Sunday, May 23, 2004

Perspective, please: Most
on both sides aren't evil

More letters: The war in Iraq

We've heard plenty from readers about the war in Iraq, particularly concerning the Abu Ghraib prison abuse case.

A few questions should be asked

These are the questions about the Iraq prison abuse scandal I would ask if I have the opportunity:

• Were manuals on prison care given to our soldiers and interrogators?

• Who chose to use untrained reservists?

• Who bought the cameras; who paid for processing the snapshots?

• Why didn't the president and secretary of defense ask to see the photos and the Red Cross reports in January?

Had the abuses been inflicted upon imprisoned Americans by Iraqis, would people question why the pictures would be made public.

Randall Wagner


In the 1940s, the famous wartime correspondent Audie Murphy said, "War is hell." While we can all agree that the atrocities on Iraqi prisoners are unacceptable and un-American, we must realize that these actions by five, 10, maybe several dozen United States soldiers are not representative of the 200,000-plus U.S. troops who have been or who are presently in Iraq. Schools and hospitals are now up and running; electricity throughout the country is twice what it was during the reign of Saddam Hussein; oil exports are moving again.

On the other side of the coin, the 5,000 or 10,000 insurgents - holed up in mosques, hospitals and schools in several Iraqi towns and giving the entire country and U.S. military all the problems - are not representative of the 25 million Iraqi citizens in the country who are striving for freedom, decency, human rights and democracy.

The Vietnam War was lost by the constant in-your-face photographs, constant anguishing over the strong images over 10-plus years, until finally the public opinion turned. Is this what we want to happen in Iraq? Let's court-martial the small number of American troops, crush the insurgents, and do both of these actions quickly - before the liberal press has time to dwell on these trivial incidents, which are being carried out by a very, very small number of U.S. troops, and of the Iraqi population.

Dan Nebert


Lies, blunders are killing us

The guest column "U.S. must get out of unwinnable mess in Iraq" (May 16) was right on. By invading Iraq under false pretenses with manipulated intelligence and a false sense of urgency, we have further destabilized the Middle East and Iraq.

Invasion. Conquest. Occupation. One colossal blunder after another. The left hand not knowing what the right hand is doing. Crisis management not seen since the Nixon administration. An economy in the tank.

All the prosperity. It quite literally is killing us.

Michael K. Loeffler


A few questions for Rumsfeld

I have some questions that I would like Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld to answer:

• Who brought the black hoods to Iraq?

• Who brought the dog leashes?

• Were the prisoners in the pictures key parts of Saddam Hussein's government or military, or common criminals - murderers, rapists, etc.?

Steve Isphording Madeira

Bush's stand costs U.S. lives, hope

Guest columnists Thomas A. Idinopulos and Abraham H. Miller ("U.S. must get out of unwinnable mess in Iraq" May 16) possess a level of reason, common sense and discernment that our posing president greatly lacks.

George W. Bush said he felt "that God wanted him to be president." So why is he hell-bent in destroying the American family? At this rate many hard-working Americans will find themselves just plain sick, stupid and poor. But, hey, we'll be safe.

Like most hard-working small business owners raising children, my husband and I have three main concerns - affordable health care, a strong educational experience for our children and a healthier economy. Bush is out of touch with reality, as are his blind followers, like sheep going to slaughter. Bush's cavalier and divisive stance on Iraq crosses partisan lines. It is costing Americans their lives and hope for the future.

Karla Addington-Smith


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