- The Washington Times - Tuesday, October 29, 2002

Insuring America against terrorism

The Coalition to Insure Against Terrorism (CIAT) commends The Times for recognizing the need "for a federal role in terrorism insurance" ("A bad terrorism-insurance bill," Editorial, Thursday). However, The Times is off-base in asserting that the agreement in principle reached by White House and congressional conferees does not "properly" address the issue.

Importantly, the proposed short-term federal backstop will protect both consumers of insurance products and victims of terrorist attacks, including business and property owners throughout America. It will create new jobs and new investment in the midst of our war against terrorism. The agreement also includes three key litigation-management provisions that are a marked improvement over current law.

With the U.S. intelligence community warning that al Qaeda plans to attack soon, it is imperative that our nation move forward expeditiously to prepare for the future. If we tarry, the next attack is likely to exact economic disruption that could be avoided with a terror-insurance program in place.


Coalition to Insure Against Terrorism


Nurse Cynthia Day

As demonstrated in "Lawsuit supports pro-life nurse against Louisiana" (Nation, Friday), the abortion movement seems to be dropping "choice" from its "pro-choice" public-relations moniker.

Louisiana nurse Cynthia Day found out the hard way that pro-choice is a one-way street when she refused to dispense "emergency contraception" drugs because of her faith-based convictions. The Louisiana health department, which admits that "an emergency contraceptive keeps an embryo from attaching to the uterus," gave nurse Day a pink-slip threat if her conscience wouldn't let her dispense the drug.

Abortion advocates have stubbornly maintained that life doesn't begin until who knows when. They ferociously fought a ban on partial-birth abortion, in which an abortionist suctions the brains out of a live baby on the brink of delivery. So they have little sympathy for conscience-driven women such as nurse Day who believe the sanctity of life applies even to earlier stages of development, during which we are wonderfully knit together with divine precision.

The issue of conscience rights in health care is not solely a religious one. Many individuals oppose abortion on ethical, philosophical and constitutional grounds. Many believe the Supreme Court erred in Roe v. Wade by not protecting the right to life as the fundamental constitutional right upon which all other rights are predicated.

Whatever happens in the courts, pushing reproductive rights toward reproductive mandates will surely backfire in the court of public opinion. The irony of trampling individual liberties and conscience rights while marching under the banner of "choice" will not be lost on the American public.


Senior policy analyst

Christian Medical Association Washington Bureau


Does U.S. need Turkey, warts and all?

I don't know whether the United States needs Turkey's support to win a war against Iraq, as former U.S. Ambassador to Turkey Mark Parris claims in "Heads up on Turkey" (Op-Ed, yesterday). What is clear, however, is that one more insider (from the Clinton administration in this case) is critical of the European Union's decision to hold off on Turkey's admission as a member. Does Mr. Parris really believe Turkey's alliance against the global war on terrorism should be rewarded by the world's turning a blind eye on its continued human rights violations of its own citizens?

The Bush administration boasts of its strong alliance with Turkey but refuses to leverage that relationship to deter Turkey from continuing its vicious pattern of human rights violations. Yet, perhaps Turkey's admission to the European Union would be less problematic if Turkey chose to implement real human rights reforms. For example, it could end the state-sponsored oppression of its own Kurdish citizens. Perhaps the European Union would be less hesitant to admit Turkey into its ranks if Turkey didn't defiantly refuse to withdraw from Northern Cyprus. Perhaps Turkey's admission to the European Union would be more acceptable to the various European countries if Turkey lifted its economic blockade of neighboring Armenia and Karabagh.

Mr. Parris would do more good by advising Turkey to reform its own practices than by trying to persuade readers to ignore the suffering Turkey inflicts on its own people and the economic hardship it inflicts on its neighbors. Turkey's alliance with the United States should not supercede moral standards of governance.


Director, Eastern Region

Armenian National Committee of America

Watertown, Mass.

Ambassador Mark Parris has a fine handle on all matters Turkish. His expertise and his suggestions should be heeded by our leaders in Washington.

A further, picayune suggestion here would go a long way in arousing our Turkish allies' enthusiasm and support for U.S. policy toward Iraq: Someone should tell the rabidly virulent anti-Turkish groups in the United States (i.e., the Greek and Armenian lobbies) to lay off. It would behoove these fanatics to act a bit more American and a bit less Greek and Armenian. After all, from Korea to Afghanistan, whenever we have needed help, we have knocked on the door of our staunch and forthright Turkish allies, not on the doors of people who inhabit Athens and Yerevan.


Paterson, N.J.

Professor taken to task for fraudulent scholarship

Professor Michael Bellesisles is leaving Emory University, if not "under a cloud" then certainly "under a rock" ("Professor quits in probe of gun book," Page 1, Monday). Indeed, a careful reading of the findings of the college committee that investigated his book leaves one with the impression that "Arming America: The Origins of a National Gun Culture" is based on skewed data, half-truths, distortions of facts and outright lies. In his zeal to present his case for tearing up the Second Amendment of the U.S. Constitution, Mr. Bellesisles evidently twisted fiction into fact and was idolized by the Left for his efforts. Now the house of cards that he so carelessly crafted has fallen down and he is out of a job, or at least will be at the end of the year.

Yet all may not be lost. Mr. Bellesisles can still salvage his career, if not his reputation. I urge him to apply for a research fellowship at the William Jefferson Clinton Presidential Library. There, he would have ample time and funding to rewrite history, advance lies, invent things that never occurred, and collaborate with others who share the same high regard for intellectual dishonesty. He might even get to meet and learn some tips from The Master himself.


Manteca, Calif.

Post-Soviet spelling

To improve coverage of Ukraine for which I am already thankful I wish to comment upon the spelling of Ukrainian names so that style and usage by The Washington Times do not fall victim to old totalitarian politics.

For example, in the article "President seen likely to avoid a probe" (World, Saturday), Bogdan Futey, the U.S. federal judge quoted, happens to be of Ukrainian descent. Therefore, his name should not be spelled Bogdan, but Bohdan.

The Russian alphabet does not have the letter h, as does the Ukrainian alphabet, and under the old Soviet regime, many things Ukrainian deliberately were Russified, including personal names. We should follow through with the breakup of the Soviet Union and let Ukrainians be Ukrainian. While some Russians may still believe in Russification, the independence of Ukraine and the other former republics should be reflected with representative spellings.

The cartographic Ukrainian Mapping Agency and Ukraine's official Committee on Legal Terminology have determined the official spelling of geographic and other transliterations, which warrant standard usage and style in American newspapers. Personal preferences always apply, of course, as may be the case with the judge.


Danville, Calif.

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