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Letters to the editor - 4/27/02

April 29, 2002

Let's tell the truth about the Mideast


To the editor:

In the name of Allah, the most gracious, the most merciful.

After reading Janice Garfunkel's letter about historic Palestine and present-day Palestine, I am forced to respond.

In historic Palestine, Arab and Jew lived side by side in peace. Trouble did not begin until Hertzel and the Zionist migration of the 1890s. In 1917, British Lord Balfour betrayed the World War I promise to the Arab people, and promised a "Jewish Home Land."

Who are the real terrorists? Let us see. On April 9, 1948 Begin and the Irgun massacred hundreds in Deir Yassin and Shamir bombed the King David Hotel in Jerusalem.

In June 1967 the Zionists began the "Six-Day War" with an unprovoked attack on Egypt's Air Force catching them in peace time formation. They also bombed an American naval vessel.

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Yassir Arafat was freely elected president in observed elections. Garfunkel forgets to mention that Hamas and Hezbollah are two political parties separate from President Arafat's Fatah. She also forgets to mention the fact Arafat came to the U.N. offering peace in November 1974, whereas Sharon allowed Sabra and Shatila to occur. Twenty years later, he allows the Jenin massacre.

Garfunkel needs to understand two things. First, there would be no Zionist occupation if not for U.S. money, i.e. $16.23 billion dollars in five years. Two, that one day Palestine will be free from the Zionist usurpers no matter the cost. She is just engaging in Zionist double-talk.

Faisal Husseini

Hagerstown

City retireess holding the bag


To the editor:

Open enrollment for the City of Hagerstown Health Insurance was recently held. Being a retired city police management employee, I expected a rate hike but from literature I received prior to the enrollment meeting, the rate hike looked acceptable to maintain the coverage I have now.

The personnel director gave the details of a new, recently adopted plan that we could sign up for at the same premium as last year with reduced benefits, of course.

My choice: Keep what I have or go to the new reduced-benefit plan. Not a hard choice at the minimal rate increase on the paper in front of me. Wait, discussion begins about the new large increase in rates from other retirees. Seems I have been sent the wrong rate sheet.

It was then explained that both AFSCME police and fire unions had voted to accept the rate increase with a promise from the Mayor and Council that the increase would be made up on the other end as a salary increase, according to the personnel director.

It was then further explained that all city employees other than union police and fire members would be paying the greatly increased rates. When asked why in the first time in the history of the city employees are being treated differently in areas of insurance rate increases, we were told the police and fire union vote dictated the difference in increases.

My union brothers who I held so dearly in my heart when I was working had just voted me a 5 percent pay decrease in my gross retirement simply because I as a retiree had no representation or vote and was in management. Thanks. I won't get a salary increase to offset my increase but apparently you will.

To all the active city employees not in these unions I say you better find a way to organize since no representation in this case has cost you dearly as well.

To the mayor and council, I understand retirees, management and other non-union employees have no voice and apparently very little respect in your administration.

Putting such an offer on the table for these unions to vote on shows your lack of concern for fairness. You have managed to create bigger gaps in employee relations which is not necessary and can only affect employee performance in a negative manner.

You have tried to hide raises to these employees by not increasing their insurance rates as high as others and more than likely when raises are given now they will be across the board which you hope will appear fair to the general public. I hope they can see through your actions.

Roy L. Cave

Hagerstown

Feminist agenda obscures the truth


To the editor:

Two stories in your March 8 issue that appear to be unrelated are indeed a most telling indictment of the current moral status of our society and the members of the media in particular. The items in question were the case of the Texas woman who "...left a man to die in windshield." and the John Rosemond column about Bernard Goldberg's book about the way in which the media distort the news.

The columnist zeroes in on Goldberg's critique of the long- term harmful effects of day-care in his chapter titled "The Most Important Story You Never Saw on TV." His final conclusion was that the media has caved in to the militant feminists who are willing to sacrifice anyone, children included, to their agenda.

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