Military Intervention in Somalia and Its Aftermath
The article "US Ignores Key Doubts Over Somali Intervention," Dec. 9, quotes United States Ambassador to Kenya Smith Hempstone as saying he is concerned that "the operation might `reunite the Somalia nation against [the US] ... who may have fed their children but also have killed their young men.' "
In addition, Alex de Waal, a former associate director of Africa Watch, says, " `All these delicate webs of agreement and contracts that have been established' by some relief agencies with Somali clans will `go up in a puff of smoke' when the Marines arrive."
What the military will do after they distribute food is an important question. No one can foresee the aftermath of this operation; but, meanwhile, children are still starving.
In clear conscience, could the United States have waited while the existing relief agencies failed to do the job? The deployment process no doubt is ticklish and risky, but time was running out. Had we waited much longer, the whole exercise would have been purely academic. Howard F. Gregory, East Falmouth, Mass. Clinton's economic summit
Regarding the article "Politics, Business Mix At Clinton's Summit," Dec. 16: There are some of us who liken President-elect Clinton's economic conference to nothing less than a political miracle. When is the last time you saw a gathering of political, academic, and business leaders, as well as ordinary people, harboring different politics and beliefs? When is the last time you saw a president (or president-elect) conduct such a meeting with skill, understanding, and a mastery of detailed background?
So what if there were people present who expect a political appointment? So what if there were others who had an ax to grind? They all made a contribution. No one orchestrated that many diverse people. No one wrote a script for that assembly. And no one had to feed answers or pump information to Mr. Clinton. We have witnessed political history in the making. Hereafter, presidential leadership and performance will have a new benchmark. Ralph W. Ritchie, Springfield, Ore. Neo-Nazis in Germany
The front-page photograph, Nov. 25, shows German youth raising their arms in a kind of Hitler salute. As a German, I am ashamed of the Nazi wave that has taken place in my country. I believe that any emergence of Nazism among German youth serves as an outlet for the helplessness of their parent/grandparent generation. In the World War II films that are shown here almost daily, this generation is always portrayed as villains committing Nazi crimes. No wonder the image of bad Germans is so fixed in people' s minds.
Recently I listened to a political discussion on television in which an Israeli journalist said, "Germany must be given back its dignity, otherwise events might head toward a disaster." To this I have nothing to add except my deep gratitude - although with a grievous heart. Luise Sohibel, Augsburg, Germany