Wars often are a sovereign necessity

Regarding the Rev. Paul L. Cook's letter "Most of our wars have been a sad waste" (June 17):

He stated that "if America is going to continue to be a strong, vibrant bastion of freedom, we must be much more careful about the wars in which we choose to engage." What he failed to consider is that, more often than not, a country does not have a choice in the wars that are thrust upon it.

Also, the Rev. Cook has forgotten that freedom is not free, and one of the methods a strong nation uses to project that strength is through the use of force. One such use of force was the Korean War, from which the prosperous Democratic nation of South Korea rose from the ashes. Looking over the border into North Korea, we find what would have been had we not intervened.

However, unlike Vietnam -- in which politicians tried to run from Washington -- the Korean War was fought in the same manner as World War II, and we prevailed. I do not consider that a sad waste.

But now, we have politicians once again running the Afghanistan and Iraq wars from politicians' armchairs, and we see the very same quagmire we saw in Vietnam. Can it not be said that, because to the interference of politicians in issues relating to combat and rules of engagement, many more lives have been unnecessarily lost?

As for America's inability to afford being the policeman of the world, according to the Congressional Budget Office the defense budget for 2010 was 4.7 percent of gross domestic product, compared to 10 percent and rising for entitlement spending in 2010. So the idea that military spending is bankrupting America is not accurate.

I will add that if there was ever a time for a world policeman, it is now -- and I would prefer it to be America. And considering what our politicians waste our money on, the cost of our security seems very reasonable.

Is it not best to oppose tyranny and make an effort to spread our way of life in the world, or should we to turn a blind eye to the dangers of the world that surround us, and ourselves become victims of other countries' tyranny?

Larry Rodgers

Evans

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