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October 05, 1989 - Image 4

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The Michigan Daily, 1989-10-05

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OPINION

Page 4

Thursday, October 5, 1989

The ilgan Daily

0

Daily

By Roberto Javier Frisancho

The recent editorial by the Daily ("By
Popular Demand," 9/19/89) and the op-eds
by David Austin ("U.S. at war in El
Salvador," 9/13/89) and Philip Cohen ("A
New Proposal for Peace," 9/21/89) on El
Salvador are part of a nationwide campaign
by the Committee in Solidarity with the
People of El Salvador (CISPES) toacut off
-U.S. aid to the government of El Salvador
=with the goal of a victory by the
Farabundo Marti National Liberation
Front (FMLN) guerrillas.
CISPES, (founded in 1980 by Farid
Handal, who is the brother of Shafik
Handal, the general secretary of the
Salvadoran Communist Party of the
FMLN), along with its chapters, the Latin
American Solidarity Committee (LASC)
among them, is trying to portray the
FMLN as an organization fighting for lib-
eration and not one whose main goal is to
obtain power (i.e. dictatorial power) in El
Salvador. Their arguments are of a cheaper
quality than the paper that the Daily is
printed on.
The most popular argument used is hu-
man rights abuses. Surprisingly, they do
not quote Americas Watch. This is be-
,cause its executive director, Aryeh Neier,
testified in July 1989 before the House
Subcommittee on Western Hemisphere
Affairs that "one of the most important
features of the current Salvadoran human
rights picture is the increase in abuses by
the FMLN. For the first time in our
knowledge, the numbers of FMLN viola-

skews
(NACLA Report on the Americas,
September 1989).
For the FMLN, negotiations are part of
a war strategy. A January 1988 FMLN
document, "Strategic Appraisal," captured
by the Salvadoran army, shows that the
FMLN uses negotiations as a ploy for
winning power. The document states that
"in dialogue as such we must have as our
central objective keeping the enemy tied at
the table with a view to his strategic
weakening.... Dialogue is one of the
forms of conspiratorial struggle and we
must maintain it." Guillermo Ungo, pres-
idential candidate for the Democratic
Convergence (CD) and president of the
Democratic Revolutionary Front (FDR)
(the FMLN's political wing), has admitted
that the FMLN does not expect its pro-
posals to be accepted, rather that they are
actually meant to "corner and isolate the
Army" (The New York Times, February
26, 1989).
After the election, Ungo strongly dis-
agreed with the FMLN's view that its
boycott was a success. The FMLN argued
that the total of abstentions, voided bal-
lots, and votes for the CD showed wide
support for the FMLN and proved that
ARENA's victory, and the process itself,
was illegitimate. Ungo pointed out that
the guerrillas could not "suck from three
teats" at the same time, that their violent
tactics "could only lead to a strong absten-
tion which no one can claim as his own."
(Latin American Weekly Report, March
30, 1989).

facts on
Democratic Convergence leaders have 1
also conceded that, outside guerrilla ranks,
the social base of the FMLN is no more t
than 50,000. This is confirmed in a pollt
by the Jesuit-run University of Central1
America. Asked of their opinion of the
FMLN, only 6 percent of Salvadorans said
"good" or "very good." While 61 percent
said they had a "bad" or "very bad" view.
The Daily and LASC realize this, which
is why they have resorted to twisting the
facts. They mention as "evidence of new {
popular opposition the turnout of 100,000
(the largest march since 1980) at an
Independence Day rally on September 15"
in San Salvador. The implication is that
the march was organized by the FMLN,
which would be a complete lie. Actually, 1
it was organized by the Permanent

government.
FMLN supporters try to act like they
tions have outpaced those attributed to
uniformed members of the security
forces."
The FMLN has gotten so out of hand in
its killing that on October 25, 1988, in a
unprecedented move, Maria Julia
Hernandez, the director of Tutela Legal
(the Catholic Church's human rights of-
fice) went on national television to con-
demn the FMLN for having its guerrillas
murder four peasants in Apopa while iden-
tifying themselves as soldiers of the
Salvadoran First Infantry Brigade.
And as Neier pointed out, "The use of
land mines continues to victimize inno-
cent civilians, as in the May 22, 1989, in-

El

Salvador

political figures, especially mayors. It has
demanded that mayors resign or face execu-
tion. So far, eight mayors have been mur-
dered and 120 out of a total 262 mayors
have resigned. According to the North
American Congress on Latin America "the
contention that mayors are legitimate mil-
itary targets has little basis in relevant in-
ternational law, and the campaign has been
harshly condemned by both Americas
Watch and Amnesty International."
are genuinely concerned that the right-
wing Nationalist Republican Alliance
(ARENA) won the March 1989 presiden-
tial elections. But Joaquin Villalobos,
leader of the FMLN, has stated on several 0
occasions that the FMLN preferred an
ARENA victory because it would re-polar-
ize the country and break Congressional
consensus on aid to El Salvador (The
Washington Post, March 21, 1989). This
would benefit the FMLN, which receives
assistance from Cuba and Nicaragua (this
support was only recently admitted by
Villalobos [Time, October 2, 1989). In
polarization, to paraphrase Villalobos, the
"active minority" would make history andO
not the passive majority. Thus, it is clear
that the FMLN is willing to use any
means (in this case, negotiations with the
intent of stopping U.S. aid) in order to
achieve its end: complete power.
Roberto Javier Frisancho is a senior in
political science and Latin American
Studies, and president of the Coalition for
Democracy in Latin America (CDLA).

