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In today's pages: Health care reform and the nature of protests

September 18, 2009 | 10:18 am

Carter The Times editorial board praises President Obama for scrapping the missile defense shield in Eastern Europe, calling the program "immensely expensive technology that still doesn't work, designed for a threat that may never materialize."

As various versions of health-care reform wend their contentious way around Washington, the board finds several weaknesses in the proposal by Senate Finance Committee Chairman Max Baucus (D-Mont.) but finds reason to hope those very weaknesses will help "bring the public's focus back to the flaws in the current system and the challenges posed by any attempt to fix them."

Health care reform and several other moves and policies by the Obama administration have led to some vitriolic protest, which prompted  former President Jimmy Carter to declare that most of this protest was racial in nature. The board finds a kernel of truth in Carter's statement but also sees much legitimate protest about political differences.

On the other side of the fold, two writers debate whether the U.N. Human Rights Council report alleging war crimes by Israel in its Gaza fighting was the product of a prejudicial probe or a clear indication of abuses of international law that should not be tolerated by Israel's allies.

Photo of Jimmy Carter by Paul Abell / AP

--Karin Klein


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