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January 24, 1991 - Image 4

Resource type:
The Michigan Daily, 1991-01-24

Disclaimer: Computer generated plain text may have errors. Read more about this.

Page 4 --The Michigan Daily - Thursday, January 24, 1991
420 Maynard Street
Ann Arbor, Michigan 48109

Editor in Chief

Opinion Editor

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.

Bring back the draft
A call-up would equalize the burden of a Gulf war

i 11
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- r'-~l f rJ
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The sit-in is over, but military research continues*

sues on campus concerning the Gulf
war is student concern about the pos-.
sible reinstatement of a military draft.
Not surprisingly, the anti-war move-
ment here has taken a position against
the draft. Chants of "Hell no, we won't
go" ring out at almost all of the
demonstrations and rallies.
But while opposition to the war is
warranted, a compulsory draft at this
point is necessary. However unjust the
war might be, the greater injustice lies
in the fact thatthe poor and people of
color in our society continue to shoul-
der the majority of the fighting.
Students should be as concerned
about who is actually fighting this war
as they are with the prospect of being
drafted themselves. African Americans
and Latinos are disproportionately
represented in Saudi Arabia; current
estimates show that one in every four
casualties will be Black. Moreover,
economically disadvantaged men and
women comprise a large percentage of
the forces in the Gulf. Meanwhile, their
more fortunate counterparts continue
with life is usual, suffering few conse-
quences of this conflict.
Soldiers now on Saudi Arabia's
front lines never expected to go to war
when they enlisted months or years
ago. Many joined during a time of
peace to save money for college; others
joined because they could not find a job
at home. Though technically volun-
teers, these troops are part of a de facto

poverty draft. Military service, for
many of them, was a means to a
greater end and a better life, but now it
may cost them their lives.
During the Vietnam War, only
straight men were drafted. Excluded
were women, gay men and lesbians,
college students, and those, like Vice
President Dan Quayle, who were afflu-
ent enough to dodge combat duty. A
draft must be reinstated now, without
these exclusions.
In addition to distributing the re-
sponsibility for the war among all
Americans, an all-encompassing draft
would make our leaders think twice be-
fore committing our nation to a
lengthy, costly conflict. If the sons and
daughters of our President and mem-
bers of Congress were required to fight
along side the others in Saudi Arabia,
these officials might act with a little
more hesitation. Presently only two
members of Congress have sons
serving in Saudi Arabia.
Furthermore, if a draft had been
implemented in August when U.S.
forces were first deployed to the Gulf,
public opinion might have prevailed
over the arbitrary wishes of the Presi-
dent, and we might not be fighting
Admittedly, a draft cannot itself
prevent our leaders' thoughtless rush
toward war. But until we reach the day
when the rich and poor together bear
the burden of war, a draft appears to be
the only possible equalizer.

By Matt Green
and Sean Herlihy
While the United States is cease-
lessly bombarding Baghdad, the main-
stream media speaks of "surgical bomb-
ings" and refuses to release information
concerning the number of casualties suf-
fered in Iraq thus far. We are purposely
being denied information about civilian
casualties, kept in the dark so- that we
will continue to support a genocidal war.
One of the weapons deployed by the
U.S. military in the Middle East is fuel-
air explosives. When fuel-air explosives
hit they suck every atom of oxygen out
of the atmosphere, even from the lungs
of people inside blastproof tanks or
bunkers. All human life in the vicinity is
destroyed. Fuel-air explosives are one of
the weapons researchers at the Univer-
sity have helped work on.
Just as the U.S. administration denies
Green and Herlihy were among about 30
University students who occupied an of-
fice at the Institute for Social Research
for 24 hours Tuesday and yesterday. The
anti-war group was protesting military
research being conducted at the Univer-

us information about the use of weapons
to murder Iraqis, the Division of Re-
search Development and Administration
(DRDA) denies us information and de-
ceives us aboutthe University's contri-
butions to the development of fuel-air
explosives which occurred here.
We oppose the war in the Gulf, and
we oppose the University's role in the
development of weapons used in the
war. We demand that the United States
lift its press blackout so that people can
make informed decisions about the war.
We also demand that the DRDA lift its

the release of proposal texts after
the funding agency submission deadline;
the release of funded research
contracts, and;
unrestricted public access to the
PRISM database.
We also call on the regents to
implement the immediate reinstatement
of the Classified Research Policy and
the extension of the "kill-maim" clause
to unclassified research
Students Against U.S. Intervention in
the Middle East (SAUSI) calls for an

