In response to the four-part series "At the heart of hunger" (Nov. 12 - 15): There are so many stories about need in the news today, but I was compelled to read this series. It got at the heart of hunger by putting me into the midst of these six countries - opening my eyes to issues in a new light.
In the last article of the series, the boy and the man contrast caught my full attention. I could hear the deafening silence with these words from the article: "It has been a long time since anyone clapped around Mwambwa's shack." And the photo of the young boys working in the field until the last light was worth 1,000 words. Despite sobering statistics, it was uplifting to read how the winter-crop program helps some families evade starvation.
This series was an outstanding example of the Monitor's motto: "To injure no man, but to bless all mankind." Also, thank you for the Ways to Help list.
Black Diamond, Wash.
Regarding "At the heart of hunger": While reading the series on hunger and illness in Africa where some 2 million orphans are without income, home, and family, reminded me of the situation 50 years ago at the end of World War II.
There were homeless widows and orphans in places left devastated. Austria introduced the idea of resettling adults with children in family-size groupings to provide a stable, family atmosphere. The SOS Children's Villages were successful, and continued in various poor countries. Today, there are several operating in Africa. Education and other social services can and should be provided in an efficient way.
Janet P. Jones
Laguna Woods, Calif.
Regarding Jeffrey Shaffer's Nov. 15 Opinion column "This isn't my mom's war": Mr. Shaffer notes that his parents "felt increasingly frustrated that a historic national effort [during World War II] hadn't produced the results they, or their peers, expected," and that possible military action against Iraq reveals "international turmoil."
But a new opportunity exists. The US now has such overwhelming power that we have a real opportunity to lead a transformation of the UN into a democratic world federation.
It is unnecessary to establish unilateral US military dominance over the world; we should use our clout to reproduce the structure of a democratic federation, the wheel that we have invented and used so successfully within our own country.
Others wouldn't resent and terrorize us. They wouldn't feel that they must emigrate to the US to find freedom and prosperity, but could enjoy life in their own countries. And it would be much less expensive than our present effort to dominate the world militarily.
Ronald J. Glossop
Regarding your Nov. 7 editorial "To the victor, the toils": I take exception to the statement, "Given the bitter battle for power in Congress over the past few years, Bush largely ignored his 2000 campaign promise to set a bipartisan tone in Washington."
I am 92 years old, and I do not remember any president who came into the Oval Office so organized, or who went immediately to the Hill and spoke with leaders in both the Senate and the House of Representatives. He also led them to meetings in the White House more than once, and cooperated with them over reform of campaign finance and big business. The Democrats, not President Bush, have paid lip service to bipartisanship, and yet at the same time stymied as many bills as they possibly could.
The Monitor welcomes your letters and opinion articles. Because of the volume of mail we receive, 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 email@example.com.