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January 27, 1980 - Image 4

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The Michigan Daily, 1980-01-27

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Page 4--Sunday, January 27, 1980-The Michigan Daily

Gbe StEigan iai1o
Ninety Years of Editorial Freedom

Afghan invasion is a message
about shifts in world alliances

Vol. XC, No. 96

News Phone: 764-0552

Edited and managed by students at the University of Michigan


Carter's C
N POKER TERMS, the Kremlin
has put all of its cards on the table
in Afghanistan, trying to force
President Carter to show his hand.
They know that all the cards are
stacked against the Carter ad-
ministration in the Persian
Gulf-Afghanistan is on the Soviets'
own border, while the U.S. is half a
world away. The only trumps the
president has in response are an
Olympic boycott, grain, -and a
technology embargo..
But now, President Carter, taking
under-the-table cues from his national
security advisor, has reached into the
deck and pulled out the needed ace to
complete his hand. Carter is playing
the China card.
In this deadly superpower game of
high-stakes poker, the decision to sell
rilitary support equipment to the
Chinese suddenly introduces a new
partner into the balance. By building
bridges to the Chinese, we are, in ef-
fect, playing the hand that the 'Soviets
,fear most-opening a second front in
.the cold war by building a new alliance
: with the one enemy the Kremlin
dreads even more than the U.S.
Carter had kleen reluctant to "play
the China card" earlier on, back when
the U.S./China dialogue was first
t opened and when the United States had
hoped for improved cultural and
' technological tieswavith Peking without
: broadening the Cold War into a three-
ring circus. But by their naked
I omen and
possible draft is not an ap-
propriate plan for the country at this
time, if such a registration program is
enacted; it shuild certainly include
women. .
It is very likely that Congress will go
along with President Carter's call for a
draft registration program. Carter has
not yet specified if he will recommend
that women be included in , his
registration proposal; he is expected to
make his position clear in his report to
Congress due in about two weeks.
As president, Carter . has the
authority to order men to register, but
the registration of women will require
congressional approval. It is hoped
that the Congress will not choose to
exempt those eligible for registration
merely on the basis of sex.
There is no question that women
deserve equal rights and that the
Equal Rights Amendment (ERA)
r should be ratified to affirm and clarify
those rights. But with equal rights
° comes equal responsibility, and this
responsibility extends to defense of the

hina card
aggression in Afghanistan, the in-
vasion of a sovereign state, the Soviets'
themselves have drawn the line by
demonstrating that they will not play
by the acknowledged rules of accepted
international behavior.
So, Jimmy Carter, suddenly
realizing the Russians were there, has
been forced to include the Chinese in
the world balance of power. China has
been granted most favored nation
status, ang the administration will begin
the sale of military support equipment
(trucks, communications gear, and
early-warning radar).
It is important now to continue
building bridges to Peking, in the wake
of Russian aggression and the very
real threat to Persian Gulf oil. The
world has, in effect, returned to the old
Cold War, except this time the U.S. can
demonstrate that Western
democracies can ally with communist
countries when the enemy is a threat to
civilized, peaceful coexistence. The
difference between this cold war and
the one of the 1950s is that this confron-
tation is not between East and West,
but, rather, between the naked bar-
barism that an expansionist Russia
represents on the one side, and the
nations respecting self-determination
and the sovereignty of all states on the
The United States is fortunate to
have China, a played feared by the
Soviets, as its ally in the poker game of
international politics.
re gstration
This is not to say that women should
necessarily serve in combat units if a
war breaks out: Such a question need
not be answered at this time. However,
there is no reason that women cannot
and should not serve in the armed for-
ces, and this fact has been recognized
in recent years by the military bran-
Women's leaders and ERA
proponents are generally opposed to
any registration or draft program for
either men or women. But if a selective
service program were initiated, most
say that women should be inchded
Phyllis Schlafly, the leader of the
ERA opposition movement, maintains,
"Carter's proposal proves what we've
been saying for the last seven years,
that the ERA proponents want to draft
women and treat them just like men in
the military."
Schlafly has her logic backwards.
It's not that ERA supporters want to
"draft women and treat them just like
men in the military." Rather, ERA af-
firms that women are equal to men,
and the logical and fair consequence of
that equality is service to defend the

