Readers write: US-Russia exchange, and how to address genocide?

Letters to the editor for the Dec. 17, 2018 weekly magazine.

Former Khmer Rouge head of state Khieu Samphan stands at the courtroom of the Extraordinary Chambers in the Courts of Cambodia (ECCC) as he awaits a verdict, on the outskirts of Phnom Penh, Cambodia, Nov. 16, 2018.

US-Russia exchange

What a pleasant surprise to see Sharon Tennison profiled in the People Making a Difference feature in the Oct. 22 Weekly Print Edition! Our family traveled with her 30 years ago as part of her program Center for Citizen Initiatives, which sets up trips to Russia for Americans and trips to the United States for those from Russia. Our children were 7, 10, and 13 at the time, and they turned out to be great ambassadors since the Russians love their children dearly. 

It was an eye-opening trip for us all and led us to focus on World War II as we continued our travels throughout much of Europe for the next 2-1/2 months. 

We also hosted two groups of Russian entrepreneurs in our community. The program was called Soviets Meet Middle America when we participated, and it was gratifying to be able to host these new friends.

Thanks for reminding us of the importance of people-to-people exchanges and for sharing Ms. Tennison’s long-standing efforts in this area.

Tom and Meg Stallard

Woodland, Calif.

How to address genocide?

Regarding the Nov. 16 Daily editorial, “A legal takedown of genocide”: I just watched the film “Hotel Rwanda,” and it made me think about the Rohingya genocide. The West was partially present in Rwanda, with United Nations soldiers and French soldiers there at times, but the West didn’t do anything to stop the genocide. Part of the movie’s goal is to make people aware of the genocide and show that idleness is not acceptable so that genocides like this don’t happen again. 

It’s nice to read that genocide occurs less than it used to, but it is still happening. We hear about the Rohingya genocide and about how their government is ignoring and denying it, but I would love to know more about what is being done to help them and stop this. What are we and other countries who are watching actually doing to stop this slaughter?

Whitney Wyndham

Chestnut Hill, Mass.

You've read  of  free articles. Subscribe to continue.
Real news can be honest, hopeful, credible, constructive.
What is the Monitor difference? Tackling the tough headlines – with humanity. Listening to sources – with respect. Seeing the story that others are missing by reporting what so often gets overlooked: the values that connect us. That’s Monitor reporting – news that changes how you see the world.

Dear Reader,

About a year ago, I happened upon this statement about the Monitor in the Harvard Business Review – under the charming heading of “do things that don’t interest you”:

“Many things that end up” being meaningful, writes social scientist Joseph Grenny, “have come from conference workshops, articles, or online videos that began as a chore and ended with an insight. My work in Kenya, for example, was heavily influenced by a Christian Science Monitor article I had forced myself to read 10 years earlier. Sometimes, we call things ‘boring’ simply because they lie outside the box we are currently in.”

If you were to come up with a punchline to a joke about the Monitor, that would probably be it. We’re seen as being global, fair, insightful, and perhaps a bit too earnest. We’re the bran muffin of journalism.

But you know what? We change lives. And I’m going to argue that we change lives precisely because we force open that too-small box that most human beings think they live in.

The Monitor is a peculiar little publication that’s hard for the world to figure out. We’re run by a church, but we’re not only for church members and we’re not about converting people. We’re known as being fair even as the world becomes as polarized as at any time since the newspaper’s founding in 1908.

We have a mission beyond circulation, we want to bridge divides. We’re about kicking down the door of thought everywhere and saying, “You are bigger and more capable than you realize. And we can prove it.”

If you’re looking for bran muffin journalism, you can subscribe to the Monitor for $15. You’ll get the Monitor Weekly magazine, the Monitor Daily email, and unlimited access to

QR Code to Readers write: US-Russia exchange, and how to address genocide?
Read this article in
QR Code to Subscription page
Start your subscription today