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     Guity Nashat should know that many WAISers are deeply disturbed by the tragedy of Chechnya and disgusted by the plight of Afghan women. She says:.
     I am deeply disappointed that the imminent destruction of the whole Chechen nation has not caused as much of a whimper in your readers, nor has the inability of Afghan women faced to attend school. As to your response that the Chechens brought on the wrath of Russia on themselves for their acts of terrorism in Moscow, I can only say even if that act of terrorism was indeed committed by some Chechen terrorists, shouldn't the punishment fit the crime?"

     My comment: Let me clarify my statement. Putting has said rightly that the break-up of Russia is possible if Chechnya were allowed to secede. We should understand how Russians feel about this. George III was trying to preserve the union, but American history idealizes the revolutionaries who allied themselves with a tyrannical power to achieve independence, treating the majority loyalists brutally. Yet when the South tried to secede, Lincoln invoked the need to preserve the union, and the Federal Army committed atrocities in the South limited only by the fact that it did not have 20th-century weapons, including airpowers. That is the way nations react. Franco brutally suppressed insurgencies in the Basque provinces because he wanted to keep Spain united.
     As for punishment fitting the crime, I quite agree, but here again that is the way of the world, as Kosovo showed. If ETA continues its crimes in the Basque provinces, it is not inconceivable that the Spanish government in frustration might react the way Franco did, and many innocent people would suffer. As the Spanish proverb says "Saints pay for sinners."
     As for Afghanistan, WAISers lament the impotence of the West to do much. Let me repeat that all WAISers are deeply concerned about both tragedies.

Ronald Hilton - 1/3/00