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The Mail


To the Editors of the Crimson:

I am a student at the Harvard Law School and I would like to explain why I am on strike.

Despite the "pullout," President Nixon has staked his national and international reputation on the survival of South Vietnam through "Vietnamization." The present offensive threatens the failure of this strategy. Mr. Nixon, in my opinion, is an unscrupulous man, who as the situation worsens in Vietnam will become increasingly desperate. So far he has bombed the capitol of Hanoi and the port of Haiphong more heavily than even Lyndon Johnson dared four years ago. There is every indication that he will go on to mine the port of Haiphong, blockade the coast and bomb ever closer to the Chinese border.

First, I think that these actions are immoral. To me, it is far more corrupt to kill indiscriminately from 2,000 feet up people one never sees by pushing a stainless steel bombadier's button than it is to fight on the ground.

Second, I think that they will be ineffective. The communists have many months' of supplies stockpiled in the south. Johnson bombed North Vietnam for years without significant effect. Experience in Great Britain and Germany also suggests that people tend to pull together when bombed from the air rather than giving in.

Third, I think Nixon's plans are dangerous. We forget sometimes that the third world war is still only a push-button away. Damaging Russian ships and bombing closer to China risk an escalation of misunderstanding. Nixon's brand of brinksmanship is all the more alarming because he seems oblivious to the danger.

Only a massive public outcry can restrain Nixon from carrying out his manifest plan. As a student, I can best contribute to such an outcry by participating in the strike. While I think that schools should be basically nonpolitical and strongly condemn disruption of classes, I feel that these are times when students must join together to dramatically express their opinions. I strike not against my university, but for my country. Robert W. Mark

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