To Intervene or Not to Intervene in Bosnia

This abominable war in the Balkans will not end by playing at peace negotiations with the Serbs and shipping in humanitarian aid parcels to the Bosnians. All this does is allow the West to glow with self-righteousness while avoiding military commitment - a doubly despicable attitude. Nothing has been achieved: Croatia has been devastated, Bosnia virtually destroyed, and we have sat by and gently deplored it all.

Arming the Bosnians themselves would be a small step, but the critical factor is in recognizing that the roots of the conflict lie in Belgrade and Moscow. Russia supports the idea of a blockade, but only reluctantly because of traditional paternalism toward Belgrade. Boris Yeltsin finds himself increasingly in debt and desperate for Western loans. The obvious step is to make financial assistance to Yeltsin totally dependent on heavy and effective pressure being put on Belgrade to end the aggression. John Allison, Exeter, England

Letters are welcome. Only a selection can be published, subject to condensation, and none acknowledged. Please fax letters to (617) 450-2317 or address them to "Readers Write," One Norway St., Boston, MA 02115.

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