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March 06, 2002 - Image 4

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The Michigan Daily, 2002-03-06

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4 - The Michigan Daily - Wednesday, March 6, 2002

OP/ED

Gcbe irbt1Vit u Itilg

420 MAYNARD STREET
ANN ARBOR, MI 48109
letters@michigandaily.com

N A
NOTABLE
QUOTABLE

CHIP CULLEN GRIND IN G T Ni\N

EDITED AND MANAGED BY
STUDENTS AT THE
UNIVERSITY OF MICHIGAN
SINCE 1890

JON SCHWARTZ
Editor in Chief
JOHANNA HANINK
Editorial Page Editor

Unless otherwise noted, unsigned editorials reflect the opinion of the majority of the Daily's
editorial board. All other articles, letters and cartoons do not
necessarily reflect the opinion of The Michigan Daily.

W..It is, at best,
inappropriate and,
at worst, malicious
to describe what
my colleagues and I
are doing as lacking
relevance."

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- Ted Koppel, in an op-ed piece published
in yesterday's New York Times, in response
to ABC's efforts to replace "Nightline"
with David Letterman's "Late Show."

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The spectre of fairness is haunting the free traders
NICK WOOMER BACK T0 THE WOOM
few weeks ago, Imposing high tariffs to protect American they'll always get the same answer from
Treasury Secre- steel or allowing the glorious free market the free traders: "You just don't under-
tary Paul to sort these problems out at what almost stand, all we need is less regulation, more
O'Neill, discussing the everyone agrees will be a horrible cost. privatization, stronger protections of
Enron collapse, noted This means that the free traders will property rights andfreer trade!"
that "Companies come soon find themselves in a rather delicious This is the "genius of capitalism"? No
and go. It's part of the Catch 22. European leaders have already thank you.
genius of capitalism - pledged to challenge any attempt by the The point here is not necessarily that
people get to make good United States to impose any sort of signif- everyone should support imposing tariffs
decisions or bad deci- icant tariff on imported steel through the on steel imports. The point, rather, is that
sions and they get to pay the conse- World Trade Organization's shadowy and we should listen to Paul O'Neill: The col-
quences or enjoy the fruits of their undemocratic legal processes. The people lapse of Enron and Argentina and the Cal-
decisions." of say, Cleveland, are unlikely to take ifornia energy crisis should not be viewed
Comments like O'Neill's are typical kindly to the idea that a group of unelect- as aberrations, but symptoms of a greater
fuzzy free-trader talk. Sorry all you ruined ed WTO bureaucrats now have more say systemic problem, a problem O'Neill
Enron employees and stockholders, it's in U.S. trade policy than W. or Congress. euphemistically calls "the genius of capi-
nothing personal, it's just 'the genius of And if the free trade ideologues emerge talism."
capitalism!' from this battle triumphant, Americans are Now we all get to bear witness to the
For some time to come, the recipients unlikely to sit back idly and watch as the "genius of capitalism" work its ruinous
of such insipid excuses will be steelwork- economy of say, West Virginia, is slowly magic on American steelworkers, pension-
ers and retired steelworkers. Last Thurs- swallowed by the anonymous machina- ers and the local economies that rely on
day, tens of thousands of steelworkers and tions of global capitalism. steel production.
their allies rallied in Washington, D.C. to Do the free traders really think this Apologists for global capitalism will
promote legislation that would place a 40 country is just going to nod its collective soon find themselves coming head to head
percent tariff on almost all foreign steel head solemnly and reassure itself that with Americans' more noble populist sen-
products. The reason is that the American "this really is for the best"? They must, timents, notably the American people's
steel industry is being strangled by super- and they had better pray (after all, so deep sense of fairness. While it is certain-
cheap imported steel - resulting in 31 many of them think praying makes a dif- ly debatable as to how to best deal with
domestic steel manufactures declaring ference) that working Americans are actu- the crisis in the American steel industry,
bankruptcy since the Asian economic cri- ally just members of some big, dumb, only the crassest individual would suggest
sis in 1998. masochistic herd ready to prostrate them- that it's fair that hard working American
No one doubts that the collapse of the selves before Unfettered Global Trade. steelworkers should lose their livelihoods
American steel industry will mean the loss The steel industry, of course, is just the or that pensioners should see their nest-
of thousands of the best jobs in the United beginning. As the regulations and tariffs eggs dry up overnight.
States' manufacturing sector - a loss that come crashing down, visions of laissez It would appear, then, that a spectre i*
will reverberate throughout the entire faire-topia will become even clearer: More haunting the free traders: The spectre of
economy (particularly in the rust belt Enrons, more California-esque energy fairness.
states). So the debate over what to do with crises, more Argentinas, more inequality,
American steel basically revolves around ,more polution and weaker unions. When >>Nick Woomer can be reached"t
which is the least bad of two alternatives: people complain about these problems, nwoomer@umich.edu.
LETTERS TO THE EDITOR

