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LETTERS TO THE TIMES

Tallying the Cost in Lives and Dollars

March 28, 2003

How ironic. In your War With Iraq summary (March 25), the first reference says that "the White House seeks $75 billion to pay for the war effort." Juxtaposed was the most heartfelt picture of an innocent little Iraqi girl, her face injured by one of our "smart bombs." To compound the tragedy, as her frightened eyes looked up for answers, little did she know that her mother had been killed in the same attack. I hope my tax dollars at least go to "smarter bombs" so we can get just the "evil-doers." Sleep tight, President Bush.

Ed Gillette

Reseda

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The $75-billion war. Now we know how much we and our children and their children will pay for the 2004 Bush reelection campaign. Or am I too cynical ? Are Operation Free Rangoon and Operation Liberate Limpopo advanced and ready to be acted on as soon as all the thrown flowers in Iraq are collected and the smiling speaker opens the first session of the Baghdad parliament? And to the flag-waving talk-radio screamers -- no -- criticizing a bad president and bad policy is not undemocratic or disloyal and does not entail any lack of respect or concern for fighting men and women everywhere.

Adrian Eaton

Costa Mesa

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It's interesting how countries can always find a way to pay for wars but can't provide money for important programs at home, i.e., health care and education. That puts us in the same box as Third World countries.

Nan Lewis

Los Angeles

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