Urging our nation's leaders to end hunger
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Letters: 'Vicious cycle of war and hunger'

By Leona R. Wieland on May 10, 2009
© Argus Leader

Thank you, Sen. George McGovern, for your editorial in the Jan. 22 Washington Post regarding U.S. involvement in the Middle East - "Calling a Time Out." Your vision is sorely needed, for continuing to spend millions of dollars and involvement in Afghanistan is not the way to go.

We wholeheartedly agree and support your idealism as the best realism. We hope and pray President Obama will listen and make changes for a true reform of national policy with "a five-year timeout on war" and with renewed efforts to end poverty and hunger. As you say, "there will always be time for another war. But hunger can't wait."

The vicious cycle of war and hunger must stop. Our nation as a governmental body only donates half of one percent to the aid and development of those in poorer countries. Part of the world poverty problem could be solved by simplifying 12 departments, 25 agencies and 60 government offices. We need to bring our U.S. foreign assistance up-to-date with a coordinated system and, in so doing, help low-income nations reduce hunger and poverty.

Your words stand as a testament with others - like these from Archbishop Desmond Tutu: "We will never win a war against terror as long as the conditions for poverty and injustice remain. Poverty breeds terrorism. So we should stop spending billions on weapons of destruction and instead feed the hungry people of the world."

Let us encourage everyone to contact Rep. Stephanie Herseth Sandlin to co-sponsor HR2139, the Initiating Foreign Assistance Reform Act, just announced on the Bread for the World Web site. With your past leadership and hers now, we can achieve the end of hunger and poverty.

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