We oppose the war in the Gulf, and we oppose the
University's role in the development of weapons used
in the war.. 4

See no evil
War brings renewed censorship of the U.S. media

restrictions and provide the community
with the information necessary to permit
serious and informed discussion about
research conducted at the University.
We call on the DRDA to comply
with the following guidelines:
the timely reporting of proposals
submitted to outside funding agencies;

end to military research on campus. This
University should be a center for educa-
tion and learning, not a site for the de-
velopment of technology designed to
implement death and destruction. We
also call for an end to the war in the
Gulf, the immediate withdrawal of U.S.
troops, and a peaceful settlement to the
conflicts in the region.

spent hours glued to their television
sets since the outbreak of war in the
Gulf. The 24-hour coverage of the first
days of the conflict boasted one of the
largest audiences in television history.
However, when the content of the
news is examined closely, it is easy to
see we are not getting the whole story.
Heavy military censorship provides in-
adequate information and only one-
sided stories to viewers watching the
war unfold. This has serious political
The media stationed in Saudi Arabia
arerequired to travel in packs with a
military escort. All transmissions from
the Gulf must first pass through gov-
ernment censors for reasons of
"military security." The Pentagon has
been intentionally slow and vague in
releasing information concerning
bomb damage assessments and
casualty statistics.
Worldwide viewers see only "pool
pictures" that are either filmed by or
approved by the Pentagon. Images of
elegant and sophisticatdd warplanes
roaring over U.S. bases in Saudi Ara-
bia dominate the newscasts. We see
shots of Tomahawk missiles effort-
lessly launching from warships to
strike targets hundreds of miles away.
It often seems that the coverage of the
war in the Gulf is nothing more than an
ad for McDonald Douglass.
But what we aren't seeing isn't so
picturesque. We don't see the destruc-
tion occurring around, the clock in
Baghdad. We don't see the civilian
population concentrated around areas
of our "surgical strikes." We don't see
pictures of the results of the 20 percent
of the missions that are unsuccessful or
learn where these bombs have fallen.
Most importantly, we don't see death.
Admittedly, some censorship is

necessary in wartime to ensure the
safety of our troops and the success of
our military operations. But the amount
of censorship taking place is actually
endangering our troops by building
massive public support for this war. It
is much easier to hate the enemy when
we are never forced to look at the face
of an Iraqi civilian. When we don't see
the people were are bombing, it is
much easier to classify them as
"foreign" or "alien." When we don't
see pictures of the human beings on the
receiving end of 2,000-pound bombs,
it is easy to forget that Americans and
Iraqis are dying in this war.
The media's role in the Vietnam
war was instrumental in shaping public
sentiment, in the first "television war"
in history. Americans were for the first
time forced to see the consequences of
their government's policy. By covering
events like the My Lai massacre, the
press brought frightening military ac-
tions to the attention of the American
public and helped ensure that justice
applied even in wartime.
While the government withholds
this information from the media, strict
regulations on where journalists can go
prevent them from finding such infor-
mation on their own. Journalists have
reported that access restrictions have
kept them from interviewing military
officials. One reporter expressed frus-
tration at not being allowed to leave his
designated area to interview the sol-
diers who successfully launched a Pa-
triot missile.
It is up to the media to call attention
to the censorship in the Gulf. Every
newspaper and television network
should expose these restrictions for
what they are - a manipulative prior
restraint by the Pentagon. Only then
will Americans see this war for what it
is, and move to halt this futile conflict.

