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Vietnamese Defence Minister: Don’t Trust Psychics

Due to the superstition present in Vietnamese society, many use psychics to get insight into everything from their future to finding the remains of loved ones who perished during the American war. But after the arrest of two ‘clairvoyants’ last week who were allegedly cheating people with fake tombs and remains to the tune of billions of dong, Vietnam’s defence minister urged people not to put their faith in them.

Judging by Minister of Defence Phung Quang Thanh’s comments, it seems as though he thinks psychics are sidetracking and muddling his ministry’s official investigation for soldier's remains: “We will facilitate the search, I advise people not to trust clairvoyants,” he told reporters.

In July 2011, Minister of Labor, Invalids, and Social Affairs, Pham Thi Hai Chuyen, echoed Thanh’s statement that all investigations would be carried out by local authorities. She later said that the announcement was a reaction to the involvement of “dubious psychics.”

The two alleged frauds in question are Nguyen Thanh Thuy, 54, and his wife, Man Thi Duyen, 54 of Quang Tri. The couple has been charged with creating fake tombs and remains to extract money from innocent clients.

Due to the prevalence of these ‘scams,’ Thanh said that criminal charges should be levied against malicious psychics.

Because there are still an estimated 500,000 communist soldiers still missing in Vietnam, many families have employed both official and telepathic means of finding their loved one’s remains.

While there has been plenty of doubt surrounding psychics in Vietnam, some, like Phan Thi Bich Hang, who is credited finding the remains of military leaders and mass graves of 4,000 soldiers on Phu Quoc Island in 2008, enjoy a strong reputation.

Based on his comments, Minister Thanh should probably have a chat with the Institute for Research and Applications of Human Potentialities, which includes a division for finding missing martyrs using telepathy. 

[Thanh Nien // Photo via mag3737]

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