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U.N. Commission on El Salvador

March 29, 1993

There can be no peace without justice--in El Salvador or elsewhere. And in that country, justice has just been ground beneath the wheel of an entrenched, self-serving oligarchy and a merciless, ideological military Establishment.

By decreeing amnesty President Cristiani and his Arena Party (March 21) have cynically cast a blanket of immunity over those on both sides who have committed the most egregious of crimes, again without heeding the voices of the people who cry at least for accountability.

Let us not compound the tragedy of ignoring the United Nations' findings and recommendations by lending military aid to the Cristiani government. That would be the ultimate blindness and cynicism on the part of the United States. Instead, I firmly believe that we should stand with the United Nations in support of whatever response it must make to this recent action by the Salvadoran government.

Please, let us not confuse "forgiveness" with justice. Cristiani coats the bitter pill of amnesty with the frosting of "forgive and forget." Murder, torture, genocide, and other such atrocities are not in the "forgiveness" category. They deserve the same kind of international condemnation, trials and sentences as were applied in the Nuremberg war crimes trials. They require justice.

WILLIAM CORZINE

Hacienda Heights

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