Letters to
We get a lot of letters, and publish some of them in this column, "Backtalk," edited by Sam Koritz. Please send your letters to backtalk@antiwar.com. Letters may be edited for length (and coherence). Unless otherwise indicated, authors may be identified and e-mail addresses will not be published.

Posted January 17, 2002

Paul for President

[Regarding Rep. Ron Paul's guest column of January 15, "Argentine Default and the IMF":]

Rep. Ron Paul, if you decide to run for President in 2004 I will vote for you. We the American people and our beloved republic need you, sir.

~ Mr. James H.

Sowing Seeds

[Regarding "American forces 'may be breaking PoW convention'," by Kim Sengupta, January 14, the Independent:]

Our government is getting itself into a catch-22 situation that is beginning to show how it plays pretty loose with international as well as Constitutional law. If the detainees are not prisoners of war, then they ought to be released or prosecuted either under constitutional laws or international laws. Clearly, we are routinely now creating new rules which abide by neither constitutional or international standards. I was especially dismayed that our government decided to forcibly shave the beards from the detainees. By Middle Eastern standards that will be regarded as an act of arrogance and an act of cowardly humiliation of a disarmed enemy. It is interesting that ... prisoners of the Taleban ... almost unanimously spoke of how well they were treated, and now the world discovers that we are humiliating our prisoners. It looks pretty certain now that we are accomplishing very little except sowing seeds for future Islamic jihad warriors.

~ Dan McDonald


[Regarding Justin Raimondo's column of January 14, "The Vanishing Imam":]

How can you say the war against bin Laden and the Taliban was a failure? Looks like Israel did real well getting a bunch of dummies to do it's bidding, against it's plentiful enemies. The oil gang and drug merchants came out great! Russia got both feet in the stirrups, something they couldn't accomplish before. Dumb-assed public, with help of liberal media, got a chance to wave the flag and feel good! Retired Generals got a chance to do their versions of George C. Scott. Don't know why I feel so bad about it. Wish Sharon and Netanyahu would get appendicitis or a gall bladder attacks, they could never keep stitches in them as the roll around on the floor laughing their heads off. Enjoy your articles!

~ Ken L., Montana


[Regarding Justin Raimondo's column of January 11, "The Pilot Who Lost His Cool":]

I find it very disconcerting that Raimondo would suggest "quarantine" for fellow journalists (if you call this column journalism) who have done nothing more than exercise 1st Amendment rights of a free press. Clearly he is entitled to this right, but apparently those with dissenting opinions, whom he suggests are mentally ill, should be locked away somewhere where they can't be heard by society.

~ Sean Carlson

Racist Wacko

[Regarding Justin Raimondo's column of January 11, "The Pilot Who Lost His Cool":]

Today's column was excellent! I've tried to read Debbie Schlussel's columns before and boy did you nail it. She is a raving racist wacko. Your columns have been so great during this period since 9/11 except for the first couple. Keep up the good work. Someone has to have the guts to take on these war-mongering neo-cons.

~ Scott R.


[Regarding Justin Raimondo's column of January 4, "India's 'Amen Corner'":]

Justin sang a wrong note here: "...with the PLO and Palestinian groups like Hamas and Hizbollah (sic)." This is a quiddity, but accuracy is important in these complex times, so let's correct it and move on. Although Hizbollah surely sympathizes with the Palestinian cause to be rid of Israeli occupation, and undoubtedly swaps intelligence and arms with the various Palestinian militant factions, it is most certainly not a "Palestinian group"; rather, it is a distinctly Lebanese organization that draws its members from the Shia population of Lebanon. As Shia, they receive ideology, weapons and money from Iran, with the tacit approval of the regional power broker, Syria. Hizbollah's explicit objective has always been the expulsion of the Israeli occupation forces from Lebanon; towards this end, its military operations have been (for the most part) confined to the South Lebanon/North Israel borderlands. Pace the Israeli military/political establishment, Hizbollah's admittedly crude, low-tech guerrilla tactics were instrumental in forcing the Israeli Defense Forces (and its collaborationist proxy, the South Lebanese Army) to reconsider its protracted occupation of most of South Lebanon. Of course, intermittent skirmishes still obtain in the Sheba'a Farms area, where Israel continues its campaign of lebensraumpolitik and Hizbollah retaliates in the name of homeland defense. Please do not misconstrue the above as some kind of romantic apologia for Hizbollah. I am no more a fan of suicide-bombers than I am of Zionist Colonialism.

~ Eric Greve


Was Luke Skywalker a terrorist? I knew I'd eventually find a write-up on this subject. This site may be of interest to a lot of your readers. Take a look and judge for yourself.

~ Christope H.

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