Letter: A little girl's suffering points up UK's failure to act

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The Independent Online
Sir: I have throughout shared Sir Antony Duff's view (letter, 10 August) that the UN should have used ground troops backed by air power if necessary to enforce (rather than negotiate) the delivery of humanitarian aid in Bosnia. If it is now too late for the 'international community' to pluck up the courage to do this, the message to warlords of the world is clear.

The UN will use force against you only if there is unambiguous inter- state aggression threatening a major strategic interest (Kuwait 1990-91), or, in civil conflicts, only as a result of overwhelming public media pressure to 'do something' (Iraqi Kurdistan 1991 and Somalia 1992), provided that the operation is 'quick in and out' and virtually risk-free.

Yours faithfully,

ANTHONY PARSONS

Ashburton,

Devon

10 August

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