Readers Write 10/23

FOREIGN AFFAIRS

Duty, honor, country should work both ways

While the Obama administration prepares our next move in Afghanistan, my oldest son, Jon, prepares for his senior season of basketball at West Point. As President Obama carries the burden of sending more American sons and daughters to a foreign land, my family carries the burden of a potential unspeakable day ahead. American families have always prepared for that day. Why? Duty, honor and country.

On behalf of my family, I ask that the political players driving the process around this war be nonpartisan. I ask that the planning be well thought out, and based on goals in the best interest of the Afghans. Give our men and women what they need to succeed. Give them the best equipment and information we have. And when things go wrong, don’t disrespect our sacrifice with cover-ups and half-truths. I ask that duty, honor and country work both ways. American leaders, we give our sons and daughters. Do your duty to honor them for this country. Marc Sizemore, Suwanee

POLITICS

Recent Nobel winners are weak by comparison

The Nobel Peace Prize Committee certainly has the right to select whoever they wish. It is, after all, their prize to give. The prestige, significance or honor attached to the prize will be a function of the world’s view of those choices. I found that a review of a few selections from the last several decades seems to indicate an interesting trend, from people of unquestioned performance or integrity, toward “politically correct” choices.

The 1950s selections included George Marshall and Albert Schweitzer. The 1960s and 1970s included Mother Teresa, Henry Kissinger and the Rev. Martin Luther King Jr. The 1980s included the Dalai Lama and Desmond Tutu. The 1990s included Yasser Arafat and Mikhail Gorbachev. Recent honorees have included Kofi Annan, Jimmy Carter, Al Gore and Barack Obama. Perhaps the selections of the last two decades will improve in the judgment of history, but they seem weak by comparison to previous decades.

Grant Essex, Milton

POLITICS

Carter actually earned his prize — by working

While partisan politics seems to be the perpetual “soup du jour,” I must disagree with Rheta Grimsley Johnson (“Nobel critics are far from noble,” Opinion, Oct. 14). The “radical right” and any other rational-thinking individual would be right to oppose both Al Gore and President Obama’s Nobel Prize awards.

One would think the prize would be given, neither for the increasing of environmental awareness, nor for potentially proliferating peace, but for actively engaging in the act of facilitating peace, as President Carter did. Right, left, up, or down, Carter actually earned his prize, while the recent winnings are motivated by pure politics.

Christopher Kerr, Jonesboro

BUSINESS

Outside investments not reason companies thrive

Re “New companies thrive on tough economic times” (Opinion, Oct. 18): M. Sawhney’s opinion would carry more weight were he an owner and operator of a new company, rather than a college professor. Thriving companies thrive because of hard work, not because of outside investments. Jack Franklin, Conyers