The Michigan Daily - Tuesday, October 11, 1988 - Page 3
BY ALEX GORDON
Charles Tackett, head of the Na-
tional Vietnam Memorial Holiday
Project, began a hunger strike yes-
teday at 9 a.m. protesting what he
termed "greed and inhuman treat-
ndent" by both the Detroit Free Press
and Detroit News.
This past summer, Tackett said
he visited both papers several times
to "keep them informed and up to
date" on his group's progress toward
t establishment of a national
itnam veterans' holiday. However,
he said that many times he was not
allowed to talk to anyone and was
" eated like a second class nothing."
Tackett sent letters stating his
Mcomplaints, including a list of 10
demands, to both papers yesterday. "I
feel for the future justice of every-
body, (the News and Free Press)
should be made aware of their dis-
couteous behavior," he said.
IN THE LETTER to the pa-
pprs Tackett wrote, "I have given up
on you both publishing anything
about any of the works that are done
i my office." His decision to fast
was not to further his cause, but,
"for the future people (who) might
cpme to you for help and be turned
away as I (was)."
Vietnam veteran Charles Tackett, shown here during a short-lived hunger strike last summer,
began another fast yesterday morning to protest the "rude" and "discourteous" manner in
which the Detroit Free Press and the Detroit News have treated him.
ALGIERS, Algeria (AP) -
Soldiers with machine guns fired on
protesters Monday, killing at least 25
people and wounding dozens, wit-
nesses said. President Chadli Bend-
jedid promised reforms to end the
bloody weeklong revolt.
Bendjedid, in a nationwide address
Monday night, hinted he would not
run for re-election at the end of the
year. But he defended his declared
state of emergency and said he would
"not allow the country to fall into
Reliable reports from police,
doctors and other sources say up to
300 people have been killed in the
riots that began last week, the worst
in this North African nation since its
independence from France in 1962.
No official casualty figures have
Monday's shooting occurred in the
Bab-el-Qued district of western Al-
giers during protests against spiraling
prices and Bendjedid's economic
"There were bodies laying on all
sides," one witness said. "The sol-
diers were piling them into trucks,
one body on top of another".
Army helicopters armed with
missiles made repeated passes over
Bab-el-Qued at low altitude, appar-
Most downtown offices were
closed and traffic fell to a trickle in
Algiers, the capital.
The demonstration was organized,
as a "peaceful protest march" by the.
Islamic fundamentalist Movement for
Algerian Renewal, which has made
claims of leading a revolt.
In his speech, Bendjedid stressed
his respect for the constitution and
said he was elected against his will in
1979. Taken together, the two
statements pointed to his wish to
retire, since the constitution does not
allow a president to serve more than
It had been widely assumed that a
ruling party meeting at the end of the"
year would amend the constitution toy
allow Benjedid to continue in office.
He was certain to be re-elected as the
sole candidate for president.
Bendjedid said he would "respect
the popular will and facilitate the rise
of young people to the leadership."
But he said these changes must take
place in a calm atmosphere.
. He said his government would
propose political reforms to a popu-
lar referendum, but gave no details.
The reforms, he said, would be the
natural extension of announced
government economic changes.
to frighten the
Joe Grimm, reader representative
for the Free Press, said he was sur-
prised by Tackett's actions. "He
doesn't have to hunger strike. As our
last letters show, we're open and
listening." Both the publisher and
executive editor of the Free Press
sent formal letters of apology to
Tackett this summer.
Yesterday afternoon Grimm in-
vited Tackett to come to the Free
Press and air his grievances "any
time," Tackett said. Tackett accepted
the invitation but declined to further
discuss his demands with Grimm
until the Free Press receives his let-
DETROIT News spokespeople
refused to comment on Tackett's
Only consuming coffee and
cigarettes, Tackett said he plans to
keep a 24-hour log of his activities
and maintain witnesses around him
at all times during the strike.
Tackett said he is serious about
his fight. "I'll carry it to my death if
I have to with no qualms or regrets.
Essentially I've placed my life in
their hands and they have the choice
whether or not to publicly murder
Grimm said he hopes Tackett will
call soon so they can resolve the is-
sue. "I don't want anyone to think
they have to starve to death to get a
newspaper's attention," he said.
