Gaza: the Terrorist Factory

Dear Editor,

On April 23, NPR reported on-the-ground observations from Gaza. [https://tinyurl.com/546e9ffz].

Rafah resident Ahmed Barhoum’s wife and 5-year-old daughter were killed when Israelis bombed his house. Saqer-Abd el-Aal’s wife and six children were bombed in their home.

What happens when a man looses all his possessions, his wife, and his children? His future taken, he has nothing to live for, nothing to build a future for. Perhaps the only thing giving his life meaning is dedication to revenge and retribution.

While Israel’s government contends it is destroying Hamas, it is also creating more enemies, dedicated, with nothing else to live for, to Israel’s destruction.

One shouldn’t conclude, however, that Palestinians are innocent and only Israel is evil. Hamas’ extreme brutality on October 7th sparked Israel’s over-reaction, by design. Now, more civilians are dying, along with some militants. Meanwhile, partisan protesters are polarizing our sensibility.

Can peace and empathy return? Yes! Starting with each of us.

Bruce Joffe

Piedmont, Calif.

Bruce:

If Bibi Netanyahu were to decide to create Palestinian terrorists, he wouldn’t have to change a thing.

The Editor

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Paranoid Suburbia Forever!

To the Editor;

I never thought I’d have to fight to keep the right to live in a single-family neighborhood in my beloved New Hampshire.

But it seems that is just what is happening after many bills espousing the “Strong Towns” agenda were passed by the N.H. House on March 28th by 152 Democrats with the help of 67 Republicans.

How these bills protect property rights is a mystery. They would work to chip away at, and eventually eradicate, any more neighborhoods that are strictly zoned single-family, a type of housing that 70 – 80 percent of the public eventually choose. These bills would remove one of the most popular choices in housing.

Some support these bills thinking it’s protecting the rights of those who want to build multiple units on their property, even after they knowingly bought land in a single-family zone. Others think these bills would help the government mitigate a supposed housing “crisis”, something we don’t even think is the government’s purview in the first place.

What both groups are really doing is enabling the implementation of the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals, a component of Agenda 21, which is known to be a philosophy based on the false “climate change” movement.

If you don’t want N.H. turned into California, please write to all your N.H. Senators (Senators@leg.state.nh.us) and tell them you don’t want the eradication of single-family neighborhoods by the passage of these “Strong Towns” bills that are currently in the N.H. Senate.

Jane Aitken

Bedford, N.H.

Jane:

You complain that these bills will “chip away at, and eventually eradicate any more neighborhoods that are strictly zoned single-family, a type of housing that 70 – 80 percent of the public eventually choose.”

You’re not seriously suggesting, we hope, that would-be homebuyers have a choice, are you? In this market?

Typical conversation:

“Does it have a roof?”

“Yes.”

“Is it currently on fire?”

“No.”

“OK, I guess we’ll take it. Here’s our firstborn.”

People can only buy what’s there. What’s there is a build environment that resulted from a conglomeration of housing and transportation policies that have sent our global climate into a high-speed wobble.

You question the existence of a housing crisis, then add that such a thing would not be “in the government’s purview in the first place.”

God help us if the government should step in and usurp the role of the “invisible hand of the market” — a standard libertarian position. Do you also, like the New Hampshire Libertarian Party, as noted elsewhere in this issue, approve of summarily shooting protestors?

We’re glad you brought up Agenda 21, which you say is “known to be a philosophy based on the false ‘climate change’ movement.” That clarifies things. In other words, you’re holding to the John Birch Society line. Do you also agree with Glenn Beck, who’s claimed its aim is to cut the global population by 85 percent?

Let’s get a second opinion. Here’s what Wikipedia has to say about that:

“Agenda 21 is a non-binding action plan of the United Nations with regard to sustainable development. It is a product of the Earth Summit (UN Conference on Environment and Development) held in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, in 1992. It is an action agenda for the UN, other multilateral organizations, and individual governments around the world that can be executed at local, national, and global levels. One major objective of the Agenda 21 initiative is that every local government should draw its own local Agenda 21. Its aim initially was to achieve global sustainable development by 2000, with the ‘21’ in Agenda 21 referring to the original target of the 21st century.”

In other words, it’s ancient history—another valiant effort to save the planet, stymied by capitalists and libertarians. Had it been followed, we’d be better off today.

The Editor

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Boros Challenges Biden

Dear Editor:

What is leadership? What is success? For millions of American voters, Trump represents the epitome of both leadership and success, sad to say.

A big ego with a megaphone is not true leadership, however. Sure, it represents a low-brow style of leadership, but it does nothing to raise consciousness to a higher level.

Higher consciousness is what’s going to save us. Appealing to the lowest common denominator is not the way out of the hole we’re in, but, rather, the way to dig the hole even deeper.

