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“Until we go through it ourselves, until our people cower in the shelters of New York, Washington, Chicago, Los Angeles and elsewhere while the buildings collapse overhead and burst into flames, and dead bodies hurtle about and, when it is over for the day or the night, emerge in the rubble to find some of their dear ones mangled, their homes gone, their hospitals, churches, schools demolished — only after that gruesome experience will we realize what we are inflicting on the people of Indochina...”

— William Shirer

American Genocide of the
Laotian People, 1965–1973

black and white photo of a B-52 flying high above the clouds, a long row of bombs dropping from underneath it.
United States Air Force B-52 bomber crew
butchering Asian women and children

The United States Air Force dropped the equivalent of a planeload of bombs every eight minutes for nine years on the people of Laos — from 1965 to 1973. Over 2,000,000 tons.

This was some of the heaviest aerial bombardment in world history.

Estimated civilian deaths: 500,000 men, women and children.

As much as half a million tons of unexploded ordnance remain littered all over the Laotian countryside to this day.

An estimated 285 million cluster bombs were dropped all over Southeast Asia during the course of the Vietnam War — seven bombs for every man, woman and child. The rate at which cluster bombs fail to explode at the intended time is 5-30%. It has been estimated that by 1973 there were at least nine million unexploded cluster bombs still lying on Laotian territory alone.

The B-52 crews finally stopped dropping their bombs on Southeast Asian women and children and flew back home to their American families. And while they’ve all been living their cushy lives in “The Land of the Free and the Home of the Brave”, every year hundreds of innocent Laotian children and civilian men and women are violently murdered or maimed by the cluster bombs those goddamned U.S. Air Force crews dropped.

With the passage of time cluster bombs become more unstable, making deadly accidental explosions increasingly likely. Farmers are afraid to tend their fields and rice paddies where cluster bombs are known to have been dropped. The deprivation of the fertile lowlands because of the presence of millions of unexploded bombs has created hunger and despair among large numbers of people in Laos.

Meanwhile, the racist men who dropped the bombs fatten themselves on steak and McDonald’s hamburgers at home. Their sclerotic minds grow fat as well, only too happy to feed on a steady diet of corporate McNews which tells the war-criminal slime they are heros.

Predictably, the United States military/government has steadfastly refused to assist in any way to clean-up its bombs. Instead, it has systematically hindered all people who are seeking to undo the horrific damage which America has done to the people and environment of Southeast Asia.

American flag - swastika and stripes - symbol of American state terrorism.

From Rogue State
by William Blum:

The Laotian left, led by the Pathet Lao, tried to effect social change peacefully, making significant electoral gains and taking part in coalition governments.

But the United States would have none of that.

The CIA and the State Department, through force, bribery and other pressures, engineered coups in 1958, 1959 and 1960. Eventually, the only option left for the Pathet Lao was armed force.

The CIA created its infamous “Arme Clandestine” — totaling 30,000, from every corner of Asia — to do battle, while the US Air Force, between 1965 and 1973, rained down more than two million tons of bombs upon the people of Laos, many of whom were forced to live in caves for years in a desperate attempt to escape the monsters falling from the sky.

After hundreds of thousands had been killed, many more maimed, and countless bombed villages with hardly stone standing upon stone, the Pathet Lao took control of the country, following on the heels of events in Vietnam.

From What Uncle Sam Really Wants
by Noam Chomsky:

No country is exempt from this treatment [American state terrorism], no matter how unimportant. In fact, it’s the weakest, poorest countries that often arouse the greatest hysteria.

Take Laos in the 1960s, probably the poorest country in the world. Most of the people who lived there didn’t even know there was such a thing as Laos; they just knew they had a little village and there was another little village nearby.

But as soon as a very low-level social revolution began to develop there, Washington subjected Laos to a murderous “secret bombing,” virtually wiping out large settled areas in operations that, it was conceded, had nothing to do with the war the US was waging in South Vietnam.

Related pages

American Genocide of the Vietnamese people

The My Lai Massacre, 1968

Book review:
The Phoenix Program

The Phoenix Program, My Lai and the “Tiger Cages”

American Genocide of the Cambodian People

Neighborhood Bully: American Militarism
interview with Ramsey Clark


Southeast Asia during the Vietnam Genocide

South Vietnam during the American Occupation and Genocide

Related sites

Laos War Legacy

The Mennonite Central Committee report on the genocidal use of cluster bombs by the United States Air Force against the people of Laos during the Vietnam War.

Legacy of the Secret War

“The Continuing Problem of Unexploded Ordnance in Xieng Khouang Province, Laos, and the Response of the Mennonite Central Committee and the American Friends Service Committee, 1972-1994.”

Cluster Munitions: The Bombs That Keep On Killing

Cluster Munitions: America’s DUMB Bombs

Part of the valuable Federation of American Scientists (FAS) website, this section gives comprehensive descriptions of individual cluster bomb models. The individual listings contain photos and diagrams of the bombs as well as photos of the aircraft that deliver them. Has photos of cluster bombs exploding over tanks and other battlefield targets.

No photos of decapitated children in Laotian villages, though. The Pentagon doesn’t want you to know about that particular use for cluster bombs. No, you just be sure you obediently pay your taxes so the Pentagon can buy these weapons, and keep your own head stuck firmly in the sand.

One photo series shows a fuel-air bomb exploding over a two-story, house-like structure on a desert test range.
(Such a target trains U.S. Air Force and Navy pilots to get used to the idea of murdering civilians in residential houses. The U.S. military turns men and women into inhuman murderers, butchering people on command. Then it tells these fools they’re “heros,” when in fact they’re nothing but trained rats.)

