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Anti-government Iraqi women protesters chant anti-Iran and anti-U.S. slogans during the ongoing protests in Tahrir square, Baghdad, Iraq on Friday, Jan. 10, 2020.
Anti-government Iraqi women protesters chant anti-Iran and anti-U.S. slogans during the ongoing protests in Tahrir square, Baghdad, Iraq on Friday, Jan. 10, 2020. (Nasser Nasser/AP)

Your editorial on the Gen. Qassem Soleimani assassination and its aftermath omitted a few critical aspects of the matter (“U.S. escaped war with Iran for now, but conflict isn’t over," Jan. 8).

First, of course, the prospect of going to the precipice of armed conflict with Tehran is deadly serious. But under Presidents George W. Bush and Barack Obama, based on pretexts every bit as dubious as the current narrative of an “imminent threat” from General Soleimani’s forces, we didn’t move to the edge of the cliff, we plunged cleanly overboard into the successive disasters of Afghanistan, Iraq and Libya, resulting in thousands of American deaths, literally millions of lives shortened or destroyed in the targeted countries and trillions of dollars wasted. No new wars have begun since Jan. 20, 2017. Please tell me again, just who has a problem with impulse control?

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Second, despite a flurry of critical barbs you throw at President Trump, you managed to miss his actual, potentially crippling error. How could any sane American give even the slightest credence to the serial liars embedded deeply in the U.S. State Department and the Anglo-American intelligence establishment after the infamous hoaxes of the Gulf of Tonkin non-attack and the Iraqi weapons of mass destruction that weren’t. President Trump might note: Many of the faux “experts” charging him with being part of a vast conspiracy with Russia to rig American elections are products of those very agencies now hyping the Iran scare scenarios. He should trust them like the gazelle trusts the hyena.

Most importantly, notwithstanding your faint hopes for calm and for everyone to behave, you offer near zero in the way of a solution. The truth is, there is no such remedy within the confines of the Southwest Asia. The only way out, as proposed by “Silk Road Lady” Helga LaRouche, is that Presidents Trump, Vladimir Putin and Xi Jinping organize a summit to launch an infrastructure-centered reconstruction program that would dwarf the Marshall Plan in size and scope.

The unique basis for peace is to massively uplift conditions of life for Sunni and Shia, Arab and Persian, Christian and Jew. But you can’t do that and pump out trillions in funny money to prop up a bankrupt financial system at the same time. We must now choose.

Doug Mallouk, Catonsville

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