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Harold Willens

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CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
March 20, 2003 | Mary Rourke, Times Staff Writer
Harold Willens, a liberal political activist, entrepreneur and the author of California's nuclear freeze initiative of 1981, died Monday of heart failure at home in Brentwood. He was 88. He spent three decades supporting antinuclear causes and candidates, but he once said his efforts toward a nuclear freeze initiative brought his most surprising success. Officially known as the California Bilateral Nuclear Weapons Freeze Initiative, it called for the U.S.
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CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
March 20, 2003 | Mary Rourke, Times Staff Writer
Harold Willens, a liberal political activist, entrepreneur and the author of California's nuclear freeze initiative of 1981, died Monday of heart failure at home in Brentwood. He was 88. He spent three decades supporting antinuclear causes and candidates, but he once said his efforts toward a nuclear freeze initiative brought his most surprising success. Officially known as the California Bilateral Nuclear Weapons Freeze Initiative, it called for the U.S.
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CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
February 27, 1994 | LINDA FELDMAN, TIMES STAFF WRITER
Harold Willens is no nuclear warrior--he's a nuclear worrier. Over the years, this writer, retired businessman and former Marine, now approaching his 80th birthday, has done more than most to boost the public's awareness of the dangers of nuclear weapons. In 1981, when the United States and Soviet Union were in the thick of the nuclear arms race, Willens launched the nuclear freeze initiative in California.
ENTERTAINMENT
August 10, 1996
How fortunate we are to have someone like Howard Rosenberg to turn a mirror on the news media and so articulately describe how their zealousness to "scoop" the competition too often tends to create, rather than report, the news ("Bomb Suspect Reporting Sets an Ugly Record," Calendar, Aug. 1). How sad and deplorable the deterioration in the quality of news coverage. Where the standard was once "All the news that's fit to print," it now seems to be "Whatever rumor or speculation will promote circulation or increase ratings."
BUSINESS
January 5, 1989
In a Dec. 26 story concerning efforts by Los Angeles businessmen Harold Willens and Wesley Bilson to encourage joint ventures in the Soviet Union, the word "not" was inadvertently dropped from a sentence. The sentence should have read: Bilson and Willens stress that their own approach is different because they are not participating in any joint ventures that may develop.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
April 28, 1989
The column by Harold Willens (Editorial Page, April 15) describing how American business people helped the Russians to convert a military facility to the manufacture of children's clothes was very inspiring. Now if they could only bring some Russians over here to inspire us to convert excess military equipment to constructive purposes! EUGENE KUSMIAK Fallbrook
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
July 7, 1992
Boiled down to a brief bottom line, your June 19 editorial ("Helping Moscow Helps America") reminds us that there are moments in history when self-interest and altruism intersect--and that this is such a moment. HAROLD WILLENS, Los Angeles
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
April 14, 1993
Your April 5 headline says: "Clinton Sees New Partnership With Russia, Boosts U. S. Aid." There are moments in history when self-interest and altruism intersect. Surely this is such a moment. HAROLD WILLENS Los Angeles
BOOKS
April 5, 1992
Arnett states that news reporters, during the Persian Gulf War, were "no match for the propaganda machine of the U.S. Central Command and the Pentagon." Alas this is true in a general sense whose implications far transcend this particular instance. With diabolical skill and no shortage of funds in its bloated budgets, the Pentagon steadily spews self-serving propaganda intended above all else to protect excessive military spending from the common sense of an informed citizenry.
