Letter: Gulf attacks lack hard evidence and imagination

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The Independent Online
SO-CALLED selective attacks on Iraq will no more build up resistance to Saddam Hussein than flattening German city centres helped effective opposition to Hitler.

Nor are sanctions going to lead to a breakthrough. Bureaucratic nit- picking in the West ensures that many desperately needed items are embargoed on grounds of potential "double-use", while most of what is allowed through is diverted from the mass of the population.

Imagination is needed. The UN should set up a supply line to deliver food, medical equipment and other essential material by land along a defined route, and by air to a designated airfield. UN forces could ensure that convoys and aircraft got through, and would supervise distribution. Saddam would hardly dare interfere with this process, but if he did, not merely would the use of force be obviously justified, it would have the support of the Iraqi people.

For years Saddam has been driving a wedge between his regime and the population: it is time we started exploiting the gap instead of trying to close it.