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A PREVENTIVE WAR ISN’T WHAT ALLIED ACTION IS ALL ABOUT To the editor: Miriam Sapiro’s commentary piece ” War to Prevent War” [April 7, 2003, Page 42] is unfortunate as, without offering any citation, it describes the U.S. government’s position with regard to the launching of the Iraq operation as one justified as “preventive war”. This, she intimates, is illegal, as opposed to a “pre-emptive war” (a response to a specific and imminent threat of force) in which those justifying a military response “may be right.” Ms. Sapiro sets up a straw-man argument. The Bush administration has, in fact, never justified pre-emptive war as the logic for its action in Iraq. To the contrary, it has repeatedly, although perhaps not as clearly as it might have, articulated its position as grounded in the original U.N. Security Council resolutions that halted the 1991 Gulf War. Of those resolutions, Security Council Resolution 687 of 1991 is a must-read. It points out explicitly that the war did not end, but only that hostilities had been halted through “a formal cease-fire” (Paragraph 1). That cease-fire was based on Iraq’s “unconditional acceptance of the destruction, removal or rendering harmless under international supervision, all of its stocks of chemical and biological weapons and all ballistic missiles with a range of greater than 150 kilometers” (Paragraph 8). Toward this end, Iraq would “unconditionally agree to full cooperation” with immediate on-site inspections, and would also “unconditionally agree not to acquire or develop nuclear weapons or nuclear weapons usable material” (Paragraphs 11, 12). Security Council Resolution 1441 of 2002 recognized that the 1991 cease-fire governed in its finding that there had been “a material breach” of its terms. Thus, preventive war is not what the allied action in Iraq is all about. Ms. Sapiro’s fears that justification of “preventive war” may give rise to widespread abuse is misplaced. U.S. justification for the Iraq action is fact-specific, centered on Saddam Hussein’s indisputable violation of the terms of the 1991 cease-fire arrangements. Allan Gerson Washington, D.C. Editor’s Note:Allan Gerson was counsel to the U.S. delegation to the United Nations from 1981 to 1985 and has served as a senior adviser to the U.S. delegation to the 2003 session of the U.N. Human Rights Commission. IRAQIS AREN’T ONLY COMBATANTS TO FLOUT RULES OF WAR To the editor: Regarding your article ” New Rules of War” [April 7, 2003, Page 1], of course it makes war more difficult when either side does not follow generally agreed on rules of conducting a war. But your article appeared to be one-sided. For example, it would be interesting to know which rules of war permit Central Intelligence Agency personnel to try to kill Iraqi government leaders in Baghdad with car bombs, as has been widely reported in the Western press. Would not that also be a violation of the rules of war, not to mention other international laws? As I read you article about the blurring of the lines between Iraqi military personnel and civilians, I couldn’t help but be reminded that this was the same complaint that the British had about our patriot forefathers, who would often fight the British by day, then return to civilian life on their farms and homes by night. Steve Lincoln Danville, Calif. THERE’S MORE TO ARENT FOX STORY THAN DEFECTIONS To the editor: As one of the partners who has joined Arent Fox Kintner Plotkin & Kahn since January, I was surprised by the lack of balance provided in the article entitled “Key Lawyers Defect From Arent Fox” [" Inadmissible," April 7, 2003, Page 3]. While bold-faced names of departed attorneys are littered throughout the piece, only 24 words and no names are devoted to the fact that while some law-yers have left, the revolving door has also permitted 11 new lawyers to join the firm since January, with seven others scheduled to arrive this month. While I appreciate the notion that a historical con-text can be useful, that is only when it is applied appropriately. I am particularly pleased to have joined a firm that in the same month landed former Congressman John Thune (R-S.D.), a national political figure with a strong background in transportation and agriculture policy, as well as Roger Cossack, a widely recognized superior legal analyst and former assistant law school dean, who is providing clients with critical guidance on corporate governance matters and bolstering our new corporate compliance and government enforcement group. I would also note that several attorneys who have left Arent Fox in recent years are in the process of rejoining the firm, suggesting that they recognize, as I did, that this is a firm with a strong grasp of where it’s heading and an excellent place in which to practice law. Dan Renberg Arent Fox Kintner Plotkin & Kahn Washington, D.C.

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