'Teach-in' held at Mount St. Mary's WAR IN THE GULF


January 23, 1991|By Thom Loverro | Thom Loverro,Western Maryland Bureau of The Sun

EMMITSBURG -- At the first "teach-in" on the campus of Mount St. Mary's College in northern Frederick County, hundreds of students and teachers protested President Richard Nixon's decision to invade Cambodia.

More than 20 years later, another "teach-in" was held last night, ,, this one with no less interest but a far different tone, as more than 500 students turned out for a panel discussion on the war in the Persian Gulf.

Seven faculty members, including a native Iranian and a former faculty member of the U.S. Army War College, talked about U.S. involvement in the Mideast and what the future might hold as a result of the war.

Dr. Mehrangiz Mennerick, a graduate of Tehran University, said Iraq -- and Saddam Hussein -- was far from the only problem Western nations faced in the region.

"The war alone will not solve all the problems in the Middle East," said Mrs. Mennerick, a sociology professor who specializes in Third World development issues. "It is very likely that strong resentment by many Arabs against the United States and the Soviet Union will continue after the war."

If President Hussein falls, "The power vacuum he leaves behind may result in some other problems," she said.

Dr. Mennerick said the Palestinian homeland issue must be addressed in a postwar Middle East. "The West must abandon its international double standard," she said.

"Many Arabs ask the question: Why has there been selective enforcement and support of U.N. resolutions?" she said.

Dr. John R. Hook, who has taught at West Point and the Army War College, praised the military operation. "Our senior military officials apparently all learned some lessons from Vietnam," he said.

But Dr. Hook, chairman of the school's business and economics department, said he thought the United States moved too quickly into war. "I personally believe we should have tried to use the sanctions longer," he said.

Some of the students, many of whom were not born during the first "teach-in," supported President Bush's actions.

"I agree with what the president has done," said James Greenhalgh, 20, a junior from Fort Washington, Pa.

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