Chapter

Dangerously Unstable

William J. Rust

in Before the Quagmire

Published by University Press of Kentucky

Published in print May 2012 | ISBN: 9780813135786
Published online September 2012 | e-ISBN: 9780813136844 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.5810/kentucky/9780813135786.003.0005
Dangerously Unstable

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Divisions among the non-communist Lao politicians, a disciplined slate of Pathet Lao and leftist candidates, and the failure of Booster Shot to achieve its objectives lead to a May 1958 election debacle for conservatives in the kingdom. Eisenhower administration officials, convinced of the need for a new generation of anti-communist leaders in the RLG, provided covert support for the Committtee for the Defense of National Interests (CDNI). Comprising younger, better-educated civilian elites and backed by elements of the Lao army, the CDNI became a powerful political force that helped depose Prime Minister Souvanna Phouma and his successor, Phoui Sananikone. The leading CDNI figure is Phoumi Nosavan, a CIA protégé and ardent anti-communist. This chapter includes biographic sketches of American Ambassador Horace Smith and Henry Hecksher, the CIA chief of station in Vientiane.

Keywords: Booster Shot; Committtee for the Defense of National Interests (CDNI); Phoumi Nosavan; Horace Smith; Henry Hecksher

Chapter.  7164 words. 

Subjects: History of the Americas

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