The Foreign Service Journal, April 2024

12 APRIL 2024 | THE FOREIGN SERVICE JOURNAL Clarifying the Numbers I found the December 2023 issue of the FSJ on “Constructive Dissent Today” informative and insightful, especially the section on the history and impact of the Dissent Channel, including the suggestions on “Doing Dissent” and “Dissenting Well.” One clari cation is needed regarding the paragraph on Archer Blood and the Blood Telegram on page 23. It states Blood authorized use of the consulate’s telegraph facilities for “seven sta ” to send our dissent message to the department. Actually, when I prepared the April 6, 1971, cable on behalf of a number of similarly concerned o cers at Consulate General Dacca (now Dhaka), the draft ended up being signed by a total of 20 o cers from the three major elements of the mission—State, USAID, and USIS. Additionally, after our message reached the department, several “South Asia hands” sent a memo to Secretary William P. Rogers associating themselves with its substance—one of those signing the memo being the late Howard B. Scha er, subsequently U.S. ambassador to Bangladesh. W. Scott Butcher Senior FSO, retired Potomac, Maryland n Share your thoughts about this month’s issue. Submit letters to the editor: to lump the majority together with the few? e antidiscrimination principles that would cause a person to object to lowercasing “white” are the same principles that underlie most people’s opposition to racism in the larger context. It makes no sense to alienate people who are wholly supportive of the basic e ort to ght racism. Why do the Associated Press, e New York Times, the Columbia School of Journalism, and other mainstays of the press bother exerting so much e ort to justify lowercasing “white”? e cynical explanation is that it is a political stance by the radical so-called woke left. is should cause the FSJ to run in the opposite direction. e Foreign Service consists of o - cers who spend their professional lives upholding the principles of the American republic, including racial equality and nondiscrimination. In 20 years on active duty, I never met a single o cer who even remotely caused me to suspect they had any type of racial supremacy beliefs. AFSA publishes the FSJ for those o cers, of all colors. is is simply an issue of equality. e FSJ is free to set its own style standards. Is capitalizing all colors too much to ask of a publication that, rightfully so, vigorously supports DEI in every issue? Bob Boynton FSO, retired Carmel, Indiana What “Two-State Solution”? As an Israeli-born American, I nd the letter in the January-February 2024 FSJ proposing a “two-state solution” for the chronic Arab-Israeli con ict (“A Two-State Solution” by George Lambrakis) a bit unnerving given the history and reality of the region. Furthermore, idealistic opinions and advice by foreigners are easy to dispense when you don’t have to live with 75 years of wars, terrorism, and the most recent pogrom. Key points for Westerners to note: An Arab Palestinian state was rejected by the Arab League in 1947; and, other than Anwar Sadat, no Arab leader has ever accepted publicly the legitimacy of the Jewish state. e “present extremist Israeli government” (as described by the letter writer) was democratically elected by Israeli citizens—can you say that about any Palestinian or any other Arab leadership in the region? Who would, therefore, serve as a representative negotiating partner with Israel? Do you really think Palestinians prefer to live under the PLO, Hamas, Hezbollah, or Islamic jihad rule? e Middle East continues to be a mess, and I attribute it to a lack of socioeconomic development and failed leadership by Arabs, in spite of extensive aid packages. Compare this stunted growth with the resurgence of other countries such as Japan, South Korea, Taiwan, and Germany that were destroyed by wars. Peace will come to the region when Palestinians (and others) accept Israel’s right to exist from the Jordan River to the Mediterranean Sea, and focus on building their own society and nation, not exterminating the Jews. Joseph Harari, DVM FSJ reader Spokane, Washington