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Madeleine Albright

September 11, 1997

Re "Albright Is Right to Go Through With Mideast Visit," editorial, Sept. 5:

Secretary of State Madeleine Albright's Mideast visit must end with an agreement between Yasser Arafat and Benjamin Netanyahu not to point fingers at each other, nor respond, as they have, with the ancient law of "an eye for an eye." It is imperative these leaders go back to the basics. The U.N. voted a partition that created two states. Israel accepted it; Palestinians didn't.

And while in war, "the spoils go to the victor," losers never accept the fact. One would hope the PLO will finally accept reality. Fifty years of war, and now terror, will not destroy Israel. Better to use its energy to build. And Israel must remember from its own history, no people, wanting to be free, can live under the control of others.

The U.N. voted partition. The U.S. accepted it and pledged Israel's right to live as a Jewish "homeland." It's also committed to good relations with all Arab states. As the world's most powerful nation, the U.S. must use its economic power to reward or punish those who use terror and/or military to destroy humankind's need to feed, house and clothe themselves, and in the process, give meaning to life's worth for all human beings, and an opportunity to live in peace.

HYMAN H. HAVES

Pacific Palisades

* The Times' editorial states that to insist, as Israeli officials do, that Arafat is ultimately responsible for all terrorist acts is absurd. However, when Arafat publicly embraces Abdel Aziz Rantissi, a founder of Hamas and its top political leader, and eulogizes Hamas bombers as martyrs, he sends out a clear, unmistakable message.

BERNICE KRAEMER

Woodland Hills

* After I had finished reading "Israeli Freedom Fighters Recall Independence Struggle" (Sept. 8), I had only one question. That question is, "Would The Times publish a reciprocal article about the Palestinian refugees who were expelled from approximately 450 towns and villages by these so-called freedom fighters?"

ARCH MILLER

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