Why invade Haiti?

In the editorial ``The Haiti Invasion,'' Sept. 14, you throw up your hands and declare that a US invasion of Haiti should go forward because ``if a better alternative exists, it has yet to surface.'' I hardly think that we can justify an invasion simply because the Clinton administration's myopic and incompetent foreign policy has failed to develop any innovative solutions short of war.

If we must invade Haiti because its military junta oppresses people, then it is relevant to wonder what characteristics make this regime qualitatively more evil than the host of other dictatorships around the world. The editorial cites a US government study which asserts that the regime has killed 4,000 people and displaced 300,000 people. Numbers alone do not construct a compelling argument for an invasion.

The American people have no assurance that this invasion has any coherent objectives that military force can achieve. Haiti's problems are numerous, and like Somalia, it is not clear that an invasion can solve them. Asking why the president believes we should expose our troops to danger and how he plans to extricate them from a potential quagmire is not partisanship, but patriotism. Chris Schulten, Durham, N.C.

Your letters are welcome. For publication they must be signed and include your address and telephone number. Only a selection can be published, and none acknowledged. Letters should be addressed to ``Readers Write,'' and can be sent by Internet E-mail (200 word maximum) to OPED@RACHEL.CSPS.COM, by fax to 617-450-2317, or by mail to One Norway St., Boston, MA 02115

of 5 stories this month > Get unlimited stories
You've read 5 of 5 free stories

Only $1 for your first month.

Get unlimited Monitor journalism.