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May 22, 1975 - Image 4

Resource type:
Michigan Daily, 1975-05-22

Disclaimer: Computer generated plain text may have errors. Read more about this.

Mayaguez capture:
U.S. long on brawn,
but short on brain

G UR LATEST littte escapade
over in Soith East Asia
proves one thing - this coun-
try has passed the stage of stu-
pidity in our dealings there. We
are now purely pathetic.
Wow, aren't we tough? First,
some hotheads in Cambodia
take over the government and
then, with revolutionary exu-
berance, seize an American
merchant ship.
Next, the president of the Uni-
ted States decides that slanty-
eyed gooks can't push old Uncle
Sam around, even though be-
cause of our own ignorance
of. historical and political forces
they have been doing exactly
that for years. This time we
had to defend our "honor.'
So what do we do? We start
by alienating the nominally
friendly government of Thai-
land, which is feeling consid-
erable pressure from the omni-
potent North Vietnamese a n d
their allies, by launching o a r
valiant Marines on their heroic
mission from Thai soil.
THEN WHEN our gallant mil-
itary strategists get their chance
to prove t at our armed forces
are not worthless, our fighting
men suffer a level of casualties
which comes close to the num-

her of men who were originally
aboard the captured ship.
But we shouldn't be toon tarsh
on the military. The island that
the Marines invaded was nly
25 miles from the one where the
captives were being held.
To these events the domestic
reaction is as if we sad won
a great victory. We slap each
other on the back. The news-
papers print a -picture of the
Ford and Kissinger crew actual-
ly smiling over the develop-
ments. Serious-sounding editer-
ials and sterile senators a r e We have proven that Amer-
quick to sing the praises of our iceas massive might zaa prevail
decisive actions. e in a military maneuver. Now
FORD HAS catered to an what? Have we proven to our-
"We have proven that America's massive
might can prevail in a military nmaneuver. Now
what? Have we proven to ourselves that we do
have the proverbial chest on which to pin a

political losses resulting from We show no tact or diplomacy
our years in Vietnam, Cambod- at just the time when sane, well-
is and Laos. We continue to ig- reasoned acts c o u id actually
nore the political realities of serve to stem the autgoug tide
that part of Asia, just like we of America prestige.
did for all those years, simply They won't have the U.S A. to
in order to verify our manhood. push around anymore, because
we can beat up anybody on the
WAS THERE a serious diplo- block and are damn proud of it.
matic effort to secure the ship's
rescuer 5I{M15+ LaUeOLi.JH aen-~AA

America tired of the frustra-
tions of the losing political bat-
tle in Asia. See, he is telling
us, we are pretty rough a n d
tumble after all. Nobody, b u t
nobody, can knock the good old

selves that we do have the pro-
verbial chest on whizh to pin a
To the rest of the world we
must look like a spite ul Gd-
zilla. That's a fine way to ie-
bound from the intereational

release! 'gnat question is hign-
ly debatable, even hough the
administration will assure us
that it did all it could on
that front before doing the re-
gotiating, with a bunch of lea-
We should have been digni-
fied enough to calmly deal with
the indignity of the senseless
seizure of the ship. Instead, we
appear to lash out immaturely
at the world that is taunting us.

B o b Seidenstein contri-
butes regularly to the Edi-
torial Page.
Letters should be typed
and limited to 400 words.
The Daily reserves the
right to edit letters for
length and grammar.

The Michigan Daily
Edited and managed by Students at the
University of Michigan
Thursday, May 22, 1975
News Phone: 764-0552
Spring Term News Staff
Editorial Director
DAVE BLOMQUIST . ..................... .... Night Editor
ROB MEACHUM ........ .................S....... . Night Editor
JEFF RISTINE .................. . ......... . . . Night Editor
TIM SCHICK ... .........Night Editor
DAVID WHITING .................... Night Editor
BILL TURQUE ............ . ....... ............. Night Editor
BETH NISSEN ...... ... Editorial Page Ass't.
SUE ADES ......... ..Asst. Night Editor
GLEN ALLERHAND .......Ass't. Night Editor
DAN BLUGERMAN........Ass't. Night Editor
ELAINE FLETCHER .......Asst. Night Editor
GEORGE LOBSENZ .. .Ass't. Night Editor
CATHY REUTTER...... Ass't. Night Editor

Shipping line hooks Pentagon $

JUST AS the Vietnamese or-
phans spotlighted World
Airways, the Mayaguez seizure
has shed the light of day on
the activities of Sea-Land Inc.,
the world's largest container-
ship operator. Like World Air-
ways, Sea-Land got its start to
riches through the Indochina
War. As a rival shioping firm
president put it, "Sea-Land's
prosperity has been premised
upon extremely profitable con-
tracts for the carriage of U S.
military cargoes."
In just nine months in 1970,
Sea-Land netted a profit of $24
million hauling military goods
to South Vietnam, Okinawa, and
the Philippines. Even the end of
the Indochina War ha nsot de-
stroyed Sea-Land's anticipated
revenues of about $25 million for
hauling U.S. government cargo
in 1975. And Sea-Land f u I1 y
expects shipping to the U.S.-
built Thai naval base a° Satti-
hip to continue profitably. Be-
sides Thailand, the company
provides container service to
ports in Singapore, the Philip-
pines, Taiwan, Hong Kong,
South Korea and Japan.
AS WITH World Airways, cor-
porate linkages leading right in-
to the White House have helped
Sea-Land gain its nre-eminent
place in Southeast Asian c o n-
tainer shipping. Until 1969, when
Nixon's accession to te presi-
dency might have caused con-
flict of interest problems, sub-
stantial interests in Sea-Land
were held by shipping billion-
aire Daniel K. Ludwig and Lit-
ton Industries. Ludwig's private-
ly owned firm, National Bulk
Carriers Inc., was a client of
Nixon's old New York law firm,
Mudge, Rose, Guthrie and Alex-
ander. And former Litton In-
dustries president Roy Ash
headed the powerful govern-
mental reorganization council
out of which the Office of Mon-
agement and Budget emerged
as the supreme power over the
government budget, and which
Ash himself finally came to

The Mayaguez in tow: "Even the shift of control to Reynols
did not take Sea-Land's corporate ownership out of national
security policies. One of Reynold's directors, Gordon Gray, is a
member of the President's Foreign Intelligence Advisory Board,
and has been involved in national security affairs since the
Eisenhower Administration."
head. EVEN THE shift of o-rol
In 1969, Ludwig and L't.ton to Reynolds did not lake fea-
R. t99 interestsin aLn Land's corporate ownership out
sold their eyntsd Seaslnd of national security politics. One
to f.J Reynolds, a holding of Reynold's directors, Gordon
company for Reynolds Tobacco GrysammerfthPr-
interests. The same year Rey- Gray, is a member of the Pres-
noldstndustriesa tried to pur- ident's Foreign Iitelligence Ad-
chase U.S. Lines, the secaid visory Board, and has been in-
lagst U.S. Lsppin coand.volved in national security af-
largest U.S. shipping company. fairs since the Eisenhower Ad-
If successful, the deal would ministration.
have given Reynolds virtual ministration.
monopoly control to the tune of
88 per cent of the U.S. con- Rick Jurgens regularly
tainership fleet. But the deal monitors the flow of raw
has been blocked since 1969 by rriaterials for Pacific News
a variety of legal maneuve-s. Services. Copyright, 1975,
Pacific News Service.

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