Editor: For those who believe it is a mistake to be at war with Iraq, I feel the need to explain my view as an American citizen on why Operation Desert Storm is necessary.
This war is not about oil or keeping down oil prices, even though oil is certainly one of the factors involved. The war is about freedom from terrorism by a sociopathic dictator. And it is not limited to the freedom from aggression that was launched on Kuwait. History may have taught us that war is hell, but it has also taught us that megalomaniacs are never satisfied.
If they succeed in controlling the world's supply of one of its most necessary and richest commodities and are swallowing up smaller countries, they will use their newly acquired territory, money and military strength to build more powerful weapons that will help them to take other countries as well. Their easy conquests are small at first, but unchecked they get larger. Then we could have another Hitler.
We know Saddam Hussein was trying to develop nuclear capabilities. We know that the more land, people and armaments he controls, the harder it will be to stop him. Now is the time, and the president was right to take action.
We exhausted every other avenue, from sanctions to talks and warnings. We went after weapon and communication systems first. Although a peace lover, I still support this action, as I truly believe it will help to keep us from worse confrontations later. Domestic problems, such as poverty and crime, may appear far more pressing to many, but unless we protect the future of
freedom now, we may one day be in jeopardy of losing control of our own destinies. We must not allow another maniac to gain unspeakable power.
America has done the right thing.
Editor: I've not heard credit given to the one person most responsible for the extremely successful performance of the U.S. weapon systems currently deployed against the Iraq, and that person is former President Ronald Reagan.
Ronald Reagan not only built up our defense during the Eighties, but also rekindled the patriotism that fuels the high morale of the men and women behind those fearsome weapon systems. President Bush's road to victory with minimum casualties is certain because it was paved by his predecessor.
Many say Ronald Reagan was an actor playing the role of the president. I'd say he gave an Oscar-winning performance.
Robert S. Lindsay.
Editor: Marylanders are grateful to Senate President Thomas V. "Mike" Miller Jr. for taking Gov. William Donald Schaefer to task for not meeting the deadline for the 1992 budget. Congratulations to Mr. Miller.
There is a sense that loss of control in fiscal affairs is escalating in the Maryland state government, with an increasing perception of erosion in Maryland's fiscal responsibility, a fragile perception in today's environment.
Using Call Trace
Editor: I would like to answer a question posed by Jack Sawyer (letter, Jan.11).
The Public Service Commission was thinking of people like me in their recent ruling about Caller ID. I have never made a crank or obscene call.
I have perfectly legitimate reasons to call people from my home and to fear for my privacy. As an insurance adjuster, many times I have to call claimants from my home. Sometimes I have to tell those same people that I will not be paying them any money on their claims. Sometimes they get very upset when I do this. If they have my home telephone number through Caller ID, they can get my address. I needn't remind Mr. Sawyer that there are a lot of crazy people out there.
Yet I am not classified as a person ''at risk,'' and therefore wouldn't be blocked automatically.
I also call many businesses to inquire about their products. These businesses could easily abuse Caller ID by securing my phone number (and address) even if I declined to give it to them. Perhaps the Public Service Commission wanted to give me the opportunity to avoid this problem.
Most important, perhaps the Public Service Commission was aware of Call Trace, and an unpublicized but already available means by which anyone, with any telephone -- and without any additional and costly equipment -- can lock in the telephone number of a prank, obscene or harassing call and have the phone company begin an appropriate investigation. Mr. Sawyer may have read about the use of Call Trace to capture a person who had been making threatening phone calls for 24 years.
The interesting aspect of Call Trace is that the proper authorities can gain access to the telephone numbers of people making such calls, but the person who received the call cannot, thus totally eliminating any possibility of abuses by the public. I wonder how much longer Call Trace would have remained C&P's little secret if it hadn't been for this major local news story.