Pier 6 ParkingPossibly you know about the...

THE BALTIMORE SUN

Pier 6 Parking

Possibly you know about the parking problem at Pier 6 events; we didn't.

With the Pier 6 parking lot closed for construction, a series of signs direct concert goers around the corner. It took about one hour to reach the parking lot, which was full.

Parking lots in Little Italy seem to have space but only for patrons of their restaurants.

By then it was too late, so we headed back home, even though we had our tickets.

Patrons of Pier 6 events should be warned to leave home very early and don't pre-purchase tickets.

L. L. Green

Havre de Grace

Greatest Crime

When World War II ended and the full horror of the Nazi death camps was revealed to the American public, the question on the lips of many citizens was, "How could this have happened?" Most Americans responded to the questions by claiming such things would never be allowed to happen again.

Today, we view the horrors of the war in what was formerlYugoslavia with a sense of deja vu, as though reliving the revelations from Nazi Germany following WW II.

Once again the madness of intolerance expressed as "cultural purity" and "ethnic cleansing" has unleashed depravity nearly as totally evil as that created by the Nazis' "final solution."

The Serbian government has made an official policy of mass rape and has encouraged mass murder and torture. Unhappily, Croats and Muslims have responded with nearly equal brutality.

This has occurred in a nation possessing only a fraction of the military power developed by Germany in the 1930s. It has occurred in a situation here other nations of Europe are ready to intervene if a response were to be organized by the U.S.

Most importantly, it has occurred, not hidden behind a screen of propaganda and censorship, but rather in the open air of thorough written, spoken and visual media coverage.

Once again, the question must be asked, "How can this be allowed to happen?" And the answer must be that silence and passivity in the care of unspeakable horror is the greatest crime of all.

The U.S. has committed the crime of silence when in position to put on immediate stop to the horrors. Today U.S. warplanes fly silently over Sarajevo casually observing the gradual extermination of the last bastion of Muslim resistance.

President Clinton, as leader of the free world, is the only person in a position to take action to bring a stop to the tragedy.

The prestige, respect and moral leadership of the U.S. will be lost if appropriate military intervention does not occur. If the war is not brought to a halt, the next world-wide moral question will be, "How could this happen again?"

Paul D. McElroy

Baltimore

Heartfelt Thanks

It's difficult to put into words our feelings about the July 28 tanker truck crash on Interstate 83. But we would like to express our thanks to all who were involved in saving my life and to those who helped me recuperate at Maryland Shock Trauma.

All I could think of . . . what brave men! Two passers-by risked their lives to save mine when they pulled me from that terrible auto crash.

To them and everyone who has sent well wishes including the gallant Medevac helicopter crew and the caring hospital staff of the University of Maryland Trauma Center, my family and I are ever grateful.

Robert Gerard Carr

Glen Arm

New Challenge

Has the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People taken over Mayor Schmoke's drug challenge?

It appears that Mayor Kurt L. Schmoke has delegated his drug legalization commitment to George N. Buntin Jr., executive director of the city NAACP. Will this remove Mr. Schmoke from having to respond to his challenger when he runs for governor? I doubt it very much.

Mr. Schmoke has yet to take up my very simple suggestion that we debate the drug legalization issue.

Polls have shown 87 percent of the American public understands the deadly consequences and are opposed to legalization. Since community leaders -- Mr. Schmoke and now Mr. Buntin -- insist on sending the wrong and a seriously misleading message to our young and vulnerable, I now offer to challenge either under any conditions they choose.

Marshall M. Meyer

Baltimore

The writer is executive director, Governor's Executive Advisory Council.

Despots Respect Only Force

The closing question in Gwynne Dyer's August 3 Opinion * Commentary article ("The Tragedy of Israeli Justice") on Israel's recent bombardment of Hezbollah targets in southern Lebanon asks, "Why is it wrong to kill innocent people in gas chambers, and right to kill innocent people with helicopter gunships?"

This is an outrageous analogy not only because it accuses Israel of acting like the Nazis, but because it blames Israel for deaths that are in fact the fault of the governments of Lebanon, Syria and Iran, the parties responsible for Hezbollah's outlaw presence in southern Lebanon.

When the new Syrian-sponsored government of Lebanon took power, it disarmed every private militia in the country -- except one.

It left Hezbollah free to carry on its attacks against Israel from southern Lebanon based on two cold, cynical calculations: First, Syria decided it would do better at the peace talks if it had Hezbollah's guerrillas keeping up the pressure on Israel, in effect turning the people of southern Lebanon into both human bargaining chips and human shields.

And second, Syrian President Assad figured, apparently correctly, that when Israel's inevitable retaliation came, it would be Israel that would pay the price in public relations damage since the Gwynne Dyers of the world would not think to blame Syria for the human tragedy that resulted.

If Gwynne Dyer had been around 50 years ago, would the columnist have advised the Allied powers against invading Europe because of all the innocent lives that would be lost? And blamed Franklin Roosevelt and Winston Churchill instead of Hitler for the deaths of hundreds of thousands of Germans in Allied aerial bombardments?

Matthew Weinstein

Baltimore

"The Tragedy of Israeli Justice" merits further objective comment. While it praises Israeli courts for the even-handed, fair handling of the John Demjanjuk case in declaring him innocent ** of the charge of being Ivan the Terrible, it is critical of the Israeli government for having killed uninvolved Lebanese civilians in violent attacks on southern Lebanon.

The writer does admit that other governments, "even the most democratic and decent ones, are outlaws once they move outside the boundaries of their own domestic legal systems."

It is interesting how idealism can often blind one to reality. This columnist fails to face the fact that governments and their leaders who provoke these attacks are the real cause of these travesties to their civilian populations.

Over and over we see the examples of ruthless rulers attacking others for ethnic cleansing, personal aggrandizement, religious differences or simple hatred.

When the victim is timid or powerless, these injustices continue with resultant even greater loss of innocent civilian life.

These despots unfortunately respect only overwhelming force. They only cease their despicable actions when it becomes clear that the resultant damage will be far greater to themselves.

How many fewer noncombatants would have been maimed and killed had the world community mercilessly eliminated the war-making capacity of the Serbs when they initiated their travesty?

Does not the responsibility for the civilians killed and driven from their homes fall on Syria and Iran, who are behind the Hezbollah guerrilla attacks on Israel? Until world reaction insists that they 00 cease, will lesser means provide Israeli citizens with relief?

Would we react less severely if death were being rained down on our people from north or south of our borders?

Can the writer suggest a more humane manner of causing these provocations to cease?

Or would this columnist's fair conclusion be that Israel retreat into the sea so that a greater Syria may evolve?

Marion Friedman

Baltimore

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