Friday, August 13


Letters to the NY Times re "Senator Kerry's Fateful Vote on Iraq." Are the Kerry people listening? These are very good:

To the Editor:

The war authorization resolution, which John Kerry voted for, gave the president authority to use military force if he determined that other means were not adequate to defend United States national security and to enforce Security Council resolutions concerning Iraq ("Stumping Bush Calls Kerry a Reluctant Ally on Iraq," news article, Aug. 11).

The president said he would choose war only as a last resort.

Millions of Americans who had deep reservations about the war hoped that a united front against Saddam Hussein might somehow make war unnecessary. President Bush chose war while weapons inspections held Saddam Hussein in check; before an international coalition agreed that it was necessary; with poor planning for the aftermath; and in the face of warnings that war could further empower extremists.

Mr. Kerry could put this question to Mr. Bush: "Mr. President, by going to war in the manner you did, do you believe that you honored the public trust?"

Todd Buchanan
Eldora, Colo., Aug. 12, 2004

To the Editor:

As one of the Democrats who hate the war, I fully support John Kerry's decision to give the president the authority to invade Iraq if Saddam Hussein failed to comply with United Nations resolutions ("For Now, Bush's Mocking Drowns Out Kerry's Nuanced Explanation of His War Vote,'' Political Memo, Aug. 12).

Without that power, the ultimatum to Saddam Hussein would have been meaningless.

President Bush's characterization of Mr. Kerry's position as "he now agrees it was the right decision to go into Iraq" is not only a flagrant misconstruing of that position, but it is also damaging to the public interest and is indicative of the president's inability to understand the issues.

Jason Delaney
Baltimore, Aug. 12, 2004

To the Editor:

Re "For Now, Bush's Mocking Drowns Out Kerry's Nuanced Explanation of His War Vote" (Political Memo, Aug. 12):

In response to President Bush's challenge, John Kerry should point out that insisting on simple yes or no answers to complex and grave issues is precisely what's wrong with this president.

Bold isn't always to be preferred to caution, or quick decisions to careful deliberation.

Jo Anne Ray
Lewistown, Mont., Aug. 12, 2004

And don't forget to read this.


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