National Geographic : 2003 Jun
Shattered Sudan Your article underscores the utter futility of war. The men are trotting around with machine guns, the children are suffering, the women are crying, and the pockets of a privileged few are getting filled. Randy Olson's picture of a young girl on pages 46-7 struck a chord with me: Half her face has a weary look; the other half is cast in shadow -much like her future. Being grateful when I lay my head down tonight seems hardly enough. JODIE LYSTER Richmond, Quebec I would appreciate anyone's identifying one sovereign nation in Africa, the Middle East, or anywhere else where the fortune befallen it from being fortuitously underlain by vast pools of oil has resulted in democracy, freedom, and egalitarian prosperity for the peoples of the nation. S. N. LUTTICH Republic, Washington MEMBERSHIP Please call 1-800-NGS-UNE (1-800 -647-5463). Special device for the hearing-impaired (TDD) 1-800-548-9797. Online: nationalgeographic.com/ngm AOL Keyword: NatGeoMag It is currently in vogue to blame big oil for as many problems as possible. The real problem in Sudan is intolerance, not oil. People anywhere will fight over oil, diamonds, or anything else of value if they cannot agree or cooperate for their own good and the good of their country. DONALD M. REIDEL Sequim, Washington We've had this war in our back yard for almost half a century. How many more lives will it cost us for the racists to understand that we're all one and deserve to live on the same land? How long will they use religion as an excuse to kill, rape, maim, and make hell on Earth? Are we waiting for the Sudanese govern ment to acquire weapons of mass destruction before Sudan appears on the front page? What a shame for our generation. Cry, my beloved country, cry. HOSEA JEMBA Kampala, Uganda FROM OUR ONLINE FORUM nationalgeographic.com/ngm/0302 In any account of Sudan's plight, one must include the deaths that are a result of the American cruise missiles that shattered irreparablythe productive capacity NATIONAL GEOGRAPHIC * JUNE 2003 Forum IA February 2003 Shocking images of war in Sudan moved many readers to write in. But a shocking sight of a different kind, NATIONAL GEOGRAPHIC'S newsstand-only swimsuit edition (see next page), generated one of the biggest piles of mailso far this year. Many objected to the cover. Others found the issue to be delightful. One woman even found her face staring back at her. I NATIONAL GEOGRAPHIC SOCIETY "Forthe increase and diffusion of geographic knowledge." The National Geographic Society is chartered in Washington, D.C., as a nonprofit scientific and educational organization. Since 1888 the Society has supported more than 7,000 explorations and research projects, adding to knowledge of earth, sea, and sky. 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