Bombing civilian areas doesn't work
Stabroek News
October 16, 2001

Dear Editor,

I suppose that Allan Fenty has experienced enough of actual war to support his doctrine of indiscriminate attack on military targets and civilian non-combatants alike (Oct 12 "Frankly Speaking"). Perhaps he's even seen a war flick or two. I have not been to war, but I am nonetheless informed by the results of siege, carpet-bombing and assaults on places like Dresden, Hamburg, Moscow, London, Laos, Cambodia and Haiphong in the past. Mr Fenty would do well to consider their complete ineffectiveness as offensive strategy. Didn't work! Validation of this fact is only a history text-book away. Further, I suspect that the intended victims would not be terribly indulgent of his swashbuckling vision of "total" war

So what? Mr Fenty is human too and is therefore entitled to his opinion, right? True, but the rest of us do not earn our keep barking into a highly amplified public megaphone such as a newspaper provides. One would have hoped that with the privilege came a certain amount of sobriety. It is also reasonable to expect that the editors would exercise some degree of control when their contributors offer silly, jingoistic, self-indulgent or frankly ill-informed essays.

Finally, Mr Fenty frets in his article about losing friends, fans and acquaintances as a result of his "bomb 'em back to the Stone Ages" advocacy. I fear that he actually stands to lose more valuable assets...his considerable credibility and the public's trust.

Peace, (in our time preferably).

Yours faithfully,

Gordon Burnett

Editor's note

The US government has indicated that it is making every effort to avoid civilian areas though it seems at least one bomb badly missed its target.