Bomb BosniaThis is to express support for NATO's bombing...

LETTERS TO THE EDITOR

April 19, 1994

Bomb Bosnia

This is to express support for NATO's bombing of Serbian positions in Bosnia.

It's long overdue. My only quibble is that it was a very small response to the Serbs' ongoing campaign of conquest by terror.

Despite good intentions, the United Nations in effect has aided and abetted the Serbs by imposing an arms embargo that affected only the victims, since the aggressors had most of Yugoslavia's arms to start with, as well as the munitions factories to build more.

It's as if the police were to come upon a rape in progress and tie the victim's hands behind her back to reduce the level of violence on the streets. (I use this comparison because the Serbs used mass rape as one of their techniques for terrorizing the Bosnian Muslims.)

Now, with some encouragement from President Clinton, the U.N. has finally shown a little spine.

It is notable that the only time the Serbs have let up in the slightest was when the U.N., after many months of dithering, finally insisted that the artillery around Sarajevo had to be removed or it would be destroyed.

I can't see any reason why the same approach should not be used -- now, with NATO planes ready to fly -- in the rest of Bosnia.

Tim Cliffe

Emmitsburg

Pound's 'Madness'

With regard to Daniel Mark Epstein's March 27 review of the newly-published letters between Ezra Pound and his publisher/friend James Laughlin of New Directions, I beg to take exception to his statement at the opening of the review (and pursued by inference) that Pound descended into "madness" during World War II.

Certainly Pound was afflicted with a psycho-pathological disorder, regardless of the fact that the "insanity plea" was used to avoid a treason trial.

It was believed by the doctors and psychiatrists in attendance, and the government lawyers (and Mr. Pound's own lawyer, Julien Cornell) that Pound was mentally troubled, erratic in attitude (never violent or crazy, as "madness" would imply), but from all accounts never considered "mad."

Indeed, Pound had great reason for his mental disorder leading into World War II, especially considering the fact that he was trapped in Italy and unable to obtain a new passport to return home.

He and his wife were without funds. He had experienced the destruction (artistically and fraternally) of World War I in 1914, when so many creative talents were lost: his friends T. E. Hulme and Gaudier-Brzeska and even Rupert Brooke.

As for his anti-Semitism and political stance against Roosevelt and Churchill, they were certainly not the singular province of Ezra Pound. It was not a politically correct era.

But Pound seems to reap the whirlwind, in that regardless of his recanting his anti-Semitism, and dead since 1972, his human failings are still paraded across his otherwise unique and brilliant accomplishments. His confrere, H. L. Mencken, shares his luck.

That Pound "used" his friend/publisher to his own advantage is an ironic turn of events, considering the relationship between writer and publisher over the past several centuries.

But it is writers such as Pound, Carlos Williams, Dylan Thomas and Tennessee Williams who have kept New Directions afloat.

Thomas Cole

Baltimore

Cold Punishment

A recent article in The Sun (April 2) reported that during a specific cold spell there were only two murders in Baltimore, both occurring indoors.

Some people say that punishment imposed by the courts does not and will not act as a deterrent to those responsible for committing certain criminal acts, specifically murder.

Why, then, did this cold period have such a significant impact on reducing of murders -- I would bet a similar reduction was experienced with other violent crimes -- committed during this time?

In days past when most murders were crimes of passion, consequences for the act were certainly rarely considered by the murderer prior to committing the act.

Since most murders today are crimes of fashion, the thugs' own "creature comfort" is certainly a consideration when deciding whether today is a good day to murder.

Personally, I believe the courts could have more of an impact on decreasing the murder rate, and other crimes, if the punishment they dispensed was more like the cold.

The consequences for committing crimes must be tangible, its effects clearly understood. It must cause immediate discomfort to those exposed to it and, like the cold, it must be consistent.

David R. Etheridge

Hampstead

American Way of Travel Is a Disaster

The Sun of April 5 opened its Opinion * Commentary page to commercial propaganda by printing an article by Charles J. Dibona, president of the American Petroleum Institute. API represents, directly, the very profitable oil industry and, indirectly, the entire complex of the highway, auto, truck and service industries that dominate so much of our economy.

I am an international consultant in transport planning, economics and management for 30-plus years and inventor of the Surrey System . . .

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