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The burned Doctors Without Borders hospital is seen after explosions in the northern Afghan city of Kunduz, Saturday, Oct. 3, 2015. Doctors Without Borders announced that the death toll from the bombing of the group's Kunduz hospital compound has risen to at least 16, including 3 children and that tens are missing after the explosions that may have been caused by a U.S. airstrike. In a statement, the international charity said the "sustained bombing" took place at 2:10 a.m. (21:40 GMT). Afghan forces backed by U.S. airstrikes have been fighting to dislodge Taliban insurgents who overran Kunduz on Monday. (Médecins Sans Frontières via AP)

Editorial: Deadly attack on Kunduz hospital needs full accounting by US

Tuesday, October 6, 2015

It is too soon to label as a war crime the U.S. airstrikes that hit a hospital in northern Afghanistan Saturday, killing 19 people, including three children. But only a full and frank accounting of this tragedy stands a chance of lifting the specter of heinous misconduct by U.S. forces. After losing 12 of its staff members and seven patients, …

Editorial: A chance for compromise in Dunkin’ Donuts flap

Tuesday, October 6, 2015

At a recent meeting in the Williamsburg Town Offices, residents came out in droves to pan a plan to construct a Dunkin’ Donuts franchise at 142 Main St. in Haydenville, the site of a now-closed bank. But instead of declaring war against it, residents should see this as an opportunity to positively influence the project. It’s a familiar story — a commercial entity …

Editorial: Your donations to United Way improve lives of our Valley neighbors

Sunday, October 4, 2015

The stories told by the United Way of Hampshire County in its annual report are compelling. They are about our neighbors — people struggling with the loss of a job, an illness, or reduced independence that comes with aging — who need a helping hand from the community. Take Jean Shaw, 84, and her husband Lester, 90, of West Chesterfield, who have lived …

Editorial: In Hatfield, official’s residency status is a disputed judgment call

Sunday, September 20, 2015

It didn’t take long for a dispute over a Hatfield election to get downright weird: Tit-for-tat surveillance. Calls to local and state police. Sharp words exchanged in a restaurant parking lot. And it produced perhaps the strangest reason a Hatfield official — or anyone — is happy to …

Editorial: A provocative Pope Francis brings message to US for first time

Friday, September 18, 2015

A rock star is expected to land in the United States Tuesday, only instead of brandishing a guitar, he will don a white cossack and a pectoral cross. And instead of powerful lyrics, he will bring powerful words. …

Editorial: Time to start search for next Belchertown police chief

Wednesday, September 16, 2015

People have a right to demand unflagging integrity from their elected and appointed officials. They don’t always get it, but should not accept less. When it can be established that a leader has violated the public trust, it is time for him or her to return to private …

Editorial: World slowly answers call to help Syria’s refugees

Tuesday, September 15, 2015

People may “talk” politics, but they feel, in their guts, the plight of others. That’s why the photo of a 2-year-old Syrian boy who drowned in waters off Turkey this month seems to have been a turning point in this refugee crisis. After seeing the limp, wet body …

Editorial: Amherst revamps bid to join state’s solar energy revolution

Tuesday, September 15, 2015

Farmers make hay, the saying goes, while the sun shines. Today, the town of Amherst aims to make solar power before tax subsidies expire. Residents get their first full look Wednesday at the shape this new municipal project might take. It was more than four years ago that …

Editorial: Northampton’s lake beavers test conservation creativity

Monday, September 14, 2015

The beavers of Fitzgerald Lake are proving themselves formidable foes of the Broad Brook Coalition, which for years has been trying to regulate the level of the lake and protect a dock used by visitors to this conservation area on the north side of Northampton. Last month, members …

Editorial: Why keep the public out of public utility matters?

Friday, September 11, 2015

From the earliest intimations that a gas pipeline would stretch through parts of his district, state Rep. Stephen Kulik has proven dogged in his push for an open and complete regulatory review process. It’s an upfront approach that people in a district that encompasses towns in Franklin and …

Editorial: Public trust shattered by Belchertown police chief's conduct

Thursday, September 10, 2015

Belchertown officials must move swiftly to address a Granby police officer’s account that their own chief, Francis Fox, drove into the neighboring town while showing signs of intoxication and in effect bullied his way out of an arrest. …

Editorial: A time for answers on Amherst’s proposed school consolidation

Wednesday, September 9, 2015

A vote won’t come until next year, but the question of consolidating Amherst’s middle and high schools is probably not yes or no, but when and how. Due to demographic change and reductions in state aid, Amherst’s school leaders are right to ask whether it continues to make …

Editorial: Bike trail in Northampton pushes west with a goal finally in sight

Tuesday, September 8, 2015

File this under “you can’t keep a good idea down.” Thanks to a recreational trail network, bicyclists can ride safely east from Northampton across the Connecticut River into Hadley. They can travel south into Easthampton. The dream of riding west into the Hilltowns on a paved path has …