The daily Nebraskan. ([Lincoln, Neb.) 1901-current, September 25, 1990, Page 4, Image 4

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    VT Editori21 Nelwaiskan
■* JLJ JL L JL L LL JL Tuesday, September 25,1990
Editorial Board
Unlvaraity of Nabraska-Uncoln
Eric Pfanner, Editor, 472-1766
Victoria Ayotte, Managing Editor
Darcie Wiegcrt, Associate News Editor
Diane Bray ton, Associate News Editor
Jana Pedersen, Wire Editor
Emily Rosenbaum, Copy Desk Chief
Lisa Donovan, Editorial Page Editor
3,2,1... restore
Museum is responsible for Apollo 009
Space: the final frontier?
NASA looks as though it’s voyaging into utter disaster.
The space agency’s reputation has deteriorated with the
; space shuttle Columbia’s delayed launching and finally the
removal of the craft from the launch line-up.
The 118-day (and counting) delay of the shuttle’s launch,
caused by a hydrogen leak, is the longest shuttle delay in
But the University of Nebraska-Lincoln is making some
j space history of its own - and it’s nothing to be proud of cither.
Years of exposure to Nebraska weather have damaged the
Apollo 009 space capsule, which sits northwest of Morrill Hall.
The paint on the outside of the spacecraft is faded, chipped
and cracked. Part of the outer shell has broken off. The windows
are dirty and scratched. Inside, wires arc tangled and equipment
is rusted.
Kcsioranon oi me crait nas occn csumaica 10 cosi ai icasi
But restoration seems to be a floating idea because Hugh
Genoways, director of the Nebraska State Museum, said that
“from the museum’s point of view, the (restoration of the) craft
is a long ways down our priority list.”
And while the museum says it doesn’t have the money to pay
j for restoration, it’s not going to let anyone else take care of the
capsule either.
It’s a sure bet that 18 years ago, when NASA agreed to give
the museum a space artifact, the space agency didn’t expect it to
go to ruins.
Max Ary, executive director of the Kansas Cosmosphere and
Space Center in Hutchinson, Kan., said that not only docs the
university own the craft, it has a responsibility to maintain a
national treasure.
The center submitted proposal to the university this summer
to take the craft from UNL permanently and restore it through
backing from a museum or foreign country that would display
the craft in an exchange program.
But UNL turned the center down, saying the craft was “too
valuable to exchange,” according to Genoways.
So valuable that Apollo continues to disintegrate.
Ary said that if the craft remains outside much longer it could
“literally turn to dust” as the deterioration of the special metals
used to build the spacecraft continues.
And now the space program is crumbling alongside its
Delays such as that of the Columbia and accidents such as the
f 1987 explosion of the space shuttle Challenger have caused
public skepticism about the U.S. space program and questions
1 about NASA’s abilities.
NASA’s mission will continue. But it won’t be successful if
the space program’s past is jettisoned.
—Lisa Donovan
for the Daily Nebraskan
Signed staff editorials represent
the official policy of the Fall 1990
Daily Nebraskan. Policy is set by the
Daily Nebraskan Editorial Board. Its
members are: Eric Planner, editor;
Lisa Donovan, editorial page editor;
Victoria Ayolte, managing editor;
Diane Brayton, associate news editor;
Darcie Wicgcrt, associate news edi
tor; Emily Rosenbaum, copy desk
chief; Jana Pedersen, wire editor.
Editorials do not necessarily re
flect the views of the university, its
employees, the students or the NU
Board of Regents.
Editorial columns represent the
opinion of the author. The Daily Ne
braskan’s publishers arc the regents,
who established the UNL Publica
tions Board to supervise the daily pro
duction of the paper.
According to policy set by the re
gents, responsibility for the editorial
content of the newspaper lies solely in
the hands of its students.
The Daily Nebraskan welcomes
brief leuers tc the editor from all
readers and interested others.
Letters will be selected for publi
cation on the basis of clarity, original •
ity, timeliness and space available.
The Daily Nebraskan retains the nght
to edit all material submitted.
Readers also are welcome to sub
mit material as guest opinions.
Whether material should run as a let
ter or guest opinion, or not to run, is
left to the editor’s discretion.
Letters and guest opinions sent to
the newspaper become the property
of the Daily Nebraskan and cannot be
returned. Letters should be typewrit
Anonymous submissions will not
be considered for publication. Letters
should include the author’s name,
year in school, major and groupaffili
alion, if any. Requests to withhold
names will not be granted.
Submit material to the Daily Ne
braskan, 34 Nebraska Union, !4(X) R
St., Lincoln, Neb. 68588-0448.
pevM ^vtuw ?
Oil is not the only impetus
Hitler, Quadaffi, Saddam illustrate need for U.S. military action
1 guess it’s official now. We’re all
in big trouble.
On Thursday, Saddam Hussein
announced to Iraq and the rest of the
world that war with the West - read
‘‘United States” -- is inevitable.
Strangely, this statcmcntcame just
days after Iraqi officials said the
economic embargo wouldn’t affect
their nation for ‘‘five or six years.”
