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Stop the cycle of hate and war

October 19, 2001 | Page 4

Dear Socialist Worker,

I am a Pakistani-American and a Muslim. Bush has declared that this is the beginning of a long war against terrorism. It is starting in Afghanistan, but no one is sure where it will end.

An international coalition has been formed against Osama bin Laden and his protectors, the Taliban. This brings back memories of the coalition that ex-President Bush formed against Saddam Hussein in 1991.

That coalition carried out the carpet bombing of Baghdad and other parts of Iraq with "smart" bombs. Many innocent civilians died in the process.

The war also resulted in massive U.S. military attacks on retreating Iraqi soldiers--soldiers who hated Saddam Hussein and who didn't want to fight Americans. These Iraqis were trying to surrender. They were not religious fanatics who wanted to "get" Americans.

The Gulf War has also resulted in the suffering of millions of Iraqi children who are dying because of the UN embargo on Iraq. It has brought death and destruction for the people of Iraq--but the dictator Saddam Hussein is still alive, intact, and strong.

I strongly wish to punish those responsible for the attacks on September 11. But I also want the U.S. and the rest of the world to do the right thing. And the right thing is to stop the cycle of hate, revenge and war.

No more innocent people should die because of the arrogance of a handful of political people--whether world leaders or terrorist masterminds. This is the first step and the only solution towards eradicating terrorism around the globe.

Ghazala Kazi, Parkersburg, W. Va.

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