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Afghan Bombing Hasn't Flushed Out Bin Laden

January 04, 2002

Re "U.S. Denies Report That Raid Killed Villagers," Jan. 1: I have supported vigorously the war in Afghanistan against Al Qaeda and the Taliban since it began. At this point, though, continued air attacks against suspected sites without absolutely certain intelligence are wrong.

We are killing civilians and not getting Osama bin Laden. The attack on the convoy last week was also problematic in terms of who was actually killed. America has generated tremendous goodwill as liberators with the Afghan people. We should not squander that now with excessive force and meaningless deaths. Let us get Bin Laden but focus also on rebuilding Afghanistan so it will never again be a base for terror. Air attacks do not fit that purpose.

Nayyer Ali

Huntington Beach


Shortly after the Sept. 11 attacks, the Afghan government said that it knew where Bin Laden was and would turn him over if evidence were presented to prove his guilt. This is the same position that the U.S. government would take before anyone here was extradited. Instead of providing that evidence, however, our Great Pretender proceeded to wage war on Afghanistan.

Now, nearly four months after the terrorist attacks occurred, more innocent civilians have died from war in Afghanistan than died in the World Trade Center and Pentagon attacks, and no one seems to know where Bin Laden is. Most agree that Bin Laden has left Afghanistan, however, raising the possibility that we will have another undeclared war waged against another country (Pakistan, Indonesia, Sudan or wherever). I am glad to see the Taliban gone, but there was never any justification for war to achieve that end. In light of these developments, why can most Americans not see the folly of President Bush's failure to provide the evidence necessary for extradition instead of pursuing the terror and futility of war?

David Holland


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