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Saturday, September 7, 2013
Unilateral attack would be a war crime
Recent events remind me of the adage about hypocrisy, “the pot calling the kettle black.”
Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., whose historic March on Washington for civil rights we just celebrated, came out against the war of his day and called the U.S. “the greatest purveyor of violence in the world.” As a recent college graduate and draftee, I remember that time well.
Our military used chemical weapons against North Vietnam, napalm and Agent Orange. Since then, in other interventions we have used white phosphorus and depleted uranium — the latter causing damage to living things even now.
The administration claims the moral high ground in arguing for a unilateral attack on Syria, but allows and supports regimes that carry out massacres against their own people — for example, the Egyptian army, a recipient of billions in U.S. aid each year.
Under international law, a nation can legally attack another nation under only two conditions: self-defense or United Nations authority. Though the state of affairs in Syria is horrible, that country has not attacked us or the European Union. We cannot legally justify attacking Syria as an act of self-defense, and thus our aggression without U.N. authorization would be a war crime.
MICHAEL L. BENTLEY
More crime reporting would stir the public
Re: the Sept. 1 letter “Where’s the outrage over veteran’s slaying?”:
The question Michael Bishop is raising seems to deal with the lack of public outrage over this terrible crime.
No doubt people should be upset about this, but how can they be if they don’t know about it? The bigger issue has more to do with media coverage.
This is just one example of a tragedy that is probably not getting the attention it deserves. There are undoubtedly dozens more horrible crimes like this happening every day, and we don’t hear about half of them.
I believe people should care about instances like this; I also believe they would if more crimes like this got covered as much as the whole George Zimmerman situation did.
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