China: Enmity at Friendship Pass

A village bears the burden of Sino-Vietnamese hostilities

In a burst of wartime solidarity, the People's Republic of China once declared that its friendship with Viet Nam was as close as "lips and teeth." But after their common foe, the U.S., withdrew its troops from Southeast Asia in 1973, the toothy smiles between Peking and Hanoi gradually turned to frowns. Today, says a Chinese official, the relationship is one of "rifles to rifles and artillery to artillery." Nowhere is that hostility more evident than along the 800-mile border between the two countries. TIME Peking Bureau Chief David Aikman was among a...

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