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The Iraq war and political strategy

July 05, 2006

Re "GOP Aims to Use a War to Win an Election Battle," July 2

The Times inaccurately describes the Republican stance on the war against terror as "uncompromising." Republicans and many Democrats have compromised severely, sacrificing cornerstones of our society such as the presumption of innocence and the immorality of torture and of starting wars. Lately, they have attacked the free press, a voice of conscience that has become inconvenient to their plans.

If we "lose" the war on terror, it will be because our way of life was taken away by our own shortsighted leaders who maintain power by scaring the public. Outside attackers have no power to take away our freedom, but the public has allowed the Republican administration and Congress to degrade American principles in ways that, I believe, have exceeded the ambitions of the Sept. 11 terrorists.

RUSSELL FRAZIER

Montrose

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The Democrats need to be as vicious as the Republicans. They need to distinguish for the voters between the war on terrorism, a just reaction to 9/11, and the war in Iraq, an undeclared war initiated by the Bush administration. The Democrats must remind voters that the president lied to us and Congress to drag us into this debacle of thousands of lost and injured lives and billions of dollars of off-the-budget spending. They should do it in the style of Ronald Reagan debating Jimmy Carter ("There you go again") every time a Republican tries to confuse the war on terror with the war in Iraq.

What's so challenging about that?

WALTER CARLIN

Del Mar

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So the GOP built a war on a tissue of lies, and now it's building its platform on a tissue of bodies. It's forgotten that the devil is also a logician.

VANESSA PLACE

Los Angeles

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