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June 23, 1971 - Image 4

Resource type:
Michigan Daily, 1971-06-23

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4te £id Ian 3n14
420 Maynard Street, Ann Arbor, Mich.
Edited and managed by students at the
University of Michigan
Editorials printed in The Michigan Daily express the individual
opinions of the author. This must be noted in all reprints.
Wednesday, June 23, 1971 News Phone: 764-0552
Strange victory
A RATHER curious victory was won Monday by oppon-
ents of classified and military research when Senate
Assembly voted to postpone consideration of the contro-
versial research issue until September.
Both students and faculty had been critical of the
idea of resolving this issue in the summer months when
most students are away from Ann Arbor. This latest
action presents the possibility of holding open forums
before Assembly to let them know exactly the size and
the rationale of the anti-research movement on campus.
But Senate Assembly, in a sense, stumbled into this
welcome move. At no time did the Assembly indicate a
willingness to hear student viewpoints or a desire to
resolve the issue before a larger audience.
The true motivating factor behind Assembly's decis-
ion was a slow working committee that had been sched-
uled to present a report on classified research Monday,
but which has indicated it cannot complete its study
until late August.
Which all goes to show that sometimes bureaucratic
bumbling can disrupt the ruling class too.
A higher court
CIVIL RIGHTS leaders will universally condemn the
Supreme Court's 5-4 recent decision that p u b 1i c
facilities may be closed, preventing their integration.
But critics who would like to brand Nixon's c o u r t
reactionary and racist must concede that the given
task of the court is to interpret the Constitution as it
stands. In that Constitution, there is no provision to
force cities to operate swimming pools or any o t h e r
facilities, and there is no reason for the Supreme Court
to order them to do so.
The court, which has generally ruled for desegrega-
tion in similar suits, was careful to determine that the
city was not covertly operating whites-only pools. "We
want no one to get any hope that there has been a re-
treat" from past decisions, Justice Black said.
" 4LL THAT is good is not commanded by the Constitu-'
tion, and all that is bad is not forbidden by it," Chief
Justice Burger explained, apparently with regret over the
It is the Constitution, not the court, that is at fault.
This nation has not yet become enlightened enough to
recognize such rights as recreation, much less the basic
human right to guaranteed income, food and shelter.
This is still-a nation of racists, of an uneasy white
majority that is willing to make concessions in the name
of peace, but not to accept the equal humanity of black
The Supreme Court is a creature of the present
system and its laws. There is no hope for true equality un-
less the people change - if they ever do.

Vietnam: Censoring the present

H EAVY fighting was reported
in southern Laos ... Defense
Minister Sissouk Na Champassak
claimed 700 enemy were killed and
three tanks and four aircraft guns
destroyed in recent days. News-
men have been barred from the
region without explanation. U.S.
and Laottan officials have been
reluctant to permit press cover-
age of the war there.
Associated Press, June 17
Thus, even as a decision ap-
proaches in the crucial test of
the right of The Times - and
all of us - to print the secret an-
nals of the past, we are remind-
ed of the curtains obstructing our
view of the present.
GOP Senate leader Scott and
other administration spokesmen
observed with some piety in recent
days that the documented decep-
tions of the Johnson era now tn-
folded are matters of sad history
that point up the refreshing can-
dor prevailing in the Nixon re-
But yesterday's report on the
blackout over southern Laos is
only the latest in a long series of
censorship sagas of the N ix a n
period. Whyare correspondents
barred from first-hand coverage
on this front? What possible con-
siderations of 'security" dictate
the exclusion of reporters?
It is impossible to suppress the
suspicion that the administra-
tion once again fears that c I o s e-
up coverage may be inconsistent
with its portrait of a war being
"wound down" with neat p r e -
EARLIER this week Jerry Green
of The Daily News, who has long
had access to informed Pentagon
sources, reported :
"The heaviest threat to Pres-
ident Nixon's program for with-
drawal of forces from Vietnam
lies in Cambodia. The situation in
Cambodia is extremely sticky and
can be reported as a matter of
grave concern' to the White
House. If Cambodia collapses and
the North Vietnamese reestablish
their sanctuaries . . . then the
whole Nixon plan, the President's.
secret timetable, would be dis-
rupted . ..,
What "contingency plans" are
being dratfed now to meet .the
threatened crisis? Are there still
some surprises ahead for the
American public? Again there is
little basis for evaluation because
the Cambodia story is largely fil-
tered through press headquarters
in Saigon.
BEYOND the continuing effort
to minimize or obscure unfavor-
able battlefield news and the re-
lease of fraudulent "body-counts"
Is the fog enveloping the politics
of South Vietnam.
Time and again U.S. officials
have affirmed their "neutrality"
in this fall's elections there. Yet
no one believes that Ambassador



"What's so 'top secret,' Dad? .. . I've been
telling you that for years!"


Ellsworth Bunker has lost interest
in the fate of his protege, Presi-
dent Thieu. Is there any serious
reason to believe that we are
promoting conditions congenial
to a free election - or are we
simply urging Thieu to avoid the
public-relations debacle of an un-
contested campaign?.
Gen. Duong Van Minh was re-
ported recently to have delivered
a speech to political figures as-
sembled at his Saigon villa- in
which he accused the Thieu re-
gime of being "afraid of peace."
The address revived reports that
he is contemplating a challenge
to Thieu based on the creation
of a "government of concillation."
But there is still doubt whether
Minh will be able to get on the
sallot, and Truong Dinh Dzu, run-
ner-up as the peace candidate in
the 1967 vote, remains imprison-
ed. It is surely inconceivable that
the U.S. could not secure Dzu's
release if there were any validity
in our professed concern about
free choice.
WHAT ALL this suggests is
that, amid the many lamentations
revived by the record of p a s t
miscalculation and disingenuous-
ness, the air surrounding our
Vietnam policy is still murky -
and the war goes on. Political im-
peratives appear to demand that
President Nixon continue and
perhaps even accelerate with-
drawal-of ground troops. At the
same time, however, there ap-
pears to be no hint of any flex-
ibility in our attitude toward a
coalition settlement.
The prisoner-of-war issue is
being exploited as a cover for the
acknowledged plan to maintain a

"residual force"; when the Ad-
ministration is challenged to set
a withdrawal date conditioned on
return of the PWs, it has alter-
nately cried that there was no
basis for the belief that the ad-
versary would accept such terms
and then admitted that such an
agreement would be unsatisfact-
ory anyway because the Saigon
regime is unready to go it alone.
Will it ever be?
OUT OF the furor stirred by the
Justice Dept.'s offensive against
The Times at least one salutary
result may emerge. The Nixon Ad-
ministration, its own credibility
already badly damaged by events,
may find it harder than ever to
pursue a devious course in its
proclaimed "exit" from the war.
More questions will be asked about
both the. censorship of military
operations and the cover-up of
our political intrigues in Saigon.
Yet in larger terms the n e w
storm is another cruel manifesta-
tion of the incalculable damage
this wretched adventure has
wrought. Now, in June 1971, more
than six years after the escalation
began, our government is at war
with the press over the right to
tell the truth about a national
tragedy. Have we really begun to
measure the cost of this disaster
on every level of our existence?
O New York Post
The Editorial Page of The
Michigan Daily is open to any-
one who wishes to submit
articles. Generally speaking, all
articles should be less than
1,000 words.


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