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Column on U. S. Conquest of California

February 05, 1988

No, it wasn't the near-Arctic temperatures we've been having lately here in the Southland that chilled me this morning--it waW. McGarry's Around the Valley piece (Jan. 20). Manifest Destiny is alive and well, it seems, smoldering in the hearts of such citizens as McGarry. Reading that ringing prose of his, we are almost persuaded to forget the cost of conquest, the humiliation and impoverishment of those who've had to prop up our pretensions to superiority. McGarry tips us off with a wink to Lt. Col. Oliver North, who, like the adventurer John C. Fremont, "had to deny what he was really doing, but he knew what the President wanted."

Hats off to McGarry for his historical perspective--let us also pause a moment for the men, women and children who've suffered as victims of such pranks.

AMY ADELSTEIN

Canoga Park

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