The Pacific: The Marianas, U.S.A.

The Marianas, U.S.A.

America grew a little larger last week. The Northern Marianas, a group of Western Pacific islands (one of the best known: Tinian, where the Enola Gay took off for its atom-bomb run to Hiroshima in 1945), officially became a commonwealth of the U.S., and its 17,000 residents became U.S. citizens.

As residents of the United Nations' U.S. Trust Territory of the Pacific Islands, the Mariana islanders were long envious of their neighbors and fellow Chamorros to the south on Guam, who have been U.S. citizens since 1950. Although the Marianas voted overwhelmingly for commonwealth status in 1975, it took the U.N....

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