- The Washington Times - Tuesday, September 25, 2007

ANALYSIS/OPINION:

Look this way

Six teens beating up on another one is not a case of “schoolyard fisticuffs or hooliganism” when the victim ends up in the hospital. Six thugs beating up on one kid deserve to be prosecuted (“Strange fruit in Jena,” Op-Ed, Friday.)

Unfortunately the press — TV, radio, Internet and print — set up the justification for this December gang beating by implying that the victim deserved the beating. After all, he was white, the tree was called the white tree and the nooses were hung in September by (sick) white teens. From my understanding he was only a white boy; he did not plant the tree or hang the nooses from it.

So, the press turns itself inward again to focus on dysfunctional celebrities like Al Sharpton and Jessie Jackson and even the skin color of presidential candidates. No one has addressed why six teens felt justified to send one boy to the hospital.

JOHN DYER

Huntingtown, Md.

Aiding Togo

The item “Flash floods ravaging Africa” (Briefing/Africa, Thursday) conveyed to readers the extent of this latest disaster to befall to Africa.

I welcomed particularly those paragraphs that detailed the extent of damage the recent rains have wrought on my own country, Togo. The floods are all the more devastating because they are centered in the Savanes region in the north of Togo.

Just weeks ago, before the rains began, UNICEF announced it was beginning to deliver therapeutic food supplies to the Savanes region to help alleviate “acute malnutrition” affecting 32 percent of the children under the age of 5 there. A $2.3 million assistance package is to be financed by the U.N. Central Emergency Rescue Fund and a $623,000 package by ECHO, the humanitarian assistance arm of the European Union.

The government of Togo has announced a national Savanes flood-relief effort valued at 500 million Chartered Financial Analyst qualification (approximately $1.3 million).

This is a considerable sum for a government that has received little development and/or budgetary assistance from the international community for about 13 years because of the community’s concern regarding the political and human rights situation in Togo, a concern that hopefully will be largely assuaged with parliamentary elections set for Oct. 14.

I would hope that the donor community, particularly the United States, would take to heart the words of UNICEF’s representative in Togo, Una McCauley, upon the announcement of the food supply effort: “This is the first time in a long time such sizable amounts have been given for a humanitarian response in Togo. We hope it marks the re-entry of Togo on the agenda of the international community,” a community that I believe has demonstrated little interest in intervening in the recent past.

LOREMPO TCHABRE

LANDJERGUE

Charge d’affaires A.I.

Embassy of the Republic of Togo

Washington

Remember the enlisted, too

As a retired fighter pilot, I was pleased to read of the celebration of the 60th anniversary of the U.S. Air Force by pilots who toured their former battlefields in Korea (“U.S. fighter pilots return in peace to Korean skies,” World, Friday). The experiences of these courageous airmen are indeed thrilling and exciting to recall.

Regretfully, military aviators — fighter pilots in particular — rarely mention those who enabled them to achieve their glorious feats: the enlisted crew chiefs, armorers, mechanics, logistics personnel and thousands of others whose job it was to make the airplanes fly.

Sometimes there is less excitement in describing their work, but it is crucial that the vital contributions of enlisted airmen and -women throughout the history of the Air Force be reported and recorded along with the exploits of the airplanes and pilots.

COL. DANIEL H. MCGRATH

Air Force (retired)

Member of the Board of Trustees

Airmen Memorial Museum

Suitland

Women and infertility

I am always pleased to have coverage of my speaking events in The Washington Times.

However, I wish to bring attention to the following inaccuracies in the coverage of a talk I gave on Aug. 22 at the National Press Club (“Women blinded to risks of infertility” Nation, Aug. 30).

In that article, I am described as saying there is a sharp decline in women’s fertility after the age of 30 and that fertility clinics are filled with women in their 30s desperately hoping to conceive.

What I stated that evening was that female fertility begins to decline at 30 and that the women crowding fertility clinics are in their 40s.

Young women need to know about the limits of their fertility so they can make well-informed decisions about relationships, career and children. It’s critical to get these numbers right.

DR. MIRIAM GROSSMAN

Senior fellow

Clare Booth Luce Policy Institute

Herndon

Kyoto’s signatories

Yesterday’s article on upcoming global warming negotiations (“Bush to host climate-change conference,” World) would have been better if it had not relied so heavily on the views of one environmental pressure group. For example, it probably is true that the nations that undertook mandatory commitments to reduce greenhouse gas emissions under the Kyoto Protocol are “very unlikely to take on more ambitious targets post-2012 unless the United States comes in with some commitments and unless there’s also something more from the major emerging economies,” as Elliot Diringer of the Pew Center on Global Climate Change said.

However, that is only part of the story. The nations that ratified Kyoto are not meeting their commitments. The percentage increase in Canada’s emissions is roughly double that of the United States. Since Kyoto was negotiated in 1997, emissions have been rising more rapidly in percentage terms in the 15 Western members of the European Union than in the United States, which did not ratify Kyoto. The European Union is doing a poorer job of limiting emissions despite lower economic growth and much less population growth than the United States.

It is hard, therefore, to see why the United States would agree to a second round when other parties to the agreement have failed to meet their solemn commitments in the first round. This would be especially foolish for the United States because in this country, unlike nearly every other in the world, private parties (such as environmental pressure groups) could go to court to force the federal government to meet its commitment. This explains why the European Union wants to pressure the United States into ratifying an international energy-rationing agreement, but it also explains why the United States should resist doing so. The European Union can sign a piece of paper and do nothing, but the United States would have to do what it agreed to do.

As for China, India, Brazil and other major developing economies, they have made it clear that they will not agree to mandatory emissions cuts because doing so would harm their economies. In my view, they are correct to consider their own self-interest, and I hope the Bush administration and future administrations will continue to do the same.

MYRON EBELL

Director

Energy and Global Warming Policy

Competitive Enterprise Institute

Washington

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