'...[T]he Latin American Solidarity Committee...is trying to
portray the FMLN as an organization fighting for liberation
and not one whose main goal is to obtain power (i.e. dictatorial
power) in El Salvador. Their arguments are of a cheaper
quality than the paper that the Daily is printed on.'

Committee of the National Debate for
Peace in El Salvador. This independent
committee is composed of 59 civic orga-
nizations called together by Catholic
Archbishop Arturo Rivera y Damas to
propose solutions for bringing about peace
between the FMLN and the Salvadoran

cident in which nine passengers were
killed by the FMLN mine under the bus of
El Leon Pintado in the Department of
Santa Ana."
Along with killing women and children,
the FMLN (like the Colombian cocaine
cartel) shows no restraint in assassinating

Edited and managed by students at The University of Michigan
420 Maynard St.
Vol. C, No. 21 Ann Arbor, MI 48109
Unsigned editorials represent a majority of the Daily's Editorial Board. All other
cartoons, signed articles, and letters do not necessarily represent the opinion
of the Daily.
.4.

Demand an open University

Bach Mai Hospital, the largest in Hanoi, before and after U.S. bombs fell on it on
June 27, 1972. The war against Vietnam is now being fought with dollars.
End the war in Vietnam

By the United Coalition
Against Racism
Today at 12 noon in the Diag the United
Coalition Against Racism will be holding
a rally demanding access to the University
for people of color.
Despite promising to increase student of
color enrollment, the University has
recorded steadily decreasing numbers. Such
promises (or, more correctly, "hype"), in-
cluding "Diversity Day," the Michigan
Mandate, and much more, are fueled by an
intent to put students of color in a state of
passivity. Protests, marches, and sit-ins
are detrimental to the prestige of this insti-
tution. The University administration
can't afford activism, but we recognize it
is necessary: we know that we need to
look behind the hype and to protest the
real, dismal truth we see there.
The history of activism at the Univer-
sity includes a series demands presented to
the administration in 1970 regarding fi-
nancial aid and Black enrollment. At that
time, the University agreed to achieve 12
percent Black enrollment. In 1976 Black
enrollment reached its peak - just over 7
percent. Since then, numbers have
steadily decreased to the point at which we
now stand, 5.4 percent.
Last year, Black enrollment went up
one-tenth of one percent, and the Univer-
sity boasted about it. But the University is
silent this year; enrollment slid back that
one-tenth and more. If the University is so
committed to increasing the numbers, then
why are they falling? Making small gains
one year and erasing them the next does
not come close to achieving increased mi-
nority enrollment.
The issue of enrollment is connected to

several other problems with University
policies, which the University portrays to
us as anything but problems.
This year, there was a 12 percent in-
crease in tuition. The University tells us
that this is necessary and in accordance
with the ebb and flow of inflation, an an-
nual process. But how many families can
show a 12 percent increase in their income
each year? And even if there were such an
increase in a working-class family's in-
come, that 12 percent would hardly com-
pare to the big dollars that the University
costs. The increase makes the University
less accessible to people of color because
they are the poorest in this state. But
they pay taxes to fund this institution:
they have a right to go here.
Then the University says that its finan-
cial aid plan will meet the tuition increase.
There have been no changes in financial
aid; more students of color are having
problems than ever before. Financial Aid
continues to offer an almost-livable plan

as Pennsylvania State for better financial
aid programs.
This brings us to the issue of retention,
something the University generally ig-
nores. Only first year students of color ar*0
of value to the University because pub-
lished statistics only record numbers for
incoming classes. But once the University
gets students here, it must not just leavb
them in this miserable climate where the
accomplishments of people of color are
ignored in the curriculum, where racist
remarks are screamed across campus, and
racism is taught in the classrooms. Thle
issue of retention is complex, but how lit-
tle the University is doing becomes much
clearer when the dropout rate for people of
color remains far higher than that of white
students.
Fewer students of color are applying to
come here because they know they cant
afford it or can't hope to compete witp
white students on the racially biased star-

'Fewer students of color are applying to come here because
they know they can't afford it or can't hope to compete with
white students on the racially biased standardized tests.'