Additionally, a fat wallet with money to burn is not true success, truth be told. Sure, it represents a form of worldly achievement, if materialism is your highest aim in life, but selfish ambition that puts profits over people and planet is a soul sickness that leads to social and ecological catastrophe.

Although there’s nothing inherently wrong with money and material things, provided they are seen for what they are, all too often money and material things tend to distract and delude. Distracted and deluded about what matters most, we lose our way.

We can do better. We can aim higher.

Rather than tinker at the edges of an oftentimes flawed system, as President Biden seems content to do, seeking to ban menthol cigarettes while selling weapons of destruction to Israel, for example, we can question the whole system and its perpetual need for greed and violence.

We, the people, can do better than settle for the lesser of two evils yet again. Just speaking for myself, I much prefer good over evil. Should you be of like mind, as I hope, then I kindly ask you to write in “Alex J. Boros” for U.S. president.

Thank you for your time and consideration. We’re worth it.

Sincerely,

Alex J. Boros, candidate for president

Rochester, N.H.

P.S. Much appreciated chez-moi is the astute political cartoon on page three of The New Hampshire Gazette for April 19, 2024. Being a clean and sober hippie, I hope America will embrace a resurgence of free thinkers.

Alex:

We’re happy to print your letter. There is much in it we admire. Like you, we are dismayed at this country’s eagerness to elevate Mammon over… well, just about everything. Although we laud your values, we cannot endorse your plan. Whether it be for RFK Jr., Jill Stein, Cornel West, or whomever, any potential vote for anyone other than the Democratic nominee is a vote for fascism.

There are those who may argue that a vote for Biden is also vote for fascism.

To them we say, the system in place is the system in place. If you can wave your Harry Potter stick and change it within the next 186 days, more power to you.

The Editor

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What, Exactly, Did He Mean by “Execute”?

Dear Editor:

Article II of the U.S. Constitution imposes a duty on the President, who must “take Care that the Laws be faithfully executed” and take an oath or affirmation to “faithfully execute the Office of President.”

The Supreme Court held arguments last week regarding whether former President Trump enjoys some level of immunity for his actions on January 6, 2021, for which he is currently facing a criminal indictment. There is some indication from the questions posed by some Justices that a certain level of Presidential immunity is warranted for actions taken within their official duties.

The actions on January 6, 2021, for which Mr. Trump has been indicted, were clearly beyond his official duties which require him to “take care that the laws are faithfully executed.” In fact, his actions were clearly in violation of the laws he was charged to “faithfully execute”, unless Trump was using the other definition of the word execute in his actions. When one violates the laws they are charged to protect, they cannot then claim immunity from those crimes by stating they were acting within their official duties. Since when is breaking the law considered performing one’s official duties, especially when those crimes were committed in one’s self interest not the nation’s? This is inconsistent with the Constitution, the Presidential oath of office, and the rule of law.

Rich DiPentima

Portsmouth, N.H.

Rich:

There is no mystery here. The situation is perfectly simple. The reason this matter appears clear to you, a mere retired U.S. Air Force officer, is because you labor under the disadvantage of not having received a lifetime appointment to a position in which you answer to no one, and yet are free to amuse yourself by uttering complex arguments in incomprehensible jargon, the better to obfuscate your motives as you achieve your political objectives.

The Editor

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Ayotte as Trump’s A.G.? Oh, My!

Dear Editor:

With shock I heard Kelly Ayotte (our once state Attorney General) on radio backing off from her 2016-election year condemnation of Donald Trump. Then she properly cared that her 16-year-old daughter “heard” Trump’s lascivious comments about women liking to “have their pussies grabbed.” Now what is she thinking? She prefers criminally-conducting-himself Trump to Biden who is using his power to create jobs for ordinary people, combat climate change, protect the environment, promote health and education. These are targets for Trump, who’d end the “progressive” track of Democrats / Biden-Harris.

Ayotte, Republican governor candidate now, is angling for U.S. Attorney General if Trump (save us, dear God) is elected. She has joined the lemmings who pack together in front of dangerous Trump, throwing morality to the mud.

About inflation and grocery prices—are prices ever coming down? I saw Golden Books (for kids) in the grocery store’s cereal aisle, now over $5.00. When my kids were little, the highest-priced Golden Book was 89 cents—and 25 cents when I was a kid. Food prices have so many underlying costs. Nothing to do with President-he or President-she. The food business involves many levels of wage-earners and transportation, etc. Those prices always rise.

Lynn Rudmin Chong

Sanbornton, N.H.

Lynn:

While reading your letter, we had a vision: the short-fingered vulgarian himself, reinstated in what we’ll have to start calling the Oval Sty, ordering around his Chief of Staff, Chris Sununu (wearing a leash and collar, to better delineate the power dynamic), aided and abetted by Attorney General Ayotte. If Thomas Paine wasn’t long dead already, this would surely kill him.

