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Letter: Gulf crisis

WHAT a barbaric century this has been, with governments throughout the world deciding that it was permissible to slaughter unarmed people to further their aims. In spite of Dresden, Hiroshima and Vietnam, our politicians continue to cling to the bombing option.

This is a suitable time for the United Nations to consider the problem of war against civilian populations. We have reached the point where the defenceless now suffer the most, while the military is largely cocooned from the worst effects of its actions.

We must strive to produce a culture of thought in the United Nations that outlaws blitzkrieg tactics. The major powers should decide, as an international principle, that the bombing of one nation by another is never to be regarded as a final "diplomatic" option.