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In addition to worsening conditions within each Asian country, many of these governments began to streamline their adoption procedures to make it easier for overseas families to adopt children in their countries.
While comprehensive statistics on Asian adoptees are very difficult to find, the most accurate information comes from the U. Department of State, who keeps track of all immigration visas issued to orphans, which are required for international adoptions.
Specifically, many people (not just Asian Americans) feel that because of centuries of deeply-ingrained patriarchy and discrimination against women, these Asian countries continue to systematically value the life of a girl much less than that of a boy.
After a disastrous first flight that crashed shortly after takeoff and killed 154 children and adults on board, several planeloads of Vietnamese children eventually landed in the U. and were adopted into predominantly White families.
During this time, several Asian countries experienced political and/or economic upheavals that resulted in the worsening of living conditions for many of their citizens, particularly poor, working class, or rural families.These events led many families in vulnerable circumstances to be more willing to give up their infants and young children to be adopted.One of the most visible examples of this situation were the events surrounding the end of the Viet Nam War in 1975.One month before the South Vietnamese government fell to advancing North Vietnamese communist forces, "Operation Babylift" was approved by President Gerald Ford that would airlift 2,700 orphans out of Viet Nam to be adopted by families in the U. Many of these children were those who had lost their parents, were children of American GIs whose Vietnamese mothers had put them up for adoption, and/or were malnourished, sick, or disabled.
Various economic, cultural, and demographic factors have contributed to this phenomenon. and other western countries include large numbers of couples who are unable or unwilling to conceive children themselves have created a demand for overseas adoptees. S., the number of children available for adoption, especially infants, has dropped considerably in recent decades and has also led many prospective adopters to look at Asian children. Studies tell us that for example, of the 265,524 orphan visas granted by the U. State Department between 1948-2000, 92,402 of them (34.8%) went to children from South Korea.On the "push" side, an oversupply of children from impoverished areas in Asia combined with a cultural devaluation of girls frequently leads many birth parents to give their children up for adoption. The practice of Asian-born children being adopted by primarily American (and predominantly White) parents began during the Korean War, as many Americans (including Harry and Bertha Holt, who later became the founders of Holt International, the nation's most well-known Asian adoption agency) sought to remedy the plight of growing numbers of children in Korean orphanages by adopting them and bringing them to the U. Estimates suggest that anywhere between 110,000 - 150,000 Korean adoptees alone currently reside in the U. After the passage of legislation that eased the adoption process, the practice became increasingly common in the 1970s.