`They've Been Extraordinarily Welcoming'

You couldn't have asked for a more curious gathering than the one in the stately lobby of Hanoi's Metropole Hotel. There stood none other than retired Major General Richard V. Secord of Irangate fame, who during the Vietnam War flew hundreds of bombing raids over the North. His entourage included an ex-U.S. intelligence officer and a former North Vietnamese general who ran the oil pipeline on the Ho Chi Minh Trail. "With all our millions of tons of bombs," says a Secord associate, "we could never destroy the pipeline."

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