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Pentagon Fights War Against Reality

August 12, 2001

Dr. Strangelove and his disciples seem to have taken over the Pentagon with their loony debate over how many wars the U.S. can fight at once ("Pentagon's 2-War Plan in Retreat," Aug. 9). The current doctrine is out of style: Was it two major wars simultaneously, or two major regional wars (is there a difference)? Or two major world wars? No, that couldn't be right. All this courtesy of Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld's review of the nation's defense mission, aided by Deputy Secretary Paul Wolfowitz. Now there's a pair of Cold Warriors for you! But is any of this real? Who's going to pay for all this, and missile defense too?

Already the fabled federal budget surplus appears to be melting away faster than global warming could do the job, thanks to an ailing economy and the ill-advised tax cut engineered by George W.--and at a time when we can't provide proper health care and decent schools for millions of American children. We can only hope that the president selected by the Supreme Court will spend at least some of the working part of his monthlong working vacation at his Texas ranch trying to figure out where we're going.

Saul Halpert

Studio City

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