I am writing in response to articles in The Washington Post on Friday, Jan. 18 and Saturday, Jan. 19. The articles, written by Michael Wilbon and Pete Axthelm supported not playing football games or, as Mr. Axthelm would have it, not playing sports at all. Mr. Wilbon couldn't believe his ears when some players and coaches spoke of football as a war, completely disassociating themselves from the real one in the Persian Gulf.

I can't help but wonder where these writers were when that other war was going on. I am a Vietnam veteran and I would like to express my opinion on this (ridiculous) matter. When we would come back to Base Camp, the first thing a lot of us would do is crowd around any radio we could and tune to Armed Forces Radio. We were not trying to find out how the war was doing, but what the Yankees or the Redskins or the Celtics were doing. We all had enough of war. We needed to escape to better times.

Yes, Mr. Wilbon, people do associate football and other sports with war. But in this harmless association nobody gets killed. As in Vietnam, many of the fighting men and women in Desert Storm need to continue with some sort of normalcy. They need to hear, and now even see, the scores, the cheers and the victories, not just the cries of the protestors.

Mike Ostinato Burke, Va.

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