Sir, Fair play to Kevin Myers (An Irishman's Diary, January 4th) for visiting Sarajevo three times when it was neither fashionable nor safe. Shame on him for criticising a celebrity, Bono, for his Christmas visit there.

It seems to me that Mr Myers misses the point of what some celebrities do, which is to focus public attention. Past examples include the successful protests against the siting of a nuclear power station at Carnsore Point "by Christy Moore and others, the important efforts on behalf of Nicky Kelly by many prominent artists including Mick Hanly and Christy Moore, U2's championing of Amnesty International and Greenpeace, which has led thousands of young people to join, and every musician in Ireland playing for free at charity events.

The second part of the article can be roughly summarised as follows: speed up global warming because it will lead to more people dying, which is a good thing because there's too many of us anyway. Many people subscribe to a gentler approach which includes making every effort towards the stabilisation of population numbers, fostering a respect for Mother Earth and all her systems and species, and finding ways of co existing with the rest of humanity.

I do not know Bono personally, but it looks like begrudgery to criticise him for giving his energy to something worthwhile. Meanwhile, Mr Myers is casting himself in the role of chief lemming.

Yours, etc.,


44 East Essex Street,

Temple Bar,

Dublin 2.