rn: AfD Open letter re: Iraq


Jan Slakov

Date: Sun, 6 Feb 2000 15:32:04 -0500 (EST)
To: •••@••.••• (Jan Slakov)
From: David Lewit <•••@••.•••>
Subject: open letter (for The Boston Globe) to our Massachusetts

Alliance for Democracy
David Lewit, MA state coordinator    271 Dartmouth St 2H, Boston  MA  02116
        phone & fax: 617-266-8687     •••@••.•••
5, 2000
Dear Senators Kennedy and Kerry:

Iraq is not one of the issues I work on.  But I am reasonably informed on
the US/UN embargo on Iraq.  I am compelled for moral reasons to write to you.

Why are we pursuing this murderous course?  Our embargo kills— yes, kills—
thousands of children every month. 

Is it due to an American disposition to be cruel?
Is it due to our disposition to be cowardly?
Is it due to lack of imagination?

I don't think most Americans are cruel.  This State/Pentagon policy goes
against most Americans' sentiments.

I have to say that many Americans, especially in high places, are cowardly.
We withdrew from Vietnam because we lost 50,000 Americans dead.  Never mind
that we inflicted more than 1,000,000 deaths on Vietnamese soldiers and
civilians.  And Vietnam is still Communist, and we don't seem to have a
problem with that any more.  Many politicians fear more for their careers
than for a million Iraqis.

We refrain from military engagements which are "fair fights."  We engage
only when we have overwhelming force.  And usually from high altitudes where
the operators of the equipment (it is inaccurate to call them "fighters")
cannot see the people or the suffering they are causing.  But they must know
that the targets go far beyond the military, to defenseless women and children.

We apparently do lack imagination as well as guts.  If we want to get rid of
Saddam we can do much better.  We could send a paratrooper force with that
mission.  Yes, we might lose 5,000 soldiers.  But isn't this "acceptable"
(to use a Pentagon term) compared to the million civilians dead on account
of our cowardly policy?  

I'm not sure the idea is to get rid of Saddam, or President Bush would have
persisted toward that end.  I don't know what the idea is.  There surely are
other ways of protecting Kuwait.  Why can't the State Department, or the
Senate, tell us what the US objectives really are? 

Actually, there's plenty of imagination, but in our Government it is
restrained.  The imagination should be applied to achieving peace, democracy,
and local autonomy— not empire.  The UN General Assembly, not the Security
Council with its vetoes, should set the policy.  This really doesn't take
much imagination, only a sense of fairness and humanity.  Most Americans
really don't want economic and military hegemony at the cost of grinding
down two-thirds of the world's people.

Please try to address these questions in a personal letter, not a form
letter.  Thank you.


David W. Lewit