Letters to the Editor

Readers write about the ripple effect that the US's treatment of its prisoners has on others, erroneous reports from the Middle East, how President Obama is doing so far, and the circumstances that influence green purchases.

How the US treats prisoners has far-reaching effects

Regarding the Feb. 3 article, "Will the US adjust life at Guantánamo for detainees?": There is no doubt of the need for corrections to be made. Guantanamo must be run in compliance with Common Article 3 of the Geneva Conventions, with regard to living conditions and treatment of the individuals being housed and held there, as requested by President Obama's recent order.

The need for humane treatment and compliance with international standards can be seen in many events being noted in many situations around the world. The actions of each one of us have far-ranging effects. We can be grateful for all leaders and private citizens around the world who take a stand for what is morally right in the treatment of their fellow man. Thank you for an article bringing this very basic need into view.

Kerry Alvarado
San Francisco

Report: No deaths inside UN premises

In regard to the Feb. 2 article, "Mitchell gets earful from Mideast": This article includes an assertion that, "Israel claims it was targeting Hamas militants, but its bombs also hit hospitals and United Nations-run schools." Your readers should be aware, however, that at least one such assertion has recently been exposed as false by The Globe and Mail, which recently revealed (Jan. 29) that, "While a few people were injured from shrapnel landing inside the white-and-blue-walled UNRWA compound, no one in the compound was killed. The 43 people who died in the incident were all outside, on the street, where all three mortar shells landed."

It is indeed unfortunate that erroneous reports of this sort are not corrected as speedily as they are reported.

Sara Freedman

Obama is doing a great job so far

In regard to the Feb. 5 editorial, "After Obama's Daschle mea culpa": I appreciate the sentiments expressed in this editorial. I agree that President Obama deserves high marks for his attempts at reform. I also think that folks should not forget that he has been in office less than one month and in that time has almost accomplished more than George W. Bush did in his first 100 days. People should also remember that President Bush dug the huge hole we are in. It is going to take a tremendous effort to fix the mess he left.

I'd say for having been on the job only three weeks, Obama is doing excellently.

Kevin Brown
Sacramento, Calif.

Green choices made for many reasons

Regarding the Jan. 28 Opinion piece, "An Apollo program for US energy?": Author Peter Z. Grossman may be correct when he stays within the boundaries of economic theory. But from an "on the ground" perspective he certainly is incorrect about green energy.

Energy changes of any sort are indeed commercial issues. But they are also technical, cultural, anthropological, religious, and scientific issues. Yes, purchasing a "green" car is about its cost, but it's also about how it makes you feel about your country, what the pastor said from the pulpit last Sunday, the latest scientific research on greenhouse-gas emissions, and wanting, or not, to be a trend setter. These are all mixed together along with the economics.

Focusing on the economics alone in attempting to understand how and why a market or product succeeds or not will always get the wrong answer, as Dr. Grossman's commentary demonstrates.

Ken Zimmerman
Salem, Ore.

The Monitor welcomes your letters andopinion 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 may appear in print or on our website, Mail letters to Readers Write and Opinion pieces to Opinion Page, 210 Massachusetts Avenue, Boston, MA 02115. E-mail letters to and Opinion pieces to .

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