They've got a mountain to climb (December 15) was a very welcome story. It's great that coverage is given to running events in the UAE and elsewhere.
My wife and I ran in the Jebel Hafeet Hill Climb in 1993 and subsequent years, and have the T-shirts to prove it. The Abu Dhabi Striders, Al Ain and Dubai Running clubs among others took part in the 10K runs. Emirati friends were amazed and thought we were a bit majnoon (crazy) and drove up the steep, winding roads to witness our folly. What a sense of accomplishment we all felt when we reached the finish line near the top!
This year I hope the organisers dedicate the run to the late Simon Aspinall who died in October at age 53. He edited, along with Peter Hellyer, Jebel Hafit, A Natural History, published by the Emirates Natural History Group.
Martin Corrado, Abu Dhabi
Control firearms to stop killings
I refer to Belgian gunman feared return to jail (December 15), about the man with a Moroccan heritage and a history of lawbreaking whose gun and grenade rampage killed four people and injured many other in the city of Liege, in Belgium.
Whether the man was linked to any terrorist group or diagnosed with any mental illness, what he did is unbelievable, and so is the ease with which he obtained his weapons.
Governments should forbid civilians from owning guns under all circumstances.
Criminals will not comply with gun bans, but strict anti-gun laws and severe restrictions may reduce the frequency of events like this one.
We all mourn victims of this lunatic gunman.
Gaye Caglayan, Dubai
Mau has become household ruler
Thank you for Falcons soar and Salukis run, but the Mau paws alone (December 15).
Our Arabian Mau was born a little over six years ago and has run circles around us ever since.
She recently moved to Chelsea in London, where every new visitor falls in love with her and she continues to rule her human family with an iron paw.
The young don't know of old days
Man found his vocation when passport pictures become mandatory in UAE (December 12) was a great story. I enjoyed reading it very much.
I wish that some of today's youth would read and learn about the hardships of the so-called good old days.
They would know that they have it so easy now but they don't make good use of their good fortune.
Haytham Ghareeb, Al Ain
Public must make use of screenings
Early detection and preventive measures are vital elements of sound public health policy everywhere.
So it is good to know that Dubai is adopting a policy of Cut-price screening to curb disease (December 15).
I congratulate the officials involved for this worthwhile step forward.
But government can't do everything. Now the burden is on each individual to take advantage of these low-priced measures - and to stop smoking.
Manal Yassin, Dubai
Twitter insults are just childish
I was bemused by your report Islamists trade Twitter insults with Kenya (December 15).
When violence is pervasive, as in Somalia, it's more than ridiculous to insult the enemy you are already trying to kill.
There's just something childish about Twitter insults in any case, but between military enemies it's just ludicrous.
Wayne Waters, Dubai
US tycoons cling to dream of space
The news story Tycoons go from cyber space to outer space (December 15) was truly inspirational.
It is exciting to see men of vision putting part of their private fortunes - money they amassed exactly because they have vision - into the service of the dream of space travel.
Many of us who came of age in the 1960s, the brave days of the US lunar programme, are still true believers in the idea that humans shouldn't be limited to one little planet, and that each generation must take the step it can take on the long road outward.
Today many people have lost faith in governments. So it is good that private money is now, in this small way at least, keeping the dream alive.
Anson MacDonald, US