Sir, - Not only has Germany not learned from its Nazi past ("Has Germany learned from its Nazi history?," December 3), but the world - specifically the western world - has not learned anything. The same appeasement of the tyrant Hitler is now being perpetrated by those same nations in dealing with the tyrant Ahmadinejad - and of course, the exploitation of Israel and its Jews as scapegoats for all the world's ills is still rampant.
One would think that those European nations who nurtured western civilization, religion and culture would somehow absorb values of decency and fairness. Alas, this is not the case.
HAIM M. LERNER
...and pasta for Demjanjuk
Sir, - John Demjanjuk's entrance to his trial in Munich on charges of being an accessory to the murder of 27,900 Jews is a replay of his being wheeled into the court in Jerusalem's International Convention Center in 1986. How heartrending.
It was found that a healthy, well-balanced prison diet would soon put him back on his feet. Demjanjuk's consumption of two large plates of pasta in Munich ("Demjanjuk trial delayed due to illness," December 3) will soon have him raring to go!
Sir, I was dumbfounded to read that the proposed bill that sought to limit visits to Hamas prisoners, and remove some prison perks during the period that Schalit was denied any visits, including by Red Cross representatives, never made it past the Ministerial Committee for Legislation ("MKs nix bill on Hamas prisoners' conditions," December 3). The reason given for the failure of the legislation was the security services' argument "that it would make the conditions more difficult for negotiations working to secure Schalit's release."
The fact that these Hamas terrorists have been indulged with extensive coddling for several years does not appear to have had the slightest effect on the Hamas negotiators.
Settlement freezes and male cows
Sir, - Robert Lax takes issue with a half-ton calf and male cows that were mentioned in The Jerusalem Post
("A load of bull," Letters, November 29). On further thought, are such phenomena indeed all that "highly unlikely"?
Consider our latest ballyhoo about a temporary settlement freeze. A week ago, our prime minister solemnly announced a 10-month settlement freeze - not including "housing already under way," synagogues, schools, kindergartens and public buildings, nor construction in "predominantly Arab east Jerusalem." Since then, we have been having a nonstop debate between outraged settlers, and politicians delicately explaining to them that it is all mere eyewash.
Settlement freezes and male cows. That sums up our present-day Israeli reality
Teachings of the mothers?
Sir, - You report on a pending bill that would extend maternity leave for up to six months ("Highly touted maternity-leave bill advances, but won't change much," December 3).
Let's look at a specific case. A teacher gives birth in October and takes a six-month maternity leave and comes back in March to finish the school year in June. This teacher teaches three to four months, while a substitute teacher is there for six months.
Now let us consider the pedagogical ramifications (academic and psychological) for the pupils. I hope the Education Ministry and the teachers' unions have had something to say.