November 16, 2007


By Richard, Aruban Boycott Contributor

Attn Mr. Larry Benjamin

Dear Mr. Benjamin:

It is my understanding that letters to the editor of the Asbury Park Press are to be sent to your attention. I accordingly invite you to print the following, should you so desire.

To Whom It May Concern:

I wish to give to the family of Joel Gove what consolation I can in the recent discovery of his body on the island of Saba. This finding ends any question about his fate. I trust that the local government will do what it can to probe any lingering suspicions of foul play.

Yet the matter should not end here. It is my understanding that after some initial half-hearted efforts at searching, the local authorities refused to carry on. I also believe that early in the search effort, these same authorities objected to the display of missing-person posters.

And I am certain that both local authorities and the Dutch military refused to follow up on the family's request that certain mountain areas be searched. Consequently, the family were forced to undertake fund-raising efforts to round up sufficient funds for private efforts.

This indifference to the well-being of guests to their country would be shameful if it were the first instance of it. But we know that it was not.

In 1998, Amy Lynn Bradley of Richmond, Va., disappeared from a cruise ship as it was docking at the port of Curacao. There is reason to believe that she remains alive, in a situation of duress. Yet it appears that the Curacao government is indifferent.

The night before she vanished from the ship, it docked at Aruba. Members of the crew invited her to go with them to Carlos 'n' Charlies, the same bar where Natalee Holloway of Alabama was last seen in May 2005. No person who has followed the case can doubt that elements of Aruba's government and law enforcement are engaged in a conspiracy to prevent Natalee's family from learning of her fate, and apparently to protect certain individuals of the island from prosecution.

Is there something about the Netherlands Antilles that makes duplicity and corruption the hallmark of these islands? Is the apparent confusion between the Dutch and the locals about who exerts what powers (we have seen, and continue to see, Aruba and the Dutch squabble about even who is in charge of the Natalee Holloway investigation) tailor-made for crimes against tourists?

I have no idea. But it is not my duty to solve Caribbean problems, but to urge my own government to do what it can to protect the American people.

Beth Holloway Twitty, soon after Natalee disappeared on Aruba, urged Americans to boycott, voluntarily, tourism not only to Aruba but to all the Netherlands Antilles islands until answers were forthcoming.

So far we have gotten nothing from Aruba but lies and evasions. I believe that justice for Natalee Holloway, and Amy Bradley, ought to be our first concern.

I support, and am taking part in, the voluntary boycott of the Netherlands Antilles. I will continue to demand justice for missing Americans, there and elsewhere.

Boycott the Netherlands Antilles. As if your life depended on it.

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