Laos: Attack & Talk

Hardly had the U.S. sat down again at the peace talks in Geneva last week, on the hopeful assumption that a cease-fire was at last in effect in Laos, when the news arrived from Ban Hat Bo, a village near the Mekong River in central Laos. After a heavy mortar barrage that lasted two hours, 1,000 Pathet Lao and North Vietnamese soldiers had attacked to a frenzied blowing of bugles. The Ban Hat Bo garrison fled, along with their five U.S. military advisers. One of them noted bitterly that the Communist assault, with...

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