What's happening in Ann Arbor today
""The rNew York
Intellectuals: The Rise and
Decline of the Anti-Stalin-
ist Left from the 1930s to
the 1980s" - English Lit. and
American Culture Prof. Alan M.
'Wald, meeting rm. of Ann Arbor
=Public Library, 343 S. 5th Avenue,
:12:10-1 pm, free admission, com-
plimentary tea and coffee.
"How to make continental
crust" - R. Keith O'Nions,
Cambridge University, 4001 C.C.
Little, 4 pm. Coffee and cookies at
"Value Dimensions: East
and West" - Poli Sci Prof. Dr.
Ben Hourani, 603 E. Madison, 12
pm. Buffet lunch available: $1.00
students, $1.50 others.
"Technology and the Envi-
ronment" - Jim Burchfield(Nat.
Resources) and Mike Soule(Nat.
Resources), 1005 Dow, 3:30-5 pm.
Cyclic Voltammetry in Or-
ganic and Polymer Com-
pounds" - Macromolecular Sci-
ence and Engineering Grad. Student
Dong Hoon Choi, 1003 EECS, 4
and Short Stories on Median
Type Filter" - 750 Seminar,
Prof. Neil C. Gallagher, 1200
EECS, 4 pm.
"Machine Vision and Appli-
cations" - Ramesh Jam, 1500
EECS, 4 pm.
"Robust Methods in Vision"
- Brian Schunck, 1500 EECS, 4
Engineering Yearbook -
Tap Rm, Union, 6 pm. Needed:
photographers, writers, editors,
anyone w/yearbook experience.
Student advocates Burmese study
son, 8 pm.
- Seventh Doctor
the Rani", 196 Denni-
Institute of Aero-
Branch - 107
Aerospace Bldg., 7 pm.
Women's Lacrosse -
tice, Tartan Turf, 9-11.
Workshops on Admission to
Schools - Pond Rm., Union,
7:30-8:30 pm, spomsored by Dept.
Pre-Interviews - Dow Chemi-
cal, 1013 Dow , 4-6 pm; Saturn
Corp., location to be announced,
CP & P - The Law School Per-
sonal Essay, CP&P, 4:15-5 pm.
Writing you CIF, CP&P, 5:10-6
pm. Employer Presentation:J.P.
Morgan, Union, Pendelton Rm.,
Cognitive Science and Ma-
chine Intelligence Labora-
tory - C2420 School of Busi-
ness Administration, 3-6 pm. Re-
Islamic Coffee Hour - Cen-
tral Rm., N. Commons, 12:30-
1:30 pm. All welcome, refresh-
ments served, sponsored by MSA.
Male/Female Relations -
Alice Lloyd , Red Carpet Lounge,
8-10 pm. Presented by Sexual As-
sault Prevention and Awareness
Revolutionary History Se-
ries - The Development of
Marxism: Building a Science of
Revolution, B118 MLB, 7-8 pm.
Presented by Spark, A Revolution-
ary Communist Organization.
The Baker- Mandela Film
Series - "From Berkley to
Soweto", Aud 4 MLB, 7 pm. Dis-
cussion following film on South
African Political Prisoners. Free
admission , for more info. call
BY PAUL DE ROOIJ
Rarely did Burma appear in the
news until turmoil erupted recently.
To understand why Ne Win -
Burma's leader since a coup in 1962
- decided to step down last August
and to comprehend the current un-
rest, one needs to study history, said
Kin Sann Myint, a Burmese politi-
cal science graduate student.
Today's news accounts portray
the Burma unrest as general discon-
tent with the government and its
economic performance, with the
people pictured as seeking democracy
BUT LEFT out from most ac-
counts are the other political trends
in the country and the influence of
important outside forces - China,
U.S., and Japan - that have shaped
Burma's recent history, she said.
The Korean and Vietnamese Wars
had a significant influence on
Burma's development because the
U.S. actively aided thousands of
Chinese nationalist troops stationed
in Northern Burma during the
1950's, and again during the Viet-
nam war, she said. Outside forces
encouraged local minority popula-
tions to defy the government,
thereby reducing its control over the
Northern border region.
