- The Washington Times - Monday, June 14, 2004

Respect the law, please

The article “Border Patrol checks ‘interior,’ ” (Page 1, Friday) gives an example of what needs to be done on a massive scale throughout the United States. There are now millions of illegal aliens living in this country.

Enforcement of our immigration laws, plus strict enforcement of employer sanctions against those who hire illegals, would solve this national disgrace. Such widespread disregard of the law must stop.

We are witnessing extraordinary lawlessness by illegal aliens. They are also disabusing our emergency medical facilities by using them for routine health care. Our schools are overcrowded by their children, and they have overloaded our welfare system. We have become a safety valve for Mexico by taking over social responsibility for many of its citizens.

Congress is considering a half-dozen measures that, in one way or another, would grant amnesty to a large number of illegal aliens, simply because we have failed to enforce existing immigration laws. Our open borders undoubtedly allowed terrorists to enter the country illegally.

The time has come for the government to take action to eliminate this problem.

BYRON SLATER

Border Solution Task Force

San Diego

Toughen up on Iran

Bravo for a timely editorial (“Iran and the EU 3,” Thursday).

It is now time for Britain, France and Germany to explain to the world the progress they think they have made in their “human rights dialogue” with Iran.

As the article correctly points out, choosing business over human rights has only brought shame to the European Union. If anything, this dialogue has emboldened the Iranian regime to pursue the export of terrorism and nuclear weapons. Iraq has become the testing ground of Iran’s dangerous skills.

In their most recent reports, Amnesty International and Human Rights Watch documented the appalling state of human rights in Iran. France outraged the world by attacking and pressing charges against Iranian dissidents only days after signing lucrative trade deals with Tehran.

It would be an ominous moment if and when the clerics acquire the A-bomb. Then, the EU would be much more than an embarrassment.

Iran has to be dealt with firmly now; tomorrow could prove too late. There are two choices before us: Dealing with the mullahs without the bomb today or dealing with them with the bomb tomorrow.

HEDAYAT MOSTOWFI

Executive director

Committee in Support of Referendum

in Iran

Washington

Tributes to the Reagans

The stoic composure of Nancy Reagan began to collapse as the first volley of the 21-gun salute was fired last week.

Anyone who has ever attended a military funeral will know that the first sound of the guns firing is frightening and unsettling. Unfortunately, we all witnessed Mrs. Reagan flinch and turn away as she reacted to the loud boom.

As the flag of our great nation was presented to her, one could see the cracks in her composure develop even more.

Then at the side of the casket, clutching the flag given to her from a grateful nation, Mrs. Reagan broke out into tears, her strength and stoicism completely spent.

Some may have observed this as weakness on her part. After all she is 82 years old.

My observation is that her loss of control was not prompted by weakness, but rather from respect, devotion and love of the highest order. Truly, this was the defining example of faithfulness, fidelity and commitment to one’s spouse.

Despite all the trappings of power and privilege, Ronald Reagan never lost the devotion and undeniable love for his wife, Nancy, and she too never wavered in her love and commitment to her Ronnie.

Even in this most heart- wrenching time, the Reagans continue to teach and lead the American people.

Perhaps we, as married couples and those who desire to be so, will benefit from their example by putting away selfishness and replacing it with devotion, infidelity for fidelity, criticism for adoration, and convenience for commitment.

FRED STICKLER

Sierra Vista, Ariz.

Without Ronald Reagan, America today likely would be the Western Hemisphere’s version of France — Godless, valueless, gutless and aimless.

The ranks of the dead victims of Communism would probably have swollen far beyond the 100 million who already had perished, and freedom’s glorious advance around the globe would have remained merely a dream.

In life, Mr. Reagan regularly reminded us of our subordination to a higher authority, the difference between good and evil, the dignity and power of the individual, and our obligations to one another.

His death again has focused our attention on these important lessons. We must etch them in our minds and those of our children so that they guide our nation onward, forever.

BARRY C. STEEL

Phoenix, Md.

My wife and I want to express our heartfelt thanks for your beautiful coverage of the events surrounding the celebration of Ronald Reagan’s life and the sorrow of his passing. He was such a decent and gracious man whose entire life was in preparation for his eight years at the helm of the ship of state. He was the right man at the right time.

Fair winds and following seas, Mr. President.

WILL PENNINGTON

JAYNE PENNINGTON

St. Leonard, Md.

Compare and contrast

Georgie Anne Geyer’s article (“Influence from the heart,” Commentary,Thursday) demonstrates how to convert a beautiful and appropriate eulogy into a polemic against President Bush and his “radical neo-con” advisers. She does so by contrasting Ronald Reagan’s performance in the Cold War with that of Mr. Bush in the current war against terrorism.

Miss Geyer argues that the Reagan policy of raising the economic ante through increased and focused defense spending forced the fall of the Soviet system. She attributes Mr. Reagan’s success to his principles and standards as a realist/idealist. Conversely, she claims Mr. Bush’s attempts to link his philosophies of pre-emption, unilateralism and total destruction of an implacable enemy with those of Mr. Reagan just don’t wash.

Miss Geyer neglects the changed circumstances. The enemy this time cannot be outspent. Nor does our advanced technology impress our implacable enemy. On the contrary, this war is unlike the Cold War for which Mr. Reagan’s philosophy, personality and single-mindedness was so appropriate. Mr. Bush is faced with a far different kind of war, wherein not only the tactics but the ideology and demographics we face are totally different. In Iraq, we may soon find out whether Mr. Bush’s policy of pre-emption and unilateralism begins the process of democratizing Islamic nations. It may take 50 years, as did the Cold War, but the process must begin.

Miss Geyer then proceeds to contrast Mr. Reagan’s ignoring of the neocons with Mr. Bush’s placing these same neocons and their philosophical descendants at the center of policy-making. Not only that, but these same neocons now receive the label of dark Hobbesian dwellers on their use of sheer power and unrelieved force. If this is so, why do we hear so many voices arguing that we do not have sufficient troops in Iraq?

No, it is much too soon to make a judgment about the Bush strategy or about the wisdom of unilateralism, which is evidently now being transformed into multilateralism. As for pre-emption, should we put our troops at parade rest until we are hit with another catastrophe?

I don’t know which walls the United States is proceeding to build up across the world instead of tearing them down. Perhaps Miss Geyer is alluding to Ariel Sharon’s fence which, despite its purpose of preventing suicide bombers from entering Israel on their murderous mission, is condemned by the European Union and the United Nations. This, however, does not constitute a building up of walls across the world.

I fear that Miss Geyer is rushing to judgment not out of respect for Mr. Reagan but out of contempt for Mr. Bush.

ABSALOM SIMMS

Silver Spring

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