Re "," May 31

Here we go again trying to fight a war with morality. Give me a break; to win a war, you have to fight the war.

Tragedies happen; innocent people get killed; young soldiers make decisions in the heat of battle in the hope that it will save their lives or the life of their buddy who is fighting next to them. For those who have never been in a firefight or seen the look on a buddy's face when he is dying, please don't judge or attempt to set standards for those of us who have.

The Marines who supposedly killed innocent Iraqis made those decisions in the heat of battle. Don't judge them, because they are the only ones who have earned that right. Be thankful that they are over there fighting for your freedom to be safe here in the greatest country on Earth.

Albert Miranda
Rancho Santa Margarita



The Times misses the point. No one condones such slaughter, but one can understand it. We train young men to kill, then put them repeatedly in situations that expose them to death or dismemberment. Does anyone doubt that some will break under the strain?

They are ordered to fight a different kind of war than we were promised. Does anyone else remember that we were told that "shock and awe" would obviate the need for street-to-street, door-to-door fighting, sometimes to recover territory that was fought over just yesterday?

The enemy doesn't wear coal-scuttle helmets or feld grau wool uniforms but instead blends into the general population, leaving our people confused about just who the enemy is. When we cry for the heads of those young men, we must cry equally loudly for the heads of those who committed them to this massive folly.

W.L. Sibley
Northridge

The June 1 article "A Town Awoke to Slaughter" gives an idea of what war does to us. I saw it years ago in Vietnam, where small girls were brutalized by the North's Viet Cong to gain village support. In an instant, war can change peaceful folk into snarling brutes who often fail to remember it afterward.

The Bahai folk are right: Only when the world realizes how much both sides lose in warfare can we realize our ultimate goals. Who and what country will lead the way?

Willard Hanzlik
Seal Beach



Negative campaigns in gubernatorial primary

Re "," May 29