An email (click here to read in Vietnamese) broadcast over the weekend was claiming that Ly Tong, Rambo Pham and Cung The Tran went to USC, cut down the red-and-yellow flag of the Socialist Republic of Vietnam, and replaced it with the yellow-and-red flag of the former Republic of Vietnam.
The yellow flag had been given to the trio by Ky Ngo. Both Ngo and Tran are leaders of the protests against Nguoi Viet and defendants in the paper’s lawsuit.
Apparently the trio went to USC on the Sunday before MLK day, found the campus empty and the flag way to high to remove. So they went around until they came upon a construction site. Tong spotted a ladder, so he jumped over the fence and carried that ladder out.
Anyway, so the Bolsavik asked a USC friend to take some pictures. When they came, they actually show Ly Tong never took down the red flag.
Nope, all he did was to drape two yellow flags over the red flag.
In the top half of the photo at the right, you can see something red between the yellow flags. In the bottom half you can see the red flag, anchored by cable to the wall, stick out from between the two.
And then if you look at the next photo, at the top the red flag is sticking out as well. Making Ly Tong’s creation something of a three-flag combo. (See more pictures on the Bolsavik’s Vietnamese blog here.)
Now, the deeper meaning of this is ambiguous.
Is Ly Tong conveying some sort of message of reconciliation where overseas Vietnamese (represented by the two yellow flags) would fly side by side with the communist government (represented by the red flag)?
Or is he insinuating that the person who had given him the two yellow flags (Ky Ngo) is, on the inside, a red communist?
Or maybe there’s no deep meaning. Maybe Ly Tong just used the South Vietnamese flag to protect the commie flag from the elements, thus saving USC money? (Say thanks Ly Tong, all you Trojans.)
The Bolsavik hesitates to impose any one interpretation on Ly Tong’s three-flag creation, but at the same time has a hard time coming up with one that is politically correct (read: Ky Ngo-approved).