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Views in brief

May 19, 2006 | Page 12

Anti-Bush or antiwar?
How the U.S. aided ethnic cleansing
International aid to Darfur

Saying no to racist hate

I JUST read your article "Taking on the Minutemen" (May 12). Bravo! I'm so proud of you. I have had an on going battle with these idiots since they started their racist group.

I just turned a church in Irvine, Calif., in to the National Council of Churches, as they held a Minuteman rally at their church. I advised them I could find better Christian fellowship in a brothel. I am in constant battle with this group. Good luck to you. You made my heart happy today.
Kay Lopez, from the Internet

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Anti-Bush or antiwar?

COMPLIMENTS TO Lee Wengraf for her story on the April 29 march in New York City ("Antiwar march takes to NYC streets," May 5). She correctly identifies the flaw in the thinking of those who made it an anti-Bush event.

While I too joined lustily in the chants that berated Bush as the world's number one terrorist and railed against his henchmen (Cheney, Rumsfeld, et. al.), socialists need to stay on message that U.S. policy in Iraq is a clash of class interests. That is, U.S. policy reflects capitalist interests and imperialist aims to control oil markets.

The political faces, whether Bush, Kerry, McCain, Clinton or any other representatives of the major parties, are simply fronting for those who sit in the board rooms and broker real power at the expense of the working class.

Socialists need to persist in articulating the conflict of class interests that links the war in Iraq to immigrant rights to environmental exploitation to health care, and on and on. Let us struggle for power to the workers, the oppressed, the alienated and the marginalized. Organize, educate and build, that justice may prevail.
Richard Capron, Schenectady, N.Y.

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How the U.S. aided ethnic cleansing

IN A recent letter, Marc from Cambridge, Mass., wrote that he "rejoiced" in the U.S. intervention into Bosnia, and generally in the Kosovo-Serbia situation, even though he is a pacifist ("Can military intervention save Darfur?" May 12).

However, Marc seems to have ignored an important section of history--namely, after the U.S. military came in, it actually stopped the approaching movement from overthrowing Slobodan Milosovic and allowed the Serbian genocide to take place, with the complicity of U.S. generals like Wesley Clark. Let me put it another way: More genocide happened after we went in, than happened before. We didn't "stop a genocide" as Marc proudly claims. We helped create one.

The U.S. military and the U.S. government have no interest in "helping people." Bush, Rumsfeld, Bill and Hillary Clinton, Gore, and the other crooks who run this country have an interest in protecting profits, preventing challenges to global hegemony and securing access to natural resources.

Guns don't feed people and bombs don't save lives. Real economic and social aid is the solution.
Brian Lenzo, Rochester, N.Y.

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International aid to Darfur

LANCE SELFA notes that "there is not a single demand calling for the U.S. to spend money to support humanitarian aid in Darfur" ("A 'humanitarian' invasion?", May 5).

In checking the Save Darfur Coalition's talking points to which Mr. Selfa referred, there is a request to "urge Congress to work with the President and the international community to make sure that sufficient food aid is provided for Darfur." Maybe food aid doesn't encourage social reform, but I think providing food to hungry people can be defined as humanitarian in this case.

Though Mr. Selfa is correct in saying the "international community...has not come through," he should focus more on chastising the European Union for the relative pittance they have contributed, as well as the non-responsive Arab League, and the gluttonous, amoral trade policies of China. The U.S. has by far given the most money for relief aid.

Unfortunately, that aid cannot get through because of the violence. The reason no-fly zones are needed is so the relief can be brought to the people who need it. It's hard to eat when you have helicopter gunships strafing your village.

Finally, Mr. Selfa criticizes President Bush for waiting until 2004 to label the crisis a "genocide." The United Nations hasn't even done that. The president's motivations aside, by labeling the Darfur situation a genocide, the world has paid a lot more attention.
Bren Unger, from the Internet

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