A valuable allyThose Israeli bashers who constantly decry...

the Forum

August 13, 1991

A valuable ally

Those Israeli bashers who constantly decry the $10 billion aid given to our ally, Israel, should take note of the Aug. 1 item in The Evening Sun, "Allies still owe United States from war."

The General Accounting Office estimated the cost of Desert Shield and Desert Storm at more than $100 billion. That will more than likely turn out to be a conservative estimate. The cost in American lives and the disruption in family lives is beyond calculation.

By contrast, not a single American life was ever lost in defense of Israel, and no guard was ever called up even in the direst emergency of the 40 years of Israel's imperiled existence. Israel, as an American ally, made a tremendous contribution to the United States by containing the "evil empire Russia" when Russia was seen by the U.S. as its greatest threat. When Israel defeated Arab surrogates armed and heavily subsidized by Russia, the U.S. learned much about the latest and best Russian military hardware. Captured planes, tanks and radar were turned over to our military for evaluation.

Only Israeli lives were lost in the Russian containment, and the cost in aid to Israel was inconsequential compared to the $100 billion spent protecting an ungrateful Saudi Arabia and an ungrateful Kuwait, both of which still owe the United States billions in pledged money to defray cost of their protection and rescue.

Henry H. Cohen

Baltimore

Trouble at home

While President Bush traipses around the world more than any other president in history has done the social problems in the U.S. grow steadily worse.

The murder rate has doubled, the drug problem persists and our poverty is a national disgrace.

Three million crimes are committed on U.S. school grounds each year, with nearly 200,000 injured. On any given day more than 100,000 students have guns with them at school.

Sheila Waters

Baltimore

Natural law

Gregory Lewis (Forum, July 29) is very confusing. He states that President Bush's nominee for Supreme Court was chosen purely to replace a man with a man of the same color. He denounces the ideals which Clarence Thomas believes in and goes on to state why. The confusion is in his arguments.

He first states that "natural law" should not be the basis of constitutional interpretation. If I'm not mistaken, the Constitution was written based on "natural law." He then states that chattel slavery was the fault of the status quo. The Constitution had certain laws regarding slavery, due to compromises at the convention. "Natural law" was not the best answer to these problems but bringing back such interpretations could not bring back slavery, thanks to the Civil War.

One of the basic premises of the Constitution was property rights. The idea of allowing one's property to be subject to the political process was what we fought to end. "Natural law" was founded in England, where Americans' property rights were subject to the devine law of the king. Making property rights subject to the status quo (democratic political process) completely contradicts his views on slavery.

Mr. Lewis tries to blend "free market" with "social Darwinism." He'll have to write a book to explain that. I find that whole paragraph to be intellectually disreputable.

I believe that President Bush has selected a fine candidate for Supreme Court justice. "Natural law" is not perfect, but the views of individual rights and property rights are a major concern of Mr. Thomas. Such concepts may not come from an ordained deity but just by viewing a world that tried to do away with it, we fared much better for having it. Considering it as an anachronism, Mr. Lewis is saying that he likes the downhill slide that the United States is taking to catch up with the Third World.

Gary J. Hicken

Baltimore

Who decides?

The issue of abortion is not a religious issue nor an issue for the legislature or the courts. It is an issue about women. The point is basic who decides. Every woman should have the righ to privacy which includes whether to terminate a pregnancy.

Be thankful each morning when you awake and have a cup of coffee or bowl of cereal that you are not personally facing the decision.And be doubly thankful that the right to make that decision is not some judge's, some review board's, some state senator's or someone with a 1000 points of spite on your side but that decision is yours, only because of Roe vs. Wade.

The Webster decision had made it possible for your rights to be slowly and painlessly eaten away in 50 different places (your home states). Laws that sound good, such as parental consent, have but one goal in mind. That goal is to take away bit by bit a women's right to make that decision for herself, starting with a very vulnerable prey, a minor.

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