Ballet Quad Cities a Jewel

Thanks to Joedy Cook, we have just spent an evening revelling in Ballet Quad Cities' reviews and DVD of performances and programs of the past year. I cannot adequately share our feelings of pride, excitement, and awe of Johanne Jakhellen's choreography!

While we were sad to leave the Quad Cites on the brink of the development of this extraordinary professional ballet company, it gives us great joy to see the growth of the company, the appreciation of the community for the wonderful performances, and the fabulous dancing.

Mark and I both worked hard to make dance an important element of the arts environment in the QCA when we were living there. We both feel that through the support of the community, the tireless work and vision of Joedy Cook, and the extraordinary talent of Johanne Jakhellen and many others Ballet Quad Cities is a success. It is a huge asset for the Quad Cities to have such a talented and vibrant presence for dance, particularly ballet, in the community.

We hope that the Quad Cities will continue to support, enjoy, and relish in the fact that such talent and creativity does not reside in many towns. You have a jewel in Ballet Quad Cities; cherish it!

Bravo to all!

Barbara Doyle-Wilch and Mark Wilch

Middlebury, Vermont

Where Are Moderate Republicans?

Now that reporter Cooper has testified under oath before the grand jury that Karl Rove was his source in the White House that named Valerie Plame as an undercover CIA agent, it seems as though Karl Rove should at least face federal criminal charges; after all, he did reveal a state secret.

But the Republican Party has come out on the offense; they are actually attacking Joe Wilson, Ms. Plame's husband. The Republican Party is defending Karl Rove for his crime. Where are our moderate Republicans?

We'll see how honest President Bush is with us. He promised that if the leak of Valerie Plame's secret identity was from the White House, he would take action. We'll see.

The Republicans spent $40 million chasing Bill Clinton for a personal mistake. They haven't spent a dime investigating this major breach of security.

The Republicans barely won in 2004. I can't wait for the 2006 elections.

Dan Lavielle

Seattle, Washington

Americans Wouldn't Support Occupation of Iraq If They Knew the Facts

Let's be honest. How many Americans would support the occupation of Iraq if all the major media provided the same coverage of the Downing Street memo; its newsworthiness is certainly not in question - authenticated minutes of a meeting attended by Prime Minister Blair in which Britain's top government officials told the minister that Bush and his cabinet were "fixing facts" to win support for an invasion.

Would Americans still support the occupation if they saw the BBC interview ( with oil consultant Falah Aljibury, who hosted secret meetings where the State Department and oil tycoons were drawing up documents that would divide up Iraq's oil within weeks of Bush's taking office in 2001?

Or if they saw the 2001 video clips ( of both Condoleezza Rica and Colin Powell announcing at press conferences that Saddam Hussein was "completely contained" and couldn't even threaten his neighbors with conventional weapons?

Or if they saw the video of Rumsfeld shaking hands with Hussein (, just prior to brokering the deals that would arm Hussein with good old made-in-the-USA anthrax, botulism, gas gangrene, cholera, and nuclear detonators - the complete list of which has been provided by Senator Robert Byrd (

Fortunately, those WMD were destroyed in the presence of UN inspectors before they were ever deployed on civilians.

Unfortunately, this administration has blatantly and repeatedly lied to us about them as a pretext for this disastrous misadventure that has now cost over 1,700 American and untold hundreds of thousands of Iraqi lives.

May the God they pay public lip service to have mercy on their blackened souls.

Eric A. Smith

Tokyo, Japan

Ike Turner's Legacy Will Last

I suspected it would be impossible for any journalist to do a fluff piece on Ike Turner without mentioning that he smacked around what's-her-name and heaven forbid, used drugs. (See "'Blues All My Life,'" River Cities' Reader Issue 535, June 29-July 5, 2005.) Quick, name a blues guitarist from the '50s who didn't do either. One hundred years from now, when Tina Turner is enjoying the name recognition of, say, Mason Reese, recordings of Ike and The Kings Of Rhythm will continue to be shared like a dirty secret by incredulous listeners.

Joe Euchner


Taco's Revenge Inventive and Entertaining

I recently saw Dingo Boogaloo 2: Taco's Revenge and I wanted to let you know what I thought of the show.

I loved it.

It was quite possibly the funniest show I've seen in a while. It was so inventive and entertaining, not to mention edgy, which (I'm sure I probably don't have to tell you) doesn't happen a lot in the Midwest. I sort of felt that this is a show I would see in the city ... maybe New York or LA or maybe even Chicago, but not here. That is what makes it even better. I say it's about time we have theatre in this area with a bit of an edge to it. I for one am looking forward to the next show that involves either of the writers of this really funny, entertaining show.

Esther Clement


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