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The Providence Journal
Please Bomb Somewhere Else
August 18, 2000
Jeffrey Gordon, the U.S. Navy spokesman at Roosevelt Roads Naval Base, in Puerto Rico , called the people against the presence of the Navy on the offshore Puerto Rican municipality of Vieques thugs. With this one remark, he has wiped out a good part of the many millions that the U.S. Navy has now spent on public relations in Vieques and the rest of Puerto Rico . The people of Vieques are not thugs. They are U.S. citizens who have a right to live in peace and health on their island something that the presence and the bombing by the Navy of Vieques does not allow them to do.
Last month, a survey taken on Vieques found that 85 percent of the people who live there want the Navy to leave their island.
The Navy asserts that it cannot do without Vieques , yet for more than a year it did not practice there. During the last 50-plus years, the Navy has bombed, dumped toxic wastes and generally made life on Vieques hard.
It is time for the Navy and Jeffery Gordon to look for somewhere else to bomb and make war on.
MARIA M. RAMIREZ
The Virginian-Pilot and The Ledger-Star, Norfolk, VA
Navy Training: Sure, Leave Vieques; Bomb Nantucket
August 17, 2000
As Christopher Xenakis wrote in his column on Vieques (op-ed, Aug. 9), we are indeed viewed as "occupying tyrants" in Puerto Rico . That's the perfect phrase, and it is partly our own fault. Our governmental policies are humiliating to their sensibilities. We should be more thoughtful and stop scratching our heads over this issue.
If we cared at all, which we don't, we would take Mr. Xenakis' advice and get out of Vieques and select a place closer to home. Could I suggest Martha's Vineyard or Nantucket Island? Bomb the smithereens out of them!
Robert L. Scofield