The attack on the U.S. Navy frigate Stark and the death of 37 crew members ought to cause every American to rethink several related policies.
The chief beneficiaries of oil from the Persian Gulf are Western European nations and Japan. Why does it fall to the United States to be the primary protector of those sea lanes?
Let the West Germans, Japanese, British and other nations protect their oil shipments. In addition to the threat to our men and our ships, this service that we supply is a form of foreign aid that we cannot afford.
America's military forces should not be used either to police the world, or to keep warring neighbors from fighting with each other. Such uses frequently lead to attacks upon our men, and the return of many of them in flag-draped caskets.
The plan to fly the U.S. flag on Kuwaiti oil tankers is a further invitation to reprisals against America.
The United States needs petroleum from the Persian Gulf because the Department of Energy and other federal agencies have made increased domestic production impossible, and because very unwarranted attacks on nuclear power have slowed this phenomenal source of energy.
If the reins were removed from the nuclear power industry, there would be a decreased need for petroleum to generate electricity. Nuclear power is, in fact, safe despite claims to the contrary by a consortium of dishonest or misinformed fright peddlers.
What's needed is more nuclear power, less restriction on domestic oil production, and less exposure of America's military to attack.