Letters to the Editor

Letters to the editor: Red Cross, steelhead runs, Saudi-Yemen war

Red Cross

During this season of giving, we hope you will keep one final gift in mind: a donation to the American Red Cross.

Your gift helps Red Cross respond to disasters big and small here in Idaho and across the country. This fall 75 volunteers from our region provided help and hope to families devastated by hurricanes Florence and Michael, and California’s wildfires.

In Idaho, we help hundreds of families recover from flooding, wildfires, house fires and other disasters each year, and we also support military members and their families.

Another important way to give is by donating blood. It takes about an hour, and a single donation can help save up to three lives. Visit www.redcrossblood.org to find a drive near you and schedule an appointment.

Lastly, make a New Year’s resolution worth keeping by joining the Red Cross volunteer team. There’s an opportunity for almost any interest. Visit redcross.org/idaho or call 800-853-2570 to learn more.

We would like to thank everyone who supported us this year with their time, talent and generosity. We couldn’t do it without you.

Roy Eiguren, chairman, Red Cross of Greater Idaho board of directors, and president, Eiguren Ellis Public Policy Firm

Steelhead runs

Don’t blame conservation groups. Conservation groups should be thanked not criticized; they are doing what the feds and the state have failed to do — fight to restore wild salmon and steelhead. Five times the feds have been told that their plans to restore wild salmon are inadequate, specifically because they didn’t include actions to restore the lower Snake River to a free-flowing condition, i.e. remove the earthen portions of the four LSR dams. IDFG hasn’t mentioned the “natural river option” since Phil Batt was elected and Governor Otter took the “B word” out of their vocabulary when he signed the BPA accords. Conservation groups and people who rely on salmon and steelhead for their livelihoods have worked together tirelessly to move politicians to broker the deal that will restore the fish and the ecosystem while meeting energy and transportation (Port of Lewiston) needs. But Idaho politicians (and IDFG) have steadfastly turned their backs on their river community constituencies by not working toward the scientifically proven solution — dam removal: This despite the fact that dam removal/river restoration represents a net gain to Idaho and the Pacific Northwest. There is a path forward, but Idahoans must force its “leaders” to take it.

David Cannamela, Boise

Saudi-Yemen war

Last month we celebrated Veterans Day to honor those who fought for the American values of human rights and democracy. What is left of those values when we sell arms to the Saudis to destroy the homes and lives of millions of innocent civilians in Yemen?

The recent article, “Yemeni rebels say they will halt rocket fire at Saudi Arabia,” shows the U.S. administration’s continued unconditional military support for the war in Yemen has pushed at least 8 million people toward starvation. Instead of promoting peace, the U.S. is prolonging a human-made catastrophe. Right now, an innocent civilian is dying every three hours from the fighting in Yemen.

We need decisive action from Congress to stop the slaughter. U.S. support for the Saudi-led coalition has made parties to the conflict believe they have more to gain from fighting than by compromising. Our leaders, including Idaho’s Senator Jim Risch, who is in line to be the next chair of the influential Senate Foreign Relations Committee, need to pressure to end U.S. support of Saudi-led forces and reinvest in peace and the children of Yemen. Such action would be the best way to honor our veterans.

Betsy Dunklin, Boise