0

Protestors wrong to blame
only Israel for Conflict in
West Bank, Gaza
To THE DAILY:
In regards to the latest wave of public
support on this campus for Palestinians, I
have only a few questions for those who
took to the Diag in protest. First, many of
you rightly declared that the violence must
end, for who would ever want war and the
death and destruction that come with it?
However, I find it hypocritical to put all
blame squarely on Israel, particularly in
wake of the latest suicide bombing over the
weekend of Orthodox Jews leaving syna-
gogue. How can you claim to advocate
peace, while not admitting that Palestinian
terrorists and the Palestinian Authority
have also done a great deal to undermine
the peace process?
Second, if statehood, self-determina-
tion, and all other inalienable rights of
human beings are being to the Palestinians,
why hasn't the PA done more to secure
their independence?
There is no military that has been estab-
lished to fight for a separate state; the
armed forces of the Palestinian people
consist of a number of terrorist factions
that simply kill Israeli civilians (and fight
each other, no less). There also has not
been a declaration of statehood; one would
think that if Yasser Arafat was truly seri-
ous about a Palestinian state, he would
have declared the West Bank and Gaza
Strip to be the independent state of Pales-
tine by now.
Again, in light of this lack of effort by
Arafat, coupled with the entrenched cor-
ruption of the PA and their inability to con-
trol terrorism within their territories, it is
impossible to simply blame Israel for the
violence.
Lastly, while the Palestinians do have
legitimate claims to statehood, why has
this surge of national identity come only
since 1967? It was not as if there was a
country called Palestine with a Palestinian
government that was overthrown by a for-
eign nation. In fact, the entire country -
ancient Israel, historic Palestine, etc. -
did not have self-rule since 63 BC until
1948, when the State of Israel was estab-

While it does not nullify that need, I was
just curious as to why it suddenly arose in
1967.
ELI SEGALL
LSA sophomore
Media portrayal of
Palestinians as 'barbaric
terrorists' misguided
TO THE DAILY:
The general campus community tends
to either feel very passionate about the
Arab-Isreali conflict or they are generally
apathetic. The Daily reported yesterday in
Palestinian protesters call for end to fighting
that over 100 members of our campus com-
munity gathered in the blistering cold on
Monday to help spread the word of ending
the violence. The surrounding media has
been generally biased in their coverage of
the conflict. I am proud of the campus
community for voicing the truth.
Despite media portrayal, Palestinians
are not barabaric terrorists. They are an
oppressed people struggling for their rights
and liberties. Their land has been stripped
away from them, and they are being told
that they have no right to return. Their
lives have been destitute and impoverished
over the past few decades. When women
and children die in the relentless attacks,
we hear from the Israeli army, "We are
sorry, we thought they were Palestinian
militants." When their homes are demol-
ished, we hear from the Israeli army, "We
are sorry, we thought the homes were
abandoned."
When will it stop? Ariel Sharon yester-
day said, "The aim is to increase the num-
ber of losses on the other side. Only after
they've (Palestinians) been battered will
we be able to conduct talks." With atti-
tudes such as these, I fear that the violence
will only continue. Is he waiting for all of
the Palestinians to be wiped out before he
has these negotiations? The 53 years that
the Israelis have been suppressing and bat-
tering the Palestinians must end. By sup-
porting those that spread the truth, such as
those that did on Monday, only then can
we educate ourselves and potentially save
the lives of the innocent.
BRENDA ABDELALL

throws around the word occupation in ref-
erence to the Palestinian Israeli land dis-
pute. Through the word occupation and
throughout his article Zahr implies that
Israel is some bloodthirsty nation that
invaded Palestine in an effort to kill the
Palestinians and take over their land.
This could not be further from the truth.
Zahr fails to address how the land became
"occupied" in the first place. The fact is
that after the United Nations partition
Israel was immediately attacked by the sur-
rounding Arab nations, in an effort to erad-
icate the entire nation. Israel won and tried
to build a country only to be attacked again
by the surrounding Arab nations again in
1967. It was during the 1967 war that
Israel was forced to defend itself by going
into the Golan heights, Gaza and the West
Bank.
After Israel won the war its government
wanted to give back the west bank and
Gaza. However at the time the Palestinians
refused to acknowledge the existence of
the State of Israel on any level so there was
no one for the Israeli's to give the land
back to.
As another course of action the Pales-
tinians decided to get back "their land" by
perpetrating acts of terror within Israel. So
is the land "occupied" as Zahr puts it? I
don't believe that occupied is the right
term.
When the Palestinians refused to
acknowledge Israel and get back their land
in 1967, it seems to me that they forfeited
some of their rights, certainly the right to
try and regain it through the murder of
Israel civilians. It seems to me that Zahr
believes that Israel's mere existence is con-
sidered an occupation of Palestinian lands.
He should address how Israel acquired that
land in the first place and reassess what the
word occupation really implies
TALI BLANCHARD
LSA sophomore
LETTERS POLICY
The Michigan Daily welcomes letters from all
of its readers. Letters from University students,
faculty, staff and administrators will be given
priority over others. Letters should include the
writer's name, college and school year or other
University affiliation. The Daily will not print any
letter containing statements that cannot be veri-

0

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