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Reacting to Russia

August 16, 2008

Re "Stand up to Russia," Opinion, Aug. 12

Neocon subaltern Max Boot would trivialize Hitler by comparing that monster to, of all people, Russian Prime Minister Vladimir Putin, in a transparent attempt to ramp up another Cold War between Russia and the West.

In trying to depict Russia as the bad guy, Boot obfuscates the truth by describing Georgia's naked invasion of South Ossetia as a "clash." The Georgians killed or wounded hundreds, and perhaps thousands, of Russians and South Ossetians in last week's attack on the province's capital city.

Russia answered, as it should have, in kind. Unanswered aggression is exactly the kind of appeasement that Boot and his neocons buddies abhor. Rather than pillory the Russians, Boot and company ought to thank them.

Randy Hamud

San Diego

Living in his bubble, Boot will never understand how low America has sunk in the eyes of the world.

George Bush, Dick Cheney, John McCain and Boot have all been spouting the party line that "this aggression will not stand." Of course it will. Bush has reduced America to a paper tiger. His actions have quadrupled the price of oil and handed billions to the Russians. Putin now mocks Bush on the world stage in Beijing with impunity, as America is despised worldwide. Welcome to the new world order of George Bush, as endorsed by John McCain.

Ian Freeman

Thousand Oaks

Boot misses significant differences between Russia in 2008 and Germany in 1938. Western nuclear weapons limit Russia's expansion potential, and Russian oil limits Western sanction potential. There may be minor sanctions that Russia cares about more than affecting regime change in Georgia. It is doubtful the West cares enough about Georgia to risk $200-a-barrel oil, however.

It would be very foolish for the U.S. to overplay our hand just to satisfy the fragile manhood of neocons such as Boot.

Chris Harget

Campbell

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