El Salvador: Deadly Medicine

Deadly Medicine

For 28 days the general hospital of the Social Security Institute in San Salvador had been controlled by striking hospital employees demanding higher wages and better working conditions. In the view of Salvadoran President Jose Napoleon Duarte, the strike was part of a wave of Communist-inspired labor unrest. Last week helicopter-borne police commandos were ordered to retake the hospital. The result was mayhem.

As the commandos moved through the building, four gun-toting plainclothes officers entered the emergency ward, ordering patients, doctors and nurses to lie facedown on the floor. When the commandos broke into the ward, they shot and killed the...

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