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Iraq to allow inspections to continue. Agreements have been broken, sanctions and diplomacy

didn't rectify the problem so it follows that force may be needed to bring about compliance to UN

resolutions and agreements. But there are consequences to firing missiles into Baghdad. By firing

missiles into a densely populated city like Baghdad, there is a tremendous risk of civilian casualties

ranging from an estimated minimum of a few hundred to the worst case of ten thousand civilian

causalities. But, for the United States government, the question is utilitarian: "how can we, in the

long term, save the most lives?" In other words, the greatest good for the greatest number. Clearly,

the answer to this question, from the government's view, is that it is better to risk the potential

sacrifice of ten thousand Iraqi civilian lives in order to prevent an even greater loss of life if Iraq

were to use its weapons of mass destruction again. By doing a cost benefit analysis, the

government would find it better for ten thousand rather than ten million die.

But who is the government to we place a market value on human life? Is it moral and does

the government have the right to place such a value on human life? Are ten thousand Iraqis worth

less than ten thousand or ten million Israelis or Americans? Fyodor Dostoevsky's reply to the

government's "official rational" is definitive. No. Neither the government nor any one person has

the right to place a market value on human life, otherwise they are playing God. Dostoevsky would

justify this by claiming that like science and Christianity, utilitarianism is just another story we tell

about how to live and make decisions. Neither story is more true than the other, but utilitarianism

isn't the best story to tell. For Dostoevsky, Christianity makes more sense. Not only do the ten

commandments dictate that it is wrong to kill for any reason (and Dostoevsky was a pacifist) but,

by taking the life of another, we are bringing about judgment on another human being and only

God can bring about judgment on man. Furthermore, Dostoevsky believes that to be moral we

must have unconditional love for others. While the government bases what would be in the best

interest of man on "such advantages as happiness, prosperity, freedom, security, and all that. . .

when listing human advantages [government] insists on leaving out one of them. They never

allow for it, thus invalidating all their calculations. One would think it would be easy just to add it

to the list. But that's where the trouble lies--it doesn't fit into any scale or chart" (Dostoyevsky

1961, pg. 106). What is this advantage? "The key phrase is 'Love others as you lover yourself'"

(Dostoyevsky 1961, pg.225); it is nothing more than unconditional love. Just as Liza in The Notes

From Undergroundembraces the spiteful underground man in an act of unconditioned love, and

Alyosha in The Brothers Karamazovacts only out of unconditional and unrestrained love for man,