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To the Editor of the Crimson:
Regarding your editorial of last Saturday,--I agree with you in not wanting to send men to fight at Singapore, or anywhere else.
May I suggest, however, that to avoid fighting in the immediate future is not the only thing we want? We also want to avoid an eventual attack which could make us fight whether we wanted to or not (for instance, an attack on the Philippines).
Another thing we want is the best position to fight from, if our declared enemies finally should make us fight.
When you advocate all possible material aid to Britain at Singapore and elsewhere, you are taking sides in the war.
If possible, we want to keep on taking part in this war only in an economic way.
But if the enemy should grow strong enough, as they could by taking Singapore, they could attack us and eventually make us fight. Until they are stronger, they are not likely to attack us; for the moment we are comparatively safe.
But we are in the "poker game", as you call it, and cannot get out even though the game may lead to shooting. I submit, therefore, that we cannot in our thinking draw the line short of sending men. At present, fortunately, we still have a good chance of continuing to draw the line in practice.
The Far Eastern position advocated by American Defense (I am not an author of it) is designed to improve our chances of continuing to draw the line in practice. It does not urge a bluff but a definite stand, with men if necessary. The object is to prevent our enemies from building up the strength to make us really fight, later, in much less happy circumstances.
(Of course this position does not mention economic opportunities in Southeast Asia which must by all means be given Japan whenever really peaceful negotiations begin,--sometime in the future). J. K. Fairbank '29, Faculty Instructor and Tutor in the Department of History.
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