But lots of people in this country
should be delighted at Saddam’s atti
tude. It will give them something to
grumble about well into the holiday
Since Iraq invaded Kuwait Aug. 2,
most nations have condemned Sad
dam for his actions. For once, the
world seemingly has come together
to back a cause.
But here in America, some people
are less than delighted.
Last Saturday, hundreds in San
Francisco protested the U.S. military
involvement in the Gulf, and there
have been similar protests across the
People are forecasting another
Vietnam, with thousands of Ameri
cans dying for nothing.
Uh-huh. It makes one wonder what
those same Americans would say if
oil suddenly shot up to $200 a barrel,
and their taxes shot through the strato
sphere to help the government main
tain our 20th century way of life.
American troops in Saudi Arabia
are there because that’s their job. They
weren’t yanked out of their living
rooms, they weren't recruited at gun
point. They joined to serve their coun
try, for whatever reasons. They arc
highly trained and are getting paid to
do what they do. Right now, they are
serving their country and the rest of
the world - just like soldiers from
other countries who are there.
And the cost? The Pentagon esti
mates that for occupation until next
Sept. 1, the pricetag will be about
$17.5 billion. Saudi Arabia has al
ready promised to pick up $6 billion
of that, and other countries such as
Japan and West Germany have com
bined to pledge another $4 billion to
$8 billion.
Cost seems to be the main issue all
the way around in the crisis.
The cost of oil was Saddam’s prem
ise for invading Kuwait. He said
Kuwaiti leaders were letting oiI prices
get too low, and that it was his job to
stop the trend.
Obviously, the impending high price
of oil is one big reason U .S. troops are
sweating it out in the desert. It’s also
little doubt that without oil, life as we
know it would cease - and not just
long weekend trips in the ol’ Camaro.
Spock-likc logic isn’t needed to
figure out what would happen if 50
percent of the world’s oil reserves
were controlled by a man w ho gasses
his own citizens, and spends SI50
billion and 1 million lives on an eight
year war with a neighboring nation.
Electricity, contrary to popular
belief, is not just up there in the power
lines, waiting to be used. It is created
by generators run by fossil fuels.
Petroleum is vital for medical serv
ices, communications, clothing and
food production, and virtually every
other aspect of life as we know it.
Until other means of creating en
ergy are found, oil is needed. Com
plaining about developing solar en
ergy doesn’t help at the moment.
Welcome to 1990.
Back in the spring of 1986, U.S.
planes launched an attack on Libya in
retaliation for a scries of terrorist at
tacks on American citizens and prop
erty. The mood of the country then
was much the same as it is now:
violence only causes more violence.
But looking back over the last five
years, I honestly can’t think of any
terrorist activity from Libya since.
There hasn’t been a peep from Lib
yan leader Moammar Quadaffi.
Our government has blundered
more than its share and stuck its nose
where it docsn ’ t belong ever since the
late-1940s. It has covertly invaded,
killed, planned and generally meddled
in the world’s affairs for a long time,
usually for self-serving reasons.
Such is the price of being the only
economically intact nation in the years
after World War II.
The Gulf crisis, though, isn’t a
contrived invasion of a tiny Carib
bean island, or a coup against a Third
World country. It’s the world versus a
nut, like it or not. And the U.S. is the
only country that can do anything
about it fast.
Had the United Stales not sent I
troops as soon as it did, Saudi Arabia I
would by now be another Iraqi prov-1
ince. Saddam would own hall of the n
world’s oil and control the world I
economy. Is that “none of our busi- I
It was none of our business when I
Adolf Hitler was stcamrolling Eu- I
rope 50 years ago, either. But looking I
back, it’s a damn good thuig the United ■
States was involved.
Saudi Arabia and Kuwait arc two
of America’s most loya'i allies in the
perpetual battlefield known as the
Middle East. Our government, as
wrong and ridiculous as it so often is,
has obligations to its allies as well as
to its own citizens.
Refugees from Kuwait have told
stories of Iraqi soldiers raping, rob
bing and looting. Saddam has ordered
that Kuwait’s culture be systemati
cally exterminated. Kuwaiti families
have been forcibly removed from their
homes, which are being turned over
to Iraqi families left homeless by the
war with Iran.
One of the favorite arguments of
Bush-bashers is that Israel has never
received U.S. condemnation for oc
cupation of the West Bank. Thai’s not
«ruc. It was condemned by U.S. offi
cials from the start, during Nixon’s
But the territory was occupied only
after Jordan entered the Six Day War
against Israel. If Israel had been de
feated, w'ould its land possessions have
remained intact?
War obviously is never good, but
it is sometimes justified. When all
else fails, it’s necessary. That’s not a
popular altitude, but a realistic one
It’s a pretty thought, hoping ev
eryone will just wake up one morning
and suddenly cooperate with every
one else on the planet, loving them all
the while.
Unfortunately, though, the world
is not yet a Utopia. The world s super
powers are slowly but surely getting
on the right track, but some other
nations still wait patiently to throw a
wrench into the machinery of prog
This lime, its Saddam. Maybe the
military buildup in the Gulf will keep
it from happening again.
Just ask Quadafft.
Green is a senior news-editorial major,»
Daily Nebraskan night news editor. *Portv
writer and columnist.