2003-07-16 / Editorials

Letters

Right Ancient Wrong
To The Editor:

Everyone in the Middle East demands that peace be founded upon their own interpretation of what is just and fair. Neither Palestinian nor Israeli can claim sole possession of morality. each side is as right, as it is wrong. With right belonging to neither side, what is needed is outside forces that compel the parties to reach a fair and enduring peace agreement.

Israel was created from the ruins of Europe at the expense of the Palestinians. The enabling powers that granted statehood to Israel through the UN, failed to address or consider the indigenous non-Jewish population. No provision was made to compensate or care for the residents who were expelled from their lands. The West simply believed that sheep herders who had no economic, military or political might, would never be a problem. Lands that belonged to the Palestinians were given away without thought. The harsh realities of Nazi Germany were to be cleansed by an act that denied Palestinians human rights or dignity.

The warfare, terrorism, and economic costs of the enduring conflict came as a surprise to many on 9/11. Yet the attacks of September 11 followed years of highjackings, oil shortages, Middle East hostilities and worldwide terrorist attacks. Without decisive intervention by the powers, the only sure thing is that history will be repeated. Acts that defy comprehension by their cruelty will appear on the streets of the Middle East, as well as cities throughout the world.

The U.S. must unite a coalition of nations to step fully into resolving the Middle East crisis. Palestine must be not only created, but empowered as a nation that can fend for its citizens. The Israeli settlers moved out of the territories. Compensation must be paid to those who were caused to forfeit land and possessions when Israel was created. Investments must flow for a generation into both Israel and Palestine creating the engine for economic success enabling people to dream of building instead of tearing down. America must act to right a wrong, and to protect itself from extremists who only seek another opportunity to strike.

Edward Horn

Atlantic Beach

Pans Car Alarms

To The Editor:

I was interested to read Steven Walker’s article "Car Alarm Menace Ruins Quality Of Life: in the Western Queens Gazette (June 25, 2003).

I thought Mr. Walker would like to know that he is not alone and that there are concerned citizens in Queens who share his sense of moral outrage and suffering from the prevalence of car alarms. I would like to point out to your readers that there are Web sites and sources of information about combating this urban blight. Readers can visit Noise Free America (http://www.noisefree.org) that has a wealth of information about banning noise from car alarms, boom cars and leaf blowers.

Another web site I recommend is silent Majority (http://www.silentmajorityny.org). It was very effective in organizing concerned citizens like myself to attend the recent City Hall public hearing on banning car alarms. They also submitted a well-written report that was read by councilmembers about the effects of car alarms and the harm it does to the quality of life of New Yorkers.

At that hearing, there were representatives from the Consumer Electronics Association (CEO), executives from Distributed Electronics (a maker of car alarms) and Audiovox (another maker of car alarms). They flew out from their lush green California suburbs just to defend their noisy products, and unfortunately, the New York Police Department and the Department of Environmental Protection testified that they were reluctant to ban car alarms, but offered no proof that car alarms work to stop theft.

I offer praise to Councilmembers John Liu and Eva Moskowitz for their bills calling for the ban on car alarms. They really do care.

This is going to be an uphill battle, but I encourage concerned readers to get informed and do take action. The police are largely indifferent, I live near a police station and the car alarms from the police officers’ civilian cars are a daily nuisance in my own life. The perception that car alarms are to be an accepted part of the city soundscape must change.

Sincerely,

Richard Tur

Astoria

Hails QL Measures

To The Editor:

I am so glad that the Ravenswood power plant workers have averted their strike. This strike would have endangered the lives of countless thousands of people by causing power outages.

I am also glad to hear that the alcohol law was finally part of our statutes and came into effect on July 1. Drunk drivers are a menace to our society, causing needless deaths, injuries and sorrow to those who are victims. In addition, our city and state will be able to get funds from our federal government that can be used to improve and build better highways. These two aforementioned pieces of information will improve the quality of life of New Yorkers.

Cynthia Groopman

Long Island City

Protests Radio Behavior

Copies of the following letters were received by the Gazette.

To: Federal Communications Commission

From: Athan John Christodoulou

Fax: (202) 418-0710

[On] Sunday, June 22, 2003, WINS RADIO broadcast that the Prime Ministers of Israel and Palestine were in Jordan, along with Russia and a representative of the [European Union] the architects of the Roadmap To Peace.

Several Greeks including me, called WINS radio to question the terminology [of] European Union representative, instead of: Greece, President, of the European Union till the end of June, resulting in the cessation of the call, by the WINS radio representative slamming down their telephone.

Note: WINS radio’s license has to be renewed every two years and can be challenged [on the grounds of ethnic discrimination to the F.C.C. [Federal Communications Commission) 201 Varick St., New York New York 10014. Telephone: 1-888-225-5322, Fax 202-418-0710.

Information: In America, Greeks are second in money, second in self employment–1 to 50 employees, lowest in crime, divorce and high school dropouts, plus first as an ethnic group in college and university entrants.

