Letter: Iraq resolution

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IN HIS attempt to justify the use of force against Iraq ("We must act. The threat posed by Saddam's arsenal is terrifying and real," 14 February), Robin Cook failed to answer some fundamental questions.

1. If Saddam is an evil dictator and his possession of weapons of mass destruction poses a serious threat to regional peace, how come his neighbouring countries, to whom he is supposed to be threatening, do not support military action against him?

2. If the main reason for military action is Iraq's refusal to comply with the UN resolutions, why is a similar action not being considered against Israel, which has consistently refused to implement the UN resolution 242 (calling for Israel's withdrawal from the occupied Arab land)?

3. If Saddam has no right to question the nationalities of some members of the UN weapons inspection team, why has the US already struck out the names of Cuban and Iranian nationals from an inspection team due to visit US chemical weapons facilities?

In the absence of a consensus on the UN Security Council favouring the use of force, the impending air strikes on Iraq can only be justified on the basis of consistency, not double standards.

RANDHIR SINGH BAINS.

Gants Hill, Essex

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