- The Washington Times - Saturday, February 2, 2002

U.N. Population Fund supports Chinese coercion campaign

Thank you for your Jan. 29 article, "Population fund at U.N. protested: U.S. money backs Chinese coercion."

The Washington Times is one of the few papers in the nation accurately reporting on evidence concerning the United Nations Population Fund's (UNFPA's) support of coerced abortion and sterilization in China.

The statements of dozens of victims and witnesses of coercion in UNFPA's so-called model program in China are the best evidence that UNFPA supports coerced abortion and sterilization in China. Evidence obtained on videotape is hard to dispute, despite what Population Institute president Werner Fornos and the zealots at the UNFPA would wish were the case. Their zeal for "family planning" is no less than support for coercive abortion.

Evidence of UNFPA's support of forced abortion in China, obtained by the Population Research Institute (PRI) in China, was presented to Congress in October. During PRI's investigation, dozens of victims and witnesses stated that voluntary family planning does not exist in UNFPA's China program. Instead, coercion prevails.

Coercive campaigns emanate from a central Office of Family Planning occupied by a UNFPA worker in this region. Punishment for noncompliance includes destruction of homes with jackhammers.

The evidence is true. UNFPA supports coercion in China.


SCOTT WEINBERG

Director of governmental affairs

Population Research Institute

Front Royal, Va.

Pakistan's grace under pressure

I understand that there is considerable doubt in many people's minds about the sincerity of Pakistan's leadership since the tragic events of the September 11 attacks ("Flattering Musharraf," Letters, Jan. 26). But those who remember President Pervez Musharraf's first addresses to the nation in October 1999 know that his Jan. 12 speech was a continuation of the theme of remaking Pakistan in the vision of its founding father Muhammad Ali Jinnah.

In Jinnah's maiden speech to the Constituent Assembly of Pakistan in 1947, he advocated democracy, tolerance, social welfare and inclusive pluralism. Mr. Musharraf's goals are the same.

A progressive social revolution is in the making in Pakistan. The banning of extremist parties, increased number of seats for women in the legislature, the ending of the discriminatory separate electorates, the holding of local elections on time and the announcement of general elections this October are but a few examples.

The events of September 11 were a catalyst not the cause of the changes in Pakistan's polices. They provided an environment in which the Pakistani leadership could reverse the trend of the past 25 years, in which the sovereignty of the state had eroded and extremist elements had encroached on the country's political space.

Before September 11, Pakistan abided by the numerous U.N. resolutions imposing sanctions upon the Taliban government. After September 11, it continued that policy, albeit with renewed vigor.

Pakistan matched words with actions, choosing what was right and therefore more difficult. Today, Pakistan faces economic losses, the threat of instability and the nightmare of a two-front threat. Nonetheless, Pakistan has shown grace under pressure, maintaining a steady course in the face of innumerable challenges and threats.


LUBNA GHANI

Fairfax

An America without shame

In her Jan. 28 Op-Ed column, "Money and mourning at Ground Zero," Suzanne Fields criticizes government-controlled charity and some relatives of the victims of the September 11 attacks who seem to regard charity as a debt.

In the America in which I was born not a trace of which remains today there was a stoicism to the American character that took calamity and injury as pretty much part of the package. You dusted yourself off, set the furniture back in place, kept your suffering to yourself and moved on.

If charity was offered, you accepted or declined, but you did not haggle over terms.

We are a different country now and a different kind of people.

Shame, no longer a real player, was then one of the modifiers of the individual sense of self, and it helped to hold behavior, both public and private, to a particular standard. We have gotten rid of shame, and that, ironically, is a shame.


BARRY MOYER

Washington

No conflicts of interest at NAS

Steven Milloy makes several outrageous claims in his Jan. 31 Commentary piece "Cloning con game."

For example, Mr. Milloy claims that members of the National Academy of Sciences' panel that conducted the recent study on cloning have conflicts of interest. There are no conflicts of interest.

No panel members are involved with corporations, commercial ventures, or personally conducted research in reproductive cloning or in the use of nuclear transplantation to produce embryonic stem cells. The chairman of the cloning committee, Dr. Irving Weissman, conducts research and is involved with companies that work on adult stem cells, not embryonic stem cells. Possible technologies for treating human disease developed from research on adult stem cells are even viewed as a competitor to potential technologies developed from research on embryonic stem cells. This relevant information is made clear in the written report, and it was explicitly stated in the news conference. Your readers can examine the report and the statements made at the news conference on our Web site, www.nas.edu.

Because of the considerable potential for developing new medical therapies for life-threatening diseases and advancing fundamental biomedical knowledge, the panel did support the conclusion of a separate NAS report, "Stem Cells and the Future of Regenerative Medicine," which recommended that biomedical research using nuclear transplantation to produce stem cells be permitted. The panel that produced this prior report on stem cells did not have any members who conduct research on either adult stem cells or embryonic stem cells.

