The US Senate has confirmed Mr. Ted Osius as the next US Ambassador to Vietnam.
After months of delay the US Senate has confirmed Mr. Ted Osius as US Ambassador to Vietnam, along with three other ambassadorial nominees from US President Obama, in a vote on Monday.
Mr. Osius, a professor at the National War College, has had experience in Vietnam as he supported Mr. Pete Peterson, the first US Ambassador to Vietnam following normalization. He also represented Vice President Al Gore on the team that prepared a bilateral trade agreement and accompanied President Bill Clinton on his historic visit to Vietnam. He said in June that that his nomination to be the next Ambassador to Vietnam was “a dream come true”.
Mr. Osius, who has served in Indonesia, India, Thailand, the Philippines, and Vietnam during his 25 years in the Foreign Service, said he had travelled all over Vietnam, once riding a bicycle 1,200 miles from Hanoi to Ho Chi Minh City. “From those beginnings I witnessed our relationship with Vietnam grow into an important partnership, founded on mutual respect and shared strategic interests,” he said.
His predecessor, Mr. David Shear, who concluded his post as Ambassador last August, will now serve as Assistant Secretary of Defense for Asian and Pacific Security Affairs.
The political and diplomatic relationship between Vietnam and the US has genuinely been elevated to a new level over the last few years. The pursuit of a strategic partnership was something that few could have imagined happening so quickly after the normalization of diplomatic relations in 1996. Clear proof of the improved relations between both sides include the US’s recent easing of its long-standing ban on lethal weapon sales to Vietnam and the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP), which appears to be close to final ratification.