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Lethbridge Herald Newspaper Archives

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Lethbridge Herald, The (Newspaper) - December 19, 1972, Lethbridge, Alberta 4 THE UTHBRIDGE HIRALO Tuesday, December 19, 1972 Nixon's patience stretched to limit By James Keslon. New Y'i k Times commentator How it looks from Quebec Last week the government announc- ed some modifications to its pro- e.am for in the civil L.T.ce. There is to be a slowing down in the identification and desig- nation oi jobs thai will require both caiciai iansuases, and unilingual c.vil servants are to have greater assurance of job security and entitle- servants appear gratified at as do most west- ern coliticians. Or.e awaits with some apprehension the reaction from Que- tic, where it is all too likely this will be considered as just another broken promise, made by the Eng- lish to get French votes, or a; beat as one more instance oi the English- speaking majority imposing its will on French Canada. According to western MPs. the chanzes indicate that at long last Ottawa is b-3S.nr.ing to listen to the West. If that so. ii indeed Ottawa is dijoiavin; some sensitivity to west- em v-ew's on bicuiiuraiism and biling- uaiisrn is a ior.s way aheai oi its or e'.en of To French- Cana- dian; are the and most influ- ential in the country, with nearlv a third of the total popula- tion more than the Ukrainians, Gerrnsr.s, Dutch. Scandinavians and all the- rest combined. They have a third of ail the seats in Parliament, all the laws and official documents are printed in their language, and they have their own province, with its own judicial and educational systems. Moreover, whenever Ottawa has any- thing to hand out, Quebec always seems to get more than its share. So thev have nothing to complain about, eh'.' it doesn't Icok that way from Que- bec. What westerners don't understand. and don't want to, is that French Canadians don't look upon themselves as just a six-million mem- ber minority in a Canada of 22-mii- lion. Rather, they see themselves as a ti.iv island of French language and culture in a vast, continent-wide sea of 250-miliion. where the language is English and the culture American. In the immensity of North America, thev are a tiny French corner, with just over two per cent of the popula- tion, and even less of the wealth and influence, engaged in an almost hopeless struggle against the en- croachment of a culture that seems to have no cut to turn them ar.d the rest of the world into a market for American consumer goods. If generally find the for identity a difficult one, to the French-Canadian it must seem well-nish impossible. And the only allies he can look to on this conti- nent, his fellow Canadians, aren't helping much, especially when they tell'him they're not interested in his troubles, even to the extent of trying to ensure that he can deal with his own government in his own language. PARIS The Vietnam peace talks in Paris are sti'l j'oing on, but the point of deci- sion is really back in the White Kou.se, where it has been f'om the start. The question now L; whether President Nixon is prepared to make a separate peace with Hanoi and the South Vietnamese communists, and so far he has heM back. Dr. Henry A. Kissinger failed to get agreement here on a ceasefire, primarily because he was never authorized to the president's frump card. He tried to persuade the South Yieir-amese that they had more to gain by accepting a fire'cw Washington's terms thai; by opposing it, but Gen. N'guy- r. Van Thieu's representatives in Paris would not agree. Kissinger was apparently au- imply that the Iriited States would sign a sep- ir'S.e ceasefire agreement, rovever reluctantly, if Tnieu go along. He heM to the !-'te- and the spirit of his in- r ructions, hut he was never to say that the U.S. govern- had decided to sign alone h> a certain date, so Saigon illed ar.d blocked the asree- n.ent the president was vailing to This raises a funds mental c-estion for Nixon. He h a s hicked Taieu for years. He ha.s c'ric-rided him against all the a-.tiwar critics in the United States. He has even risked war with the Soviet Union arid China by mining the harbor of Haiphong and carrying the air v. ar to Hanoi and even to the China harder in order to dem- oratra'.o his support of Thieu and the Saigon regime. But Thieu's response to all has been to Nixon's compromise ceasefire agree- ment with the Vietnamese Com- rr.tjnist.5 ar.d even to vil'.ify in the Saigon for carrying out what Saigon to'h--; Nixon's diplomatic ir.v.ructinr.s. It has been obvious for rrorths sr.d even yosrs that, v.ere allies, their