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Daschle Finds His Voice to Challenge Bush on Iraq

September 29, 2002

Re "Daschle Accuses Bush of Playing Politics on Iraq," Sept. 26: Finally! I didn't think the Democrats would ever find their voice. They have been like sheep, refusing to utter a word against either rushing to war with Iraq or postponing the huge tax cut that was passed last year. One can question these things without being unpatriotic, despite what Vice President Dick Cheney suggested after 9/11. This is a democracy, not a monarchy.

Peggy Schulz

Sherman Oaks

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Senate Majority Leader Tom Daschle (D-S.D.) is concerned about what the president's policy on Iraq will do to our international partnerships. I guess what he is concerned about is that they might get upset and insist we stop sending them billions. Obviously we can't have that. It would be totally opposed to good liberal Democratic principles. I guess President Bush didn't think about that, although I guess I could learn to live with it.

John Waugen

Anaheim

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Re "Is Bush a Brawler or a Bluffer?" Commentary, Sept. 25: Congratulations to John Balzar--finally someone in print who understands the program! All the pantywaists are bemoaning what our "friends" around the world might think of us. Look at what is actually happening. The Palestinian Authority is about to be replaced, the North Koreans are suddenly talkative and Iraq is praying for inspections. Can you imagine what the Saudis, Iranians and all those other two-bit dictatorships are thinking?

You see, the beauty of the strategy is that the ones with the courage to stick to their principles are never actually bluffing. That's why they rarely have to fight.

Michael Markowitz

Newport Beach

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Bush may be a brawler today, but we know he wasn't during the Vietnam War, when he chose to join the Texas Air National Guard to avoid having to go to Vietnam. It is also reported that Cheney chose not to go to Vietnam by using the college student deferment. Strange that we are now being led into war by two people who chose not to fight in Vietnam.

Robert C. Mason

Simi Valley

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I can only say a loud amen to the concern expressed by Steve Lopez about the misplaced priorities of the Bush administration vis-a-vis protecting the nation from terrorist actions ("Forget the Saddam Offensive--Focus on Our Defenseless Ports," Sept. 25).

One of my first thoughts after that fateful Sept. 11 was that now there would be no excuse for continuing the National Missile Defense program--those billions should be applied to protecting us from much more dangerous and imminent threats, which would be primarily focused on our seaports.

But here we are, one year down the road, and it seems that the amount spent on port security is at very inadequate levels, while the NMD program is still rolling along. This administration seems totally devoid of creative thinking.

David Kane

Laguna Woods

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Re your Sept. 24 editorial, "U.N. Needs to Act Quickly": The Iraqi palaces are not all residences. But the arms inspectors are not all arms inspectors either. Just maybe Saddam Hussein doesn't want to give CIA tag-alongs a road map of his key government offices. In 1998, President Clinton bombed away for several days to get Monica Lewinsky off the front pages. In 2002, Bush needs a diversion from a sinking economy.

Bob Munson

Newbury Park

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