Letters to the Editor

Your views in 200 words or less

Tag: afghanistan


MILITARY: Our wars haven’t made us safer

Re: “Ford-class ships boost ability” (TNT, 11-10).

Mackenzie Eaglen says we need a fleet of new “Ford-class” super aircraft carriers at about $14 billion apiece. Writing as a veteran on Veterans Day, I ask why must we have the wars she apparently anticipates?

When, since World War II, has war ever made us more prosperous or secure? Vietnam was a flat-out loss despite thousands of dead and wounded on both sides and thousands of Vietnamese still suffering from our use of poison gas – which is what Agent Orange is.

Far from making us any safer, hatreds generated by

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MILITARY: Easy to advocate for commanders’ ‘accountability’

Re: “Force protection Job One in Afghanistan” (editorial, 10-2).

From the safety of an editor’s desk – unencumbered by any actual responsibility for the matters on which the writer opines – it is easy to advocate for the humiliating end of the careers of two capable general officers in the name of “accountability.”

The headline demonstrates an astonishing lack of understanding of the demands placed on our commanders in Afghanistan. Every military professional knows that mission accomplishment is “Job One,” and mission accomplishment in a combat environment means that there are going to be casualties.

As our troop strength

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TERRORISM: Stop intervening in the Islamic world

When it comes to the so-called war on terror, we’ve all been told by our government that these terrorists “hate our freedom,” and we must fight them tooth and nail to save our way of life. The way we do that is to launch military campaigns against places like Afghanistan and Iraq.

What have we gotten out of the wars there? We’ve spent a ton of money and have a debt approaching $17 trillion to show for it. We have thousands of dead and wounded young Americans to show for it, and, through our interventions, we’ve generated enough hatred in

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SYRIA: No easy fix, but debate is welcome

After weeks of scanning the opinions given on your editorial page, from the rational (Eugene Robinson, David Brooks and Paul Krugman) to the intractable (Charles Krauthammer), it’s pretty clear no one has a solution to the bloody disaster in Syria.

One thing is clear, though: The American people were burnt twice in that part of the world (Iraq and Afghanistan), and we want no more of it.

So I applaud Congress and the Obama administration for encouraging a protracted debate on the subject – words are cheap – and hope they find a non-military solution – war is costly.


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MILITARY: We need to stop trying to police the world

At present more than 150,00 American troops are serving outside of our country. Where and why deserve some answers.

In addition to the endless war in Afghanistan, where 63,000 of our troops are trying to help people, many if not most of whom hate our very guts, another 100,00 of our finest are deployed all over the world.

If I remember correctly, World War II ended nearly 70 years ago in 1945, so why are 52,000 U.S. troops still in Japan, 45,000 in Germany, 10,000 in Italy, 10,000 in the U.K. and another 50,000 or so scattered around the world?

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MILITARY: Save some compassion for Bales, too

I have watched several local news reports on TV. It seems that our loyal press just can’t understand why a soldier may not remember his actions in a war zone. Four deployments to war zones in a short period of time could be a reason. A severe head injury while in a war zone could be another.

I have also noticed news agencies, including The News Tribune, have lamented about the poor care at Madigan Army Medical Center for post-traumatic stress disorder. Have any local news reporters been subjected to the same physical and mental traumas that this soldier incurred?

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SYRIA: Another war would be a losing gamble

We had no vital interest in Vietnam, Iraq or Afghanistan, and we spent vast sums of our treasury, both financial and human. We ultimately lost or will lose both militarily and in credibility. So why are we now thinking Syria will be any different?

No one can predict the future, but we can consider the weight of our vital interests, which are next to none, versus  the costs of entering another war. A good gambler weighs the risks and costs of losing against the possible benefits of winning. We have to start learning what a good bet is.



BOMBINGS: Pray for victims of terror in other nations, too

My prayer for America is this: As we feel deep and noble compassion for our own innocent children and families, wounded or slaughtered by the irrational, the ignorant, the cowardly – so may we feel that same compassion for the innocents of other nations, especially Iraq, Afghanistan and Pakistan, especially because so many of them have been wounded or slaughtered by us.