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Origins of the Israeli Conflict

I enjoyed the articles in the special report, "Peace in the Balance" (part 1, July 30) but would like to comment on the author's brief analysis of the Arab rejection of the UN partition resolution.

For the indigenous Arabs (Palestinians), the consequences of the partition were far more profound than the writer hints - economically debilitating would be a better description.

In "The Palestinians," Jonathan Dimbleby says the land allotted to the Jewish state "incorporated almost all of the fertile land, including the main citrus groves which the Arabs depended on for their main export earnings," as well as the barley- and wheat-producing Negev region.

The origins of this conflict are myriad and complex - yet the Western news media rarely addresses them. An in-depth, sympathetic presentation of the Palestinian point of view would do much to promote peace in this troubled area. Maybe a few West Bank teenagers would refuse to join a terrorist group; perhaps a few villagers would report bombing plots to the authorities. You never know until you try.

Patricia Gordon

Reno, Nev.

Thank you for the articles. The reporting is exceptional for its balanced perspective and depth of analysis. Like the author's other articles, these clearly show the short-sightedness of the recent arms buildup by the parties involved.

What's still lacking, however, is an analysis of why of the parties cling to these outmoded security approaches. When Arabs and Israelis, among others, are able to deal with each other as equals and establish a dialogue based on dignity for both, then peace will be attainable.

John D. Hymes Jr.

Murrells Inlet, S.C.

Tibet under Chinese jurisdiction

The article "After Decades, Tibet Won't Bend to Chinese Ways" (July 29) warrants further clarification.

Tibet has been part of China for more than 700 years. The region was peacefully liberated in 1951 through an agreement between the central people's government and the local government of Tibet. Tremendous changes have taken place, particularly since democratic reform was introduced in 1959.


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