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High Sacrifice for Iraq's Liberty

March 19, 2004

Re "American Put Her Life on the Line for Iraqi Women," March 16: It's a shame that Fern Holland gave up her life in such a manner. If it were up to me, she would not have been in Iraq helping Iraqi women rise above their oppressed state. Not that Iraqi women should be oppressed. But I don't believe it was Holland's place to lift the Iraqi women from darkness into the light; the Iraqi women must do this for themselves.

This is the nature of freedom. It cannot be given from outside. When the Iraqi women have had their fill of oppression to the point where they will risk everything they value in life and rebel on their own, then they will be free. But there is nothing even a thousand well-intentioned people like Holland can do to force freedom upon the enslaved mentality. The best any of us can do is to pray and hope for their speedy awakening.

Arthur Saginian

Saugus

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A serious case could be made that the Bush administration's agenda, most disastrously in Iraq, could be responsible for killing more people than the terrorists it claims to be fighting. Not only has the war cost the lives of hundreds of U.S. servicewomen and -men, but also those of aid workers, idealistic and courageous women like Holland, journalists and countless Iraqi citizens who have been sacrificed in the last year for a war based on lies.

Meanwhile, at home, Bush sacrifices the lives of American children to asthma, unsafe mercury levels and other environmentally linked diseases when he rejects science and relaxes the standards on air pollution to favor corporate interests.

When Americans go to the polls this fall, they may just make the Bush administration pay for its four years of living dangerously.

Lisa Mohan

Los Angeles

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