The legality and legacy should steer us away
I am disappointed to find that the Star Tribune is supporting Obama’s threat to bomb Syria without reservations (“Obama’s best hope to rally the world,” editorial, Sept. 5). The legal facts are clear. Any attack by the United States upon Syria would be a violation of the U.N. Charter prohibition against aggressive war. According to the Nuremberg principles, which set the United Nations definition of war crimes, the U.S. is starting an aggressive war against another nation that has not threatened to attack it. This is the most serious form of war crime.
Furthermore, it is discouraging that the Star Tribune fails to consider the number of deaths of innocent people — men, women, and children — that U.S. bombing will inevitably cause. In the worst case, we could create an atrocity that kills more people than Syria’s chemical weapons did. Needless to say, it is very discouraging to find that my family newspaper, which I have subscribed to for 23 years, is advocating criminality without considering the massive harm it could wreak upon the innocent.
DEAN DeHARPPORTE, Eden Prairie
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Perhaps the world would listen to us on the subject of chemical weapons had we not scorched Vietnam with Agent Orange.
INGRID STOCKING, Minneapolis
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As the United States considers a serious military strike against Syria, we should note that:
1) A month after the U.S. shelled Syrian and Palestinian forces in 1983, suicide bombers blew up the U.S. Marine barracks in Beirut, killing 241 marines.
2) After U.S. bombers struck Tripoli and Benghazi in 1988, Libya blew up Pan Am flight 103, killing 259 people.
3) After cruise-missile strikes on Al-Qaida camps in Afghanistan and a pharmaceutical plant in Sudan in 1998, The USS Cole was hit by suicide bombers, killing 17, and a year later the World Trade Center was taken down, killing nearly 3,000.
Anyone see a pattern?
JOHN KROUSS, Baudette, Minn.
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The Opinion section is produced by the Editorial Department to foster discussion about key issues. The Editorial Board represents the institutional voice of the Star Tribune and operates independently of the newsroom.