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Finding the Stolen Middle Ground

I wish to thank Raj Krishnan [April 4, “Caught Between a Hawk And a Radical Place”] for articulating what I have been trying to explain to my 16 year-old son when discussing the recent protests to the war in Iraq. I was in college in the late 1960’s and remember well when the fringe radical groups began to usurp the peace movement that, at my campus, the University of Minnesota, had begun at the Catholic and Episcopalian student centers. Between the SDS and the Black Panthers, those of us who simply wanted the Vietnam War to end were caught in a dialogue of causes and methods with which many of us did not agree.

The message of those wanting a peaceful resolution using increasing diplomatic pressure and sanctions gets diluted by theatrical performance demonstrations. Pretend blood splashed on pretend victims may be cathartic to those looking for drama, and it certainly draws the press. But where is there room for those who want regime change, but also want cooperation from allies in the U.N., sustained popular support from the liberated and an America which is able to debate without becoming totally polarized? Your article, Raj, is one I will save.

Jean Vickers
Hopkinton, Massachusetts