national inter- ests would not be the same once Hanoi was ready to sign a compromise ceasefire agree- ment. i o n never promised to guarantee the security of the Saigon regime, hut merely to give it a "fair chance" to de- fend itself. He has taken great political and military risks to pi-.'e Thieu this chance, but now Thieu is insisting that Nixon do more keep fighting and negotiating until the Commu- nists agree that Hanoi with- draw all its trrxiys and recog- rize Saijon's authority over all the territory o! South Vietnam, including the areas the Com- has tried to per- More persecution The much maligned and persecuted Jeho'. ah's V.'ltnesses are underg'-.'ir.g sr.other experience r.i harassment and horror. This time is in Malawi. A World Press story recently stat- ed that virtually the entire commu- nity of 23.000 Jehovah's Witnesses in the East African country has fled in the last two months. Most of the ref- ugees are now in Zambia, a few in Mozambique. Attacks on the members oi the reli- gious group v.ere tr.ggered by reso- lutions passed at the armual confer- ence of the ruling Malawi Congress party held in September. The resolu- tions charged the Witnesses with hin- dering the economic and political de- velopment of the nation. Malawi officials claim that opposi- tion to the sect is justified because bersh.r; inteiTireted by the gov- as a form of taxation. The other charge is one that has fceen made in other societies, including Canada. Equating goo-d citizenship with membership in a party and singing oi the national anthem is superficial. Good citizens are those who contribute to the well-being of the nation ar.d its people. The Jeho- vah's Witnesses are generally law- abiding, good living, a.id hard work- ing people. Ti-.eir" refusal to join political parties and sing national an- thems is a logical outcome of their commitment to God and His kingdom even if too literal from the point of view of others. Tney deserve res- pect rather than abuse. Canada, with its history of intol- "Spends days putting up the Christmas lights, but do you think he'll replace the burnt out bulb in the suade Saigon that while this may te an understandable de- mand, it is an unreasonable de- mand. But Tnk-u insists that Kissinrer negotiate Saigon's control areas which ntitht-r the South nor even the American air forte have been able to command. Nixon lias to great some of his critics would say almost to ridiculous lengths to -nipport Thieu, tat l-f: VietriarntEC leader ha.5 little interest in the pre-Ident's is row trying to blackmail him into carrvin? on v.'ar on Saigon's Tne two Eev tions here in Paris have- raade this fA'-ie'.'.iy clear. Tne has patient ever he a'f.horizsd KUrlngcr is'e i.ri Oc'oher to announce at hand." But by Nixon KLsrin- 7cr have rx.-en enough. Tr.Ieu ir.temrets.'] V.'israng- tor'i uatie-c-e f.s weakness, and now the Paris is up. here in Paris pre- lerAs any Veer that the tech- "rho ha-.'e be- to arrange a c' which Kisdnzer to So the has to po along wi-'r. Tr.ie'J 'rje wsr a.s it Ls, ar.d bo-ies of setting t-e .'-.rr.eri'.an r.rso'r.ers by f-rirTiS' sr.d the war behind hy iraujurstion day r-- 20. or to Tr.ieu that is sro'ns SJipirat''- nov.'ever reluctantiv, hv a certain date, a-d soon. Even rr.isht '.o on Nikon's cease- fire at least, thfi Paris taSis v.-o-jM be brought, down to reaiity. Lacking a clear decision in the While House to sign a scpa-ate peace by a certain the chances are thai there will be to agree- in Paris. Kowsve.-. there Is a c'r-a: dernier, by the president to a separate peace asree- n-.r-nt, T-.ie'J might, even then, not go a'or.g, bat until rjch a deei-Wi is made, the jtxif.ir.erit of the me-, i-volve-i in here i.s 'hat there -.ill be r.o settX-rr.erjt. In the of Paris taila doei not iie here, b-jt in the Wr.ite Hrjase. ar.d N'ixwi. The ar.d a.s Hsr-.' T.-ornin said. Voter-financing of political parties studied By Maurice Western, Ottawa commentator- FP Publication, jie rnernhers do not pay taxes and trance toward the Witnesses, is OTTAWA federal EOV- mending other changes or. But r.-.o-e imr.or.ar.t still, at. that time and K regards w.tho-it enthusiasm A'ill not sing the national anthem, scarcely in a position to stand in ernment and Parliament have z p-ermar.en: voters' if it going, to he. efficient, you leaves little doubt that the and even detestation. It Fne first of these charges 13 flirnsily judgment of Malawi. Nevertheless, never enjoyed a monopoly in i nere is a persuasive case for v d have to rar, grest migr.t future ire-based on the refusal of Jehovah's Wit- the n isht of the religious refugees the field of pohucal ez- reiorms. But t.vey nave in hits _ r tn.nx .-.e fw