Ivory Coast: Oasis in a Desert

Beginning a recent visit to the Ivory Coast, Congo President Joseph Mobutu raised his hosts' eyebrows by shrugging that he would not believe in President Houphouët-Boigny's "economic miracle" until he personally saw proof of it. A few days of touring the Ivory Coast were enough to convince Mobutu. "Now that I've visited Houphouët and his country," he said, "I wonder which of us is the real revolutionary."

There are no doubts in the Ivory Coast. Eight years after the country won its independence from France and installed him as President, Houphouët has...