Books: Only When I Laugh

CUSTER DIED FOR YOUR SINS by Vine Deloria. 279 pages. Macmillan. $5.95.

Indian history is notoriously full of broken covenants, callous horse soldiers and greedy land-grabbers—all encouraged from Washington. Though Vine Deloria dwells on such things with savage wit in this remarkable book, he is more bitterly concerned with the recent past and the havoc worked among the long-suffering tribes in the past 20 years by less officially baneful agencies—compassionate missionaries, humane anthropologists and liberal bureaucrats. Their doings, says Deloria, justifiably provoked a Sioux leader to tell a congressional hearing that what the...

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