34. Fact: The majority of the refugees admitted to the United States were not part of the South Vietnamese elite
The overwhelming majority of the refugees which fled Vietnam to other Asian countries in the hope of eventually reaching the United States were not the elite of society. Most of the so-called boat people were from rural areas not yet under firm control of the new government, including former members of the Viet Cong. They were farmers, artisans, mechanics, less educated, and often families of lower level officials who had already been sent to camps for “re-education”. Between the fall of Saigon and the end of the 1970s more than 400,000 were admitted to the United States, where they established Vietnamese enclaves in many American cities. More refugees continued to be admitted to the United States at the end of the 1980s, the children of American servicemen and former political prisoners.