Letters: February 8, 2010

'End of the Rogue'
There are no rogue states, just rogue leaders. They are no myth but a continuing reality. As long as there are cohorts to support them, there will be no end of them.
Oscar Gonzalez
Lisbon, Portugal

If sanctions fail to stop rogue regimes, Nader Mousavizadeh is right that we should take aim at their illegitimacy—their "true Achilles' heel." One place to start would be the United Nations. Increasingly, rulers who routinely breach the U.N. Charter's principles of freedom, equality, and nonviolence are using the world body to win credibility and prestige. Although the Islamic Republic of Iran discriminates against Arabs, Azeris, Bahais, Baluchis, and Kurds, the U.N. chose it as vice chair of the planning committee of the 2009 World Conference Against Racism. Then the U.N. allowed President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad to deliver the opening speech. By denying rogues such legitimacy, the U.N. will help victims of tyranny, weaken aggressors, and improve its own reputation.
Hillel Neuer, executive director
U.N. Watch
Geneva, Switzerland

'The Depressing News About Antidepressants'
Sharon Begley bases her argument largely on two meta-analyses by Irving Kirsch and Guy Sapirstein. The psychiatric community understands that meta—analyses, which combine different medications and methodologies (as in Kirsch's and Sapirstein's research), or which handpick studies and exclude others (as did, in my view, the JAMA paper by Jay C. Fournier of the University of Pennsylvania and his colleagues), are susceptible to biased interpretations. Those of us who treat patients on a daily basis understand medications are not magic pills, and that treatment combining antidepressant medication with psychotherapy offers patients the best chance of recovery.
Julie Hatterer, M.D.
American Psychiatric Association Council on Communications
New York, New York

'The Fight Over "Allah" '
The Malaysian government has provided an environment in which Malaysians are able to live together in peace and harmony. It acknowledges and accepts the multi-religious, multiracial makeup of Malaysian society and draws strength from that diversity. Thus it is not to the advantage of the government to "institutionalize racism" nor "embolden Muslim hardliners." Being democratic, the government cannot stop people from voicing their opinions. Nowhere did the prime minister sanction demonstrations as alluded to in the article (Feb. 1).
Jalaludin Bahaudin, media adviser to the prime minister of Malaysia
Putrajaya, Malaysia

Corrections
In "Chávez Is Losing His Grip," we said that Venezuela's population is 45 million, and that its inflation is 30 percent a month. In fact, Venezuela's population is 29 million, and its inflation is 30 percent a year.
NEWSWEEK regrets the errors.