Jorge Silva / Reuters A Buddhist monk poses next to unexploded bombs dropped by the U.S. Air Force planes during the Vietnam War, in Xieng Khouang in Laos, September 3, 2016.
Jorge Silva / Reuters A man walks past a house standing on bombs dropped by the U.S. Air Force planes during the Vietnam War, in the village of Ban Napia in Xieng Khouang province, Laos September 3, 2016.
Jorge Silva / Reuters A girl poses at an entrance of her house next to a bomb dropped by the U.S. Air Force planes during the Vietnam War, in the village of Ban Napia in Xieng Khouang province, Laos September 3, 2016.
Jorge Silva / Reuters A woman walks past a restaurant decorated with unexploded bombs dropped by the U.S. Air Force planes during the Vietnam War, in Xieng Khouang, Laos September 2, 2016.
Jorge Silva / Reuters A woman poses at an entrance of her house next to bombs dropped by the U.S. Air Force planes during the Vietnam War, in the village of Ban Napia in Xieng Khouang province, Laos September 3, 2016.
Jorge Silva / Reuters Toui Bounmy Sidavong, 43, holds a bomb dropped by the U.S. Air Force planes during the Vietnam War, in the village of Ban Napia in Xieng Khouang province, Laos September 3, 2016.
Jorge Silva / Reuters A bomb dropped by the U.S. Air Force planes during the Vietnam War is used to grow plants in the village of Ban Napia in Xieng Khouang province, Laos September 3, 2016.
Jorge Silva / Reuters A man makes spoons by melting the bombs dropped by the U.S. Air Force planes during the Vietnam War, in the village of Ban Napia in Xieng Khouang province, Laos September 3, 2016.
Jorge Silva / Reuters An unexploded bomb dropped by the U.S. Air Force planes during the Vietnam War is seen decorating a hotel in Xieng Khouang province, Laos September 3, 2016.
Jorge Silva / Reuters A courtyard is used as a deposit of bombs dropped by the U.S. Air Force planes during the Vietnam War in Xieng Khouang, Laos September 1, 2016.

The Unexploded Bombs of Laos

Over the course of nine years, starting in 1964, the United States rained down some 580,000 bombs on Laos in a secret campaign to support the royal government against communist rebel forces known as the Pathet Lao. About a third of those bombs did not immediately detonate and over the years that followed, have killed at least 20,000 Laotians. There have been some moves to clean up these explosives and, in a recent visit to the country, U.S. President Barack Obama pledged $90 million towards the effort. This gallery shows how some of the defused weapons have been given a second life as support beams, scrap metal, and planters.

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