Letters

Muslims speaking out against terrorism go unheard by media

Your March 15 editorial, "Muslims Who Condemn Al Qaeda," mentioned only the edict of the Islamic Commission of Spain and failed to mention the condemnation of terrorism since 9/11 by US Muslim organizations such as the Islamic Society of North America and the Muslim Students Association of the US and Canada. Many world Muslim leaders have also strongly condemned such heinous acts, chief among them President Musharraf of Pakistan, our foremost ally in eliminating the terrorist organizations and their agents in Pakistan.

It is unfortunate that a very small percentage of so-called Muslims, due to their ignorance, took upon themselves to hijack the faith of one billion or more peace-loving Muslims - assisted, of course, by some media that failed to be as objective as the Monitor.
M. Owais Jafrey
Seattle

Tug of war over value of Social Security

One wonders if the Pace University student quoted in the March 8 article "Democrats fight back on Social Security," has forgotten or never learned lessons from kindergarten. She said the new Social Security proposal appealed to her because "it is your own, instead of sharing."

Putting aside what one should learn at a young age, there are larger issues of being a citizen within a community. The strength of a society is dependent on its members and their contributions. When folks think they can have the benefits of our collective wealth (in defense, industry, education, etc.) "without sharing," we should be alarmed.

Social Security costs should be adjusted to reflect the value of the benefits. The system is not "broke," in spite of what our modern-day Chicken Little is telling us.
Will Seyse
Scotia, N.Y.

In his March 11 Opinion piece, "Ideology check on Social Security overhaul," Daniel Schorr asks, "If Republicans and Democrats are having trouble finding common ground for negotiation, is it because it can be hard to compromise with a [Bush] crusade?"

If he really wants an answer, it is, "No. The problem is that the Democrats refuse to look at the financial facts and to accept that there truly is an enormous financial problem." They and he should actually read the Social Security Trustees' reports - the new annual one will come out this month.

The press is no help on this subject, as it keeps repeating the myth that "there is no problem until 2042," when in fact the problem is already here, because it is too late to be able to pay for everything that Congress has promised the baby boomers in their retirement years.
Bert McLachlan
Author of 'Saving Social Security (from Congress)'
Katy, Texas

Missing piece in Plame case

Regarding Pat Holt's March 3 Opinion piece, "Plame leak is not journalism's sin": I believe there is one major point that is being missed in the whole discussion. Valerie Plame's husband, Ambassador Joseph Wilson, was sent to Niger to look into the matter of uranium yellowcake close to a year before President Bush mentioned yellowcake in his State of the Union speech, and Mr. Wilson then commented on the accuracy of that portion of Mr. Bush's speech.

The simple fact is that there was no way that Ms. Plame could have known at the time of her alleged recommendation to send her husband how Bush would use the information related to her husband's investigation in his speech. Whether or not she suggested her husband be sent on the mission is totally irrelevant. Robert Novak must have understood this when he revealed Plame's identity in his column - clearly an attempt to falsely discredit Wilson and nothing more.
Fred Studer
Clarks Summit, Pa.

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.

Any letter accepted will appear in print and on www.csmonitor.com .

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 Letters.

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