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'Why Contra Aid Must End'

December 17, 1987

Your editorial states that "The Latin Americans have taken charge. They have assumed responsibility for security in the region." You blithely advocate that the United States abdicate its moral responsibility to help people who are fighting and dying for their freedom.

Implicit in this assertion is the suggestion that Nicaragua's neighbors, by mere virtue of their geographic proximity, have somehow acquired superior moral authority and insight. The fact is that Nicaragua's neighbors, by requiring an end to U.S. aid to the Contras in the treaty, as well as Sandinista aid to the insurgents in their own countries, without requiring enforcement procedures for the establishment of democracy in Nicaragua, are simply willing to sell out the freedom of the Nicaraguan people in return for pathetic paper assurances of their own security.

Were it not for the success of the Contras, the Sandinistas would never have entertained the thought of restoring the rights and freedoms of their people. Once the Contras have been eliminated by a cutoff in aid, the Sandinistas again have no reason to restore freedom and democracy to Nicaragua.

We should definitely continue to provide aid as insurance that democracy will be implemented.

PETER CALLIS

Santa Monica

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