Letter to the Editor:

Dear editor:

Samoans are dying for nothing? That's the opinion of Mr. Ah Mu, a senior reporter for the Samoa Observer. Maybe he is right, what does Samoa get out of this conflict? Absolutely nothing, but that is what you get in return for nothing. Mr. Ah Mu states "Our (his) Government is against the war, arguing for a less violent way of reaching solution". Well Mr. Ah Mu, here's a surprise for you, we all want peace and love, but the fact of the matter is someone has to defend those that can't defend themselves, and that someone is and has been for the past two hundred plus years the United States of America.

I am from the village of Utulei in American Samoa. As a former soldier in the US Army for over 10 years, I and all U.S. soldiers know and understand the reality of war. It is often said that the last person on earth that wants to go to war is the soldier. American Samoan soldiers are not dying for nothing. They are fulfilling their duties to their country and defending the idea of a free and democratic Iraq. As a territory of the U.S., American Samoans that join the military of their own free will understand and accept the consequences. Fighting and dying for what is right and just is an honor only a soldier can understand. There is nothing more noble than dying for your country, the very same country that has provided freedom and security for its citizens and nationals for generations. Those that fall on the battlefield are forever remembered as HEROS.

It appears that Mr. Ah Mu has forgotten the atrocities committed by the former government of Iraq and its leader. Saddam Hussein had killed and tortured tens of thousands of innocent men, women and children. He used chemical agents to kill thousands of Iranians in the Iran/Iraq war and thousands of Kurds in his own country of Iraq. The list of atrocities go on and on.

In the late 1930's, a man named Adolf Hitler came to power in Germany and committed atrocities to neighboring countries and Jews in his own country which ultimately lead to World War 2. Saddam Hussein was on this same path, invading Kuwait and warring with neighboring Iran. If this monster was not stopped, who knows what it could have lead to.

If the United States and its allies do not defend those that can't defend themselves, who will? Mr. Ah Mu, will you?

- Rob McDonald, Utulei, American Samoa

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