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LETTERS TO THE TIMES

Certitude No Substitute for Accurate Intelligence

October 07, 2003

Re "George W. Bush's Medieval Presidency," Opinion, Oct. 5: Neal Gabler poses two mutually exclusive propositions: (a) President Bush and various of his cohorts fail to process knowledge, and (b) the same individuals engage in "cosmology" and "epistemology" and are "medievalists."

The use of such terms exaggerates into grand intellectual history that which is merely the base joining of the presidency with greed, immorality, mental sloth and a Congress too self-serving to commence impeachment.

The coincidence of the meanest human motives with power is hardly an intellectual process.

Suzanne Gorenfeld

Ventura

Instead of relying on his aides to provide him with a summary of what's in the news, perhaps Bush and his aides should read Aeschylus and Sophocles to understand the dangers of hubris and certitude.

Brad Bradford

Columbus, Ohio

How can anyone continue to use the word "intelligence" and Bush in the same sentence? Bush's information on weapons of mass destruction was way off. His information on "yellowcake" in Niger was fantasy. His information from British Prime Minister Tony Blair regarding Iraq's nuclear capacity was wildly off target. The estimates regarding the Iraqi oil industry were seriously in error. Bush's intelligence quotient is somewhere around zero. As it turns out, you can't possibly misunderestimate this guy.

Maren Henderson

Los Angeles

Re "Rebuilding Iraq," Oct. 5: Has anybody in Iraq counted the hulks of garbage trucks destroyed by our bombs? As an American, I feel an obligation that our tax money pay for their replacement. I would even be happy to see the remaining garbage trucks repaired at our expense. But the Iraqis had a functioning society before we broke it. Anything beyond the prewar number of garbage trucks should be paid for with their oil.

I believe Bush is misusing the prefix "re" in the words "rebuild" and "reconstruction." If the Iraqis want extra garbage trucks, he should go to Congress to ask for separate "expansion" funds.

David Crain

Reseda

Re "U.S. Tries to Stop a Key Iraqi Official From Embarrassing Bush," Oct. 3: How naive of the Bush administration to rely on Ahmad Chalabi, an Iraqi who had not lived in his country for 45 years, to lead postwar Iraq. The entire Iraqi debacle is one embarrassment after another.

Mary Ann Tipton

Cerritos

Re "U.S. Advised to Invest in Its Image," Oct. 1: Maybe someone should clue in Deputy Secretary of State Richard Armitage and that guy who thinks he was elected president: Present any image you want of the U.S.; the people in the Middle East and the rest of the world will judge us on what we do. Right now, the world looks askance upon us, and with good reason.

Dominic Di Zinno

Santa Monica

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