Regarding the May 20 Opinion piece "Show what 'support our troops' really means": David Perlmutter's answer to "supporting our troops" in Iraq is far off the mark. As our soldiers get more and more experience with the moral bankruptcy, arrogance, and sickening waste of our policy in Iraq, kind gestures like those suggested by Mr. Perlmutter may come to be hated. They will be seen as ignorant and blind affirmations of the administration's war policy.
If we really want to support our troops, we will demand from our political leaders decent, enlightened, cooperative foreign policy, and the humane use of the military. That would be far more supportive.
As the mother of a soldier on his second round of duty in Baghdad, my heart was touched deeply by this article. Such small acts of appreciation serve as a simplisti, but inspired way to show our troops how proud and thankful we are - in spite of our personal opinions of the war. These troops are keeping a promise they made in peacetime: to do their duty no matter what sacrifice is asked. We should all strive to show them that we support them.
Regarding your May 25 editorial "Defining 'Extraordinary' ": Interpreting the Constitution and the Constitution only is the expectation and guideline that the federal courts should follow. Resisting the personal sense of "what's right" or what other international courts are doing is outside the purview of the court's mandate.
Unfortunately, there are those in this country who would circumvent the will of the people by using the judicial branch to make law. Either political party can resort to this strategy, but neither party can truly win if the courts are establishing law against the will of the people.
As it turns out the courts were not established to assure minority rights over the majority, they were established to fulfill the rule of the Constitution.
Professor Karl Inderfurth's May 23 Opinion piece, "India and Pakistan - thawing the frozen divide" is overly optimistic. No solution to Kashmir is possible unless Pakistan stops supporting terrorism.
US foreign policy continues to treat differently terrorism that impacts Americans from terrorism that impacts Indians. It is time to put an end to this "cowboys and Indians" foreign policy. The US should ensure that Pakistan is as active in closing terrorist training camps near its eastern borders, which export terror to India's Jammu and Kashmir, as it is in closing camps near its western borders, which export terror to Afghanistan.
A much needed first step is Pakistan implementing an extradition treaty with India, whereby terrorists can be deported from Pakistan to face Indian justice.
Regarding the May 19 article "The rising economic cost of the Iraq war": The article puts a price tag on the Iraq war of roughly $5 billion each month and $192 billion approved so far by Congress. Has it been worth it? There are reasons to believe that it has not. "No Child Left Behind," Homeland Security, and Social Security are all underfunded. The environment is in jeopardy. US education is losing ground to China and India. We are kidding ourselves if we believe we can transform countries into democracies while maintaining global leadership.
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