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February 03, 1980 - Image 4

Resource type:
The Michigan Daily, 1980-02-03

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Page 4-Sunday, February 3, 1980-The Michigan Daily

A student defends need for draft registration


The remnants of an era gone by are being
unrolled. The protest signs are being dusted off
and the poster presses are running at full blast.
More than ten years later, the pervasive in-
fluence of Vietnam is being felt, not just at
home, but in the shaping of America's foreigii
policy. Yet, before there is a return to the
violence and rioting of the Vietnam era, it is
important to put the present situation in per-
President Carter's decision to re-activate the
Selective Service was the only substantive op-
tion open to him in a war of words, threats, and
counter-threats. The Soviets certainly realize
that our current armed forces are severely un-
dermanned. This consequently undermines the
United States' military strength, and as any
government leader can tell you, a viable
military is the key to national security. Curren-
tly, it would take between 111 and 151 days to
put any drafted soldier on the front lines. By re-
instituting Selective Service, the U.S. can
reduce this time lag, thus - increasing our'
military strength. If the Soviets begin to take
this threat seriousy, President Carter's action
might just prove to be the one that prevented
A FAVORITE argument of opponents of
registration and the draft is one predicated on
the age of. the legislators. Why, ask many oppon-
ents, should middle-aged or elderly men have the
right to send teenagers and young adults out to
the battlefield to fight wars that the youth did
not start? This argument bears little credence
when one considers that most of our current
lawmakers have themselves been drafted to
serve our country. Furthermore, many of them\
have sons and possibly daughters who would be
affected by a draft.
Does the Soviet invasion of Afghanistan
really present a clear and present danger to the
security of the United . States? The opponents
of the draft registration answer that it does not
,constitute such a danger. In fact, at this time
neither the President nor any of his advisors
believe that the Soviet invasion of Afghanistan
is threatening to the U.S. in and of itself.

By Joshua Aaronson
However, the key to determining effective
foreign policy, or indeed, any policy, is
possession of the foresight to consider the long
term ramifications of any action. These results
no one can predict with certainty, but even a
glance at the Soviet action raises some in-
teresting questions.
There is no doubt that the Soviets have
placed chemical warfare-weaponry inside
Afghanistan and are arming their men with the
necessary'related equipment If their only pur-
pose is to aid the government of that country,
as they claim, why is this chemical weaponry
necessary? Why the executions of tens of
thousands of political prisoners? Why the
deployment of so many troops? Certainly it is
not merely coincidental that the Soviets are now
only 300 miles from the sea port they so
desperately desire.
a buffer zone between the Soviet Union and the
Indian sub-continent It is only in the last ten or
so years that the country of Afghanistan has
been a pro-Soviet regime. The Soviet's
rationale for their move into Afghanistan is not
wholly clear, but to be unprepared for further
action would be naive on our part.
Yet, even confronted with this information,
the opponents remain steadfast. Should the
Soviets take over the entire Persian Gulf, these
opponents claim it is not a threat to our coun-
try, and most importanly, to us as individuals.
They claim that there are other ways to solve
the world's problems without fighting. Indeed,
there is no doubt that there are other methods,
but history has consistently proven them to be
ineffective. It is a sad but true fact that if.we as
a people are to achieve higher moral goals,
some of our more immediate aims must be
Finally, the opponents of the draft will not let
us forget Vietnam. There is an important and
valuable lesson to be learped from Vietnam,
but that lesson is not that every subsequent

foreign crisis possibly requiring military inter-
vention will be another Vietnam. This country
must not get caught up in "Vietnam phobia." If
one is going to stir up memories from that war,
one should also stir up memories of World War
II. Had the U.S. not been so hesitant to inter-
vene and take Hitler's threat seriously,
millions of lives might have been spared. Viet-
nam is not an excuse for inaction. It is because
of this phobia that our armed forces are so
depleted, that our military is so under-equip-
ped. Our foreign and military policy has suf-
fered long enough under the cloud of previous
mistakes. There is no better time than the
present to correct this situation.
FEW PEOPLE CONDONE war. In this coun-
try, people are free to express their dissenting
viewpoints on this or any other subject in an
acceptable form. And, although we consider
freedom of expression to be one of those
inalienable rights granted to all individuals,
maniy countries do not share this consideration.
The stark fact of the matter is that these
inalienable rights are rights that were won
through war. The way we live today is a direct
result of the wars that were fought so diligen-
tly by our founding fathers. Those wars enable
us to protest, and to express our own opinions,
even if they are in disagreement with those of
the government.
However, dissention is one thing, and defec-
tion is quite another:It seems that most of those
people who oppose registration and the draft
are the people who will jump in their cars and
head for the nearest border when called upon to
serve their country. These people will leave the
U.S. offering the most moral of reasons for
their flight, without considering the immorality
of their own actions.
It is necessary, then, when protesting the
draft, or registration, or even a war, to put the
issues in perspective. Personal considerations
should be removed to the side. War is enough to
scare even the most callous of nen, yet one
must consider the morality of the alternative.
Joshua Aaronson is an LSA freshman
planning to major in business.

