Letters to the Editor

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IRAQ: U.S. should have exercised patience

Letter by Thomas W. Glenn, Tacoma on Dec. 21, 2011 at 2:24 pm | 26 Comments »
December 22, 2011 9:54 am

A decade ago, our president led us into war. We were under imminent threat from the “axis of evil.” Our sworn enemy, Iraq, had poison gas and long-range missiles and was months away from maybe having a nuclear weapon. Something had to be done now, by us, to save ourselves and the world.

That hardly anybody agreed with us merely showed their ignorance. At the cost of a trillion dollars and thousands of our dead and injured and more than 100,000 Iraqi dead, we liberated their nation from totalitarianism and created a vaccum the Iraqis are still trying to fill.

In the same nine years, Libya’s Moammar Gadhafi fell to his own people and North Korea’s Kim Jong Il fell to time and debauchery. At the cost of our economy, prestige and good will we brought down a regime that patience and time would have toppled.

The loss to our nation and the world is also in lost opportunity. A trillion dollars could have provided education through college to every child born here this decade. One of the lives lost or destroyed could have been the next Steve Jobs, Jonas Salk or Mozart.

Lives, money and respect can only be spent once. Given the price we paid, we need to ask: “Did we really win this war?”

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