BOLIVIA: Chaos in the Clouds

If large infusions of democracy and U.S. aid were the easy, automatic antidotes to backwardness and poverty that they are often assumed to be, mineral-rich Bolivia (pop. 3,300,000) should be a paradise. The bloody uprising of 1952 led Bolivia into the world's most comprehensive social security, illiterate Indians got the vote and land, the coup-prone army got abolished, and the mines that enriched tin barons of old got taken over by the government. The U.S. chipped in $129 million in aid during the next six years—more Yankee aid dollars per Bolivian than for any other people on earth.

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