Daily Photo by PAUL ENGSTROM
ABOUT 200 PROTESTORS marched from Community High School to the Federal Building
last Thursday to protest the registration and the draft. Many Americans believe that these
students are refusing to fulfill an obligation they owe their country by resisting President
Carter's call for a renewed Selective Service program.



hTe Sidjirgant BaIl
Nitt CYears of Editorial Freedot
Vol. XC, No. 102 dews Phone: 764-0552
Edited and managed by students at the University of Michigan
Olympic iboycottna drive,
world into partisan, crisis

Afghan rebels in Pakistan stilt
hope to conquer Soviet army

.i .i

HE FATE of the Moscow Olympics
TL' appears to be sealed. President
Carter has strongly worded his support
of a boycott; theCongress has followed
his lead; and the American people, ac-
cording to polls, also believe the United
States' athletes should stay home.
Unless the Soviet Union withdraws its
military forces from Afhanistan-an
event that seems about as likely as
Michigan winning a Rose Bowl
game-our runners, gymnasts, and
swimmers will be visiting some other
country this August, or perhaps, none
at all.
China and Japan have supported the
boycott, as have several western
European and South American
nations. The president has even sent
Muhammad Ali to Africa to rally sup-
port for the move. But the rush toward
this Cold War, tactic is no less
deplorable than it was before it
became internationally popular. The
international alliance the U.S. is
building will not bring world peace. It
will have no effect on Soviet expansion,
as supporters of the boycott would
have us believe. It will serve only to
hasten the polarization of the com-

munity of nations into two large,
angry, and dangerously hostile camps.
Any Third World nation that has no in-
terest in choosing sides (and thus
destroying relations with one or the
other of the superpowers) will not be
able to avoid making a decision. If it
elects to go to the Games, even if the
motive is the noble one to preserve the
cooperation the Olympics demand, the
U.S. government will peg the nation as
"one of them." Similarly, any non-
aligned nation that tries to stay in
favor with the West by boycotting will
find itself in hot water with the
Yet the U.S. presses on, testing the
Soviets with a move that will no doubt
inspire a retaliatory, and perhaps
sterner, move by the Soviets. Maybe
'Americans then will decide that the
escalation has gone far enough.
If the Olympic boycott goes through,
as it almost certainly will, the best
then can be hoped is that the U.S. does
not extend its jingoistic fervor to other
areas of foreign policy. Perhaps, if the
president comes back to his senses, the
situation will be reparable by way of
acts of genuinely good faith.

Fear, confusion, anger-the
emotions are almost palpable in
the cold, brittle, thin air of this
Pakistani city near the Afghan
border, the headquarters of the
Islamic National Front of
The Afghan refugees who have
streamed over the high mountain
passes and spilled into a dozen
refugee centers in Pakistan are
angry at everyone: at the
Russians for invading their coun-
try; at Americans, whom they
believe will do nothing effective
against the Russians; even at
Muslim leaders like Palestine
Liberation Organization (PLO)
Chief Yasir Arafat and the
Ayatollah Khomeini, who have
failedto denounce the Russian
tense hatred of the Russians, and'
it is not isolated in the refugee
camps. In the city of Quetta,
capital of Pakistani Baluchistan,
I sat, on a bus with two young
Hazaras, Shi'ite descendants of
the Mongolian soldiers of
Genghis Khan who had settled
years ago in the center of
Afghanistan. Theirgrandfather,
they said, had fled to Pakistan 80
years ago in the time of Ab-
durrahman Khan, the harsh ruler
who unified Afghanistan.
"Give us rifles and we shall
return to fight, for the
motherland," declared one of the
When I remarked that their
family had lived here for 80
years, and that they had never
even seen Afghanistan. it could
hardly be considered their
"motherland," they replied:
Never mind, we are all Muslims.

