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Tuesday, March 6, 2001


Inquiry should proceed in spirit of forgiveness

There are acts of valor in battle, and there are acts of valor in other aspects of military life.

I believe the letters of apology written to the families of the Ehime Maru victims, by the USS Greeneville skipper, Scott Waddle, are individual acts of personal and military valor.

I hope the courage and honor it took to write these letters (against the advice of his attorney), and the sincerity with which they were offered, will be considered in the naval court of inquiry that Waddle now faces.

Also, I hope that the letters will provide some comfort to the families of the victims, and that they will inspire similar insight, courage and sincerity on the part of the Navy in its review of policies regarding civilian participation in training exercises.

I believe Adm. William Fallon provided another example of humility and clear thought by visiting Uwajima to offer personal apologies to the victims' families.

Nothing can be done to reverse the tragic loss of life, but much can still be done to resolve this affair with honor and sensitivity. Much must be done to assure that, in the future, such incidents do not inflict loss and pain on innocent people, and havoc on the careers of skilled and honorable military personnel.

I hope the court of inquiry will proceed in this spirit.

Chris Anderson

Japan should be the one apologizing

The Ehime Maru accident was a tragedy that the United States has apologized for, and rightfully so. I am certain in my mind that the people of this country are also most apologetic for it.

But how far must we go? Must we get down on our knees, while wearing sack cloth and ashes?

First, there is the matter of joint responsibility. Was there no watch on the Ehime Maru? Operating in U.S. waters, thousands of miles from their homeland, with a partial crew of fishing "students," was their sonar not operating?

If not, is it possible they were not watching for schools of fish, but surface baiting, perhaps for shark fins?

Second, there is the matter of the long overdue apologies from Japan for the thousands of deaths caused by the treacherous and deliberate attack on Pearl Harbor; for thousands of victims of the Rape of Nanking; for the deadly Bataan Death March; for the sexual enslavement of the thousands of Asian comfort women, and for other barbaric, horrific and inhumane treatment of prisoners of war and other captives.

Furthermore, the death of my brother in the battle of Bougainville during World War II has never been acknowledged or apologized for. O Nippon!

Nor has Japan ever offered reparations or apologies to me for my Army Service of five years, nine months and 16 days during World War II, of which 1944-1946 were in the Pacific Theatre. Enough is enough!

William J. Fisher
Conover, N.C.

Ask tough questions of Liberty House execs

Go for the real story about Liberty House, now that it has emerged from bankruptcy (Star-Bulletin editorial, March 3).

What will its leaders do next? Do they consider themselves out of the survival mode? How is this reflected in their business plan?

Do employees and lower-level managers feel they are out of the survival mode? Is Liberty House surveying its people to find out?

Is there a well-developed "Nordstrom in da House" strategic plan ready to go? Have the line employees and lower-level managers contributed or been asked to contribute to such a strategic plan?

If there was a Liberty House IPO next month, would the top 20 percent of all managers mortgage their houses to buy stock? Or do you just know it and believe it, because you've heard it enough in your own editorials? Thumbs up, Hawaii!

S. Lenzi



"You never bank on
something like that."

Crystal Lee
Voted to the first team of the best Western Athletic Conference players


"This is not a funeral.
This is a ceremony to ask the traditional gods
of Hawaii to care for those who are
still unrecovered from the sea."

Poka Laenui

Before flowers were carried by the Hokule`a and
dropped where nine men were last seen when a
U.S. sub accidentally hit and sunk a
Japanese fishing boat they were on

School reform is badly needed in Hawaii

Five years ago, I took time off from the Department of Education and did subcontracting work in construction. My main contract during this respite was the state Capitol renovation.

During the final stages of the project, while on the building's top executive level, I would end each day by watching the sunset from the governor's desk until the other subcontractors cleared out.

What I came to realize during this ritual was how much government bureaucracy has affected education. The respite I sought was from the system, not the academic and significant emotional needs of the children.

We really need to examine and restructure our single school district system, which has one school board and one major funding source for more than 200 public schools. Until any leadership group commits to this challenge, the maladies of the DOE will be perpetuated.

In the meantime, increasing teacher salaries has become a key issue. My hope is that those in power do not let the sun go down on teacher morale and with it, Hawaii's future, during these negotiations.

Sam Kakazu Jr.

Why hasn't officer been charged in DUI death?

I have been searching my soul to try to figure out if I am missing something here. After five months, almost to the day, I want to know why Clyde Arakawa is still not being charged with killing Dana Ambrose.

How can an officer of the law still be unaccountable for causing her death? Why does he keep getting shielded and protected by those who are supposed to be enforcers of the law?

His past crimes allegedly include breaking into someone else's homes while drunk. This has become common knowledge to the public through news reports and show this man's complete disregard for his job as a police officer.

Are these things merely being dismissed because they have "nothing to do" with this case?

I just cannot believe that this is a system in which I have taught my family to respect and believe in. When does this man start facing the music?

Jacque Rarick

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