Now picture you and your loved ones underneath that fireball. Then you’ll have a clue as to what the people of Yugoslavia experienced for 79 days and nights in 1999. And what the people of Southeast Asia suffered for over 14 YEARS, courtesy of good ol’ Uncle Sham.

Writings by Peace Activist S. Brian Willson

Brian Willson is a courageous Vietnam vet who was wounded in combat — but not during the Vietnam Genocide. He was fighting a war of conscience. In 1987 a military train at a U.S. Navy munitions base intentionally ran over him and severed his legs as he and two other veterans sat on the tracks to block it. The train was carrying weapons to be used in America’s ongoing holocaust of innocent civilian people in Nicaragua, Guatemala and El Salvador.

His autobiography is heartfelt, utterly unself-pitying and very instructive, particularly his experiences from Vietnam onward. Brian Willson’s writing is extremely valuable, being from a deeply intelligent and genuinely moral man who has witnessed firsthand the horrors of American state terrorism around the world.

From the site:

“THIS SITE CONTAINS essays describing the incredible historic pattern of U.S. arrogance, ethnocentrism, violence and lawlessness in domestic and global affairs, and the severe danger this pattern poses for the future health of Homo sapiens and Mother Earth. Other essays discuss revolutionary, nonviolent alternative approaches based on the principle of radical relational mutuality. This is a term increasingly used by physicists, mathematicians and cosmologists to describe the nature of the omnicentric*, ever-unfolding universe. Every being, every aspect of life energy in the cosmos, is intrinsically interconnected with and affects every other being and aspect of life energy at every moment.”

*everything is at the center of the cosmos at every moment

Vietnam Veterans Against the War Anti-Imperialist — VVAW-AI

“Vietnam Veterans Against the War Anti-Imperialist is part of a network of anti-imperialist veterans who are proud of our resistance to U.S. aggression around the world. In the 1970s, to be a Vietnam veteran was to be against the war. That proud legacy must be carried forward through the 1990s and into the next millennium. As veterans, we have been to the edge and seen the viciousness of Amerikkka unmasked. We have no doubt that the bastards who sent us to war will use their nuclear arsenal, along with unspeakably cruel conventional weapons, to maintain their empire — and after the Gulf War, do you?”


The Phoenix Program
by Douglas Valentine

“One of the best books ever written on the secret history of the Vietnam war. Valentine presents an unsparing account of the Phoenix Program, the CIA/US Army ‘pacification’ program in Vietnam that practiced plunder, torture and widespread assassination.”

Apocalypse 1945:
The Destruction of Dresden
by David Irving

Killing Hope:
U.S. Military and CIA Interventions Since WWII
by William Blum

Rogue State:
A Guide to the World’s Only Superpower
by William Blum

What Uncle Sam Really Wants
by Noam Chomsky

The Beast Reawakens
by Martin A. Lee

Blackshirts and Reds:
Rational Fascism and the Overthrow of Communism
by Michael Parenti

Against Empire
by Michael Parenti

The Sword and the Dollar:
Imperialism, Revolution and the Arms Race
by Michael Parenti

Western State Terrorism
Alexander George, editor; essays by Noam Chomsky, Edward S. Herman, Gerry O’Sullivan and others

Terrorizing the Neighborhood:
American Foreign Policy in the Post-Cold War Era

by Noam Chomsky
Pressure Drop Press, 1991

Pirates and Emperors, Old and New:
International Terrorism in the Real World
by Noam Chomsky

The Fire This Time:
U.S. War Crimes in the Gulf
by Ramsey Clark

Desert Slaughter:
The Imperialist War Against Iraq
by the Workers League

The Culture of Terrorism
by Noam Chomsky

Derailing Democracy:
The America the Media Don’t Want You to See
by David McGowan

A People’s History of the United States:
1492 — Present
by Howard Zinn

Deadly Deceits:
My 25 years in the CIA
by Ralph W. McGehee

War At Home:
Covert Action Against U.S. Activists and What We Can Do About It
by Brian Glick

Inventing Reality:
The Politics of News Media
by Michael Parenti

War, Lies & Videotape:
How media monopoly stifles truth
edited by Lenora Foerstel; multiple authors

On Killing:
The Psychological Cost of Learning to Kill in War and Society
by Dave Grossman
published by: Little, Brown

Examines the consequences of the U.S. military’s conditioning of American soldiers to overcome the instinctive loathing of murdering fellow human beings. Shows how it has increased post-combat stress disorder and how contemporary society — especially the American media — replicates the U.S. Army’s conditioning techniques, resulting in increased violence in American society.

Reporting Vietnam: Media and Military at War
by William M. Hammond
published by: UPKs

Uses classified documents as well as extensive interviews to examine the bitter animosity that developed between the U.S. government and the news media during the genocidal Vietnam war. Tells how they first shared a common vision, but as the war dragged on, the truth fell victim to the U.S. government’s “management” of the press.

Nowadays, of course, the mainstream press wouldn’t dream of reporting the latest American military atrocities. The U.S. Corporate Mafia Government has gotten much better over the years at “managing” the press and all the mass-media.

The two books immediately above are available from:
Edward R. Hamilton, Bookseller
Falls Village, CT  06031-5000

Each year 26,000 people are killed or mutilated by landmines - of which 8000 are children. Clear Landmines - www.clearlandmines.com

Click here to clear landmines for free.

A great number of the world’s landmines are unexploded cluster bombs, dropped by the United States Air Force all over Laos, Cambodia, Vietnam, Iraq, Yugoslavia and Afghanistan.

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