this spot, leave the door open and we will meet here. He said, I will do that. At that time, there was Lt. Vang Neng, Chue, and Amusat. These three were to be in the car, leaving with us. At that moment, his in-laws had flown out already. The second flight had already flown out too. I came and told the General we are ready to go. Let’s go then, he said. I’ve said to the soldiers, if I come out with no hat on, the General is behind me. At that moment, we moved in together to protect the General like this and walk with us to the back of the house. Once we are gone, come back and stand guard as usual until I come back. So, we got out and rushed to the meeting point. Chue, Amusat, Neng, and the case of 10 million Kips were in the car. So, he stepped in first, then I followed. He asked me to lead him to certain place but he did not tell me where the next point would be. He never told me we will be going here, here, and there. I only know as much as where he told me to go. So, we got in the car and Chue asked, Dad, where are we going? Just go, he said. We drove pass Colonel Soua Vang and Joua Yang’s houses where the road splits. He said, drive to the hill up there! So, we drove up the road which lead to the King’s house. Then we cut behind the King’s house along the top of the hill and down to where the fish pond was. Then we came to a stop at the fish pond. He asked, where is the smoke flare canister? I got it, I answered him. Throw it, he said. I opened the canister and yellow smoke rises. There was already a white USAID airplane circling down in the Na-nying area waiting for the General. Because Jerry had already called and set all of this up. I just didn’t know about it. They’ve already planned everything well. So, the plane flew up from the valley and landed by the fish pond. The plane turned and faced downhill. I threw in the case of money. Then Chue and Amusat stepped in. We were just standing there because the plane was small. The General said, you two go back to Long Cheng. I almost died at that moment. I was so disappointed and sadden. He told me to be with him. But when he left, he didn’t take me along. That was the most disappointed moment in my life. But I didn’t know that there was already a plan number two. He held on to the sides of the door like this and took one step up. I was not sure what he was thinking. But he stepped back down and pointed his finger like this, one round like this. Then he stumped his feet twice and climbed up to the plane. They closed the door and the plane took off and flew back to Na-nying. I was so sad and upset that day. He asked me to stay with him through it all but at the end, he left me behind. I was so sad and upset, I almost died.

Neng was the driver and he said, let's go! Both of us did not know that there was a plan number two. So when we got back, Neng told Jerry that VP was okay. Vang Nyia told us to head to the Porter Aircraft first then they will follow and we would fly out. So, we went to pick up Neng's wife at his house. Then we came to the airplane, got in, and sat there waiting. We waited for about five to ten minutes. Then Vang Moua, one of the body guards, came knocking on the airplane door, demanding us to open it. I said, no! He had a rifle, so he demanded that we open the door or he will shoot. So, Neng told me to open the door and he climbed in. Now, there were four of us in the plane.

Nyia came, carrying half a case of beer with him. He tossed the half-case of beer in front of us. I pushed it to the side. He climbed in to sit with us while Jerry got in and sat in the front. Then our plane took off. We circled two rounds, climbing above the King’s mansion. I could see another plane taking off. Jerry said to Nyia, a large military leader was hi-jacking a plane. Therefore, there would be no more evacuations. So, Jerry called off all evacuation planes. So, the last flight was the one Colonel Vang Ko hi-jacked. From there, we flew to Phuka. When we got there, I looked down and saw the General’s airplane parked down on Phuka airport. He was giving away to the villagers of Phuka, the ten million kip I put in his plane. Looking from above, it looked like they were having a new year festival down there. There were people running in and out, gathering around in the airport runway. We were circling above, waiting for the General. Once the crowd was cleared, his plane took off and we followed each other and flew the Muang Ca. But at that time I did not know that we were going to Muang Ca. The other airplane kept following us. Once we got to Na-mu, I realized that we were going to Muang Ca. So, we landed in Muang Ca, my old village.

There were still 4 million Kip left in the money chest. Chue brought the chest with him. The General, Amusat, and Chue got out of their plane and climbed into ours. The other plane took off and then ours.

The General and I sat facing each other. He waved, calling for me. I leaned forward and he said, “It’s okay. Let this country fall. By the time we come back, all the trees in this jungle will be as big as a giant wok. All I said to him was, “Yes Sir.” We flew above Banana Market then he lean forward toward me and said, “All these Lao and Hmong leaders are evil.
Let us leave this country behind. When all of these evil people passed away, we'll bring
Good and educated people back to develop the country.” He shed some tears when he said this. Then we flew out to Thailand and arrived at Udon Thani Province. Noi and a few Thai officials were there to welcome us. They took the General with them and we were left waiting in a room for about three hours. Then they brought us food. The next morning, around 9 am, the General came back and they drove us to the airport. We all got on a Dokota Aircraft and were taken to Namphong. So, that was the summarized story of how I helped with getting the General out of Long Cheng. I can only talk about my own personal experiences with the General. I share this as history for all of you children to treasure.

Transcription completed by: Moua Lee