Send a letter to a local or national paper expressing your views on nuclear weapons, missile defense, space weaponization, or another issue.

Guidelines and sample letters

List of newspaper e-mail addresses

Tips for Writing an Effective Letter to the Editor

When writing a letter to the editor, first look at the length and style of the letters that paper usually prints. Normally, letters are about 100 words. Your comment should be timely and relevant and should add something new to the discussion. It helps to refer directly to stories that were published in that paper, referencing the article’s title and date.

Your letter will usually be edited, with or without your final approval. Be sure to include your full name, your city, your organization, and your contact information so the paper can call or email you to verify that you are the author.

Below are some sample letters that GSI’’s staff has published.


Sample Letter 1

The New York Times
Saturday, June 17, 2000

Building a Missile Shield, Holes and All

To the Editor:

In June 15 front-page articles, you report on both legal approval of a limited missile shield and the United States’ plans to drop sanctions against North Korea.

Proponents of national missile defense say that the North Koreans are a looming nuclear threat, and that we must spend $60 billion to stop missiles they don’t even have.

Yet the United States is planning to lift sanctions on North Korea because the Korean leadership showed vision and courage; because it stopped testing its missiles and took diplomatic steps that worked.

So why do timid Democrats and hawkish Republicans still say we need this technologically unsound missile shield when it will risk starting a new arms race with Russia and China?

The wise course is to seek complete elimination of nuclear weapons, something the United States has promised for 30 years with little progress.

San Francisco, June 15, 2000
The writer is program coordinator at the Global Security Institute.

« top of page


Sample Letter 2

The New York Times
Monday, August 13, 2001

Our Best Defense

To the Editor:

Conservatives and liberals alike should be wary of the alarmist rhetoric of Americans for Missile Defense (news article, Aug. 6). The coalition’s spokesman, Jeffrey Baxter, suggests that we need a missile defense rather than diplomacy: “When I look at people in North Korea, Libya, Iraq and Iran, understand folks, these folks don’t sit around and watch ‘Seinfeld’ and eat Milky Way candy bars all day.”

Is he suggesting that digesting American popular culture is a prerequisite for rational thought?
It is misleading to suggest that missile defense is an issue for conservatives to rally around. America prides itself on values of freedom and democracy, and assisting, rather than bullying, other countries. A better defense is to strengthen trust and cooperation among people and countries.

Program Director
Global Security Institute
San Francisco, Aug. 6, 2001

« top of page


Sample Letter 3

San Francisco Chronicle
Sunday, July 22, 2001

Don’t deploy missile shield

Editor – Michael Kelly’s op-ed column (“Star Wars bullet can hit a bullet,” July 18) asserts that missile defense is attainable, and asks “. . . then why in the world should we not want to attain it?”

Contrary to Mr. Kelly’s assertions, a missile shield would decrease our security. Although administration officials may view the ABM treaty as outdated, Russia and China do not, and their leaders have indicated they would respond by strengthening their nuclear arsenals.
Reckless U.S. unilateralism would erode international law, fuel nuclear proliferation and spark a new arms race, this time in space.

A better way is to honor and strengthen our treaty commitments and move toward the elimination of nuclear weapons.

Global Security Institute
San Francisco

« top of page


Sample Letter 4

San Francisco Chronicle
Wednesday, September 19, 2001

The real war against terrorism

Editor — Amid talk of declaring war against terrorism (‘U.S. ultimatum to Taliban,” Sept. 17), there has been little discussion of the political fights that must be won to assure victory.
One battle that we cannot afford to lose is the struggle to end proliferation of nuclear, biological and chemical weapons. As tragic as Tuesday’s attacks were, we must face the terrible truth that if the terrorists had acquired and used nuclear weapons, casualties might have been measured in millions instead of thousands.

If the United States is serious about defeating terrorism, we must take the lead in international efforts to inventory and control weapons-grade nuclear material, strengthen the chemical weapons control regime, fully support Russia’s nonproliferation efforts and return to negotiations toward a strong and workable biological weapons convention. Let Tuesday’s tragedy be a call to action to ensure that an attack of this scale will never again occur.

Global Security Institute
San Francisco

« top of page


Newspaper e-mail addresses

Akron Beacon Journal

Arizona Republic

Arkansas Democrat-Gazette

Asbury Park Press

Atlanta Constitution

Atlanta Journal

Austin American-Statesman

Bergen County Record

Boston Herald

Buffalo News

Chicago Daily Herald

Chicago Sun-Times

Chicago Tribune

Cleveland Plain Dealer

Columbia State

Contra Costa (CA) Times

Daily News (New York)

Dayton Daily News

Denver Rocky Mountain News

Detroit Free Press

Fort Lauderdale Sun-Sentinel

Fort Worth Star-Telegram

Fresno Bee

Grand Rapids Press

Hartford Courant

Huston Chronicle

Indianapolis Star-News

Kansas City Star

Las Vegas Review-Journal

Lexington Herald-Ledger

Los Angeles Times

Memphis Commercial Appeal

Milwaukee Journal Sentinel

Minneapolis Star Tribune

Nashville Tennessean

New York Post

New York Times


Norfolk Virginian-Pilot

Omaha World-Herald

Orange County Register

Orlando Sentinel

Philadelphia Inquirer

Pittsburgh Post-Gazette

Portland (OR) Oregonian

Raleigh News & Observer

Richmond Times-Dispatch

Rochester Democrat and Chronicle

Sacramento Bee

San Antonio Express-News

San Diego Union Tribune

San Francisco Chronicle

San Jose Mercury News

Seattle Post-Intelligencer

St. Louis Post-Dispatch

St. Paul Pioneer Press

St. Petersburg (FL) Times

Star-Ledger (Newark, NJ)

Tacoma News Tribune

The Baltimore Sun

The Birmingham News

The Boston Globe

The Charlotte Observer

The Cincinnati Enquirer

The Columbus Dispatch

The Dallas Morning News

The Denver Post

The Des Moines Register

The Detroit News

The Louisville Courier-Journal

The Miami Herald

The Oklahoman

The Palm Beach Post

The Providence Journal

The Salt Lake Tribune

The Seattle Times

The Tampa Tribune

Toledo Blade

Tulsa World

USA Today

Wall Street Journal

Washington Post

Wilmington News Journal

Share This