United Nations: A Pose Is a Pose Is a Pose

Most of the newly independent nations (and many of the old ones) have scarcely caught up with the 20th century, but diplomatic politeness makes it non-U to refer to these countries as "backward" or even "underdeveloped." To close the word gap U.N. delegates have developed a dictionary of discretion. Some euphemisms: Less privileged, less developed, developing, emerging, have-not, catchup, lowincome, needy, "poorest third" (used by Secretary-General U Thant), dependent, recipient and restless. Paul Hoffman, head of the U.N. Special Fund, is popularizing "modernizing nations," which seems to be catching on...

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