MAGAZINE
November 8, 1987
My personal score sheet reads three complex spine surgeries in the past 24 months. And on a general level, we all know how many people suffer from back-related maladies. For them, and for myself, I write in appreciation of Mary Murphy Swertlow's beautifully written "Conquering Her World of Pain" (Oct. 4). The author deserves respect and gratitude for her willingness to share with others the uphill battles she so valiantly fought on the way to triumph over seemingly unconquerable odds.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
May 9, 1996
To your timely, well-taken editorial ("Colby's Accountability," May 1), I feel impelled to add a postscript regarding former Central Intelligence Agency Director William E. Colby. He and I were brought together by our shared concern about the danger of a runaway nuclear arms race. We agreed to see how business executives might respond to hearing relevant facts and figures from someone who had served in his position. Our first "off-Broadway experiment" (as he jokingly termed it) took place in Columbus, Ohio, where the chief executive of a nationwide insurance company convened many of the city's top businesspeople.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
January 19, 1996
By calling for a global ban on the proliferation of nuclear weapons (Jan. 14), Pope John Paul II has sent the world a message of utmost importance. His recent "state of the world" speech mentioned a number of troublesome problems--but in terms of catastrophic consequences none can compare with the nuclear threat that continues to hang over our heads. As a Marine intelligence officer during World War II, I saw the total devastation of two Japanese cities, each by one atomic bomb. Nuclear weapons have 1,000 times the destructive power of their atomic ancestors; a fact far too little appreciated by most people.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
February 22, 1995
In the mid-1960s Sen. J. William Fulbright became my friend--and my mentor. Our shared passion was the conviction that the Vietnam War was a massive and costly mistake that should be brought to an end without delay. With his encouragement I worked to create an organization of business executives (card-carrying capitalists, he jokingly called us) augmented by a military advisory committee headed by the recently retired U.S. Marine Corps Commandant, Gen. David Shoup. The members of our group who testified in public hearings of Fulbright's Senate Foreign Relations Committee included prominent business leaders such as Louis Lundborg, then chief executive of Bank of America.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
February 27, 1994 | LINDA FELDMAN, TIMES STAFF WRITER
Harold Willens is no nuclear warrior--he's a nuclear worrier. Over the years, this writer, retired businessman and former Marine, now approaching his 80th birthday, has done more than most to boost the public's awareness of the dangers of nuclear weapons. In 1981, when the United States and Soviet Union were in the thick of the nuclear arms race, Willens launched the nuclear freeze initiative in California.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
February 11, 1994
"North Korea Plays a Dangerous Game" states your Feb. 7 editorial, which goes on to remind us "how great a worry North Korea's nuclear program has become." You are right, there is no greater worry than a global body politic diseased by the cancer-like spread of nuclear weapons. The problem, largely ignored by our news media, is that since the dawn of the nuclear age we have been guilty of a demeaning double standard: While preaching nuclear abstention to others, we ourselves have been practicing precisely the opposite.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
April 14, 1993
Your April 5 headline says: "Clinton Sees New Partnership With Russia, Boosts U. S. Aid." There are moments in history when self-interest and altruism intersect. Surely this is such a moment. HAROLD WILLENS Los Angeles
SPORTS
October 3, 1992
It takes tremendous courage for a citizen to take on the President, as Magic Johnson did when he accused President Bush of dropping the ball on AIDS. Indeed, his highly visible resignation from the AIDS Commission, and his widely reported criticism of Mr. Bush, could come to be seen, in a biography yet to be written, as the single bravest deed of his life. I can well imagine the internal anguish and external pressure preceding his decision. He earns my gratitude for teaching us democracy's most valuable lesson: that we the people should never hesitate to speak up, in any way we can, to criticize or correct those we elect to serve us--not rule us. HAROLD WILLENS, Los Angeles
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
March 23, 1987
While John Pike's thoughtful, informative article about Perle's resignation doesn't mention this, Perle has said that he is leaving the Pentagon to concentrate on fiction--which some Perle-watchers say is no change at all. A rigid hard-liner on arms control, this man's politics are so far to the right--in my view, far to the right of Attila the Hun--that he has won the fawning admiration of columnist George Will. And around Washington, where it is generally agreed that after a nuclear war no survivor could tell the difference between communist and capitalist ashes, it is also generally agreed that the only survivor who could make that distinction is Richard Perle.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
December 25, 1992
In response to "Cheers for the 'Army of Conscience,' " Commentary, Dec. 14: Ronald Reagan offers proposals I had assumed could never come from the mind of the man I met with in the Oval Office 10 years ago. During our discussion of the nuclear arms race, President Reagan's ideological ardor left me more pessimistic than ever about the possibility of a nuclear Armageddon. Yet now the new Reagan, despite the old tendency toward black/white extremes (evil vs. good), nonetheless urges that the "responsible powers of the world unite . . . to enforce stricter humanitarian standards of international conduct" and even suggests that our military capability be employed to enhance international security through international cooperation as perceived in the "noble vision of the United Nations' founders."
SPORTS
October 3, 1992
It takes tremendous courage for a citizen to take on the President, as Magic Johnson did when he accused President Bush of dropping the ball on AIDS. Indeed, his highly visible resignation from the AIDS Commission, and his widely reported criticism of Mr. Bush, could come to be seen, in a biography yet to be written, as the single bravest deed of his life. I can well imagine the internal anguish and external pressure preceding his decision. He earns my gratitude for teaching us democracy's most valuable lesson: that we the people should never hesitate to speak up, in any way we can, to criticize or correct those we elect to serve us--not rule us. HAROLD WILLENS, Los Angeles
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