The Editor

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One More Mission Update

Dear Kickstarter backers,

I am delighted to share some very good news. The National Endowment for the Humanities, a federal agency in Washington, just awarded a major production grant to “One More Mission”, our documentary film about Vietnam Veterans Against the War. What makes this especially gratifying is that NEH grants are so hard to get. The agency’s media program only funds about 12 percent of the applications it receives.

This infusion of money from the NEH will go a long way toward enabling us to complete the film. We now expect to finish it within the next year.

I want you all to know that we never could have achieved this wonderful step forward without your support. Your contributions to our Kickstarter campaign enabled us to do the work that made our application to the NEH successful. A key part of that application was the work-in-progress video that you helped to fund. If you haven’t seen our most recent 15-minute version, you can screen it here [https://www.onemoremissionfilm.com/preview].

Even with the NEH grant in hand, however, we will still have to raise some more money. NEH awarded us less than the full funding we had asked for. So over the months to come we will have to make up that shortfall. If you have ideas about potential funders, please let me know. And anyone who would like to make a tax-deductible contribution to our non-profit sponsor, Catticus Corporation, to support our work, can do so here [https://www.catticus.org/one-more-mission].

Thank you all once again. I’ll keep you posted as the film moves forward.

With my warm regards and gratitude,

Ed Gray

Edward Gray Films, Inc.

99 Hudson Street 5th floor

New York, NY 10013

(917) 208-5493

onemoremissionfilm.com

Facebook: edgrayfilms

Ed:

Congratulations on the NEH grant. Thanks for keeping us informed. Please continue doing so.

Readers:

We are obviously in the tank for this project. Allow us to explain why.

The Vietnam War was built on lies. Those lies broke this country. Younger folks may not understand, and older ones may have forgotten, but most of the rancor we’re experiencing right now can be traced straight back to our national effort to make Vietnam safe for capitalism.

You cannot be a part of a thing like that war without it becoming a part of you. That experience can be, shall we say, uncomfortable.

There was a readily-available, socially-acceptable remedy for this discomfort: deny your own truth, and accept more lies—the gold standard of which was Ronald Reagan’s “noble cause.” But for some, that wouldn’t cut it. Ed’s film is about the truth, and those who told it.

The Editor

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Breaking The Cycle Of War

Our documentary film One More Mission tells a 50-year-old story. But it’s one that most Americans have never heard—and one that urgently needs re-telling today.

Remember what happened in 2001? And again in 2003? Our leaders said, yes, we’d have to sacrifice. But the benefits of going to war would far outweigh the costs. And in the end, we’d achieve victory.

But the costs proved to be much greater than we expected. Thousands of Americans were killed. Hundreds of thousands were wounded or afflicted with traumatic brain injuries or PTSD. In Iraq, Afghanistan and other countries, the death toll ran into the hundreds of thousands, and millions were injured or forced to become refugees. Yet in spite of America’s overwhelming military power, and the courage of its men and women in uniform, it didn’t win those promised victories. Iraq still teeters in instability. And in Afghanistan, the Taliban is back in power.

What will happen the next time a president tells us that Americans must fight and die? Are we doomed to keep repeating this cycle? Isn’t there some way to make people appreciate the horror and futility of war?

What few Americans realize is that fifty years ago, thousands of young veterans of the war in Vietnam succeeded in doing just that. They were members of a group called Vietnam Veterans Against the War—VVAW. And they were the first veterans in U.S. history to demand that their country end the war they had fought in. VVAW played a crucial role in turning the tide of public opinion against the war and pressuring President Nixon to finally end it.

Many Americans were shocked by these outspoken young people. They were breaking with a deeply rooted belief: that people owe their country unquestioned loyalty during wartime. But these veterans took the radical step of denouncing what their country was doing in Vietnam. Why? Because they had discovered—while serving in that war—that it violated the even deeper moral values on which they’d been raised. And because of the physical courage they had proven on the battlefield, their acts of moral courage earned the respect—and won the support—of huge numbers of Americans.

But, unfortunately, the story of VVAW has faded from American memory. Today, as the world is once again confronted by war, it is vitally important that we reclaim that story. By bringing the hard-won insights of these courageous veterans to a new generation, our hope is that we can help prevent yet another war.

 — Ed Gray

Again, tax-deductible contributions to Catticus Corporation can be made at https://www.catticus.org/one-more-mission.

–=≈=–

“I recently reread Bernard Fall’s book on Vietnam, Street Without Joy. Fall makes painfully clear that we had almost no understanding of what we had gotten ourselves into. I cannot help thinking that if President Kennedy or President Johnson had spent a quiet weekend at Camp David reading that perceptive book, they would have returned to the White House Monday morning and immediately started to figure out a way to extricate ourselves from the quicksand of Vietnam.”

– Colin Powell, My American Journey, 1995

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