The readers’ forum

Benefits of war?

 

Once a long time ago when I was a senior in high school in Pinellas County where I grew up, I enlisted in the Army. It was 1944 and we were at war. It has since become known as “The Good War.” But I have come to look on that term, as an oxymoron — war is never good.

As a young 18-year-old, like everyone else, I learned about our unbelievably devastating atomic bombing of men, women and children in Hiroshima and Nagasaki. Until then, we had never heard of an atomic bomb.

The war ended, but not before we engaged in the horrendous carpet-bombing of Tokyo and major cities of Germany. That no sooner done, we had a major war in Korea ending in a stalemate. A long war in Vietnam killing 57,000 Americans and basically ruining the lives of thousands more. And, we dare not think about the damage done to the Vietnamese.

I’m 86 years old now. What was done in Iraq and Afghanistan is fresh in our minds now. For what purpose? How have we benefited from our warfare and the wreckage we have left in their countries?

And one other question: Since the United States is the only nation that has used nuclear weapons, who has given the U.S. the authority to decide what nation or nations have the right to possess such weapons?

Rev. Frank Smith, Miami

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