Friday, December 28, 2007

Anti War Folks Fond of Saddam

Laguna Beach Independent
412 N. Coast Hwy., #415
Laguna Beach CA 92651

Dear Editor,

I am offended that the Laguna Beach Independent would publish a letter-to-the-editor stating that I plagiarized which is defined as “to copy another person's idea or written work and claim it as original”. When I write often the majority of the text is in quotation marks noting the source of the information.

I do not expect everyone to agree with my views, but I am surprised by letters expressing a fondness for former Iraqi dictator Saddam Hussein. Hussein was a ruthless tyrant, in violation of international law, who was responsible for the untimely death of many people and he also caused significant damage to the environment.

■ The Marsh Arab “wetland ecosystem … covering about 12,000 square miles as recently as 1985, [were] drained, burned and dammed to the point that only remnants of them still exist. Where once lay healthy, ecologically rich wetlands, teeming with aquatic life, buffalo and migratory birds there now is only barren, salt-encrusted land.” See

■ “During the 1991 Gulf War, Iraqi troops intentionally set fire to more than 600 oil wells and dumped millions of barrels of oil into the Persian Gulf as they retreated from Kuwait. … The oil well fires released 500 million tons of carbon dioxide (the leading cause of global warming) and sulfur dioxide (the primary element in acid rain). Black, greasy rain and snow fell up to 1,500 miles from Kuwait.” See

Many died in the eight year Iran-Iraq War which started when Hussein invaded Iran September 22, 1980 see The low end of estimates is that 1,125,000 soldiers/militia/civilians were killed or wounded.

There was controversy about Iraqi civilian deaths during the administration of President Bill Clinton see “The grim question of how many people have died in Iraq has sparked heated debate over the years. The controversy dates from 1995, when researchers with a Food and Agricultural Organization (FAO) study in Iraq wrote to The Lancet, the journal of the British Medical Society, asserting that [United Nations] sanctions were responsible for the deaths of 567,000 Iraqi children. The New York Times picked up the story and declared ‘Iraq Sanctions Kill Children’."

I blamed Saddam Hussein then for the increase in infant mortality and the Iraqi deaths not President Clinton or the United Nations. And today I blame the insurgents and Al Qaeda, who deliberately operate among civilians and deliberately target civilians for the deaths of Iraqis.

It is in the strategic interest of the United States to have functioning democracies in the Middle East. I am rooting for the United States to succeed.

Yours truly,

Gene Felder


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