Union Square wasn't altered for the cameras For some...

LETTERS TO THE EDITOR

April 17, 2002

Union Square wasn't altered for the cameras

For some reason, Lisa Goldberg began her article "A man of letters returns to city, courtesy of C-SPAN" (April 8) with a series of unfounded insults that had nothing to do with the story.

In fact, Union Square Park looked no different than usual. No special preparations were made, there were no pretensions and the square was hardly "transformed."

As happens on most mornings, particularly on weekends, some of us picked up some trash, which might appear overnight in any urban park. Individuals performing community service assignments also participated. We did this the weekend before Ms. Goldberg's observations and will do it again this one.

The water to the fountain was turned on that Saturday, as requested by neighbors who were getting married in their home overlooking the square. The C-SPAN producer observed this, liked the atmosphere and asked to have the fountain activated during the taping.

We and our neighbors, some of whom were referred to as "stragglers," stayed out of camera sight as a courtesy to the C-SPAN crew.

The story promised in the headlines, along with an attractive, representative photograph of our square, was almost entirely on page 2B. The front-page introduction was largely untrue and offensive.

Debra Rahl

Francis R. Rahl Jr.

Baltimore

The truth didn't set Henry Roberts free

Baltimore State's Attorney Patricia Jessamy displayed her arrogance in suggesting that the recent revelations in Henry Roberts' case represent justice of any kind ("Police had real killer's identity," April 11).

Although the truth has at last been confirmed, the injustice suffered by Mr. Roberts persists, and will persist forever. Even if he were alive to be released from prison and see his name cleared, that would only be reparation. It would not be justice.

I hope our next state's attorney has more humility than Ms. Jessamy, and more respect for the meaning of justice.

Sarah S. Gannett

Baltimore

Don't bemoan razing of terror framework

The Sun's headline, "Institutions targeted in Israeli incursions" (April 7) bemoans the destruction of the infrastructure of the Palestinian Authority. In fact, as captured documents and weapons caches prove, the Palestinian Authority had become the de facto control center for terrorist activity long before the disintegration of the Oslo process.

The so-called Palestinian "police force" was Yasser Arafat's corrupt paramilitary arm, shaking down the Palestinian people and stifling dissenters as collaborators. His schools had become centers for political propaganda, indoctrinating a generation of suicide bombers in the spirit of jihad.

And Palestinian television and radio stations have been employed to spread hatred, continuously broadcasting calls for martyrs and revenge even as Jews and Palestinians attempted to forge a peace.

The focus of the Israeli forces on stone and steel, rather than the Palestinian people themselves, gives testament to the humanity and restraint of the Israelis. If the destruction of the Palestinian people was truly Israel's aim, it could have been accomplished long ago with large-scale, indiscriminate bombing.

Cronshi Englander

Baltimore

Arafat's words lack credibility

Palestinian leader Yasser Arafat in no uncertain terms has condemned the suicide bombings perpetrated by his followers on innocent Israelis ("As Arafat speaks out, Powell agrees to meet," April 14).

And, by the way, he also has a bridge he'd like to sell us.

Morton D. Marcus

Baltimore

Sharon's heavy hand intensifies Arab rage

The Sun's article describing the travails of the ordinary Palestinian refugees at Rumana tells us why there will be no love between Palestinians and Israelis for hundreds of years ("Conflict uproots refugees a 2nd time," April 11).

Nothing can excuse the suicide bombings in Israel, but neither can the off-hand murder of ordinary Palestinians by the Israeli troops in their search for terrorists be condoned.

If someone bulldozed my home and imprisoned me and then let me go miles away from my village without food and even clothing, I would hate that person forever.

As a World War II veteran, Israel's tactics remind me of what Hitler's armies did in Poland and other countries.

Ariel Sharon has set back the cause of Israel 100 years with his heavy hand. We should lighten it by cutting off the billions of American taxpayers' dollars he gets each year from our government.

Albert Kwiatek Sr.

Palmyra, Pa.

Apartheid's horrors still go unpunished

The verdict handed down by a South African court acquitting "Dr. Death" despite the convincing testimony by hundreds of witnesses, including his former colleagues, provides yet another example of how discrimination against black people by white people has never been truly addressed ("South Africa's `Dr. Death' acquitted of murder, fraud," April 12).

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