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VIEWPOINT LETTERS

Olympic Fever: Catch It, America

August 14, 2004

On the morning the U.S. Olympic basketball team played Turkey ("Jittery U.S. Team Defeats Turkey, 80-68," Aug. 11), two bombs went off in Istanbul tourist hotels. USA Basketball Executive Director Jim Tooley reassured everyone with this comment: "They gave us intelligence. The State Department official reiterated this was not targeted at American or Western interests, and it was something that is not atypical of what happens in Turkey."

Wait a minute. What Olympic year is this, 2000? Not "American or Western interests"? Hello! "Tourist hotels?" It appears the American dream is alive and naive as ever. I just hope it doesn't take something like Munich in 1972 or a "war on terror" to wake up our "team" USA.

Henry Rosenfeld

Santa Monica

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Regarding Sunday's article "Tarnished But Still Golden":

Lindsay Davenport's comments about the Athens Olympics do a real disservice to the Greeks. There would be some anti-American sentiment no matter where the Games were held. But the Greeks as a whole are warm and caring people who are smart enough and sensitive enough to distinguish between Americans and American politics.

Sure it's not going to be like Atlanta -- it's never as much fun being the away team as it is playing on your home court.

The Greeks understand that the whole point of the Olympics is to bridge the differences between nations by focusing on athletic accomplishment, rather than political and cultural differences. Safety concerns are one thing, but a little negative sentiment? All the more reason to go and show the world the good side of America.

Jacqueline Fuchs

Los Angeles

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