To the editor:
I agree with Allan Hanson that the war in Iraq is the most important issue facing Americans today; there isn't a day goes by I don't think about this war and what it will mean for our country and the people of Iraq.
Yet I can't agree with the ballot question proposed by the Lawrence Coalition for Peace and Justice calling for the immediate withdrawal of U.S. troops from Iraq. Recognizably a symbolic act, it doesn't go much beyond that.
Yes, it is true caches of weapons of mass destruction have not been found, but, make no mistake, Saddam Hussein was a vile leader who had to go. I wonder what stance Mr. Hanson and his group would have if such weapons had been found and our situation in Iraq were the same as it is now. Would they still advocate withdrawal?
Nearly 3,000 Americans - some of them Kansans - have died in Iraq, as have thousands of Iraqis. As a reservist I have known many who have deployed to Iraq and Afghanistan, and my own brother is a contractor just outside Baghdad. It may sound corny, but these young men and women truly believe they are helping Iraqis build a better Iraq.
To leave now, before the job is done, would be ruinous for America but, more importantly, ruinous for the Iraqis, like those who work daily and have pledged their lives to a building a better future for their people and nation.
David L. Teska,