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Letter to the Editor: U.S. needs strong U.N. ambassador

Wednesday, May 4, 2005

To the editor:

The attacks on John Bolton, President Bush's appointee to be U.N. ambassador, remind me of similar attacks during the confirmation of Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas. There are always plenty of former employees or associates who will criticize any successful executive.

I have been in responsible management assignments for 52 years. There will always be individuals who were not promoted or dismissed for cause who would testify with negative remarks.

John Danforth quit as U.N. ambassador after just six months. His comments reported in the St. Louis Post-Dispatch were very negative. One example concerned the U.N. blaming America for the 70,000 deaths in Darfur. The U.S. was accused of not caring enough to stop the bloodshed. But the U.N. didn't even have a suggestion of how it would do it. The Security Council would not authorize a military response or even use the word "sanctions."

Within the last few days, Kofi Annan has been blaming the U.S. for not stopping the smuggling in the oil-for-food scandal. The U.N. is more impotent than the League of Nations in the 1930s.

It appears to me we need someone like Bolton, a successful diplomat for 20 years, to be our ambassador. American taxpayers are obligated to pay 22 percent of the cost of operating the U.N. I do not want my tax dollars spent until we see some real reform.

GLENN REEVES, Cape Girardeau