:.
s

S EVEN MILLION anti-personnel
bombs and M-79 fragment grenades
embedded in an area smaller than the
state-of Rhode Island: this is the legacy
of the U.S. presence in Binh Tri Thien
province, five years after the
Vietnamese defeated U.S. troops.
(Indochina Issues 12/89).
The U.S. government has never rec-
ognized that it was beaten in Vietnam.
For the past decade, it has continued its
,war with trade embargoes instead of
soldiers and bombs.
The United States has blocked the
yVietnamese from receiving World Bank
and International Monetary Fund loans,
the principle source of capital for de-
veloping nations. It has also success-
fully pressured its allies to keep the
Vietnamese out of the Association of
'South East Asian Nations, a regional
:trade organization.
American policies have dragged
Vietnam into deeper poverty and forced
.the nation into economic dependence
on the Soviet Union - one of its few
sources of aid. As of 1984, Vietnam
;owed the Soviets more than $4 billion,
in addition to its other debts to Europe
and the East Bloc (Far Eastern
Economic Review 11/15/84).
*
Two red herrings are often used to
justify America's embargo of Vietnam:
the invasion of Kampuchea and the
rbodies of U.S. war dead.
Vietnam invaded Kampuchea in
December1978. At that time, the

longed occupation of Kampuchea, but
its fears of the Pol Pot regime were le-
gitimate. The United States - itself
guilty of prolonged occupation - had
not paid Vietnam the billions of dollars
in war reparations (which it still owes),
and was not proposing any solution to
the Kampuchean raids.
U.S. complaints about the
Vietnamese occupation serve to divert
attention from its own crimes against
Kampuchea. In President Nixon's final
term, the U.S. dropped 400,000 tons
of bombs on Kampuchea, installed the
Lon Nol government with a CIA-engi-
neered coup, and then cut off aid when
it appeared that the Khmer Rouge had
won. This was when Phnom Penh was
entirely dependent on the U.S. for food
rations - which amounted to only
280g of rice per family per day
(Hilderbrand and Porter, Cambodia:
Starvation and Revolution, 1976).
Quite simply the U.S. eliminated all
alternatives to the Pol Pot regime and
then blamed Vietnam for engaging in
self-defense.
To the Washington mindset, the de-
mand for the repatriation of U.S. war
dead is also legitimate. The thinking is
that the United States has the right to
carpet-bomb Vietnam, destroy its
economy with an embargo, and then
ask the Vietnamese people for favors.
What's astonishing is not the demand,
but the fact that Vietnamese govern-
ment has complied with the requests by
looking for Americans still in the

for first-year students, but it takes it away
in their sophomore year, forcing many
students of color to drop out. This injus-
tice continues, while University President
Duderstadt claims aid has been increased
by more than 40 percent. The University
has a history of manipulating statistics;
why should we believe them now? One
would expect that an increase in financial
aid would mean that more people of color
could come here, but the numbers don't re-
flect any such thing. More and more stu-
dents of color from Michigan are choosing
to travel hundreds of miles to schools such

dardized tests. And they know that if they
do come, they will be met by a complete
lack of concern for the hardships in the
lives of most people of color. Thus, fewer
students of color are entering. And those
few who do come are not staying.
Our concerns are similar to those voice4
19 years ago, and that is sad. But the
largest decreases in Black enrollment coriie
at times when activism is low. We most
keep up the fight: the University won't
move if we don't make ourselves heard.
As long as we get no justice, we must
give the University no peace.

Capitalism is just:

0

Don't believe the "progressives"

-1

By Steve Mytyk
The Daily recently reprinted an article
from Dollars and Sense magazine
("Settling for more," Daily, 10/2/89), in
which "conservatism" and "liberalism"
were declared dead, and which called for the
institution of "progressive" new policies
to reinvigorate the welfare state. It con-
tained horrible misrepresentations of the
nature of capitalism and the concept of
justice.
The mixed economy we have in
America today is not capitalism.

pleases from you to finance its handouts,
the right tothe product of your own effort
becomes meaningless.
In capitalism, no one gets handouts; it's
laissez-faire, let it alone, hands off - the
government has absolutely no legitimate
interest in the economy. This means no
welfare, no loans to businesses, no finan-
cial aid for college students, and no na-
tional health care. In a capitalist society,
you get what you earn by your own hard
work, no more and no less, whether you
are a business or an individual, and no one
can legally take it away from you by force
or fraud. And that is what justice means:
getting what you deserve.
mo,.«..- - - -,,...,,. ....~c, ,.t..,. .

property rights is nothing more than
tyranny by majority rule. They want you
to believe that capitalism is the cause of
all our problems - that a political system6
which guarantees to each citizen the free-
dom to pursue success and happiness Is
the most evil curse ever to befall mankin(d.
Don't believe any of it for a second. The
ideology of the "progressives" is like
arsenic. If you drink milk laced with
arsenic, you don't get a healthy person,
you get a corpse. If you mix socialistn
with capitalism, you get the mangled half-
breed that you see in America today, with
the decaying of freedom, increased gov- g

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