Keeping Md. Guard in Afghanistan does not promote peace

January 31, 2012

I found the recent headline regarding to Maryland National Guard ("Maryland Guard fights on in hope of Afghan peace," Jan. 29) to be Orwellian. It is a simple dictum that you can't wage war for peace. There are no winners in a war, only losers. One side may kill more than the other or capture more territory, but a cessation of warfare is not peace.

I was a Peace Corps volunteer in Botswana helping to set up small business. It would have been ludicrous for me to use force on the entrepreneurs to get them to do what I wanted.

If our government is interested in assisting Afghanistan, it would use diplomacy and technology. The technology would be used to build schools, road, clinics and bridges. Sending in the U.S. military was an act of vengeance against Osama bin Laden, not in any way a peace mission. And the Pentagon remains mired in Afghanistan.

My heart is torn for the oppressed women in that war-torn country. But bullets and bombs are not the way to provide assistance. Let us instead have non-governmental organizations work at the ground level to provide basic assistance and have theU.S. State Departmentengage in serious negotiations. And bring back the Maryland National Guard for local emergencies.

Max Obuszewski, Baltimore

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