Letters

Exactly how did US fumble in bin Laden chase?

Regarding "How bin Laden got away" (March 4): The article stated that, "In retrospect, it becomes clear that the battle's underlying story is of how scant intelligence, poorly chosen allies, and dubious military tactics fumbled a golden opportunity to capture bin Laden...." While a list of mistakes was provided, nowhere did I find an opinion on: how intelligence should have been improved, which allies should have been chosen instead, or exactly when and where the US fumbled in the bin Laden capture.

We've found ourselves trying to get up to speed with a culture very foreign to America's. It's logical that we'd fail to fully grasp the mores and folkways of such a civilization. As a state senator, I've found it's entirely one thing to discern a problem needing resolution, but entirely another to divine a workable solution. It's all too easy to sit in cheap seats and yell directions at the coach - especially after the game is over.
W. Tom Sawyer Jr.
Bangor, Maine

Your article on the escape of Osama bin Laden is groundbreaking. It will do a lot to break the iron curtain of evasions and misinformation. Perhaps now we can have serious public discussion of our national endeavors. And perhaps the press will take courage in these issues of war.
Paul L. Kane
Washington

In India, democracy must reign

Regarding "Hindu-Muslim violence "(March 5, Editorial): I belong to one of the smallest ethnic minorities in India. Having lived in four cities located in various regions among mostly Hindu neighbors, being neither Hindu nor Muslim myself, I can vouch that India has been a haven of religious tolerance. I live in Baroda, Gujarat, which is at the heart of the communal violence.

Indians of all religions are by and large peaceful. It is a common practice for Hindu neighbors to help and protect their Muslim brethren and vice-versa, even in the worst riots of partition in 1947.

We are anxious to ensure that peace and prosperity return to our area, considered one of the most well-endowed and industrialized states in the country. The handiwork of misguided elements with the support of political godfathers can't hold back the Gujarati spirit of free enterprise, peaceful coexistence, and tolerance. Most of all, we look for justice to ensure that a destructive minority of thinkers doesn't hold the people, the state, or the nation back from a path of globalization.
Avi Sabavala
Baroda, India

The recent train killings of 55 Hindus, committed by Muslims, followed by the revenge riots of the Hindus are acts of terror that must be condemned. Such acts undermine the values and ideals the Indian democracy stands and strives for: A vibrant multicultural, multiethnic, and pluralistic society where all communities have equal opportunities and freedoms. Indians today have a choice to make. They can either remain stuck in the grooves of the divisive issues that polarize them, or they can forge a path ahead, eschewing the bitterness of the past. I hope they choose the latter.
Deepanker Baderia
Fremont, Calif.

Your editorial states, "The last time Hindu militants unleashed violence against Muslims was in 1992, when they tore down a mosque in Ayodhya to make way for a temple to the Hindu god, Ram. Over 2,000 people were killed then." When I was an American diplomat in Delhi from 1997-99, the generally accepted number of Muslims killed in '92 was closer to 10,000, but was assumed never to be known because the counting was done by Hindu officials for a Hindu nationalist government of India.
Peter Rice
Sarasota, Fla.

The Monitor welcomes your letters and opinion articles. We can neither acknowledge nor return unpublished submissions. All submissions are subject to editing. Letters must be signed and include your mailing address and telephone number.

Mail letters to 'Readers Write,' and opinion articles to Opinion Page, One Norway St., Boston, MA 02115, or fax to 617-450-2317, or e-mail to oped@csps.com.

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