The Alianza: Three on the Go

Four years after the Alianza set out to help 200 million Latin Americans make progress, there were still half a dozen countries teetering on the brink of political and economic chaos. But it is now clear that three tiny, historically tortured countries can be taken off the crisis list.

∙NICARAGUA. In office since 1963, President René Schick, 56, works in the shadow of the Somoza brothers, Tachito and Luis, who control the country's military and much of its wealth. Schick and the Somozas are development-minded, however, and since 1961 their small (pop. 1,600,000)...