Islamic Electoral Victories and the People's Choice

In the editorial "Algeria's Fundamentalist Vote," Jan. 2, the overwhelming victory by the Islamic Salvation Front is depicted as "a protest vote against the corruption and mismanagement they [Algerians] associate with the long-ruling National Liberation Front," and not a vote for Islamic values. I remember the same opinion was expressed when the Iranian people demonstrated against the shah and for the Islamic Republic.

When is the West going to realize that there is a genuine movement among Muslims toward Islamization in different countries? Once Muslims are allowed to have a free parliamentary election, as in Algeria, they show their true feelings. Comments like "It's too early to assume that Algeria has veered toward some kind of dark age," show a lack of respect for the people's choice. Reza Fassihi, Denver, Colo.

Letters are welcome. Only a selection can be published, subject to condensation, and none acknowledged. Please address them to "Readers Write," One Norway St., Boston, MA 02115.

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