From Mr. M. Bentlage, Portland, Oregon, USA.

It seems many people who write to Gulf News regarding U.S. foreign policy like to focus their hatred on the Bush administration. Maybe they are unfamiliar with democracy.

In America, the government is the people. Your correspondents should recognise that many Americans consider Bush a moderate. Most of us think he has gone overboard pandering to the global community when (post 9/11) we would just like some decisive action against terrorism in general and the evil that is Iraq in particular. The simple truth is Americans have too many problems of our own to care much about the Middle East.

It is pretty generous that Amer-icans pay such an outlandish premium for the oil that we discovered, and Arabs should be happy for the prosperity we have given them by our large marginal demand.

From Mr. A. Naviwala, Abu Dhabi.

The U.S. dollar, has hit a three-year low compared to the euro, and with the U.S. war mania over Iraq, it will show further lows during coming months. It will be wise if the UAE Central Bank snaps its tie with the U.S. dollar and links to the euro to establish the dirham's strength.

Bad associates
From A Reader, Abu Dhabi.

Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez is making sincere efforts to be fair to the poor people in his country after decades of misuse of oil revenues. But the way he handles the issue is unwise. Instead of seeking support from leaders with worldwide acceptance like Nelson Mandela and Jimmy Carter, he has teamed up with dictators like Saddam Hussain and Fidel Castro. So with his friends' bad profile, he might go down with all the hopes of the needy.
* Name withheld by request.

Light traffic
From Mr. I.E. Maladwala, Dubai.

To make traffic more manageable during the Dubai Shopping Festival, the authorities should arrange bus transport from various spots in Bur Dubai and Deira, Dubai. Visitors to the Global Village can park their vehicles in such areas and use the buses instead. The pick-up and return spots should be selected with ample free car parking spaces. The previous site of the Global Village near Wafi City would be a good site. Dubai Transport can charge a nominal fee for the return journey.

Can the Traffic Police have round-the-clock patrols on Al Garhoud and Al Maktoum bridges and on all busy intersections (BurJuman Centre, Strand Cinema, etc.)? This will ensure smooth flow of traffic and in case of accidents prompt action will be given.

The authorities should publish in the newspapers all the event sites (Global Village, Carpet Oasis, etc.) with easy to follow road maps and times. These can also be distributed at petrol stations and the airport. The Traffic Police should strictly prohibit buses, vans and pick-ups from using the last two left lanes on Sheikh Zayed Road.

Give way
From Ms Y. Desnavi, Abu Dhabi.

On several occasions, while I was driving, I have noticed ambulances, fire engines and police cars with their sirens on, trying to find their way through the traffic. It is shocking how motorists stick to their lanes stubbornly and don't give way to emergency vehicles. Such motorists don't realise that every second counts to save a life.

The international traffic law states that when these emergency vehicles have their sirens on, all vehicles should try to move aside to give way to them. Public awareness in this matter is of prime importance. The Traffic Police should issue warnings and instructions to motorists to make them aware how to deal with such situations.

From A Reader, Abu Dhabi.

I always face the same problem when travelling by taxi. Every time I proffer a Dh5 note for a fare of Dh3.50, the driver will often return only Dh1, saying they don't have change. So I decided to always take coins. Yet when I offer them the exact fare of Dh3.50, they argue with me saying they don't want coins, as they have lots of change. Action should be taken to stop this racket.
* Name withheld by request.

From A Reader, Dubai.

There are too many stray cats in Rolla Road, Bur Dubai. Earlier they used to be near the garbage bins, now they have started entering buildings and houses. Dubai Municipality should take action to stop this nuisance.
* Name withheld by request.

From Ms R. Siddiqui, Abu Dhabi.

Ms Coram's justification of the appalling arrangement for the Shahrukh Khan concert was pathetic ("Team effort crucial" Gulf News, January 2). She should answer why the security personnel were threatening not just the unruly crowd but also those who had no proof of what section they were sitting in for they had no proof of what price ticket they purchased?

The organisers were ill prepared and it seemed not bothered as long as their pockets were lined. The end result is the paying public lost out and the organisers laughed all the way to the bank.

From A Reader, Abu Dhabi.

I missed most of the Indian movie star concert shows held in Dubai, but I never regretted missing them after hearing the difficulties faced by the audience every time. I fail to understand why these unruly things occur to only Indian shows.

It happens always irrespective of whoever organise these shows. By this, obviously we can't blame the organisers every time it happens. It is clear that the audience have to follow rules basically. I back the view expressed by Ms Coram, it is not for the organisers to ingrain basics of behaviour to the audience in the shows.
* Name withheld by request.

From Mr. E. Eappen, Dubai.

I refer to the news item titled "Three Keralites convicted in Kuwait school scam" (Gulf News, December 24). It is a shame for the Indian expatriate community to know that Asianet executive K.P. Mohanan was sentenced to eight years imprisonment for committing fraud in Kuwait.

Mohanan conducts interviews with prominent figures like chief ministers, opposition leaders and other personalities about corruption and related subjects, and now he is involved in such case.

What is the stand of Asianet on this issue? Programmes like Kannadi and Nammal Thammil used to highlight the scams but in Mohanan's case they were silent. The media should not be biased otherwise viewers will be forced to switch to other channels.

The Indian government should extradite Mohanan along with Mathew Philip and Thomas Chandy, who are also involved in the scam to Kuwait as early as possible. Non-resident Keralites Affairs Minister M.M. Hassan should take the initiative in this endeavour.

Image building
From Mr. A. Adel, Abu Dhabi.

Some politicians from Kannur repeatedly stress the need for an airport there. Is there really a need for another airport in a small state like Kerala? Who told them the development of a nation depends on the number of airports? Surely such politicians have vested interests from this project.

Now we have three airports with international facilities. After Cochin airport, the necessity of Trivandrum airport is now being questioned. Kerala depends only on Gulf travellers. Even Cochin airport has not reached its