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LETTERS TO THE TIMES

Iraq's Oil and Weapons Are Both in the Mix

March 14, 2003

Re "Gauging Promise of Iraqi Oil," March 12: At last, coverage of U.S. interest in Iraqi oil is on the front page, where it should have been before Congress voted to go to war to take the oil away from France and Russia, which used the old-fashioned approach of negotiation. Now the question can be framed: Should President Bush and company be impeached now or prosecuted for war crimes later? Would it be double jeopardy to do both?

When will the front page cover the resignations of diplomats John Brady Kiesling and John Brown because they can't square an invasion of Iraq with American principles?

Leslie Paul Boston

Sherman Oaks

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How did our oil get under their sand? Your article finally wrote it in black and white. Bush isn't looking for terrorists in Iraq. He's not looking for chemical or biological weapons. He's not looking for Saddam Hussein. He's not even saving our country from an Iraqi attack.

Bush wants only one thing in Iraq. He wants their oil. Bush was raised in oil country. He got rich on oil. All of his cohorts in Washington are oilmen. They all want Iraq's oil. And they are willing to kill as many people as is necessary to get it.

Meanwhile, America's opponents in the U.N. -- France, Russia and China -- don't come out smelling any better. The bottom line for these "peaceful" countries is oil too. Oh well, at least they don't want to kill people to achieve their goals.

Ernest G. Masler

Malibu

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Re "Foot in a Closing Door," editorial, March 12: Hussein, France, U.N. Secretary-General Kofi Annan (who said he could "do business" with Hussein, on disarmament, in 1998), the left wing of the Democratic Party and The Times want to stall the Iraq confrontation until the weather makes the use of America's high-tech military impossible. We are now seeing the dust-storm season arrive. Soon, high temperatures will make it impossible for our troops to wear the gear that will protect them from the poison gas that everyone knows Hussein has.

Then Hussein will have won. We cannot keep 250,000 troops in the region for months. We will withdraw, the French will succeed in lifting sanctions and a Democrat president will one day face a nuclear-armed Iraq astride the Middle East oil fields. When that happens, few will remember how it all came about. We could have lost the Cold War. This is how that happens.

Michael T. Kennedy

Mission Viejo

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Your editorial is right on the mark. However, it states, "In part, it's a measure of Hussein's diabolical craftiness that the United States and the United Nations have turned against each other, instead of uniting against him." This is giving too much credit to Hussein.

The main reason the Bush administration has been unable to persuade other members of the Security Council, despite intensive arm-twisting and juicy "enticements," is not because of Hussein's craftiness but because of its own ineptness. Our administration's months-long arrogant, reckless rhetoric has alienated our friends. Unfortunately, all Hussein has to do now is sit tight and watch the Bush administration continue to botch its case to the world community and quarrel with our allies.

Aldo Martin

San Pedro

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Regarding the Air Force's March 11 test of its biggest nonnuclear bomb: I take exception to the name "Mother of All Bombs." It would be more appropriate to call it "Father of All Bombs," since it is mostly men who create these horrors and are generally responsible for waging wars so they can use them.

If all the effort, expertise and time that is spent inventing and producing weapons were used for things that would improve the lives of human beings and the Earth, this world would be a far better place.

Liz Bennett

Los Angeles

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I'm confused. Who gets to decide which country's weapons of mass destruction are good and which country's are "evil"?

Barbara Gary

Los Angeles

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Satan has a death grip on the hearts and minds of those who would condemn Bush for his promise to Hussein. What kind of smoking gun does Hans Blix need, a mushroom cloud? Peace is our goal here. May God continue to bless America and our allies who support our president. And may the U.N. members rethink their priorities or become completely inept and impotent.

John Pierson

Rancho Cucamonga

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The International Criminal Court was sworn in Tuesday, and not a minute too soon.

John P. Lepo

Alhambra

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