The Check Is Not in the Mail

U.S. assistance to Panama and Nicaragua is overdue -- and so is a review of America's whole foreign-aid program

Angela Palacios Chavarria, 31, a barefoot Nicaraguan peasant, can explain in two words why she voted for Violeta Chamorro's National Opposition Union (U.N.O.) over the Marxist Sandinistas ten weeks ago. "Lapas verdes" (greenbacks) says Palacios, voicing a common opinion that a vote for the U.N.O. was a vote for U.S.-financed prosperity. Surely, this argument goes, since Washington spent $312 million over nine years to bankroll the contra rebellion and another $9 million to back Chamorro's campaign, it will now lay out as many lapas verdes as necessary to rebuild Nicaragua's ravaged economy and keep its friends in power.

/ But Palacios...

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