Letters to the editor

June 2022

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Not going back

Not again.

I am 70. I had an illegal abortion prior to Roe with the help of a Jane group. I was lucky, and my abortionist was a real doctor. But the procedure was done without anesthesia and the pain was traumatic.

Thanks, FS, for fighting for free abortion access. Nobody should have to suffer an illegal abortion.

Katie Bretsch, Portland, Oregon


Palestinian-American journalist assassinated

Shereen Abu Akleh, a Palestinian-American journalist, personified “truth to power” and for that, she was targeted and killed by the Israeli military.

On May 11, 2022, while wearing a blue vest with “PRESS” written on it, she was shot and killed while covering a raid by the Israel Defense Forces on the Jenin refugee camp in the West Bank.

There is no doubt that she was specifically targeted. As The Palestine Chronicle noted, “Her on-the-spot coverage of daily violations by the apartheid regime including detentions, home demolitions, military raids and killings of Palestinians, placed her in the crosshairs of Israel’s terrorist army.”

Throughout her decades-long career, she informed the public at large, and inspired many — particularly Arab women — to become journalists. Tributes have poured in via social media and mainstream platforms, acknowledging her profound impact. Tens of thousands of Palestinians gathered for her funeral in Jerusalem. A funeral the Israeli military disrupted with gross displays of violence including attacking the pallbearers carrying her coffin.

The assassination of Shereen Abu Akleh is, unfortunately, not unique. Across the globe journalists have been attacked and killed — too often with governmental impunity.

Protecting free press is not just in the hands of journalists. It is in all our hands. We must demand justice for Shereen Abu Akleh and all those slain for reporting the truth.

Monica Hill, Seattle, Washington

Defend Julian Assange

Thank you for your previous coverage of Julian Assange’s case. Journalism is not a crime, but Assange has been treated as a criminal. After seven years in an Ecuadorian Embassy, he was arrested and put in a maximum-security prison for over 1,000 days in Britain. His crime was publishing documents and videos exposing war crimes by U.S. troops in Iraq and Afghanistan.

The UK is poised to extradite him soon to the United States where the government is eager to put him on “trial” for espionage.

If convicted, Assange could be sentenced up to 175 years in a supermax prison. This harassment must end. His real “crime” was exposing the U.S. government’s dirty dealings.

His actions should be defended by all who believe in a free press. He should be receiving journalism awards, not prison.

Drop the charges, end the political witch hunt, and free Assange!

Louis Harris, Port Angeles, Washington


News you can use

I read FS because I learn things I wouldn’t hear about otherwise, especially events outside the United States.

Recently, a friend I hadn’t seen in 20 years called, and as we caught up, he told me he now worked for Rio Tinto. “You’ve probably never heard of them,” he said.

“Oh, I’ve heard of them all right,” I replied. I then related some of what I learned about Rio Tinto’s mining operations in Australia and Indonesia from reading the FS. My friend didn’t seem to know any of it. Because much of the information is hidden from the general public.

The FS keeps readers informed.

Johnny Townsend, Seattle, Washington

Excellent stories

Thanks for the great lead article in the latest paper [“The ravaging of Ukraine,” Vol. 43, No. 2]. Indeed, it’s crucial for more people to understand the imperialist roots of not only the crisis in the Ukraine, but the general mega-messes the world finds itself in!

Megan Cornish’s bio of James P. Cannon is superlative. And, as an ecosocialist, I really appreciated William Hathaway’s article regarding the commodification of nature.

Another great issue!

Dave Zinck, Steilacoom, Washington

The FS welcomes your feedback and opinions. Letters may be edited for length. Please write to 5018 Rainier Avenue S., Seattle, WA 98118, or email FSnews@socialism.com.

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