The period after the 1962 coup,
when the economic and political
systems were centralized, must be
understood as a reaction to the
British colonial period that ended in
1948. "Under colonialism, Chinese
and Indians controlled most of the
commerce, and Burma's only indus-
tries were in the extraction of natural
resources," she said.
"The nationalizations after 1962
must be understood in this light.
Burma sought to modernize and be-
come self-sufficient," Myint said,
adding that- only one party was al-
lowed because a pluralistic system
would have represented the vestiges
A SIGNIFICANT restructur-
ing of the economy during the
1970's is at the root of today's tur-
moil. At the end of the Vietnamese
War, Japan and West Germany of-
fered Burma inexpesive loans for in-
dustrial modernization. Factories
were built with advanced technology,
but many proved to be failures, said
debts, Myint said.
By 1980 it became clear that
Burma's attempt to industrialize had
miscarried, she said. Burma was then
forced by outside pressures to im-
plement austerity measures. At this
time Burma was the only country to
A consequence of the economic
situation has been the emergence of
an enormous black market and
smuggling. And the government,
restricted by the International Mone-
tary Fund (IMF) has turned a blind
eye to it. Close to 40 percent oft
Burma's exports are smuggled out of
the country. Myint quoted a recent
National Geographic magazine:
"Burma grows the tallest teak trees
in the world. No matter which way
you cut one, it falls in Thailand."
IN RESPONSE to the deterio-
rating economic situation, the gov-
ernment, in March, 1987 confiscated
without compensation large bank
notes then in circulation. It further
destroyed individual savings by
makinghbank deposits worthless
Myint explained that a final mea-
sure that gave rise to current turmoil
was a price deregulation package in
September, 1987. As a consequence,
rice, Burma's most important food-
stuff, became inaffordable because of
hoarding by spectators. This added a
"food riot" element to the current
political unrest in the urban areas.
It is unlikely that any political
change in the coming months will
be dramatic, she said, "because any
future government will have to
guarantee the status of the military."
It's also unlikely that Burma's eco-
nomic system will change into a
capitalist system, or what the people
call "Thailand's development
model," she said, "because most
Burmese dislike Thailand's role dur-
ing the Vietnam War, and they don't
like that Thailand has become a cen-
ter for prostitution in the world."
THE CURRENT political al-
ternatives are not clear. But it is
clear that a new leadership with a
new found legitimacy will have to
emerge to "save Burma from the vi-
cious spiral of economic collapse
and a fragmentation of the country.
"Part of Burma's fate lies in its own
hands," she said, "but much depends
on outside forces such as the pres-
sures of the IMF and Japan."
Kin Sann Myint, a graduate student and teaching assistant
from Burma, said people should study Burmese history to
understand recent unrest in the country.
'Part of Burma's fate lies in its own hands, but much
depends on outside forces such as the pressures of
the IMF and Japan.'
- Kin Sann Myint, a Burmese political science
Weymouth, 1500 EECS,
Myint. Not only was Burma bur-
dened with "industrial white ele-
phants," but it was also forced to
increase its exports to repay its
negotiate with the United Nations to
reduce its status from a "less-devel-
oped country" to a "least-developed
Public Relations and Sports
Marketing - Union Welker
Rm., 4:30 pm.
Pro-Israel Student Activist
- Metting at Dominick's, 5 pm.
Michigan International Re-
lations Society - Re:Model
United Nations, 429 Mason Hall, 7
A bouncer from the Nectarine
Ballroom was hit in the chin with a
tire iron while attempting to break
up a fight early Saturday morning,
Ann Arbor police said.
Sgt. Jan Suomala said the
bouncer described the assailant as a
6'4" Black male, weighing about
190 pounds and wearing wire-
No arrests have been made, S uo-
mala said, and an investigation is
- By Nathan Smith
CLASSIFIED ADSI Call 764-0557
Are you religious, but not "churchy"?
Seeking a church that involves itself in social concerns?
Do you believe a church should work for peace on earth?
then maybe YOU ARE A QUAKER and don't know it...
A ___ !1 - r /t ow w IL