Nepali Times

I was uncomfortable with the slightly derisive tone of Bhagirath Yogi's piece on your online edition "Peaceniks on warpath" (#119). Although he has tried to be fair in the article, the headline and box "Revolutionary roadshow" indicate that you are trying to make fun of the genuine belief some of us have that by arming both sides to the teeth. All we are going to get is more bodies, a longer war, and a more dreadful future for the country.

Laura Sedloveck,

. There is no doubt that the Maoists need to be defeated. Nepalis cannot and will not tolerate being ruled by republican revolutionaries who know no other path but the path of violence. But I wonder whether the helicopters, guns and equipment promised by the US is going to be enough to stop them. A solution must be homegrown, it must have a development component, and above all it must rely on superior intelligence. So far, going by the massacres of policemen last week, there aren't many signs of those things.

S Thapa,
by email

. The Loony Left has done it again. So, they want us to turn our other cheek to the Maoists. Only, there will be no cheeks left to turn once they blast our heads off with guns. They may not believe it but murderers do not set store by such quaint notions as dialogue and peaceful negotiations. The only language they understand and respect is that of power. When it comes to the Maoists, we inhabit the Hobbesian world in all its naked brutality and horror. Life is becoming brute, nasty and short by the day. Was it Hobbes who famously said, "Covenants without swords are mere words"? Those of us who believe in freedom are engaged in a life-and-death struggle with an evil force blinded by its ideological certainty. We must do everything to defeat our own "axis of evil", including accepting aid from the US and Britain for weapons. I am using a fake name to protect myself and family from Maoist


. I am concerned that Bhagirath Yogi\'s piece,"Peaceniks on the Warpath" represents the issue of support for US military aid to Nepal as one that splits along Nepali/non-Nepali lines. Yogi suggests that only a few dozen\' Nepalis signed the ANHS petition, while in fact, there are at least 100 Nepali signatories.

It also appears that no Nepalis who did support the petition were interviewed, while numerous Nepali intellectuals are cited against the petition. Since these signatures are available on the petition website, surely any of these individuals could have been contacted for a quote to counter the presumption by an unnamed Nepali scholar that "the distance of the scholars from a rapidly evolving situation in Nepal may be making them reach for easy and romantic answers". Simplifying the situation in this way fails to acknowledge the genuine complexity of both Nepali and foreign perspectives, and drives a false wedge between the international community concerned for Nepal and Nepalis working for peace within their own society. Most ominously, Yogi\'s article obscures the dire need for a genuine discussion of potential paths towards peace in Nepal by echoing the easy dualistic "us vs. them" rhetoric of Bush\'s war on terrorism.

Sara Shneiderman,
Cornell University

(11 JAN 2013 - 17 JAN 2013)