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PUBLIC FORUM NOT A WORD THEN.

Several July 15 letter writers seem to be of the opinion the president is a liar about the weapons of mass destruction. What about the ditches full of bodies? Perhaps we should have just ignored that and just waited ``to see'' what our allies would have to say about this problem. Maybe we should have waited until Saddam launched the missiles at some unsuspecting country and gassed them as he did thousands of Kurds.

Or maybe we should have waited until we suffered another 9-11 disaster or worse. How about the aspirin factory that was bombed on incorrect intelligence given to President Clinton? You didn't say a word. The Marines and civilians killed in our embassies and Clinton maintained a ``wait and see'' position. Where were all you president bashers then?

- Edna McCoy

West Hills

Not enough?

I would like Bush supporters to comment on these statements from the public sources: More than 70 American soldiers have died since Bush declared major combat over May 1. Between 6,058 and 7,711 civilians were killed in Iraq. The United States expects to spend an average $3.9 billion a month on Iraq from January through September this year. An average of $700 million a month is being spent in Afghanistan.

CIA Director George Tenet took all the blame for President Bush's false allegation about an Iraqi nuclear deal. No weapons of mass destruction were ever found. Not enough for Watergate?

- Victoria Iannone

West Hills

Had to do it

The continuing vitriol aimed at President Bush over the credibility of the weapons of mass destruction intelligence from many in this country is absolutely sickening. It is well documented that Saddam had a robust weapons program in the past and whether he had them or not at the time of the U.S. invasion is irrelevant because we are certain of his intentions. And therefore we could not leave Saudi Arabia with Saddam still in power.

Since 9-11, it became clear that we were going to have to find a way to bring pressure on the Saudis to end their support of Islamic radical groups and toward that end it was in the U.S. strategic interest to remove Saddam and free up Iraqi oil production so it can be brought up to its full potential in order to lessen the importance of Saudi oil production.

- Leonard C. Snebold

Simi Valley

Not the same

In ``Defending Bush,'' (Your Opinions, July 10), Henry Terusa comments on Albert Cohen's letter criticizing President Bush, citing his lack of combat experience, draft dodging and the continued loss of American lives in Iraq. Terusa disagrees.

Terusa's defense is riddled with poor analogies and lacks facts. Iraq is not Vietnam or World War II - those wars were fought for totally different reasons. Bush did not fly his jet alone nor did he do so in combat, but Terusa equates that with wartime. Bush goes to other countries talking peace, but starts a war in the name of peace. ... Need I go further?

- Richard McCurdy

Burbank

Our obligation

Re ``Over there'' (Your Opinions, July 11):

In neither World War I nor World War II did Germany attack us. In 1917 we fought a war to ``Make the world safe for democracy.'' In 2002, we went to Afghanistan to do the same. In 1941 we fought to rid the world of a maniacal dictator and free a people. In 2003 we invaded Iraq to do the same.

If in 1945 we had left Germany to fend for themselves, the Soviets would have devoured them into their communist bloc. In 2003 if we leave Iraq to fend for themselves, some kind of tyranny, oligarchy, theological despotism or plutocrat will devour Iraq. It is a historical certainty. It is our obligation to keep our boys there.

- Donovan Weir

Chatsworth

Invite millions more

Tsk, tsk to Washington Post columnist Marcela Sanchez's pessimistic deportation projections (``Immigration reform would help security,'' Their Opinions, July 8). According to ``The Latino Encyclopedia,'' more than one million illegals (mostly Mexicans) were rapidly deported in 1954 alone plus many others repatriated themselves accordingly. So if we really wanted to ``deja vu'' in 2003, we could.

At any rate, this matriculas consulares chicanery seems tantamount to an unprincipled, ``reverse-ex post facto'' scheme, which would, in effect, brazenly document up to millions of currently undocumented (i.e., illegal) immigrants, and all but invite millions more to follow in their footsteps.

- Harvey Pearson

Los Feliz

Ask Canada

Re ``Latinization of U.S. accelerates changes'' (Their Opinions, June 20):

I beg to differ with Maria Elena Salinas. English certainly is mandatory. My great-grandmother and countless other European immigrants gave up their language voluntarily for the privilege of citizenship in the freest country in the world. It was just as difficult for them to learn as it is for Spanish speakers.

Speaking of language, what does united - as in United States of America - mean? It means made into one. What is the Latin saying on every quarter? E pluribus unum, which means ``From many, one'' - one country, one language. Mandated multilingualism is divisive, and socially and politically expensive. Ask Canada.

- Sylvia Alloway

Granada Hills

Retraining DMV

Re ``Trail of death'' (July 17):

When George Weller at age 86 slammed through the farmers market, killing and injuring many people, a thought came to me that might work to prevent this kind of disaster from happening and satisfy the senior citizens groups that opposed former Sen. Tom Hayden`s Senior Drivers Bill in 1999 that was defeated.

Train all personnel that work at the Department of Motor Vehicles license renewal department to ask a few questions of, say, people over 75 years of age. If they seem confused or have difficulty in answering, then they go to an interviewer specially trained to notice possible dementia or other signs of confusion, and if that person thinks the applicant needs to take the road driving test again, isn't that fair?

This might cost the taxpayers a little bit more, but what about the cost to the people who are maimed or killed by drivers who should never have been licensed? I'm a 73-year-old driver who has no objection to a policy such as this.

- Jerry Cadish

Agoura Hills

Not for everyone

How high must the death toll in car accidents rise before this nation eventually realizes that driving is not for everyone - it's just for professionals who work as drivers, and for those amateurs who pass really tough driving tests and are well-regulated by the DMV and California Highway Patrol.

For the rest of the nation - at least in large metropolitan areas such as L.A. - it should be a widespread network of public transportation, covering the whole area, street by street, and running on a regular and reliable basis every three to 10 minutes in all directions, no matter day or night, weekday or weekend. This is the way it is for people in Europe and the whole civilized world. This country, though it claims to be most civilized, in reality has one of the poorest and least reliable public transportation systems in the world.

- Ruben V. Hakobyan

Glendale

No alternatives

Re ``Trail of death'' (July 17):

Perhaps elderly drivers would not be so reluctant to give up their driving privileges if we had a decent public transportation system. It is truly appalling that there are no alternatives available to most people, other than a private automobile, for getting from one place to the next.

- Lea Osborne

Woodland Hills

Retraining older drivers

Re ``Trail of death'' (July 17):

Since the overwhelming majority of elderly drivers probably do not drive a stick-shift vehicle, perhaps they might consider retraining themselves to brake with their left foot.

- Hermon Esmer

Woodland Hills
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Publication:Daily News (Los Angeles, CA)
Article Type:Editorial
Geographic Code:7IRAQ
Date:Jul 20, 2003
Words:1291
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