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Reflagging of Oil Tankers

July 26, 1987

I read that this Administration can't back off from sending ships bearing the American flag into the Persian Gulf because it would involve a serious loss of face for our country.

Save face? Who cares about saving face? I care about saving lives. I care about my future and that of my children. I am frustrated and angry that I have to fear for these basic aspects of my life because the few old men who are running this nation need to feel like "real men" again, and beating their chests in the Persian Gulf is the tonic they need. Of course, keep in mind that they make this policy from the safety of their offices. None of them will actually put their lives and limbs on the line. That's for the younger men to do. That's for our sons to do.

Ronald Reagan has always wanted any excuse to come down hard on Iran. Bombing Libya and Libyan leader Moammar Kadafi's house wasn't enough. Now we will taunt Iran into firing on those ships with the weapons that we sold to her, giving this Administration the excuse it has been waiting for to drop a big one on them. This is dangerous and twisted policy.

Why is it that Ronald Reagan, at 76, who can't even have a telephone conversation without the assistance of index cards, and his crew of stalwart henchmen, are able to formulate and implement such destructive policy? These policies threaten all of us.

I am not behind these potentially devastating maneuvers, and I am not proud of this Administration.

MAUREEN HOGAN ZWEIG

Pacific Palisades

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