I was greatly saddened to hear of the passing of George F. Lowman, chairman and chief executive officer of Farrell Lines Inc. (''Farrell Lines CEO, responsible for its turnaround, dies at 82,'' Oct. 6, Page 19).

In this day and age, when shipping American-flag means nothing to shipowners but more money, Mr. Lowman showed the courage, independence, determination, energy, and patriotism not only to keep Farrell Lines' ships under the U.S. flag , but also to be fiercely proud of it. This was the fire is that set him apart then and that remains in our minds now.As American merchant mariners, we did not have be a family member or an employee of Farrell Lines to feel that we were riding along with him on the passage from rough financial seas to the peaceful waters of stability.

All U.S. merchant mariners - who today face threats to shut down maritime schools and programs as our glorious fleet is being bought from under us - were proud to know that Mr. Lowman was fiercely protective of Farrell Lines' American flag, as well as its own independence as a stand-alone carrier.

His life was an example to us all, but especially to the American merchant mariner, to keep up the good fight and eventually things WILL turn around. Tenacity and quality will always overcome suppression and will always endure.

Mr. Lowman, thank you for your contribution to American merchant seamen, to the U.S.-flag fleet everywhere that continues to fight the good fight, and to our national pride.

We were all proud to know your tenacity, fight, and courage. You will be sorely missed by us all.


Babylon, N.Y.

Interventions erode

US prestige, foster

dictatorial image

In response to ''Buchanan is no Teddy Roosevelt'' (Sept. 21, Page 5): Many Americans wonder why the United States doesn't get love and respect in the outside world commensurate to its noble democratic traditions. Pat Buchanan, and to a certain extent Gary Bauer, succinctly explain why.

As Buchanan notes, the ''braying donkeys of interventionism'' have brought the American foreign policy to a dangerous state where the precipitate U.S. actions do not lead on a coherent, desirable goal. Instead the unwarranted U.S. interventions - witness Somalia, Haiti, Yugoslavia, Timor - end up massacring civilians, eroding U.S. prestige and creating new enemies.

The more the United States tries to control the whole world, the clearer it projects an image of an intolerant, hypocritical and controlling entity. It is rather hard to correlate the internal democracy and openness of the United States with its dominating, dictatorial and veto-wielding international posture.

As Buchanan mentions, the U.S.-driven expansion of NATO into Eastern Europe - a direct violation of the U.S. pledge to the Soviet Union - speaks much more loudly than all the professions of friendship, democracy and human rights.

Bauer correctly implies that by doing business as usual with an ''authoritarian, autocratic, one-party dictatorship'' like China, Washington is sending the wrong signal to the world that might is right, that our basic principles and values can be sacrificed for dollars.

The United States regularly uses its veto status in the United Nations to push its partisan agenda. Its current economic power gives it many followers, while others constantly have to be on the lookout for a U.N.-bypassing, NATO-type action.


Bloomington, Ill.