RWL discourages two
potential protesters
To the Daily:
Last Monday night a friend and I
went to a meeting for "Students Against
US Intervention in the Middle East."
The anti-war meeting was held to dis-
cuss what kind of organizing will be
done if/when U.S. troops attack Iraq.
Before this meeting, I didn't know
much about the Revolutionary Workers
League (RWL) except that they were a
progressive liberal group. The actions of
RWL's members Monday night showed
that they are also immature, violent,
and disruptive.
Before the meeting began, there was
an agenda written on a blackboard in
front of the room, stating what activities
were to take place. On the agenda was
time for an introduction, committee up-
dates, and then the discussion of old and
new business. MSA President Jennifer
Van Valey was mediator of the meeting;
as soon as she began the introduction,
RWL members began screaming (out of
turn) that they wanted to make a pro-
posal for the agenda. Van Valey told
them that as soon as the introduction
and committee announcements were fin-
ished, they could make their proposal.
Unfortunately, the RWL members
didn't feel like waiting. For about forty
minutes they repeatedly called out and
screamed- about the importance of their
issue. These disruptions wasted a large
amount of time and delayed the progress
of the meeting.,
Before she asked for proposals for the
new business section of the agenda, Van
Valey tried to hold a vote to establish
that the anti-war coalition's actions and
rallies would be nonviolent. A woman
from RWL raised her hand to comment,
and was called on. Within a few min-
utes she was in a screaming frenzy,
preaching against nonviolence. Soon
other RWL members began to yell, and
then nthpr npnnla .,arv .,olinr nt themn

Bush had sent them straight from D.C. to
destroy any efforts U of M students
made to protest the war with Iraq. They
succeeded in creating a miserably an-
tagonistic atmosphere, and their actions
compelled more than a few people to
walk out of the meeting. My friend and I
left the meeting early also, feeling hor-
rible about the situation.
I believe that RWL members have
every right to voice their opinions, but it
was not fair to the rest of the people at
the meeting that they screamed them
out disruptively. If they will not work
with others to accomplish a mutual
goal, then they should hold their own
meetings, especially when they want to
fight about anti-war organizing.
Alissa Strauss
Natural Resources first-year student
Red, White, and Blue
To the Daily:
Red, White, and Blue
Like a cold, naked child we must cling
for warmth to our multicolored national
Inside, millions of us fearfully huddle and
the same old song whileour rulers take our
hides to the market.
We cover our dirty faces with fifty stars
and Union Jacks
and blinding yellows and the bloodiest
This way we don't have to look outside at
the dusty tracks
which are inside our hearts -so
mechanically well-bred.
And when colors clash, as they often do,
we are happy to throw steel blankets at
each other.
We invite our shepherds to cloak our
trusting child eyes to soothe
our rattling tracks, rattling with the
corpse of our Iraqi brother.
Nelson Tello
Engineering first-year student

fact the University itself supports most
The next step in University recycling
belongs to the Daily. The Daily has the
largest circulation of all the university
papers and is distributed by free drop, a
fact that the Daily itself states con- -
tributes to its strong financial health.!
This free drop policy contributes signifi-
cantly to University waste.
The Daily has the responsibility to
attach recycling boxes to their pick-up
boxes. Recycled newspapers could be
picked up by those who dropped off the
next day's paper. This low-cost solution,
combined with some jazzy public ser-
vice announcements on the pages of the
Daily would help lead to the creation of*
a new norm: the need to recycle one's
paper each morning.
A second suggestion for the Daily in-
cludes more extensive use of recycled
newsprint in publishing.
I am singling out the Daily for the
simple reason that this publication has
the largest circulation on campus. Need-
less to say, I believe that all University
publications should follow these steps.
Patricia Welch
Graduate student
Union offices unsafe
To the Daily:
As a member of the Michigan Video
Yearbook, I think that the article enti-
tIed "MVY complains of office break-
ins" in the Jan. 23 edition of the Daily
wrongly focuses on the cause of our
problems. While it is true that the rob.
beries occurred only after University
Students Against Cancer (USAC)
moved into our office, it is not fair to
"point the finger" at anyone in particu-
lar at this time.
In my opinion, rather than being an
issue of office allocations, I think that
this problem is due to the security of the
Union itself.
The Union has its own security staff,
but it appears that this is not sufficient

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