Letters to International Herald Tribune question US on GM
The letters to the International Herald Tribune in item 2 on GM and Iraq seem to hang together: "Regarding the report "Alliances with Europe: Bush redraws map" (Jan. 24): "The problem with Bush drawing anything is that he only uses two media, crayons and gunpowder. What an embarrassing time this is for America."
International Herald Tribune
Thursday, January 30, 2003
Genetically modified food
Regarding "Don't make Europe gag" (Views, Jan. 27) by Clyde Prestowitz: The European Commission, against the will of 14 out of 15 member states, pushed through in 1996 the first authorization of genetically modified organisms in Europe, concerning maize made by Ciba Geigy of Switzerland. How come? The commission could rely on decision-making based on a nontransparent, nonaccountable, creaky bureaucratic system.
Civil society cried wolf and mobilized political support. National governments supported a moratorium on genetically modified organisms until there was appropriate testing, labeling and traceability.
Why doesn't the U.S. government listen to the demands of its civil society as well as business? Since 1992, 55 nonprofit groups have lobbied the Food and Drug Administration for stronger regulation of genetically modified food, to no avail.
Consequently, the American consumer is not free to choose and market transparency has gone out the window.
Brigid Gavin, Bruges,
The U.S. and world opinion
Regarding the report "Bush accuses Saddam of 'contempt' for UN" (Jan. 29): In his State of the Union speech on Tuesday evening, President George W. Bush accused Saddam Hussein of "utter contempt for the United Nations, and for the opinion of the world."
In recent months, Bush and his cabinet have repeatedly noted that they reserve their "sovereign right" to attack Iraq, regardless of UN support. Last week Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld dismissed the concerns France and Germany had expressed about going to war in Iraq. Their opinions were irrelevant, Rumsfeld said, dismissing the two countries as "Old Europe."
Contempt for the United Nations and the opinion of the world? These are things that the Bush administration knows well.Trineesh Biswas, Geneva
Regarding the report "Alliances with Europe: Bush redraws map" (Jan. 24): The problem with Bush drawing anything is that he only uses two media, crayons and gunpowder. What an embarrassing time this is for America. The Supreme Court justices who now have the right to appoint losers should at least canvass the opinions of allies first.
Linda Deak, Wassenaar, Netherlands