Monday, July 25, 2005

Letter to the editor: Iraqi children's fate.

I finally got into the Philadelphia Inquirer. It was a long road, over a year and three calls for consideration, but here it is.

It goes without saying that driving a car bomb into a group of children is an unspeakably despicable act. However, I wish the July 15 editorial "No justification" had focused more broadly on the suffering of all Iraqi children since the invasion, rather than merely condemning the tactics of the insurgents.
Ultimately, Iraq's children are the key to the future of that country. The question is: Do they have a future?

According the United Nations, Iraq now surpasses Haiti in infant mortalities and 400,000 children younger than 5 are severely malnourished. Common childhood injuries become mortal wounds without antibiotics that are now in short supply. Many, fearing being blown up, shot or being kidnapped, stay away from school - assuming there is a school to go to.

The suffering of Iraq's most vulnerable is acute. If they grow up, whom will they blame more for this needless war, our President, who so eagerly and irresponsibly began it, or the insurgents? This is as crucial to their future as it is to ours.


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