To the editor:

Robert Fisher’s letter (Oct. 6, “McCain has wrong outlook to lead us in a time of war”) has it all wrong. Is politics clouding his perception?

Personally, I would rather have a leader educated in the art of warfare than someone who has never set foot in a boot camp. It has been approximately 28 years since radical Islam declared war against us. They have repeatedly attacked us, and until recently, we chose to ignore the truth of the matter, and even now our news media have failed to acknowledge this war and are criticizing us for being engaged in it.

Yes, we need a peacemaker. So how does one deal with people educated from birth to hate us? Yes, we could sit down with them if we could agree about the shape, size and location of the negotiating table and other trivia, as happened with the North Koreans. Having been a negotiator must of my working life, I can tell you that when you sit down without preconditions, you are at a great disadvantage because negotiations are basically tradeoffs, and these people are so adamant in their goals that it makes negotiations nearly impossible.

What leverage do we have against a religious philosophy such as theirs? Remember, these people use women and children to bomb innocent people. I’m not saying that negotiations are impossible, but close to it. Unless they are whipped into submission, meaningful discussion can’t take place. Remember the futile efforts of Neville Chamberlain in negotiation with Hitler? Hitler was a piker when to the radical Islamic.

Obama says he will meet with the terrorist leaders without preconditions. What will he say to them? “Oh, come on guys please stop your violence?” Before serious negotiations can commence, preconditions are mandatory.

The advice of Theodore Roosevelt is as true now as it was then: “Speak softly and carry a big stick.”