LAOS: Desperation's Child

For six weeks the quarreling Laotian politicians had been unable to select a new Premier. Last week parliamentary leaders suddenly made up their minds. Picked as the youngest Premier in Laotian history was Tiao Somsanith, 47, who has a shining reputation for honesty and ability. As governor of the northern province of Houa Khong, Somsanith was one of the few Laotian leaders not involved in the diversion of U.S. foreign aid funds, looked after the non-Lao tribes committed to his care so solicitously that the pro-Communist Pathet Lao forces were unable to make any...

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