South Viet Nam: Suicide in Many Forms

A South Vietnamese novelist and politician named Nguyen Tuong Tam sent his sons out to buy a bottle of whisky one night last week. For a while he sat drinking with them at his home in Saigon. "My sons, I feel very happy tonight," he said. "I am going to die very soon." Suddenly he keeled over, was rushed to a hospital where he died next morning. In his glass was found a lethal dose of cyanide.

Novelist Tam, 58, was a revolutionary leader in Indo-China's war against the French. But after independence in 1954, he grew increasingly disenchanted with the...

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