It is all the same.
in Quetta. The Baluchis have
even put aside their perennial
quarrel with the Pakistan central
government in Islamabad over
their demand for greater
autonomy, and funds for the,
development of Baluchi-language
textbooks. All local con' emns
have been overshadowed by the
momentous events in
Afghanistan, where it is believed
that Muslim brothers are being
enslaved by foreign infidels.

By Richard Frye

among many of the populace
Equally real is the sentiment
for some sort of Pan-Islamic
union,, ranging in conception'
from an idealistic United States
of Islam to a narrower union of
Iran and Pakistan to save their
common neighbor, Afghanistan.
If the idea lacks support among
the bureaucrats of Tehran and
Islamabad, it is nonetheless real
among the refugees. One hers
such proposals from all sides: the
Afghan refugees, the Baluchis,

'The Afghan refugees who have streamed over the
high mountain passes and spilled into, a dozen
# refugees centers in Pakistan are angry at Everyone:
at the Russians for invading their country; at.
Americans, whom they believe will do nothing ef-
fective against the Russians; even at Muslim leaders
like PLO chief Yasir Arafat and the Ayatollah
Khomeini, who have failed to denounce the
Russian invasion.'

their headquarters here cannot
agree among themselves as
what form of governn ent shodL
exist in Afghanistan.But they are
firmly united on the one major
point: it should not be a Russian
government, nor a Russian pup-
And there is also despair and
pessimism, especially among the
refugees who plan to cross back
into Afghanistan to fight the
Russian's or the Russian-directed
Afghan army. They lack the mos
elemental equipment. One of t 3
great needs, they say, is for
simple walkie-talkips so that
bands of guerrillas can keep in
contact with each other and in-
form groups which are in danger
of encirclement. They say they
need mine detectors in order to
keep frontier passes open.
They seek support from
anywhere, though few expect to
get it from the United Stat
Reports that the Soviet regin'
installed in Kabul had asked for
help from Angola, Ethiopia,
Cuba, and Palestine caused con-
sternation in one camp. "Arafat
must be contacted to deny this,"
said one. "There must be
solidarity in the ranks of Mtalim
leaders for us."
Rumors abound of heroism and
the dangerous plight of the
refugees. But little isverifiabl
The rumors and the scheme
blanket this land like the snow,
and change with each passing

Just several days ago, armed
Pakistanis stopped a British
tourist bus at the nearby Bolan
Pass, which leads to the plains of
the Indus River. The armed men
boarded the bus and asked if any
Russians were among the
travellers; if so, the Russians
would be killed on sight, they
said. The frightened English,
whose ancestors once fought and
died near here for the greater
glory of the empire, were allowed
to pass unmolested.
The fear that the *hussians will
reach the frontier at Chaman and
then invade Pakistan is real

the Pakistanis.
TOWARDS IRAN, there is an
ambivalent feeling: exhilaration
over the revolution, but distrust
of Khomeini which tempers
people's enthusiasm. Rumors of
the ill treatment of Baluchis in
Zahidan by Khomeini's followers
have roused many against the
Ayatollah. In the bazaar of Quet-

ta, p

)hotos and pictures of the late Richard Frye is a professor
tollah Taleghani abound, but- at Harvard's Near Eastern
e is not one of Khomeini. Language Center and is the
f course there are author of several books on
greements, too. The four dif-
nt groups of Afghan Persia. He wrote this piece for
edom fighters" who have the Pacific News Service.


Peanut diplomacy in action

to be the Carter adminsitra-
hion's latest contribution to the
historial lexicon. All a dictator has to
do to get support from Carter is label
any economic aid as "peanuts."
It looks like Peanut Diplomacy is
going to work for Pakistani President
Mohammad Zia ul-Haq, who several
weeks ago whined and complained that
the IT C n-ffpr of 'J2nmI illinn in nivl to

But now, the Carter administration
has decided to give Zia not only
peanuts, but also peanut butter, jelly
and Wonder Bread. Carter has sent a
high-level delegation to Zia to tell him
that the $400 million is part of a larger
international aid effort and the first
step in a long-term American comit-
ment to Pakistan.
How unfortunate that a perceived
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