Sincerely,

Athan John Christodoulou

Chairman: U.S. 2000 Census Hellenic

Steering Committee of New York State

Mr. Athan John Christodoulou

Chairman

U.S. 2000 Census Hellenic Steering Committee of N.Y. State

41-36 76th Street

Elmhurst, NY 11373

Dear Mr. Christodoulou,

Thank you for bringing to our attention the matter about WINS radio. It certainly appears that there may be reasons for official protest on the grounds of ethnic discrimination.

Because of the sensitive nature of the matter, I will ask our attorney to check into it and a course will be taken based on his findings.

Once again, I commend you for your vigilance and for your interest in protecting our ethnic integrity.

Best regards

Chris Tomas

Vice President

N & S America Region

Learn From History

To The Editor:

In today’s Sunday comics, [June 22], there is a "future cartoon" from June 22, 2006 in which George Bush says that, although his "intelligence reports" show Cuba is harboring members of alQaeda, and has advanced chemical, biological, and nuclear weapons, he is going to focus on "finishing the job" in Afghanistan, Iraq, Iran, and newly "liberated" Syria! With reference to George Santayana’s often-repeated quote from a century ago, that those who cannot remember the past are condemned to repeat it, I find this Boondocks "future cartoon" to be much more than just the joke of the day!

A half-century ago the French were being beaten by the Communists in Vietnam, and President [Dwight] Eisenhower made that fateful decision to send "just a few advisors" to help the leaders of South Vietnam, after the French withdrew and the country was divided into communist North Vietnam and supposedly pro-Western South Vietnam. Then, after the American "advisors" came under enemy fire, President [John] Kennedy sent in some 5000 "protectors" for the 500 "advisors"! President [Lyndon] Johnson then decided that "America can’t back down!", and supposedly to prevent the "domino effect" of losing all Southeast Asia to the Communists, subsequently dispatched over 500,000 troops to that jungle hell! President [Richard] Nixon, of course, didn’t intend to "back down" either, and until Watergate became the main focus of his attention, continued the carnage in Vietnam. In the end, after our two decades of "help" in Vietnam, over 57,000 Americans and over 1,000,000 Vietnamese were killed in the war, and Vietnam went Communist anyway! The more than 200,000 American wounded and millions of Vietnamese wounded remain as living proof of our Presidents’ folly in escalating that "anti-Communist" war!

To get Congressional "approval" for committing a half-million American soldiers to the Vietnam debacle, Lyndon Johnson used the so-called attack on an American ship in the Gulf of Tonkin in 1965, when Congress stupidly gave him carte blanche to do as he decided, after an "attack" we now know never happened! Last year, Congress similarly gave "permission" to George Bush to attack Iraq, because of supposed "weapons of mass destruction" and involvement in the 9/11 Attack on America! There is no evidence of the latter, however, and the former cannot be found! Hundreds of British and American soldiers, and thousands of Iraqi soldiers and civilians have died because of these myths, or worse, possible outright lies, about Iraqi "threats" to the U.S.A. Just as the Vietnam conflict "spilled over" into Laos and Cambodia, we now see Bush saber-rattling against Syria and Iran as the "future cartoon" cited and with an average of more than one American a day being killed in our occupation of Iraq, we seem well on the way to repeating the Vietnam "cycle", as more and more American families receive a body-bag containing a loved one! In 2006, instead of "Hey, Hey,-L.B.J., How Many Kids Did You Kill Today?", will millions be chanting, "Hey, Hey, Hey -George W. Bush, How Many Innocents Have Your Wars Turned To Mush?" Learn what Santayana meant, Mr. Bush, before you escalate America into a nuclear holocaust!

Frank Skala

Bayside

Radios Are Danger

To The Editor:

As a 25-year member of Community Board 6, Queens, and a licensed Amateur Radio Operator affiliated with the Red Cross Emergency Service, I have been deeply concerned for many years that radios carried by first responders to terrorism, namely Police, Fire and EMS, are not compatible and that these units cannot talk to each other directly.

At last week’s [June 25] Community Board 6 meeting I asked representatives of the Police Department and Transit Police whether their radios are compatible with each other and with the Fire Department and EMS. The answer was a resounding "No". Many deaths at the World Trade Center on 9/11/01 of members of Fire, Police and EMS occurred due to lack of communication with each other. Unfortunately, this tragedy is continuing to this day. This problem must be addressed immediately by all elected officials, all department commissioners and the radio industry.

During budget hearings at Borough Hall I have for years requested that these radios be made compatible and have been ignored by all departments. As a licensed amateur radio operator I know that this problem is nationwide and is interfering with the fight against terrorism. Up to this point the United States Congress has not done an adequate job of resolving this problem and Sen. [Diane] Feinstein’s (D–CA) Bill in the Senate is going nowhere. As a result, law enforcement, firefighters and EMS teams cannot communicate with each other when it matters most.

With all the electronic advances made by industry it should be possible to solve this problem today. All monies needed to come up with a solution should be allocated. We are dealing here with the lives of the first responders, the Police, Fire and EMS and also with the lives of our residents in Queens County, as well as the city of New York.

Norbert Chwat

President,

Forest Hills Action League


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