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U.S. Reaction to Terrorism

January 15, 1986

Of all the editorials and articles condemning the proliferation of Middle East terrorism, there is only one, by G.H. Jansen (Opinion, Jan. 5), which also tries to understand the motivation behind the rage; and this is crucial, because the Mideast crises will not be settled with guns but with common sense and understanding.

As Jansen recognizes, neither terrorist actions nor retaliatory strikes will accomplish anything but to perpetuate the "cycle of blow and counterblow."

It was Albert Einstein, offered the presidency of the Israeli state in 1952, who believed the top political priority of Israel "should be an understanding with the Palestinians." A forum to culture such understanding and address grievances seems inevitable in the wake of this new brand of "ferocious, suicidal" violence.

Terrorism is a cancer that grows in the suffering body of its people. Terrorism must be dealt with sternly, yet its origins must also be understood. Perhaps the time has come for the intelligent people on both sides to talk, to understand.

PETER JAISLE

Los Angeles

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