Letters To The Editor


April 11, 2003

Stop the sniping and celebrate U.S. war success

Wednesday's Sun carried the headline "Urban warfare in Baghdad" and, in smaller print, "U.S. continues its push in capital's downtown as civilian casualties rise." But the images I saw that morning on my television told another story as I watched U.S. tanks and troops rolling into Baghdad, welcomed by cheering crowds of Iraqis, some waving American flags as they celebrated the end of Saddam Hussein's regime.

The Sun was again a day late and a dollar short in its coverage of the war in Iraq. And from the beginning, The Sun has been critical of the Bush administration and its approach to the problem of weapons of mass destruction and a brutal Iraqi regime.

The Sun criticized President Bush for his failure to persuade the French, Germans, Russians and Chinese to back the removal of Mr. Hussein's regime by force.

The criticism continued as the war started and, more recently, as it draws toward its conclusion. This is exemplified by recent editorials such as "Contractors of war" (April 6), in which The Sun hinted that the letting of a contract to put out oil well fires to Halliburton, a company once headed by Vice President Dick Cheney, was a sweetheart deal.

And on April 8, a Sun editorial criticized the administration for using the Free Iraqi Forces, under the leadership of the Iraqi National Congress, to help liberate Iraq ("Stealth puppetry").

However, the Bush administration has handled the Iraqi problem brilliantly, from breaking with the United Nations, which would not take action against Mr. Hussein, to the execution of the war, which has been a roaring success.

Now that Iraq has been liberated by U.S. and British forces from the oppression of Mr. Hussein's regime, it's time for The Sun to stop its sniping at the Bush administration, get with the U.S. program and congratulate the administration for its success.

Murray Spear


Fall of Baghdad vindicates Bush

Finally, we can see with our own eyes and hear with our own ears from the actions and the words of Iraqi citizens that they are overjoyed that Saddam Hussein is gone ("Baghdad Falls," April 10).

He has gone the way of all despotic dictators. And thank God we have a president with the courage and strength of conviction to see this madman removed while the United Nations and the rest of the world fiddled as Iraq burned.

Scott Appelbaum


I would suggest that the images shown on television on Wednesday, particularly the reaction of Iraqi citizens to the destruction of that huge statue of Saddam Hussein, give the lie to the views of the protesters around the world who were content to leave Iraq crushed under Mr. Hussein's dictatorship rather than take positive action to remove him.

President Bush demonstrated his determination to do just that, despite the cowardly actions of the United Nations, which ignored Mr. Hussein's repeated rejections of U.N. resolutions for a decade.

And in this case the protesters have been shown to be demonstrably wrong.

Robert A. Erlandson


Restoring order is next challenge

Americans can feel a sense of accomplishment for militarily shattering the despised government of Saddam Hussein. But a huge challenge remains - restoring domestic order in Iraq's large cities ("Joy and chaos as capital falls," April 10).

The potential for large-scale civil disorder, looting and revenge is magnified because of the widespread availability of weapons coupled with the reduced ability of local authorities to enforce basic civil laws.

While getting food, water and medical supplies to the civilian Iraqi population may get the headlines, restoring local civilian order and government is what will make it all work.

Phil Retchless


Gov. Ehrlich wins by cutting spending

The Sun outrageously listed Gov. Robert L. Ehrlich Jr. as a "loser" and House Speaker Michael E. Busch as a "winner" in the 2003 legislative session ("Assembly ends with fiscal crisis unresolved," April 8). Of course, the liberals at The Sun have it all wrong.

Mr. Ehrlich successfully put a halt to the orgy of more taxes and spending that the liberals in Annapolis, and at The Sun, are so fond of.

The governor took a stand against new taxes this year, which will make Marylanders the true winners and Mr. Ehrlich a winner in 2006.

Paul J. Gallo


Raise taxes to pay for better schools

I disagree with the writer of the letter "Voters have no taste for tax increases" (April 9). I welcome tax increases to provide funds to pay for the Thornton Commission's recommendations.

The governor should fulfill his campaign promise to fully fund Thornton, with or without slots.

Shannon Neville Fritz

Ellicott City

Democratic leaders asleep at the wheel

The term "politics as usual" can be overused. However, I don't think that is the case regarding our General Assembly. The session that just concluded displayed the weaknesses of our political system ("Assembly ends with fiscal crisis unresolved," April 8).

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