Al-Ahram Weekly   Al-Ahram Weekly
17 - 23 August 2000
Issue No. 495
Published in Cairo by AL-AHRAM established in 1875 Issues navigation Current Issue Previous Issue Back Issues

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Wilkie lives on

Sir- Having a past and somewhat personal and familial relationship with American-Egyptian (Arab) attitudes I am reminded of a quote attributed to Wendell Wilkie who ran for the US Presidency circa 1940s which is reflected in Thomas Friedman's writings about the Middle East and the Arab nations.

That quote, unfortunately is still pervasive in the US. It is my understanding that that quote was made in Cairo, Egypt where Mr Wilkie was visiting. As best as can be remembered it went something like this: "It will be another 25 years before these people [referencing the people of Egypt] will become jackasses."

It therefore is a waste of time to consider Mr Friedman's statements as representing an educated or knowledgeable individual.

In short what can one expect from an avowed Zionist.

Armand DeLaurell
Little Rock, Arkansas

True disposition

Sir- Thank you for Ibrahim Nafie's article: "Clinton's ugly threats" (Al-Ahram Weekly, 3-9 August). I have sent it to all my subscribers and continue to enjoy and share so many excellent commentaries in your newspaper.

All Americans pray that you and others will not take for granted that the American people share Bill Clinton's attitudes, rants, hatred for all peoples across the globe.

Most Americans sought Bill Clinton's impeachment, but in view of the controlled Congress, as our votes in the upcoming election, the controls are against the true disposition of the people here.

Godspeed, Ibrahim Nafie.

Continued success, we are with you.

Karolyn Martin

People matter

Sir- The 3 August article in the Egyptian Gazette on perils of Egyptian streets failed to mention the greatest peril. Disease. It is unconscionable that the manual street cleaners are not provided disposable gloves by the Health Department. Certainly bacteria like Staphlococcus and Streptococcus live in the street debris along with viruses and fungi, all aided by your warm moist climate.

It would require the classic tripple surgical scrub to clean the hands and forearms of these street cleaners.

Does it not matter that the safety of these workers and their families, the others who touch what they touch through glasses and cups and counters is disgarded by such negligence?

The greatest saving of life and health is preventive medicine -- every MD knows this. Plastic and vinyl are cheap.

Oh fair Health Department where art thou?

Martin H. Platt, MD, FAAP

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