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In 1975, as thousands of Vietnamese men and women fled Southeast Asia, more than fifteen hundred individuals chose repatriation rather than resettlement in the United States. Waiting in Guam, repatriates entered a terrain defined by American empire, and their stories complicate Cold War narratives of Vietnamese immigration. In this contingent and colonial space, repatriates engaged in collective civil disobedience, political jockeying, and even violence and vandalism in their quest to return to Vietnam. Providing no easy answers, this article argues that the history of the Vietnamese repatriates emphasizes the dynamics of contingency alongside the tenacity of American empire.