University Access Has Been Restricted Before

The opinion-page article ``Israel's Assault on Palestinian Universities,'' Dec. 18, states that ``Israel's illegal ban on Palestinian higher education is ... unprecedented in modern times,'' specifically decrying the denial of library access to members of the faculty. This statement is incorrect. The Hebrew University was founded in Jerusalem by Jews in 1925, 23 years before the founding of the state of Israel. At the end of the Israeli-Arab war in 1948, the university was left as an enclave in the Arab East Jerusalem. The campus was left intact, but Israelis were denied access and the university stood empty and unused until the Six-Day War in 1967. I visited Israel in October 1958, when I found that the faculty of the new Hebrew University built in the Jewish part of Jerusalem had been denied access to the libraries of the old university since 1948.

Curt Teichert, Rochester, N.Y., University of Rochester

Cuban aid not mercenary In the article ``Angolans Wary of Experiment in Democracy,'' Dec. 28, the author refers to Cuban soldiers who have assisted the Angolan government as ``mercenaries.'' Cuban troops serving in Angola are paid by the Cuban government, not by Angola or any other entity. They are therefore not more ``mercenaries'' than are the US troops presently serving in Saudi Arabia. It is worth noting that Cuba's assistance to Angola also has included thousands of Cuban doctors, teachers, and technical assistants.

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Daniel W.E. Holt, New York

Compassion is compassion The column ``The Caring Heart Does Not Specialize,'' Dec. 31, is right. People dedicated to stopping animal cruelty are among those most involved in alleviating human suffering.

Many great humanitarians and social reformers have fought animal cruelty. Henry Gergh founded the first American societies for the prevention of cruelty to children and animals. Lord Shaftesbury, who legislated protection for children, the insane, and the poor, spoke out strongly against all kinds of animal abuse and particularly vivisection. Albert Schweitzer's last message to the world concerned vivisection.

Compassion is compassion.

Jacqueline Jackelow, Vero Beach, Fal.

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