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Study other events before condemning


No yellow ribbons round the oak tree for Bowe Bergdahl in Monday’s “Street-Wise.” Four out of five have him convicted of desertion and are willing to outsource the punishment to the Taliban. Bergdahl may be guilty of desertion, but if he is, he should be convicted in a court martial and serve his time in Leavenworth.

I’d like to speculate if you asked these five people to name the greatest president of the past 100 years, at least three of them would say Ronald Reagan.

Here’s a history lesson for the young folks: Reagan traded arms for hostages numerous times with the Iranians. And while that was going on, Donald Rumsfeld was palling around in Iraq with Saddam Hussein.

And did I mention his administration was also supplying weapons to a group in Afghanistan led by Osama bin Laden?

And for good measure, in violation of Congress, they were funding a group of “freedom fighters” in Nicaragua called the Contras. The scare quotes are there because most sentient beings would consider the Contras to have been terrorists. The hypocrisy of Oliver North to criticize the Bergdahl deal is off the charts.

Do yourself a favor and read up on the Iran-Contra affair. Fascinating stuff. Better than le Carre.

After that, you can look at the events in Beirut during those years and contrast it with Benghazi.

You’ll see why the Republican-led Congress is more interested in ginning up scandals concerning President Barack Obama and the Clintons.

By the way, Israel, not exactly a wuss in dealing with violent adversaries, trades hostages on a fairly regular basis.


Fort Edward

Bergdahl deserves a fair, due process


This is in response to the June 11 letter from Tillie Merrill. I soundly agree with you, Tillie. I also treasure your wisdom of the years.

It’s shocking to me the number of Americans who have demonstrated such a high degree of vitriol toward Sgt. Bowe Bergdahl and his family. So far, he has not been charged with desertion. No one can speak of his guilt until due process has been served.

From my own experience serving in combat, I have witnessed men shooting themselves, faking being bitten by rats or having a mental breakdown in order to avoid the near certain injury or death in the upcoming battle we were facing.

I will never sit in judgment of what torture churned within them which subjected them to an eternal life of shame they would have to face because of their actions.

In my opinion, it is the greatest honor to die fighting for your country. I experienced the second highest honor, spilling my blood and nearly dying for the country I love. Sadly, Sgt. Bergdahl never got to experience this. Instead, he spent five years as a POW.

To those who choose to judge him, put your morality guns back in your holsters, enough damage has already been done. Justice will prevail.



Aim at center mass if life is threatened


In reference to a recent letter you posted, the writer suggested law enforcement personnel and civilians defending themselves should “aim low” to wound a person. I do not know what the writer’s background is, but firearms safety and personal protection is not one of them. Center mass is the only area at which someone should be aiming while using deadly physical force.

The reason is simple. Center mass is the largest area with vital organs. This is the quickest and most effective way to eliminate a threat.

It also reduces the chance of innocent bystanders being struck by stray rounds or ricochets.

Real life is not like TV. Hitting a small moving limb is the last thing you want to try in the middle of a life-or-death situation. I speak from experience.


Stony Creek

Thank you for help with special league


On Saturday, June 7, the Hudson Falls Little League Challenger Division played its last official game of the season.

We want to take this opportunity to thank the many individuals and organizations who made this dream a reality. A year ago, we threw a pebble into the water by asking a friend how to form a local baseball team for kids with special needs. The ripples that followed have been awe-inspiring.

Thank you to Scott Gillis for carrying the idea to the right ears.

Thank you to the entire Hudson Falls Little League Board, especially Jason Doyle and Danielle Passino, without whom this team would not exist.

Thank you to all the coaches who gave their time each week to teach fundamentals and sportsmanship. Thank you to the sponsors for your generosity, which ensured every child had a chance to play on a real team proudly wearing a uniform with their name on it. We are told one youngster was so happy, he wore his shirt for three days straight.

Thank you to Meg Hagerty, David Cederstrom and Mark Mulholland for spreading the word to the community. Thank you to all the amazing buddies on the field each week helping the athletes do for themselves.

These buddies are elementary school kids with a natural talent for teaching the game they love to kids who may have a hard time learning; they are truly tomorrow’s leaders.

Most of all, thank you to the athletes and their families for coming out each week to play ball.

Over the past few months, we have watched you grow as athletes and teammates. We hope you had as much fun playing as we had watching you play and that you are looking forward to next season.


Tommy Martindale

proud parents of No. 12

Hudson Falls

Two commentaries a pleasure to read


This morning’s (June 10), two positive and supportive commentaries on the Bowe Bergdahl exchange were a welcome treat.

I find the hostility, negativity and rush to judgement seen all over television and elsewhere depressing and what I used to consider un-American.

I’m glad the young man is home, and I hope “home” will be a positive experience for him.



God needs His spot back in America


As we sit back in our comfortable pillow-top lounge chairs in front of the TV and watch the American way of life disintegrate before our eyes, we seem to desperately look to others to place blame. I wonder how many of us place the blame where it truly belongs — with each one of us?

Yes, we are all at fault! We have pushed God out of our lives, removed any vestiges of his presence in America and filled the void with distractions, media noise, narcissism and a plethora of other forms of societal degradation.

We cannot continue to choose to go it alone! We need to put our God back in His proper place in American society.

May I ask you please pray for peace in a very troubled world?


South Glens Falls


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