Response to rockets
Sir, – Every country has responsibility for the safety of
its citizens. However, Israel is so afraid of being criticized by unfriendly
countries that it barely does anything to stop Hamas from firing rockets at its
citizens (“Palestinians renew rocket attacks on southern Israel,” November
Frankly, the people living in the south of Israel and even in Ashdod
cannot understand what Israel’s army and air force do in Gaza. The air force
hasn’t even eliminated the smuggling tunnels.
Hamas keeps its hold on
Gaza, and the people there should have sufficient reason to say the Islamist
group must go. But they have no reason to do this as Israel does nothing
of substance to make them unhappy.
For the sake of its own citizens who
live with constant terror, Israel must decide to do something very soon to
eliminate the need for having schools threatened and men and women in need of
being so close to shelters that they cannot live or work properly.
should not make our defense predicated on the European Union’s idea of what is
correct. After all, we are supposed to be a free and sovereign nation in our own
Sir, – Your front page headline
“Palestinians renew rocket attacks on southern Israel” hardly qualifies as news.
It has become, to our shame, routine.
The army “responds” by attacking
pre-planned sites, and nothing changes.
We should simply cut off the
Gazans’ electricity and water, and the money we allow in. Let them stay busy
figuring out how to live on their own, giving them no time or resources to keep
SHARONA and YAACOV BEN-AVRAHAM
Sir, – I find it difficult to understand why some so-called experts
reacted with dismay to the resignation of David Petraeus (“CIA director resigns,
admits to extra-marital affair,” November 11).
It’s too bad that such a
promising career should come to an early end, but all officials, military or
otherwise, must be held to account when they go off the rails to carry on an
Perhaps I am old fashioned, but it seems to me that
if a man or woman wishes to carry on an affair, he or she must be prepared to
pay highly for it. Of course, he or she might believe that the indiscretion will
never become known, but these things seem to have a way of coming out
Next time someone in high office feels like kicking off his
or her shoes, let that person think twice. And then think again!
Sir, – David Petraeus is more than a man of conviction. His resignation
can also be chalked up to his disagreements with President Barack
Petraeus was forced against his will in Iraq and Afghanistan to
carry out what he felt were wrong decisions. Thus, he resigned also because
Obama was reelected.
MURRAY S. GREENFIELD
His own words
Reader Ken Kalcheim (“Let them decide,” Letters, November 11) seems to have
added his own words to reader Steve Kramer’s comments.
Kramer never even
hinted that “Jordan is Palestine.”
The only occupation that took place
was the Jordanian occupation of eastern Jerusalem, Judea and Samaria against the
terms of the British Mandate. The land that Jordan occupied was defined by the
UN resolution of November 1947. The Security Council considered it “an act of
aggression to attempt to alter by force the settlement envisaged by the
As a result of the unwillingness of the surrounding Arab
states to accept the resolution, and the invasion by Arab armies of the nascent
State of Israel, the land returned to the status defined in Article 80 of the UN
Charter, as written in the Levy Report.
The Israeli government has
officially committed to a two-state solution, but Palestinian leaders and their
constituency are unwilling to recognize the existence of Israel and sit down and
negotiate an agreement.
Sir, – Ken Kalcheim does not
address the fact that the reasons behind our being in all the places we went
into was a defensive measure – to keep our enemies far enough away to make it
difficult for them to infiltrate and kill our people.
We were willing to
let things alone after the original 1947 UN decision, but our enemies were not.
As unprepared for war as we were, we prevailed, and we need to be sure we will
continue to prevail.
Once a single sincere gesture of peace comes from
our foes, we will surely consider adjusting our view. But why now, when
hostility and rockets are what we face daily?
Sir, – Israel is facing growing uncertainty. This has been
exacerbated by the reelection of President Barack Obama. His policies toward
Israel cannot be construed as positive in any sense of the word.
argument is often made that if Obama is “so bad for Israel,” then why do so many
Jews support him? It’s not that Jews support him per se; it’s that US Jews have
been lifelong Democrats. He is the face of the party, but it is the party that
Jews have an affiliation with, not necessarily with him.
Were the Jews
not there to check Obama’s actions, he would have enacted more outwardly hostile
policies toward Israel.
As Jews we must remain ever vigilant and guard
against the policies of the Obama administration.
The next four years are
going be telling for Americans, Israel and, indeed, the world. What we can say
with certainty is that Obama is no longer fully accountable to the
Sir, – I am a supporter of
Israel, the son of ardent Labor Zionists, a member of the Democratic Party and a
longtime supporter of Barack Obama.
In the election just past, Jewish
Republicans, buoyed by testimonials from Americans who made aliya, did a good
job of portraying Obama as somehow anti- Israel despite the fact that his
administration has had more military cooperation with Israel than any other.
Romney had already signaled that he was not interested in engaging in the peace
process and counted among his closest friends and supporters pro-Arab
So what is the problem? In a word, Netanyahu, and the evermore
right-wing coalition he leads. His policies make any peace impossible, and in
joining with the party of Avigdor Liberman he solidifies a fortress-Israel
mentality and will never compromise.
If you want stronger relations with
Obama, you have only to send Netanyahu home next January to work on his
MITCHELL S. ROTHMAN
Merion Station, Pennsylvania
Sir, – I was visiting Israel when, on November 4 at 6:15 p.m., I took bus No.
497 from Beit Shemesh. I was shocked to discover that the bus was segregated and
that I was expected to use the back door and sit in the back.
this practice continues despite being illegal.
I fail to understand the
difference between the groups that impose this in the name of God, and
extremists from other religions who marginalize women.
Little good can
come of this in the long run.
How can these men, who have no exposure to
women, be good husbands and fathers? Do they really have so little willpower
that they are unable to resist even the sight of a woman? Government and
religious leaders should work toward educating these people rather than catering
to the lunatic fringe.