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Human Rights

Still-deadly legacy of secret US bombing of Laos lingers

It was exactly 40 years ago, on March 29, 1973, that Operation Barrel Roll -- the secret US bombing of Laos during the Vietnam War -- ended after nine years, more than a half a million bombing runs, and more than two million tons of ordnance dropped. But it is still claiming victims like Thoummy Silamphan, who is preparing to begin a nationwide tour next week organized by the nonprofit group Legacies of War to raise awareness -- and money -- to help remove the thousands of unexploded cluster bombs that still litter an estimated 30 percent of the Southeast Asian nation and have maimed or killed an estimated 20,000 civilians since the bombing ended.

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