While I know that President Barack Obama wants to destroy the Islamic State group, he offered no new approaches in his address to the nation on Dec. 6 [“Obama’s terror speech divides Long Island congressional delegation,” News, Dec. 7].

As I see it, we cannot destroy ISIS in Syria until we stop supporting rebel groups that wish to bring down President Bashar Assad, the country’s legitimate leader. We must start working with him and his forces in Syria to destroy the common enemy: ISIS. It’s that simple.

Obama inadvertently gave support to ISIS by defining Assad as the enemy following the misnamed Arab Spring. As is so often the case in the Arab world, the enemy of our enemy, is . . . well, as they now say, our frenemy. Assad is our frenemy.

Harry Katz, Southold

 

President Barack Obama gave a speech on terrorism, and even if many people thought his speech was “almost pitiful,” I thought it contained many truths.

He said we need legislation so that guns cannot be sold to people on the no-fly list. Our gun control is pitiful. We don’t need to outlaw guns, just make them harder to get.

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Japan, for example, has very strict gun control. Handguns and small-caliber rifles are banned. Only shotguns and air rifles are allowed. Before you can buy one, you have to take an all-day class, pass a written exam and pass a shooting range class. You also have to pass a mental health test and drug test, which are filed with the police, and undergo a criminal background check. You have to redo each step every three years.

If you really want a gun, you should be willing to go through these steps to get one.

Our gun control doesn’t have to be as strict as Japan’s, but I believe that prohibiting guns to the people on the no-fly list is a step in the right direction.

Sydney Fulton, Baldwin

 

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Rep. Lee Zeldin (R-Shirley) must be out of touch with the world around him [“Rep. Lee Zeldin counters Rep. Peter King’s bill on gun buys,” News, Dec. 12].

Zeldin characterizes a bill that prevents individuals on U.S. terrorist watch lists from purchasing firearms and explosives as one that makes “Americans guilty until proven innocent . . . and improperly targets law-abiding citizens.”

He apparently thinks the better approach is to allow people on this list to purchase firearms and make the Justice Department present a court order preventing them from doing so. Entirely absent from his reasoning is the fact that individuals end up on watch lists for a reason. And while that may include law-abiding citizens, Rep. Peter King’s (R-Seaford) bill provides a mechanism to be removed from the list.

Peter Tufo, Nesconset