Outsider Lobbies

No need to comment on the Greek foreign minister's outburst in which he called President Clinton a "liar" because Washington attempted to prevent the installation of Russian missiles in the Greek Cypriot half of Cyprus.

When one is in the wrong, as any party favoring missile-escalated tension in a hot zone is, bluster may cover diplomatic discomfort.

More serious than nasty words was the minister's attempt to incite Greek-Americans to pressure the US government to change its posture.

Washington has often experienced external influence exerted through domestic ethnic groups. There was the famous "China lobby" of the 1950s and 1960s, a Vietnam lobby in the '60s, the still-effective Cuban-exile lobby of the past four decades, and the skillful American Israel lobby.

The American melting pot includes more ethnic groups than ever learning to be exemplary citizens. It's not fair to any of them when officials of their ancestral homeland demand that they divide their loyalty to further an outsider's policy against US interests.

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