To the editor:
For Harold Longaker and James Benkard (Public Forum, April 28) the answer is quite simple: Cut and run. The United States is a big old brute and meany to the rest of the world. We are there illegally and without merit. Wrong.
Mr. Longaker cites Vietnam and Somalia as examples of lessons learned. However, those very wars are the ones where we did cut and run. Therefore, yes, we did learn a lesson from them. This president has no intention of cutting and running. Longaker says most Iraqis hate us, and Benkard says showing the kissing of a soldier's hand is misleading.
The largest part of the soldiers over there believe they are fighting for a noble cause. Most of the Iraqi population actually does love the fact that we are there. However, news media tell you only of the fighting by a small (yes, small) group of insurgents mostly from the Baath sect and other (Iran comes to mind) radical Muslim countries.
This is a country the size of California, with a population of millions. We don't get to see the schools, the hospitals or the smiling, well-fed children who have replaced the scourge of Saddam's rule. His war has brought out the extremists in the Middle East countries who fear democracy in their neighborhood, uncovered the malefactors in the United Nations and has proven that, given the choice between fighting for freedom or living as peaceful peons, American liberals choose dictators over democracy. Shouldn't Iraqis have the same choice?
Robert M. Tyler,