Unnamed hero

I don't need to know who helped uncover the alleged Fort Dix plot. What I do need to know is that other private citizens may be encouraged to help uncover future plots. Your irresponsible reporting will do nothing other than discourage others.

Do you really think it is important to report employment information about the person who notified the FBI? If you find the store clerk's identity, do you plan to have reporters staking out his or her residence?

E. Campbell
Philadelphia

Staged terror plot

The idea of a pizza deliveryman, a cab driver and sundry other nincompoops preparing for a takeover of Fort Dix by playing paintball in the Poconos while shouting jihad slogans doesn't get me panicked.

The "sting" described on TV by the U.S. attorney - no doubt one of Attorney General Alberto Gonzales' "loyal" appointees deemed worthy of keeping their jobs - suggests that had the FBI not enticed the malefactors with opportunity, nothing much would have occurred.

This is an anemic attempt by the administration to strike fear into the hearts of Americans and allow it to say, "See, that's why we have to stay in Iraq!" It smells like the Gulf of Tonkin, the Lusitania, and the Battleship Maine to me.

Tony Borrelli
Springfield, Pa.

U.S. bans straw buys

Re: "City to sue state over gun laws," May 3:

Darrell L. Clarke and his friends in Philadelphia City Council can't convince the General Assembly that gun control is a good idea, so they're off to the courts to waste taxpayer money on a feel-good suit they can't win. Clarke says straw purchases have proliferated because the state has not enacted laws to rein them in.

Sorry, Councilman, under federal law, a straw purchase - using one's clean record to buy a gun for someone not allowed to own a gun - is illegal, even in Philadelphia. Why doesn't Council reduce violence by voting to accelerate the glacially slow tax cuts and bring sorely needed jobs to the city? People at work all day don't have time to kill each other.

Jonathan Goldstein

Narberth

Will U.S. capitulate?

On Sept. 30, 1938, Neville Chamberlain said, "My good friends, for the second time in our history, a British prime minister has returned from Germany bringing peace with honour. I believe it is peace for our time." We all know the horrors this capitulation brought upon mankind.

Now the Democrats in Congress would have us believe we can have peace with honor in our time if we take our troops out of Iraq and leave it as a safe haven for terrorists.

They would have us believe that 3,300 brave men and women, including Lt. Travis Manion and Lt. Colby Umbrell, both of Doylestown, have given their lives in vain. Their hatred for the president is so great they would welcome defeat for their country rather than support its troops and their commander in chief.

Bernard J. Byrne
Doylestown

Unsupported opinion

Re: The Inquirer's "picks" for the Democratic Council at-large seats (editorial, Tuesday):

I am appalled by the slanderous comment about Matt Ruben. I realize this is an opinion, but how dare you say "but he has made some alliances this election season that give you pause" without explaining what you mean by that?

That one line would put doubts in anyone's mind. You are doing a disservice to this region and the integrity of the paper by printing unsubstantiated opinions.

Erika Katz
Philadelphia