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FOREIGN STUDENTS

THE MAIL

To the Editors of The Crimson:

I would like to point out certain inconsistencies regarding the statement of my opinions in the article "Elite Students: A Silence Between Two Cultures" by James Kaplan in the supplement Foreign Students at Harvard of March 17, 1976.

Mr. Kaplan quotes me as saying that "I feel closer to people here than at home." I don't recall having uttered this statement. I did say that "in SOME WAYS I feel closer to people here than at home," which signifies a totally different connotation than the one signified by Mr. Kaplan's words.

At another point in the article, in referring to my views on Western media he writes that "he (meaning myself) even sometimes reads Soviet publications now, just because he knows that a lot of what the West puts out isn't so." I feel that this is definitely a misinterpretation of my opinions. I did say that I didn't believe in all the news reported by Western Media but I certainly did not imply that I generally mistrusted the media here as is implied by the statement printed.

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At yet another point in the article, I am quoted as saying "people there hate you if you are westernized, they think you are snobbish." Once again I don't recall having said exactly these words. I did say that people in Bangladesh disliked snobbishness and exclusiveness on part of the students. As far as this snobbishness was associated with being Western, then Mr. Kaplan's statement is partially true. However I did not imply that people back home hated me because I was Westernized, which is the impression one gets from the article.

I would highly appreciate it if you would clarify the inconsistencies that I have mentioned.

Finally as a general comment, I would like to add that the article seems to have focused on only certain seemingly negative aspects of the Foreign Student experience in America and especially in Harvard. No mention was made about any positive feelings on part of the Foreign Students. On reading the article one gets the impression that Foreign Students do not have any positive feelings at all about Harvard or about America, which is certainly not true at least on my part. Omar Rahman '79

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