Choosing Sides in Yugoslavia

The editorial "Balkan Fires," Oct. 4, misses the point. The US cannot support Serbia or the Serb-led federal Army, both under the leadership of Serbian President Slobodan Milosevic, because he is a hard-line communist with no integrity.The US must support the emerging countries who stand for the same things we stand for: democracy, human rights, open borders, and a free-market economy. Then peace will come to the Balkans. Virginia Surso, Fort Wayne, Ind., Macedonian Patriotic Organization

'Wise use' for whom? I am disappointed with the article "Land Use Advocates Make Gains," Oct. 3. Only 10 percent of US forests are left - 90 percent are gone without a realistic chance to renew. Tree farms have not had a good record; the soil is not restored after clear-cut and slash-and-burn methods. The shipping of 1 of 4 trees to Japan and Korea and the use of modern machinery have cost the jobs of millworkers and loggers. Like blacksmithing, logging is becoming an occupation of the past. Loggers need help now adjusting to new jobs. What upsets me most is the insidious suggestion that the destruction of natural resources benefits man. This destruction is for lumber barons and industry - not for man but for money and greed. Margaret Flanagan, St. Paul, Minn.

The report on the "wise use" movement is both informative and balanced. However, the author omits an essential statement of fact when quoting me. My complete statement was: "Unlike other sectors of the United States economy, natural resource development on nonagricultural lands involves a mixture of socialist and capitalist enterprises. Government owns the means of production on a large fraction of the US land base [one-third]. Government ownership can create political strain in a largely capitalist economy. Since we are not socialist, there is no national rhetoric of responsibility when we force people off the [government's] land. This is analogo us to kicking tenant farmers off state-owned farmlands." Only the italicized section was published. Government's failure to assume responsibility for the social and economic consequences of its actions raises questions about whether government ownership is wise public policy. The "wise use" movement can be an important force in helping to bring democracy to government land ownership. Robert G. Lee, Seattle, University of Washington

From here to infinity Regarding the article Frontline Literate Voice," Oct. 3: Producer David Fanning has a Sisyphean task if he is accurately quoted as "doing television for the highest common denominator." Schoolchildren learn to add fractions by writing them as equivalent fractions with the lowest common denominator. A highest common denominator can never be found, because doubling the one you have always gives you a larger one. Harold P. Boas, College Station, Texas

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