The panel that conducted the cloning study considered only the scientific and medical aspects of the issue and encouraged a broad national dialogue on the societal, religious and ethical concerns associated with human reproductive cloning and nuclear transplantation to produce embryonic stem cells.

Your readers were much better served by the accurate news story about the study published in The Washington Times on Jan. 19, "Panel seeks ban on human cloning."


E. WILLIAM COLGLAZIER

Executive officer

National Academy of Sciences

National Research Council

Washington

Less 'family planning,' less abortion

In January 2001, President Bush cut off funds to so-called family planning organizations abroad that promoted abortion overseas. These groups argued that the president would effectively be killing tens of thousands of women annually by cutting off the funds for abortion. In so doing, they indicated that abortion is a necessary part of family planning.

Now, according to Werner Fornos, president of the Population Institute, we read the opposite that family planning reduces abortions ("U.N. Population Fund is 'line of defense' against abortion," Jan. 31). Cutting off abortion funds from family planning groups doesn't kill tens of thousands of women, but family planning does raise the need for abortion. Contraceptives fail, making abortion the ultimate contraceptive.

For example, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) issued a report on Dec. 8, 2000, on national abortion statistics for 1997. The report said that 45.5 percent of women having abortions reported having previous abortions, sometimes more than three. The repeat abortion rate in Maryland a state overflowing with contraceptives is 70.5 percent.

We have spent millions of dollars on family planning in the United States, and we have more than a million abortions annually a total of about 40 million since 1973. Mr. Fornos' position that we should spend more money on family planning to reduce abortion is preposterous. It cannot be given any serious consideration.


@Text.noindent:FRANCOIS L. QUINSON

Gaithersburg



"The first line of defense against abortion is family planning, and to deny family planning is a surefire way to escalate rather than decrease abortions." So said Werner Fornos, president of the Population Institute, in his Jan. 31 letter "U.N. Population Fund is 'line of defense' against abortion."

Mr. Fornos is wrong. Contraception always leads to more abortion, as both have the objective of preventing birth. Below are just a few rebuttals of Mr. Fornos' disingenuous statement by contraception and abortion promoters and independent sources.

A former medical director of the International Planned Parenthood Federation (IPPF) said way back in 1970, "Abortion and contraception are inextricably intertwined in their use. As the idea of family planning spreads through a community there appears to be a rise in the incidence of induced abortion at the point where the community begins to initiate the use of contraceptives."

Hundreds of millions of taxpayer dollars have been spent on family planning in the United States in the past 35 years and, rather than decreasing, both illegitimacy (now 33 percent of all births) and abortions (1.3 million a year) have skyrocketed.

Former Sen. Daniel Patrick Moynihan said, "Social chaos has come," when citing the teen-age illegitimacy ratio (the proportion of out-of-wedlock teen births to all teen births), which rose from 14.8 percent in 1960, the approximate onset of the contraceptive era, to 75.9 percent in 1994.

The Supreme Court in the 1992 Casey decision recognized that surgical abortion is a necessary backup for contraception because Americans "for two decades organized intimate relationships on the availability of abortion in the event that contraception should fail."

An August 1996 Alan Guttmacher Institute study reported that 58 percent of women seeking an abortion used contraceptives in the month they were impregnated. Jeannie Rosoff, president of the Guttmacher Institute, said in a classic understatement, "neither the methods nor the users are perfect.

Oral contraceptives frequently cause early abortions. In her testimony in January 2001 against the confirmation of Attorney General John Ashcroft to the Senate Judiciary Committee, Gloria Feldt, president of Planned Parenthood Federation of America, said "the birth control pill frequently acts to prevent implantation of the fertilized ovum," thus confirming that oral contraceptives frequently abort a child without the mother even knowing it.

Oral contraceptives and contraceptives in general dramatically increase the number and need for abortions. Mr. Fornos, by saying contraceptives reduce abortion, loses his credibility in advocating for more funds for the barbaric Chinese population-control program.


CAROLYN NAUGHTON

Silver Spring

Cartoon in poor taste

[email protected]:The crashing of two airplanes into the Twin Towers of the World Trade Center on September 11 will forever be considered a somber, defining moment in our great nation's history.

Millions of people watched the murder of nearly 3,000 innocents on television. Those who watched suffered great emotional distress, and many still do.

The friends and families of those who died are still mourning. Some are still hoping and praying for the recovery of their loved ones' remains.

By publishing a cartoon depicting that horrific episode adjacent to the Jan. 31 Commentary piece "Reading Enron's economic entrails," you cheapen and denigrate the memory of those who died. Shame on you.

The financial breakdown of a large corporation should not, in any shape or form, be compared with the collapse of the Twin Towers.


HOWARD B. THORSEN

Alexandria





I'm not much for political correctness or censorship, but the cartoon with the Enron airplane was too much. To make light of the events of September 11 was not funny or clever.


STEPHEN D. BAXTER

Rockville


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