LETTER : Our guilt

I write as an American whose taxes may have helped pay for the missile that killed the family of Abbas Jiha ("Is this some kind of crusade?", Review, 18 May), the Apache helicopter that fired it, or even the salary of the Israeli gunner who squeezed the trigger. A few cents of my tax dollars may also help pay for the water that keeps the lawns around the discreet buildings of the Boeing Defence and Space Group green and manicured or contribute to the retirement salary of the spluttering colonel whose calcified military mind could not get around the idea that he, Boeing, the US and Israeli governments, the pilots who murdered Abbas Jiha's family and I all have their blood on our hands. If we have, all of us, lost our capacity to understand that, we have also lost the right to call ourselves civilised. As for me, I say to Mr Abbas Jiha that I am humbly sorry, I share in your mourning for your dead family, and to Mr Robert Fisk, I say, more power to your arm.

RL Doerschuk

Mountain View, California