Letters from our readers

On “European Union-US summit in Vienna—Europe’s leaders close ranks with Bush”

I enjoy reading many of the articles on the WSWS, but this was a particularly good one. Thank you.


London, England

22 June 2006

On “American democracy in decay: US Congress debates the Iraq war”

“It is one of the longstanding myths of official American politics that ‘support’ for the troops means endorsing policies that lead to their deaths, while those who urge that US soldiers be moved out of harm’s way are slandered as being ‘against’ the troops.”

This is a great quote.


21 June 2006

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Quote from your article:

“There has been no debate on the Iraq war in either House or Senate for the past three years, since the passage of the resolution in October 2002 authorizing Bush to use force against Iraq. The administration has conducted an open-ended war, financed by emergency appropriations bills and without the slightest congressional oversight—a transparent demonstration of the extent to which democratic procedures have broken down in the United States.”

The truth Americans don’t want to see is that if our vaunted democracy was anything but weightless words, it wouldn’t have been so easy for the current administration to erase moral underpinnings that uphold “democracy.”

If all of what we Americans understood as “democracy” can be so easily swept aside, how could we have really had genuine “democracy”?

A more understandable concept, in the glaring spotlight of endless war, is that money, talks, walks, and rules. If it smells like profit, it is profit. No matter what color the horse is painted.

Bill Moyers was fired from PBS because he dared to believe in democracy; he asked: Where is the outrage? An esteemed journalist, protected by our democratic ideals, working for the only “public” television broadcast company, lost his position because he dared to use it in the public interest. If you believe in democracy, you will have a difficult time in squaring that with how democracy is supposed to work.

Democracy, if it ever existed, has been attacked by the HIV of capitalism and is just a shadow of itself; without the media to pump in wonder drugs, it would die the death it has long since owned.


Duluth, Minnesota, USA

20 June 2006

On “Indian prime minister ignores opposition to Narmada dam extension”

The way the authorities and the media have dealt with the question of raising the height of the dam has indicated their utter disregard of the interests of those uprooted from their homes and land. The saber-rattling of the little monster of Gujrat against a film star is comic, but is also an indication of bankruptcy of public opinion.

I am a freedom fighter. If I was not old and infirm, I would have myself joined the valiant fighters for the distressed people.


Lucknow, UP, India

On “‘To Each Time Its Art, to Art Its Freedom’—Modernist architect Harry Seidler dies in Australia”

Thank you for this excellently presented piece on Harry Seidler. I had never heard of him and probably would not in the future if not for the WSWS’s sensitivity to the significance and import of a field of endeavor in relation to humane values and capitalist priorities.


Bradenton, Florida, USA

20 June 2006

On “Britain: Did police shoot to kill in Forest Gate anti-terror raid?”

I have lived in Forest Gate—indeed my eldest son was born in the local maternity hospital. It is a run-down but lively community in East London, as ill-served by its Blairite council as we all are by this Blairite government.

At least Dubya doesn’t masquerade as being any less vile than he actually is. Anyone can see that the Republicans are a bunch of wealthy gangsters. It was the same here under Thatcher and her successors. Blair adds a component of betrayal to the lies and deceit. He and his gang remind me of the pigs in Animal Farm, and are all the proof needed that when such scum can float on top, then the swamp underneath must be truly stinking. The Forest Gate outrage merely confirms the point.


Bristol, England

20 June 2006

On “Tsotsi: Can a baby redeem a hardened thug?”

An excellent review of Gavin Hood’s Tsotsi. The film has some moments of truth, but these are obscured by sentimentalism and a general political disorientation in the face of the pain and hardship that is the lot of millions of South Africans. The film also serves to underpin a system of rule that baulks at the prospect of collective political action by the likes of Tsotsi. Emancipation of a sort, it seems, can only come about through individual effort. This is trite and thoroughly conformist.

Although I have not read Fugard’s novel, I know many of his plays. The film Tsotsi seems to lack the resonance of such works as The Blood Knot, Hello and Goodbye and People are Living There. As such, one leaves the cinema feeling somewhat unsatisfied.


South Africa

19 June 2006