So how are you trying to install wlassistant
sudo apt-get install wlassistant
that should automatically take care of the dependency issue you are having. If you manually downloaded wlassistant and don't have an active internet connection on the laptop that will make things (automatic dependency handling) more difficult.
Can you get your hands on a wired connection to the Internet long enough that you can install the packages you need ?
Do you have the wireless-tools package installed ? apt-cache policy wireless-tools
If so, you can use the command line tools to check out what your wireless card is seeing..
manipulate the basic wireless parameters
allow to initiate scanning and list frequencies, bit-rates, encryption keys...
allow to get per node link quality
allow to manipulate the Wireless Extensions specific to a driver (private)
allow to name interfaces based on various static criteria
for example you might use iwlist /dev/wlan0 scanning
to see all the wireless networks your card is detecting.. substitute your proper wireless device name where I used /dev/wlan0 in the example..