The US and Britain have seen fit to "promote" themselves as the self-appointed international police force, judge and executioner of the various sections of the global society in which we live. This has been the case for 50 years.

Terrorism, in the guise of neighbourliness, as enacted against Middle Eastern sovereign nations by these two has been excused as inevitable in the defence of freedom and the world as the Western nations perceive it.

The distress caused by the act of retaliation on Tuesday is understandable. That these reprisals have been so long in coming is also remarkable.

All nations and faiths have the right to defend themselves equally. How much less is a life worth in Iraq or Afghanistan, when being obliterated, than that of an American or British national?

US bombs and British hardware are no less offensive than their Islamic counterparts. The strategy is about as obscene.

How many people died needlessly because of the panic of the White House in shooting down an unidentified aircraft in the aftermath of Tuesday's tragedy? How many will die in the future - all because the US can't take the same punishment it metes out to nations such as China, Libya, Cuba or Iraq.

Who's the bully? Think on.

-N Corelli-Lichenstein, Nettleton Court, Brighton