Talk in Washington of "regime change" in Iran, even when the results of our last one in Iraq are yet unclear, should be unsettling to Americans ("US weighs a tougher Iran stance," May 28). In both Saudi Arabia and Morocco, condemnation of recent terrorist attacks is widespread, as is the opinion that the Iraq war energized extremists.
There are people in Saudi Arabia, Iran, and other Islamic countries pushing for more-open political systems, based on a more enlightened interpretation of Islam.
If Iran were a world power and declared an intention to destabilize the American political system, would those of us disenchanted with policies of the Bush administration join with Iran? Democrats would be the first to condemn Iranian interference, out of both revulsion and the need to demonstrate patriotism. And so it is in Iran. Aggressive talk in Washington does more to undermine, rather than speed, progressive change.
Regarding the May 29 article, "Taxpayers ambivalent on cuts": From where I am, this cut does little or nothing for me. These tax cuts need to be an intricate part of a much broader plan - one that makes these things permanent, not on some sort of 10-year plan. The inheritance-tax reduction signed into law self-destructs after 10 years, in 2011, unless made permanent or extended. So will with this new tax reduction. So I say: What's the problem? Cannot the US Congress pass tax laws that are less complicated - ones that the average citizen can understand without having to go to accountants and tax attorneys to get their taxes done? Tax reductions of any kind should be made permanent from Day 1. If this cannot be done, then no reduction is in order.
Regarding the May 29 article "Saudis mount intense drive against terror": Having just left the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia as a recent survivor of the May 12 suicide attacks, I can assure you that, although the security has tightened around government buildings and other Saudi interests, the security provided to my Western compound has only improved by one or two additional half-asleep guards. The corporation that I worked for has also done nothing additional to secure the compound. The corporation and the Saudi government were well aware of an imminent attack prior to May 12 and did nothing to bolster security. The attack on my compound could have been avoided very easily, or, at a minimum, could have been foiled. This is not the last time that the US public will hear of this incompetence.
Colorado Springs, Colo.
Thank you for such a lighthearted satire on the upcoming release of the fifth book in the Harry Potter series ("Hey, muggle, over here! Wanna buy a snitch?," Opinion, May 29). I must admit that the long wait for the next installment has been hard to bear, but your satirical article put a smile on my face as it has no doubt on others'. It has truly helped ease some of the tension and excitement all of us Harry Potter fans are feeling.
Regarding "How hard will Bush push for Mideast peace?" (May 27): I think that it was wonderful for this article to be published, as it offers hope to those who have nearly lost it, and it encourages people to once again have faith in the goodness and peacefulness of America.
San Luis Obispo, Calif.
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