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Reagan Policy in South Africa

July 29, 1986

There are times when people blithely say and do things that to me are so irreconcilable that I begin to doubt my own rationality. President Reagan has soothingly told us that "we and our allies cannot dictate to the government of a sovereign nation, nor should we try." At the same time he has made it clear that he doesn't like the Sandinista government and how specifically he wants it to change. And he has committed this country to support a group of mercenaries who each day wage war against the sovereign government of Nicaragua to force that government to follow the rules that President Reagan has prescribed.

Can anyone tell me how that can be reconciled? In the absence of that I have to conclude that our President is capable of holding two ideas in mind at the same time, contrary to what some of his critics have said. But to do so he must be unconscious of one while he is occupied with the other. And no one must be allowed to get near enough to him to point that out.

THOMAS ROBISCHON

Venice

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