>> America's military made its largest return to Vietnam since the end of the war on Monday. The USS Carl Vinson pulled into the port town of Da Nang for a five day visit. And a 100,000 ton symbol of closer ties between the two former foes as China rises in Asia.
America wants to develop military links with Vietnam to counter Beijing, and aircraft carriers like this often patrol the hotly disputed South China Sea. And while sources say Vietnam leaders want to stand up to China on the ocean, they're also taking pains to keep relations cool with their giant neighbor.
Reuters James Pearson is in Hanoi.>> Vietnam kind of finds itself within the gravitational pull of the US and China especially in the South China Sea upon which China lays very many claims. So the presence of the US Carl here is clearly also very, very sensitive. For that reason, Reuters heard that you did have back room discussions going on between the Vietnamese and the Chinese to try and put Beijing's mind at rest.
Some commentators in Beijing have looked at and said, hey, this means that we actually are correct in our militarization in the South China Sea. And in fact, we should be doing more if this is the kind of thing the US is going to do.>> The arrival also ends months of talks with the Pentagon to get the ship to dock.
>> It's a very significant arrival which really underscores the level to which military relations between Vietnam and the US have developed since the war. We're gonna see about 5000 soldiers onboard many of whom will come ashore, they're gonna meet Vietnamese equivalents. And they're also gonna be visiting the treatment center for victims who were exposed to the agent orange chemical during the Vietnam War.
>> As of Monday, there's not been any major outcry from Beijing over the visit, suggesting Vietnam's effort's backstage worked to put China at ease. And as they move forward with the US, one expert told Reuters Vietnam will go slowly to avoid triggering any kind of overreaction.