The sledge-hammer approach that the
Soviet Union wielded against the former
Amin government in Afghanistan has shaken
the world's geopolitical balance of power.
And that is precisely what it was meant to
do: oust an overly brutal Soviet client gover-
nment, and at the same time send a resoun-
ding message to Washington and Peking that
Moscow is unhappy with the emerging shift in
world politics.
THIS DUAL ASPECT of the Afghanistan
invasion recalls the sudden Soviet occupation
of Czechoslovakia in August, 1978, when hun-
dreds of thousands of Soviet troops were
airlifted into Czech airports within a matter
of days, all for the purpose of ousting a liberal
Czech leader.
Then, as now, a much lighter touch at far
less cost in world public opinion could have
achieved the political aims of the Soviet
Union. But in both cases, the massive nature
of the invasions was dictated by broader con-
siderations involving Soviet relations with the
big powers.
In the months preceding the 1968 invasion of
Czechoslovakia, U.S.-Soviet and Chinese-
Soviet relations were worsening. The U.S.
was moving toward development of an Anti-
Ballistic Missile system that could have
nullified the Soviet missile deterrent against
the U.S. And just one week before the in-
vasion, the U.S. successfully flight-tested a
multiple warhead, thus greatly increasing its
offensive nuclear capability. In the Far East,
the Soviets and Chinese were rapidly building
up frontier forces that led to a shooting mini-
war in March of the following year.
THUS, THE SOVIETS' intent in the
massive occupation of Czechoslavakia was
two-pronged. It aimed to oust the Dubcek
regime, but also to force the central
geopolitical issue of the time: real detente, or
back to the cold war.
Just as in 1968, U.S.-Soviet detente has been
coming apart in recent months. The U.S. has
been accusing the Russians of pushing a
military modernization program that istilting
the balance heavily in favor of the Warsaw
Pact forces And the Soviets accuse the U.S.
of upping its military posture through the big
new MX missile program, creation of a Mid-
dle Eastern strike force and a new Indian
Ocean 5th fleet,and especially,athe NATO
decision to install Pershing and cruise
nuclear missiles in Western Europe. Par-
ticularly unnerving to the Soviets-who have
always been more concerned by political than
strictly economic or military factors-was
the unexpected support for the NATO missile
decision by West Germany's Chancellor
Helmut Schmidt, with whom the Soviets have
been attempting to reach separate accom-
But these destabilizing developments alone
probably would not have moved the Sovietsto
the point of carrying out so massive an in-
vasion. It took more-and there was
more-striking the Russians right in their
political solar plexus.
WHAT TIPPED THE balance was the
recent swing in the triangular balance that
governs U.S .Sino-Soviet relations. Sino-
Soviet relations have been worsening since
the breakdown of the Moscow talks last
November. And-even more alarming to the
Soviets-U.S.-China relations have been
evolving towards what looks increasingly like
a de facto military alliance, despite Secretary
of State Cyrus Vance's denials.
Since 1959, only one power in the world has
upset, frightened and confused the Soviet
Union, and that is China. It is the spot of
irrationality in an otherwise cautious a n d
c a lc u l a tin g Soviet foreign policy.
China has been an unsettling factor for the
Soviet Union in many ways: on the
geopolitical level, on the problem of border
tensions, and lately over Afghanistan. Even
sin ce the Taraki coup in Afghanistan in April,
1978, the Soviet Union has accused the
Chinese and the Americans of abetting and
aiding Afghan rebels along the Afghan-

