On March 24, members of AMCD met with Mr. Hung Cao, who is running for Congress in Virginia’s 10th district. Mr. Cao came to America at age four after the fall of Saigon. His father had been Deputy Administrator of Agriculture for the government of South Vietnam and after emigrating to the US, he traveled to Africa to help develop agriculture there on behalf of the US government. He returned to the US so that his children would learn English and grow up in America.
Hung Cao attended the US Naval Academy and then served in naval special operations for 30 years. He was part of the team that recovered JFK Jr.’s plane and did a lot of deep-sea work and worked with explosives. He worked on sensitive operations involving psychological warfare – convincing our enemies to fight one another. After the disastrous withdrawal from Afghanistan, he decided to retire from the military and run for Congress. He pointed out the President Biden had voted against arming South Vietnam during his time in the Senate and then failed to achieve a status of force agreement with Iraq when he was Vice President, which led to the rise of ISIS.
Mr. Cao maintains that for the Iranian Revolutionary Guard Corps, obtaining nuclear weapons is the main goal. He also explained that America has programs in place to take out strategic targets without harming the people of Iran. He also explained that the IRGC is getting a lot of money selling oil under the auspices of Venezuela by engaging in illicit oil transfers between ships. Oil goes through Venezuela and arms come back from Russia. They are also engaged in the drug trade and human smuggling at our southern border. Mr. Cao explained that OTMs, or “other than Mexicans” coming through our border used to be a small percentage (under 5%), but now is up to 15-20%.
Mr. Cao went on to explain how the IRGC is using Yemen as a testing ground for their Russian weapons. Saudi is equipped with US weapons. Iran has been probing their defenses with drones and forcing them to use Patriot Missiles, which are very expensive, to shoot down drones, which are very inexpensive. He also believes that Russia and Iran are working together to take half of Afghanistan while Pakistan and China are working to take the other half. He also believes that while the world is obsessed with Ukraine, the IRGC may well try to sink a US battleship or possibly even an aircraft carrier in the Persian Gulf. However, he notes that Iran has not been able to replace Soleimani with someone of equal caliber. Ultimately, the mullahs believe a nuclear weapon will both insulate them from attack and give them a seat at the international table at the same time.
With all the instability in the world, Mr. Cao and 30 other special forces veterans are running for Congress in 2022. We have serious foreign policy challenges ahead. If China takes Taiwan, they may not stop there, and Southeast Asia might be next.
Question: We can see Iran is making progress in creating a Shia crescent from Afghanistan, through Iran, then through Iraq, Syria and Lebanon. Iranians are disappointed in the US and feel they have been betrayed. They believe the mullahs have America in in their pocket.
Answer: There are two ways to take down a building. One is to bulldoze it; another Is to release termites to undermine it from within.
Question: The people of Iran are losing hope. What can we do to give them some reassurance about the future?
Answer: One very important way is to keep the internet up and running the way Elon Musk has done in Ukraine. Sometimes small things can grow into big movements. I escaped communism and now I see young people are susceptible to communist ideas all over again. Our education system needs to be revitalized through the private sector.
Mr. Cao said, “Remember, it took Jimmy Carter to give us Ronald Reagan.” He is very hopeful about the midterms as is AMCD. We need more great candidates like Hung Cao. With his military background and deep understanding of foreign policy, Mr. Cao deserves all our support.
AMCD unreservedly endorses Hung Cao for Congress.