September 19th, 2002

Brian and Anne

political act of the day

open letter:

Dear Members of Congress, Senators, Secretary Powell, And President Bush;

I am writing to express my complete opposition to congress' authorizing the administration to take military action in Iraq at this time.

If we were to do so, we would validate in the international view Saddam Hussein's predictions that this is what we would do. Associated with those assertions are the ideas that the U.S. does not keep its word, that approaching the U.N. to get approval was an empty political ploy to get international support for something we intended to do with or with without the international community and no matter what Hussein does or does not do, and no matter what evidence we might have seen of weapons of mass destruction he does or does not have.

Everything I have seen written by experts who are not part of the current administration, including a member of the last team of weapons inspectors to be in Iraq, say that whether or not Iraq has a program to develop such weapons, it is incapable of actually doing so at this time. Solid minds have pointed out that there are now many countries - volatile countries such as Pakistan and India, whose people may be and train those who would attack us even if their leaders sit peaceably at our side, and supposed example countries, like our own United States, who posess both nuclear and chemical weapons of mass destruction and have programs working on biological agents that could be used in that way if necessary. A lasting international peace must find a way to address those threats without destroying national governments at the will of the U.S.

Attacking Iraq at this time and without more information provided to you, our Congress, us, your citizens, and the international community would devastate our international standing, hurt our alliances with many European countries, and not only would it not make us safer, it would directly result in the deaths of our sons and daughters, possibly even in friendly fire as in the accidents and murders committed in Afghanistan. We don't need that. It doesn't help us. It doesn't look good. It doesn't feel good. It feels like a cowboy president and a vice president with a mouthful of empty phrases leading a cavalry charge against a confirmed bad guy to try and increase their local ratings while conveniently giving their agents at home and abroad more power to secretly act in a war with no official ending and no good definition.

Ladies and Gentlemen, I am opposed to this resolution, and I abhor the rush. If we should rush anyone right now it should be the U.N., to get their weapons inspectors into Iraq quickly and to enable their survey to be both swift and thorough. Otherwise we will attack an impoverished country at a time when most people in the world, including many at home, wonder if we're rushing to cover up the fact that there are no caches of weapons of mass destruction over there at all.

Finally, I examine the idea that presenting such a threat to Hussein might press him to use any weapons he does have immediately - or inspire someone else to do so on Iraq's behalf. If we are going to depose him as our president has promised to do, what has he to lose? And by the way, what is the plan of our government regarding the regime that will follow the desired "regime change"? How do we avoid setting up another Saddam Hussein and what reassurances on this count does our administration offer when asking for our support for this resolution? I see none, and I am not convinced.

I oppose this resolution. Please confer with your people and consider the public opinion before acting.


--Anne K.G. Murphy

I forgot to put in the part about our recent "excercize" demonstrating that our current military tactics don't work, but oh well.