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Web Letter

I am one of the many Americans who are outraged by the behavior of George W. Bush, Richard Cheney, and their administration. It seems to me that our war in Iraq was likely started in administrative minds early in the first term of this administration, and reasons for it were then manufactured. This possibility should be investigated. Should it turn out to be true, they could be charged with both treason and murder. Both of those charges, should they come to trial, might even cause people to spend the rest of their lives in prison.

I am very tired of an administration that, for its own ends, lied to the American people, and treated prisoners as well as home-based citizens in an illegal manner, and we need to correct those situations as quickly as possible.

But the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq were mishandled in many ways; the war in Iraq was pursued without real cause; and Cheney's former corporation profited beyond imagining from them. George W. Bush's old pals in the oil industry have also profited from many administrative orders. All of this has cost the American people a debt we'll be repaying for years. The fact that the debt appears to have been based on lies--they didn't even include the cost of the War on Terror in their annual budgets--would seem to me to be treasonous. I'm not a lawyer or an expert on the subject, but I sure would like to have the experts look into it.

Lois Eyre

Riverhead, NY

Feb 27 2009 - 1:33pm

Web Letter

While President Obama may be more interested in looking forwards than backwards, federal law and US treaty obligations leave him little choice in the matter of investigating the Bush administration. From illegal wiretaps in violation of FISA to the use of waterboarding in the interrogation of detainees at GITMO and elsewhere, neither President Obama nor his Justice department have any leeway as to whether or not to investigate. The law requires that the evidence be followed to wherever, and to whomever, it may lead.

If he truly believes that no man is above the law, he will order his Justice department, or order a special prosecutor, to investigate the administration and file appropriate charges is so warranted. Failure to do so will only further damage America's already tattered reputation in the world.

As for a "Truth and Reconciliation Commission," given the results of the 9/11 Commission, we'd be better off not wasting the money and time.

Mark Schrider

Columbus, OH

Feb 22 2009 - 5:35pm

Web Letter

One of the nuttier ideas in the current political debate calls for a "Truth Commission" to examine parts of the American operation of the War on Terror. Comparing recent events in which such mechanisms did, or could have had a constructive role, we find that our situation really does not need this action.

In nations like South Africa, Rwanda or Argentina, the rules of democratic civil society were broken and elections were missing or distorted by violence. In contrast, America's unbroken free and open elections have no equivalent damage to repair.

It would be a very destabilizing precedent for such a process to re-examine old policy questions that appear to pit the majority of Republicans against the majority of Democrats, who had a legitimate disagreement with the president at the time. Numerous people and groups did push this issue within last year's voting, and that time has now passed.

There is plenty of room for reasonable people to disagree on these, and other, points of ongoing debate.

John D. Froelich

Upper Darby , PA

Feb 20 2009 - 1:14am

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