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Best Middle East policy is to back off

As an American taxpayer who has watched our country shell out trillions in the Middle East, I wondering if that region would have been better off without our meddling ( "Obama and the Arab spring" May 20).

For example and close to home , the Maryland Army National Guard is in Egypt, and our National Guard is also involved in the Iraq and Afghanistan conflicts. America has been bombing Libya (under a NATO umbrella); we're asking the leader of Yemen to "step down," and we've imposed sanctions against Syria's President Assad. I believe we still have a military presence in Kuwait, and it looks like Bahrain's King Al Khalifa will soon be a U.S. target.

Egypt has been forgiven $1 billion of its debt in hopes that nation will emulate the United States, which is doubtful. And we all know America has also been actively involved with the Israeli-Palestinian peace process for over half a century. As far as the other Mideast countries, no doubt the long tentacles of American foreign policy are present there as well.

I believe the best policy for this country right now is to back off. I'm tired of seeing our blood and treasure squandered in the Middle East, and I'm tired of the unending news about the region. Of course, we're dependent on oil, but we should stay out of Mideast internal affairs. The culture and history of that part of the world is entirely different from ours.

Frankly, I believe America's Middle Eastern adventures to have been a waste of time, exorbitantly expensive and rarely gain a worthwhile result. Let's worry about our problems here at home first!

Rosalind Ellis, Baltimore

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