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Editorial: Use some caution in our view of war

The dangers of the Middle East and elsewhere continue for America and the world.

The leaders of the world are watching both Iraq and Syria, Palestinians are seeking a resolution to their issues, the Arab Spring continues in a number of countries and Israel simply seeks safety. And North Korea remains a concern in the Far East.

The challenges in the Middle East are significant. It is a region where countries and tribes have quarreled amongst themselves for centuries.

That is the toughest part of the challenge for the United States and the Obama administration. There are no easy answers in the Middle East.

A decade after our country went to war in Iraq, America and its citizens wonder whether this war was necessary. If you ask most Iraqis today whether they are better off than they were a decade ago, the answers will vary.

Some Americans today — Democrat and Republican — question the need for the Iraq war as well. That truly is a question for history that will be decided over time.

The major lesson of the Iraq war is that America should never be in a rush to go to war. The cost and sacrifice for the Afghanistan and Iraq wars has been significant. Supporting two wars at the same time did not help our economy either.

Many American families, including a number within west central Minnesota, know the true cost of going to war — as their loved one was killed or died while serving in the U.S. military.

However, Iraq, Syria and North Korea should remember the danger of attacking America. If this sleeping giant is attacked, it remains a world military power that tends to finish the fight when needed.