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Winter 2007 Vol. V, No. 2

Letters to the Editors

On “A Visit to the Alumni in Iraq”, Winter 2006, Vol. IV, No. 2

To the Editors:
I read with great pleasure your recent article about President Dodge’s trip to Iraq in 1947. It seems that President Dodge, his wife, and a large number of guests visited with relatives of my husband, Hekmat Tamimie, in Iraq. My husband remembers visiting that same group of relatives when he was a young boy when he was living in Iraq with his American mother, Iraqi father, brothers, and sister. Hekmat left Iraq as a child, but continues to have some very fond and vivid memories of his childhood there. He also attended AUB as a junior year abroad student in 1973, during the October 1973 war.
It is a very, very small world. We always enjoy reading stories like this in MainGate. Keep up the good work.

Thank you,
Rose and Hekmat Tamimie
King of Prussia, PA

On “Nature in the Design”, Spring 2006, Vol. IV, No. 3

To the Editors:
I very much enjoyed the article about campus landscaping in your spring 2006 issue. The comment from Jala Makhzoumi that her students had “to argue against common misconceptions that landscape design is about beautifying open spaces with exotic plants,” and the words of Salma Talhouk about the preservation and introduction of native plants, resonated strongly with me from my experiences as a young naturalist on the AUB campus in the years 1946-49.
But there was one thing missing from the historical account of campus landscaping, namely a mention of someone who made important contributions to it and would also have been delighted to read those words: my father, William A. West. Especially in the years after 1941, when he stayed in Beirut after his family returned to the United States during the war, until his retirement from the Chemistry Department in 1959, he took an active interest in campus plantings, bringing in native trees and shrubs, corms, and bulbs, from his Sunday hikes up the Beirut River Valley. In a letter to my mother of March 2, 1942, he wrote: “Those [Judas tree] seedlings we brought from Aley last year have grown well, and forty or fifty will be ready to set out next year.” His wartime letters, which will go to the Archives in the Jafet Library, are full of references like that, including hands-on attention even to details like pruning. He had the support of Buildings and Grounds through its director Aziz Nahas, a long-time friend, and the two of them shaped much of the still-existing landscape of the campus. My roots in Lebanon are extremely deep, perhaps like those of an old kharoub, and I still get a lump in my throat even at the thought of that glorious view beyond Marquand House.

Sincerely,
David West
Blacksburg, VA

 

“From the President” and “Focus on Recovery”, Fall 2006, Vol. V, No. 1

To the Editors:
I read the fall issue of MainGate with great interest and admiration. I was most impressed by the excerpts of the speech by President Waterbury and the article “Focus on Recovery”.As I read the daily events summarized in the article, I recalled the difficult and stressful time that my family went through. My family, including my two children who study at AUB, were in Beirut during the horrible and sudden war.  As an alumnus and father, I was so concerned about the safety of all AUB students, faculty, and staff. All day, I was either on the phone or watching the news for any developments. The AUB bulletins and continuous messages helped in providing a level of comfort and assurance and alleviating our fears.  I applaud the significant efforts and contributions made by the AUB administration and staff during the harsh days of the war. They were there when we needed them.

Best wishes and regards,
Loutfi K. Echhade (BBA ’73)
Riyadh, Saudi Arabia

Errata

“AUB Reflections: Speaking with Raja Iliya”, MainGate Fall 2006
Trans Arabian Tapline Company was mistakenly referred to as Trans American Pipeline Company.

“Najla Zurayk, A Woman for All Ages” MainGate Fall, 2006
The photo caption on page 36 should read: Left to right: The author, daughter Huda Zurayk, Dean of Health Sciences; Najla Zurayk; Dean Nadim and Mrs. Cortas.

Letters to the Editors, MainGate,Fall 2006

Rosa La Sorte Rich’s home is in Brockport, NY, not Oklahoma City, OK.