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Reagan's Visit to Germany

April 22, 1985

I am saddened by the furor over President Reagan's plan to visit a German cemetery. The people of Germany are our allies. What better way to strengthen today's friendship with them than to dissolve yesterday's conflicts. Forgiveness and healing do not signify forgetfulness; rather, willingness to rise above the past to a brighter and more loving future.

It is well to remember that the German dead are no longer the SS; they are the moldering bones of men and boys caught in the vise grip of Hitler's nationalism. They are the relatives and loved ones of our German friends--individuals, no longer parts of the mercifully defunct machine they once served.

No one is proposing to honor the SS, Hitler, or the Holocaust. Rather, this visit is meant as a gesture of good will to Germany today. If we cannot show this simple act of kindness to our friends, how can we ever hope to make peace with our enemies?

MARTHA PALMER

Topanga

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