ZANZIBAR: The Happy Island

Once upon a time, in the palm-fringed squares of Zanzibar, off Africa's east coast, where Arabs gather each evening to chat over tiny cups of syrupy black coffee, the talk was all of pleasant things, of rich crops of clove and cinnamon, of the fleets of slant-sailed dhows which each January drifted over to the island on the northeast winds and in April, when the winds changed, drifted back, heavy-laden, toward India and the Arabian coast. Zanzibar, in the words of one of its political leaders, was "a happy island"—its climate fine, its...

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