By Franz Schurman
Pakistan border. Moreover, with the com-
pletion of a new highway from Chinese
Sinkiang scross the Karakorams into
Pakistan, it is possible to drive overland from
Peking to the Indian Ocean, passing close by
the Afghan frontier.
BUT IT IS not the economic nor the military
aspects of the road that worry the Soviets-its
capacity to carry traffic is limited. It is its
political significance. The road symbolizes
the fact that the Chinese regard their alliance
with Pakistan of central importance.
For many years,. the Chinese have been
slowly weaving a belt of de facto alliances
with Pakistan, Iran (before the Islamic
Revolution), and Egypt-all designed to form
an arc of containment against the Soviet
Union's southern flank. The U.S., meanwhile,

from Moscow. Aside from the Soviet anxi
about so strange a revolution as that in Ira,
there is the Soviet's fear that the CENTO are,
once conceived as hemming them in bat
gradually viewed as a means of stabilizirg
the region, has become fluid and uncon-
trollable, and nothing so terrifies the control-
minded Soviets as a situation out of contr .
And no revolution in recent times has been,
deliberately or not, so fluid and uncoil-
trollable as the groundswell rising of Islamic
THE IRANIAN Revolution is not a simp
power vacuum caused by the collapse of one
strong regime and ensuing chaos. It is a
pulsating force sparking flames of Islamic
revolt and consciousness in other countries,
notable Afghanistan, where the diverse anti-
Kabul factions at least agree of their Islamic
identity. The fact that there is no functioning
government in Teheran unnerves all powers
that have dealings with Iran, including the
Soviet Union.

Ar rn~t'
CHINESE FOREIGN MINISTER Huang Hua assures the Afghan refugees last week that hisW
country will send relief supplies in view of their sufferings at the hands of the Soviet-installed
regime in Kabul. Many believe the U.S. and China are forming much closer ties partly in
response to the Soviet invasion.

relied on its own alliances, embodied in CEN-
TO, to separate the Soviets from the oil fields
of the Persian Gulf.
It has been a cardinal principle of U.S.-
Soviet detente since the Nixon ad-
ministration's opening to China that nor-
malization of U.S.-China relations was accep-
table, but alliance was not. Secret U.S.
breakthroughs on detente with both Moscow
and Peking occurred almost simultaneously
in December, 1970. No such simultaneous
agreements would have been possible without
an understanding.,-however tacit-that in no
case would the U.S. line up with one against
the other.
ALL DURING THE Nixon years, the even-
handed approach to both Moscow and Peking
prevailed. It wavered a little during the Ford
years, but not much. Under Carter, it first
seemed as if National. Security Advisor
Zbigniew Brzesinski's anti-Soviet line would
tip the balance, but then U.S.-China relations.
were put on the backburner. When diplomatic
recognition of the U.S. and China coincided
with the fighting between China and Vietnam,
it again seemed that an alliance was in the
making, but then U.S.-Soviet detente made a
comeback with the signing of the SALT II
But in the last few months, something hap-
pened to chance all this. And among the many
vortices of change, the central historical
event is the Iranian Revolution. Iran's
'Revolution not only toppled the Shah. It also
cracked the central link in the CENTO arc
from Turkey through Pakistan.
While the Shah's collapse-a major blow to
the U.S.-might have been considered
pleasing to the Soviets, in fact there have
been no hosannas of acclaim for the Ayatollah

