Printed letters, October 3, 2013
The majority of the wars fought through World War II were among nations with established boundaries and based on historic rules and customs for determining victory or defeat.
Since then, the character of international conflicts has been significantly altered into guerrilla warfare, no longer between nations but involving political and religious factions that usually know no national boundaries and owe allegiance only to themselves. These factions consider anyone who does not agree with them their enemy, which includes civilian populations.
Traditional military force, even with the aid of advancing technology and special forces, is relatively ineffective against guerrilla warfare, as guerrillas wear no uniforms, can extend worldwide and operate and attack their targets with great stealth.
In 2001, al-Qaida did as much damage to America on 9/11 with a couple dozen terrorists as all of the destruction done by our massive army in the invasion of Iraq. A lesson we should have learned from defeat in Vietnam is the ineffectiveness of traditional forces against guerrilla warfare.
Even if we could afford a 1,000-to-1 ratio of our troops to theirs, our Christian values will not allow us to slaughter our opponents’ defenseless women, children and aged people. Our military strength and skills notwithstanding, we are unable to defeat an amoral enemy willing to fight to the death, as our experience in the Middle East over the last two decades has aptly demonstrated.
Accordingly, with an empty treasury and a moral standard that will not allow us to compete effectively with an Islamic guerrilla opponent, it is time to withdraw our military from the Middle East and allow the Muslims to determine their own destiny even, sadly, if it will result in an extended bloodbath.
Dominguez-Escalante priority should be conservation
As stewards of our public lands, we’ve all been asked to provide comments and input on open BLM land as guidance in how to best manage these lands for both public use and preservation. I feel that it is increasingly more important that areas of critical concern be judiciously protected when surrounded by off-road vehicle access.
Therefore, I strongly urge BLM to protect such places as Gibbler Mountain and its slopes, a place known for rare plants and interesting evidence of dinosaurs, in the Dominguez-Escalante National Conservation Area plan.
As part of a hiking group, I believe it is important that we be able to have access to off-trail hiking, especially since it is becoming rarer to find such areas. I especially support protecting undeveloped areas for off-trail hiking and maintaining minimally developed trails for opportunities to explore regions that are nearly free of human impact.
It is critical to provide protection at the onset. It is easier to protect first than it would be to delay protection, only to discover that it’s a mistake later.
I encourage BLM in its efforts to promote Dominguez-Escalante as a National Conservation Area where conservation is the emphasis, rather than just recreation.
Obamacare doesn’t do enough for affordable care
Why are the Republicans and other conservatives complaining about and trying to undo Obamacare? For years, they presented nothing in the way of a health care plan, but instead allowed the health insurance companies to hike rates, raise deductibles, deny coverage to people with pre-existing conditions and offer less and less coverage to people who had a health care plan.
As a result, the Democrats stepped in to correct these problems because the GOP continued to allow the health insurance companies to reap huge profits as the GOP continued its master plan of making sure it takes care of the huge corporations and the rich before it takes care of the poor and the middle class. So the Democrats came up with an attempt called the Affordable Health Care Act.
Sure, Obamacare is not perfect. But just the requirement not to deny health care to anyone with a pre-existing condition makes it a reason to give it a chance. That requirement alone is going to make it popular with a lot of people, no matter what the polls say.
Why don’t people like Sen. Ted Cruz from Texas make health care a priority in this country and come up with a health plan of their own? Instead, they try to convince the very people whom the health insurance companies are denying coverage to.
As a matter of fact, Obamacare does not go far enough. It still is not going to be anywhere close to affordable for many people. Health care should be free to everyone. I don’t hear the British or the French or the Canadians wanting to give up their free health care. They just shake their heads when they hear us talking about how expensive and limiting health care is in this country.
What if parties were reversed, Dems demanded gun laws?
To those who support the tea party extremists’ move to shut down our government, picture this: It’s now four or eight years later. We have a Republican president and Democratic House. The Democrats hold the government hostage until there is a bill requiring background checks to buy guns.
Would that be OK? After all, 86 percent of Americans support background checks, way more than those who want to get rid of Obamacare.