THURSDAY’S LETTERS: Coulter’s ‘Annie One Note’ Columns, Iraq Editorials, Bush Admin. More ‘Treasonous’ Than ‘NYT’?

By: E&P Staff

In today’s letters, readers praise Greg Mitchell’s column on Iraq war editorials, and readers weigh in on Coulter’s “Annie one note” articles, and a reader wonders whether the Bush Administration isn’t more guilty of treason than the New York Times and other newspapers.


Praise for Greg Mitchell’s Column on Iraq Editorials

Thank you [Greg Mitchell] so very much for “Blood on Our Hands” — we need this kind of direct and honest commentary. The bloodshed is terrible. There are many segments in Iraqi society are in real danger, but a group that concerns me greatly are those in academia, particularly scientists.

Let me tell you how I know.

I am a librarian. When the U.S. invaded Iraq, and libraries were looted and burned, I set off to see if I could contact Iraqi librarians, if only to convey my profound professional condolences for their losses.

Along the way, I have developed contacts with Iraqi faculty and students. I discovered that the language of higher education in Iraq has been English for many decades. Early on, my contacts wrote me that, since we imposed sanctions in 1991, they had been totally cut off from getting any new textbooks.

Academics have been targeted in Iraq since late 2003. But, it seems the practice has become much more common of late. Those at universities who cooperated with Americans are targets.

Iraq is losing its academics — through assassinations and because many are fleeing the country.This is a terrible consequence of the U.S. invasion of Iraq. I don’t know what can be done, but it is manifestly not acceptable to be aware of the situation and do nothing.

I am in contact with an administrator at Diyala University in Baquba who in an email related the sad news that 10 students and 4 professors at his university had been killed recently, and one additional professor had been seriously wounded.

I am just hoping that somehow, some people with good will and clear thinking can think a way through this madness.

Topsy N. Smalley
Instruction Librarian
Cabrillo College Library
Aptos, Calif.

Just read your comments. How wonderfully articulate. I am a Vietnam vet — now much older than I want to be — and find what you said to especially right. Thanks

Fred Wilhelmy

I wholeheartedly agree with [Greg Mitchell’s] column in today’s E&P online. Thanks for taking such a clear and unequivocal stand. I am astounded that the nation’s leading editorial boards and columnists (with the notable and inspiring exception of Bob Herbert) continue to find ways to rationalize an open-ended commitment in Iraq.

I realize I don’t represent a major daily, but I do write editorials for the second-largest daily in Oregon. Our editorial board opposed the Iraq invasion from the get-go and we do not miss many opportunities to remind our readers that we must spare no effort to extricate ourselves from — to steal a beautiful phrase from Herbert — “the flaming quicksand of an unwinnable war.” …

Thanks again for using your soapbox to speak to the profession about the most important topic in the nation today. …

Jim Godbold


Coulter and the Syndicates

[Dave Astor’s] piece on [Ann] Coulter [was great] … maybe the NY Times should run it. She indeed is a child pretending to be an adult. I hope Universal begins to think beyond publicity and the “Almighty Dollar” and rids themselves of her hateful commentary. We [at TMPress] will never cross that “line” which allows Universal to let Coulter do whatever she wants!

John Osborne
GM/Managing Editor
TMPress – United News & Press Features

Thank you for printing the article [on Ann Coulter]. I certainly hope the editor goes beyond “considering” and does drop Coulter. None of her words or comments on television have any social redeeming value. If a paper or two drops her Annie One Note (“I hate ******* liberals!”) columns, surely several others would follow suit. Thank you.

Ruth Crocker
Garland, Texas

Ann Coulter’s meltdown is fun to watch, but I doubt this will amount to much. Coulter and her benefactors have made a living out of denying reality. This is just one more instance of reality that has no place in their twisted world. …

The problem with Coulter is that she isn’t a legitimate journalist or a legitimate academic, even if some people treat her as such. Therefore, she doesn’t possess any ethical standards that are usually acquired by people who go through training in journalism and academe. So not only is the public assaulted by her fleeting association with the truth. We are also assaulted by her contempt for common standards against plagiarism.

Shamus McGillicuddy
News Writer
TechTarget CIO Decisions Media Group


Treason and the Press

Zealous pro-Administration people contend those newspapers which wrote about the classified banking program have undermined the Bush Administration’s efforts to investigate and capture terrorists, and in effect, are guilty of treason.

Are these people trying to tell us that the New York Times, the Los Angeles Times, the Wall Street Journal and the Washington Post are to be held responsible for the fact President Bush has failed to successfully investigate and capture mass murderer Osama bin Laden, the world’s No. 1 terrorist whom Mr. Bush five years ago vowed repeatedly to “get dead or alive?” …

And speaking of treason, which is more culpable:

A newspaper which writes about a classified banking program or … an Administration which fails to take seriously warnings of imminent terrorist attacks and thereby fails to protect and defend American citizens such as President Bush and his team, according to 9/11 Commission Chairman Tom Kean, failed to do prior to September 11, 2001?

Dave Futornick
West Orange, N.J.

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