News Archive

Sacramento Bee: “Viewpoints: U.S. must clean up leftover bombs in Laos”

Posted: Mar 21, 2010

I received an e-mail a few weeks ago from a colleague in Laos regarding yet another deadly accident. On Feb. 22 a cluster bomb that the U.S. dropped on Laos more than four decades ago killed five children and severely injured another. The children, ages 10 to 14, were feeding their water buffalo in a rice field when they found the bomb. They were the latest victims among the more than 300 new casualties that occur every year – one-third of them children, according to Lao government figures.

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Cluster Munition Coalition: “Lao PDR: Five children killed in cluster bomb blast”

Posted: Mar 11, 2010

Five children were killed and one injured when a cluster submunition exploded in a village in Lao PDR’s Champasak province on 22 February 2010. The incident highlights the need for urgent action to assist survivors and ensure the clearance of cluster munition remnants when states parties to the treaty banning cluster bombs gather for their first official meeting in the Lao capital, Vientiane, this November, the Cluster Munition Coalition (CMC) said today.

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NPR: “Laos’ Unexploded Bombs: Deadly Scrap Metal, Toys”

Posted: Mar 5, 2010

During the Vietnam War, the U.S. military dropped more bombs on supply routes in Laos than it did on all of Europe during World War II. Laos is paying the price, as the countryside is still riddled with unexploded bombs — many of which look like harmless metal spheres. Bomb disposal units are trying to reclaim the land from tons of unexploded ordnance.

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Reuters: “Laos still paying the price of Vietnam war”

Posted: Nov 26, 2008

Imagine growing up in a country where the equivalent of a B52 planeload of cluster bombs was dropped every eight minutes for nine years.

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Anchorage Daily News: “Woman helps tell a story of Lao people”

Posted: Nov 10, 2007

Xayasana Lounmala, 23, could barely make it through “Refugee Nation,” a performance at Out North Theater that delves deep into the Lao American experience. He didn’t know what to expect, but it sure wasn’t sitting there in tears.

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Legacies of War National Premiere of Traveling Exhibit

Posted: Sep 18, 2007

Making its national premiere in Cambridge, the Legacies of War Exhibit features compelling, first-person art exhibit to tell the story of deadly cluster bombs leftover from the horrific secret U.S. bombing in Laos during the Vietnam War era, making Laos the most bomb country in history. The Exhibit will be accompanied by public and community programs in Boston/Cambridge throughout Fall 2007.

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First International Conference on Lao Studies

Posted: May 22, 2007

On May 22, 2005, the Legacies of War project participated in historic First International Conference on Lao Studies held at Northern Illinois University, DeKalb. Legacies organized a powerful and moving panel discussion that featured bombing survivor Ms. Bounthanh Phommasathit and war veteran Lee Thorn, who spoke together for the first time on their experiences from the war.

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Visiting the UXO Removal Program in Laos

Posted: Mar 20, 2007

On a visit to Laos in February 2005, I went to visit the Luang Prabang office of UXO Lao, an organization run by the Lao government that administers clearance of unexploded ordnances in Laos. Prior to visiting the office, I knew about the history of the secret bombings conducted by the U.S. during the Vietnam War era. I was particularly disturbed when I learned that the country of my birth is the most heavily bombed country in the history of the world. Yet, most people are not aware of this history. I wanted to see firsthand the reality surrounding these unexploded ordnances and meet those who work daily to decontaminate the land in their working environment.

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