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Protests Against Gulf Actions

December 27, 1990

It seems The Times has finally "discovered" the peace movement. After months of protest which have escalated in recent weeks, suddenly three stories graced The Times.

But these stories belie the journalistic double standard which plagues the peace movement. The teach-in at Fairfax High attracted nearly 2,000 people, yet the large photograph that accompanied it pictured not an overflow audience braving the cold to hear the speakers from an adjacent courtyard, not the packed auditorium, not the banner with the names of the 56 U.S. servicemen who have already become victims of the latest U.S. military adventure, but a member of the Jewish Defense League, one of the small handful of pro-war counter-protesters.

In contrast, when The Times or other means of the mass media cover the Bush Administration's belligerent gulf policy, they rarely consider it appropriate to include voices of popular dissent.

As a result, the mass media have willfully allowed Washington elites to trivialize this crisis with deep historical roots into a sanctions-and-war later versus war-now debate. The third option, a peaceful solution through negotiations aimed at addressing longstanding grievances in the region, is tragically missing.

DAVID WELLS

Los Angeles

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