Calling Iraqi Defectors
Re '' 'Sodom' Hussein's Iraq,'' by Thomas L. Friedman (column, Dec. 1):
A potential Iraqi defector may decide to withhold his information, for fear of consequences to his country. Any revelations will trigger a devastating American invasion costing thousands of Iraqi lives. The war will destabilize the volatile region and turn Iraq into a de facto United States protectorate for years. The conscientious defector may doubt the sincerity of American commitment to ordinary Iraqis, given their suffering under United States-backed sanctions.
To win the cooperation of concerned Iraqis, guaranteeing the safety of their immediate families won't be enough. We must guarantee, to the extent possible, the well-being and dignity of the Iraqi people. A new United Nations resolution is needed, specifying our plans for a post-Saddam Hussein Iraq. Otherwise, an Iraqi ''Sakharov'' may worry that ''severe consequences'' mean just that for his country.