weeds on main

Let’s take care of the Waynesville streets

To the editor:

I have taken photos twice now and sent an email to the town manager, town aldermen and to Downtown Waynesville Association about the poor conditions on our sidewalks, etc. and both times I get radio silence. People are blatantly violating the no smoking statute since I see cigarette butts everywhere.

Why is the town so silent on this issue? Can we not afford a little weed killer? Are we in that poor of a fiscal condition that we can’t keep our town clean anymore?

I constantly spray around my building and even use an electric leaf blower to keep my section clean. I wish other would do the same if the town is unwilling to address?

I have never seen so many weeds on our sidewalks in my 29 years on Main Street,

Not sure where to turn.

Gary Lance Waynesville

Be specific with language

To the editor:

I enjoyed the editorial in the July 1 Mountaineer “The way we talk” by Dave Hogan. I noted with special interest the editorial comment in italics at the end of the article. “Dave lives in Lake Junaluska.”

I do not believe that is what you meant to say. Perhaps fish live in Lake Junaluska, but I can assure you Dave does not.

Should you not insert “the town of?” Perhaps you know your community and their contemporary understanding that you do not need to specifically identify “the town of.”

This is a short time understanding. In the future if the town of Lake Junaluska exists no longer (all of its residents having left or absorbed by a larger community) “Dave …lives in Lake Junaluska” makes no sense for reader.

Doris B. Hammett, MD Waynesville

Another quagmire?

To the editor:

Many of us are overwhelmed by the deluge of news coming at us these days. Keeping up seems impossible. Let me summarize my take on one issue — events in the Persian Gulf.

We seem to be approaching war with Iran. Our government claims (probably factually) that Iran is harassing shipping vessels in the Gulf. They have damaged several non-US tankers and shot down an unmanned U.S. drone, meant to get our attention, but not provoke war. We have backed them into a corner, and they are reacting as we should have expected.

Predictably, instead of trying diplomacy, we sent a naval task force to Iran’s doorstep, with additional troops to follow.

We say we don’t want war. WWI started because a limo driver decided to take a short cut that got the Austrian Archduke assassinated. Who wanted that war?

Why is Iran “acting up?” One of the Trump Administration’s first acts was to renege on an agreement we signed with Iran, our European allies, Russia and China intended to stop Iran’s nuclear weapons program.

As we demanded, Iran destroyed its stockpile of nuclear weapons material and equipment to produce more. In return we and the other countries relieved crippling economic sanctions we had imposed. Before 2017 all signatories agreed that Iran was abiding by the agreement.

And, according to our allies, Russia and China, they are still abiding by it even though we have reneged. Because of our policy Iran is desperate, its economy on the verge of collapse.

Further, Iran is aggressive as it sees itself as defenders of Shiitism, they believe true Islam. If they cease their defense, they imperil their souls. (Yes, and some religious leaders have earthly motives. Surprise!) Most of our Middle East allies are Sunnis and consider Iranian Shiites infidels.

Why did we renege on the nuclear agreement? The stated, but false, reason is that Iran was cheating — a statement disputed by all other signatories and many in our intelligence community.

Members of the current administration, led by some of the same “advisors” that got us into the Iraqi quagmire, wanted to wring more concessions from Iran after the agreement was signed. The intent of the original negotiators was to address Iran’s “adventurism” (Iran would call it defending the faith) after the nuclear agreement was in force.

Saudi Arabia is Iran’s major rival. It can be argued that the Trump Administration, firmly aligned with Jared Kushner’s buddy Saudi Prince Mohammed bin Salman (MBS), has decided to enter this international Islamic war of Sunni vs. Shiite on the side of the Sunnis. (MBS, you will recall, is the man who ordered a Washington Post reporter murdered.

You will also recall that the 9/11 attack on the U.S. was funded and planned by a Sunni, Osama bin Laden and implemented by other Sunnis.)

Doubtless, Bibi Netanyahu would be delighted to have us attack Iran.

To further add to the absurdity, John Bolton supported deposing Saddam Hussein, a Sunni, in the costly Iraq war. Saddam’s fall strengthened Shiitism.

Now, as Trump’s top advisor in this area, Bolton is urging us into an even costlier war to depose a Shiite regime grown more powerful because of our Iraqi adventure! What utter nonsense!

Trump promised to break things. That is one promise he has truly kept. He broke the word of the U.S., damaged our international reputation as a neutral Middle East arbiter, and has now blundered to the brink of another senseless Middle Eastern war.

Cynically, I suspect this is just another Trump ruse: Declare or generate an emergency where none exists. Then do nothing but tweet, then declare that he has solved the problem and move on to the next subterfuge.

But this one may not be as easy to escape as earlier examples (e.g. threatening to shut down the government or threatening a tariff on Mexican imports.)

Or perhaps he has brought in these right-wing hawks so that, next to them, he seems reasonable.

In any event, Trump may find that he has painted himself into yet another corner. That is a very dangerous situation for someone like him, in today’s world.

Everett Baucom Cruso

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