However, ever since the Islamic Revolution
erupted a year ago with its clear and present
danger to all the key foreign interests in the
region, the three big powers, the U.S., China,
and the Soviet Union, have been drawn
deeper into its politics. The U.S., historically
never a Middle Eastern power, now has
military presence in the Indian Ocean an
may son have mainland bases. Chine is aiding
the Afghan rebels, and the Soviets claim the
U.S. is, too. More importantly, China and the
U.S. are clearly acting in closer and closer
accord, as witnessed by the "shared in-
terests" rhetoric of U.S. Defense Secretary
Harold Brown and Chinese leaders, who were
meeting in Peking evei as the Russians made
the biggest move of all, staking out all of
If the Ayatollah should prove incapable o
holding Iran together, even more dangero
big power moves could occur-Soviet oc-
cupation of Iranian Azerbaijan, U.S. seizure
of the oil fields.
For the Soviets, the uncontrollable situation
in the entire Middle East has been a key fac-
tor in pushing the . U.S. into closer
collaboration with China, strengthening
NATO, and raiding its defense effort. The
Soviet strike into Afghanistan, aside from the
aim of ousting the Amin regime, can thus be
seen as a shrill-if dangerous-warning to t
U.S. and CHina to go back to detente or face '
Cold War II.
} Franz Schurmann is a professor of
history and sociology at the University of
Califonia at Berkeley. He wrote this piece
for the Pacific News Service.

YI'T E I ? S T o T :E 1 ) :1 1 1 :
No publicity about rate hike meeting

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To the Daily:
While reading Friday's Daily, I
found, to my surprise, an article
reporting that an open meeting
on Thursday night, Jan. 24 to
discuss the report of the Single
Student Rate Study Committee
drew zero participation. Beyond
my initial incredulity that
students were not interested in a
study that would implement a
13.2 per cent increase in their
room and board fees, I was
distressed that-even though I
am president of my House Coun-
cil-I had heard nothing about
the open meeting.
Mosher-Jordan Hall, though
representing a small number of
students (about 500 residents), is
at the center of several of the
issues studied by the Rate Study
Committee: both weekend con-
solidation and water saving
measures (low-flow
showerheads) were implemented
in the building this year. Many
may recall that Mosher-Jordan
last year was at the hub of the
protest against meal con-

minutes for the open meeting in
November to discuss weekend
consolidation will show that the
vast majority of opinions voiced
were made by Mosher-Jordan
residents; dissatisfaction with.
the new showerheads, albeit not
universal, is widespread within
the formitory. I find it hard to
believe, therefore, that not even
one resident from Mosher-Jordan
much less from the entire
Residence Halls system, would
be interested in the final
decisions of the Rate Study
Whether or not the interests
exist, it is still the students'
prerogative to have access to the
report of the Rate Study Commit-
tee. The resident tends to. have
limited access to the goings-on of
the Committee because copies of
the minutes and final report are
distributed only to staff and
House Councils; Mosher-Jordan
House Council posts its copy of
the minutes, but understandably
hs diffizeulty reaching 5d0

show than anything else. At any
university, especially one of the
size of Michigan, there is a com-
munications problem between
the adnmiistration and students;
that problem, however, does not
mean that the administration
should not strive to communicate
as best it can. Two inconspicuous
advertisements in the Daily-one
tucked in the lower corner of the
Classifieds page one day, and the
other sandwiched smong
similarly inconspicuous adver-
tisements the next-is definitely
not an ideal mode of com-
In Mosher-Jordan, apparently
none of the Resident Advisors nor
individual residents were notified
of the meeting, and House Coun-
cil and its officers definitely
received no notice. The Building
Director apparently heard
something "through the
grapevine" before receiving of-
ficial notification, but apparently
did not treat the matter with
munh imnainc and ainwed lit-

Advisors, House Councils, and
others; and a publicity cam-
paign, 2) list the meeting in the
University Record calendar or
the Happenings column of the
Daily, and 3) include a time an
place of such a meetin
somewhere in the Rate Study
Committee minutes and final
report. The Rate Study Commit-
tee seems to have either chosen
the wrong methods of approach,
or simply to have ignored them.
Since much time and
deliberation has already been
spent by the. Rate Study Commit-
tee in preparing its final report,
the open meeting obviousl
should not be used to try an
change the proposals. Rather, the
importance of an open meeting
lies in its role of providing the
Committee with a wider context
for its report by guaging student
reaction, while simultaneously
offering students an informative
and educational opportunity.
Speaking for the students that
my House Council represents, I'

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