Chess winner has made our country proud

Readers congratulate Saleh Salem on winning the Asian Continental Chess Champion title. Christopher Pike / The National
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It is rare to see Emiratis competing in chess championship (Emirati chess master crowned Asian Continental champion, August 11). Saleh Salem has not just made his country proud by becoming the Asian Continental Chess Champion of the year, but has also broken some stereotypes. Many congratulations to him.

Name withheld by request

This is awesome news. Congratulations to Salem and the UAE on this victory.

Khurram Qureshi, Dubai

Singapore has lessons to teach

Singapore has just celebrated its 50th birthday (Singapore at 50 struggles with changing reality, August 10). In 1965, all they had was a new country, with no economy or natural resources. Today, per capita GDP is at $55,000 (Dh202,012). How did they do it? Who can better answer that than its late founding father, Lee Kuan Yew.

In his book, From Third World to First, he wrote: “How was an independent Singapore to survive? We had to create a new kind of economy, try new methods and schemes never tried before anywhere else in the world ... I was never a prisoner of any theory. What guided me were reason and reality.” Reason and reality are rare commodities in Africa. Leaders worship ideology more than the constitution. It has gold, diamond, oil and copper. Yet it’s poor.

Singapore has none, but has an economy more powerful than the rest of Africa. Vision at the top is the difference. What is the point of having all these resources if they can’t be managed?

I hope Africa will learn from Singapore that it’s not where you are coming from that matters but where you are going.

Samoaen Osman, South Africa

Iraqis doomed to suffer

I am an Iraqi and I thank the Almighty for being able to live a comfortable life in Dubai (Summer of suffering, August 4). But I have relatives back home who are having to deal with incessant power cuts and water shortages at a time when the mercury is at its peak. I can't stop thinking about their plight for even a moment. How can we live at peace when our near and dear ones are suffering? There is no one to help them. Generations will have to bear with this pathetic state of affairs. It's a curse that Iraqis will have to live with for years to come.

Abu Al Khayr, Dubai

Ways to bond with cats

The editorial Purrfect day for cats (August 8) was interesting. I am very fond of cats, but have never been allowed to keep them as pets at home. Fortunately, a stray cat that recently gave birth started to live in the car park of our building, meaning I finally had a cat to pamper and shower my love on. I would feed her twice a day. One day I forgot to feed her in the evening. It was past midnight when I remembered about my duty. But to my surprise, there was no milk or meat at home to feed her. So, I drove to the nearest 24/7 supermarket and brought fish for her. She enjoyed her late dinner while I faced the wrath of my father.

Name withheld by request

I love my cat to bits. I have done many ridiculous things, such as dressing him in a baby dress, putting accessories in his fur and colouring his tail. In other words, he is extremely pampered.

Mariyah Fatoom, Abu Dhabi

Does Trump fit the bill?

I don't think Donald Trump is a true conservative (Why I'm backing The Donald's bid to be president, August 10). Until recently, he has had liberal views. I think he is in it to win and run his liberal agenda or not win the nomination, run as an independent and split the conservative vote. Either way the liberals win.

R Richards, US

I respect Khalaf Al Habtoor’s opinion, but what about the blatantly racist and sexist views that Mr Trump has expressed in the past, and even during this campaign trail? Someone spewing such divisive, hateful comments cannot be the leader of a “free” and multicultural country. He doesn’t even have the basic decency to express his immigrant-phobic views in a diplomatic way like other candidates, who despite being extremely conservative, have distanced themselves from him.

With all the social issues and racial divide taking place in the United States, it would be disastrous to elect him.

As a second generation North American woman, I cannot imagine living under a leader like him.

Name withheld by request