We print a letter to the Stars & Stripes from an American officer in Iraq who reminds us of the importance of numbers.
“A few statistics were missing from your five-year-by-the-numbers piece(March 25)-2.7 mllion Iraqis displaced, 100,00 plus Iraqi civilians dead, 0 weapons of mass destruction, $12 billion by month operating cost. As we look at the ‘surge’ and the relative ‘success’ and our decision to stay here, a cost-benefit analysis look at the numbers needs to be made. You could look at the war as a stock in your retirement portfolio. If the stock’s going down, down, down, with little or no chance of return, do you stay in it or do you dump it? If you asked my broker what the answer was, he’d say, ‘sell.”
Capt. Matthew A. Lassergad