- The Washington Times - Thursday, December 6, 2001

U.S. can stabilize Pakistan's economy by lifting tariff

As The Washington Times accurately reported this week, Pakistan's textile and apparel industry urgently needs relief from U.S. tariffs to keep its factories operating and its economy stable ("Pakistan textiles a problem for U.S.," Dec. 4).
However, it should be emphasized that such assistance will not harm American companies or workers. Pakistan's share of the U.S. market for imported apparel is a tiny 1.6 percent, behind that of 19 other exporting countries. For all textiles apparel and non-apparel Pakistan's share is only 2.65 percent. Our best-known products high-quality apparel sold under dozens of familiar brand names generally are not made in the United States.
Reducing the average 17 percent U.S. tariff on Pakistani textile and apparel will simply compensate for higher cost and perceived risk, helping us win back U.S. orders that were lost as a result of concerns about events in Afghanistan. The textile and apparel industry is the backbone of Pakistan's economy, accounting for 70 percent of the industrial work force, and we already have seen thousands of workers laid off because of a drop in U.S. orders.
Pakistan has chosen to stand with America in the war against terrorism, but our ordinary workers should not be penalized for that decision. For Pakistan to remain a strong ally, we need a strong economy something the European Union already has recognized by lifting tariffs and increasing quotas on our products. We remain optimistic that Congress and the White House will stand behind their commitments to Pakistan and do the same.

Lahore, Pakistan

Aleema Khan leads the Pakistan Textile & Apparel Group, a coalition of business interests in Pakistan that manufacture clothing and other goods for export around the world.

How can PA police 'crack down' while being fired upon?

The Israelis are demanding that the Palestinian Authority police arrest Palestinian militants whom they believe to be involved in the weekend's horrible suicide attacks. Yet the Israeli military has launched a wave of attacks against the PA Police. How are they supposed to carry out this task which would be difficult enough under ideal conditions under heavy fire? It seems that the Israeli leadership is lacking in common sense and operating strictly in revenge mode. Israeli Prime Minister Ariel Sharon claims that it should be easy for the PA to pick up all of these people and stop the attacks against Israel. Yet the Israelis were in direct control of the West Bank and the Gaza Strip for years, and they were unable to root out all of these militants.

Baton Rouge, La.

'Rogue regimes,' not 'rogue nations' nations'

Again, in the Dec. 5 article "Missile defense successful in test," you have used the words "rogue nations" when you should have said "rogue regimes." A nation is a people who live in a designated territory, a country. As far as I know, there have been no rogue peoples, except perhaps the Vandals, who sacked Rome in 455. Today, there are half a dozen rogue governments, including the Taliban and those governments currently in power in Libya, Iraq and North Korea.
The term "rogue nation" stigmatizes a whole people, many or most of whom actually are victims of the rogue government. In the interests of accuracy, to say nothing of alliteration, I implore you and the media in general to use instead the words "rogue regime."

Chevy Chase

Elephants unhappy behind bars

The National Zoo, which hopes to keep increasing its herd of captive-bred elephants "We need another baby, and then another baby for this baby to play with," says the zoo's elephant manager, Marie Galloway is on the wrong track ("Zoo has jumbo plan," Metro, Nov. 28).
Zoos and circuses breed elephants and other animals to ensure an endless supply of crowd-pleasers, then all too often dump them when they become inconvenient.
Male elephants, like the calf born recently at the National Zoo, are especially likely to be sentenced to a life in chains. When they're babies, they're useful as circus performers or zoo exhibits. However, they grow up to be extremely unpredictable, often aggressive animals that simply cannot be controlled. Because of their massive size and strength adult males can weigh 10,000 pounds to 20,000 pounds or more many elephants spend decades in sterile barns, out of public view, immobilized by chains around their necks and legs. Compare this to life in the wild, where elephants travel up to 25 miles a day under the vast skies of their native lands.
It's time for zoos to stop "saving" animals by breeding them in captivity and to work instead on saving habitats. Animals deserve freedom in their natural homelands not life behind bars.

Staff writer
People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals

Haitian government to blame for country's 'misery'

With eloquence, Ronald V. Dellums exposed the misery and tribulation of Haitian people, caused in part, as he claims, by the international community's refusal to extend loans and other aid to Haiti ("Haiti's season of misery," Op-Ed, Dec. 8). However, as a consultant to the Haitian government, he chose to ignore the real causes of this misery. One need look no further than the present Haitian government, for whom he consults. This government is suppressing the democratic aspirations of its people. The current regime has stolen elections, used the police for its own political advantage, blatantly protected its supporters from the justice system and gone on shopping sprees for million-dollar villas and other extravagant items.
As a Haitian, I have witnessed the misery of my own people, and it has been inflicted by the same leaders whom the people, in their struggle for democracy, gave their sweat and blood to restore to power. Let's point to the real culprit. The wrongdoer is not the American government or the international community.
It is time for the Haitian government to stop its intransigence and to correct the mess it created. It must start acting as a true democratic government. Only then will the Haitian government be justified in blaming the international community for failing to live up to its promises.


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