NATO's Direction Unclear

Regarding the editorial ''Deploying US Troops,'' Oct. 25: President Clinton's recent actions concerning the deployment of United States troops in Bosnia appear to be more of a 1996 campaign move than a legitimate effort to exercise foreign-policy leadership.

Why the delay? NATO has had its problems in adjusting to the post-cold-war world. Its charter is no longer clear and should be addressed beyond the operational context. NATO's current charter will require redefining and adjusting to the many demands that now face Europe. This adjustment will require NATO to address concerns outside its military origins and accept responsibility for the political and economic factors necessary in maintaining regional stability. NATO must also take a more active role in its own region, beyond the scope of its original defense charter. US leadership must be more decisive and instill foreign-policy confidence if NATO is to remain an effective alliance.

It is apparent that the Clinton administration has much more in common with the Jimmy Carter presidency - a foreign policy that is based on reaction and not design.

John F. Stampfli Mission Viejo, Calif.

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