Kudos for your front-page photo accompanying “Sasson snags Israel’s second medal” (August 14), showing judoka Ori Sasson’s extended hand being rejected by his Egyptian opponent.
What better way to highlight the basic problem Israel is having with the Palestinians (and the Arab world). It’s not the settlements; it’s the rejection of our extended hand! Who was it who said a picture is worth a thousand words? NINA SPIRO Jerusalem The photo of Ori Sasson stretching out his hand to the Egyptian he had beaten to win a bronze Olympic medal was well deserving of an appearance on your front page. The question is, what will BDS supporters and Jewish anti-Zionists make of this? Probably “Jew beats up Arab” or “Jew uses disproportionate force to beat Arab.”HERTZEL KATZ
Having recently and most proudly made aliya to this great country, and also having attended the Munich Olympics in 1972, I agree with Gil Hoffman that we should celebrate loudly every win and medal of any color (“Of strong Jews and Olympic pride,” Frontlines, October 12).
The athletes in Munich who were murdered in a cold-blooded act of terror are a constant reminder to me, especially every four years, that we should never forget them (as some might try to). Having suffered for just being Israelis, any sporting win should be proud testament that we are here competing at the highest level – and never going away.STEPHEN VISHNICK
No explaining needs to be done as to why we are proud of a bronze medal. It’s the other countries’ attitudes that are the mistake.
Yes, gold is the best, but there are two others that every country should be proud of!
With regard to “Kahlon lauds 2017-2018 budget reforms amid flak on spending” (August 14), I am one of the people who will be affected by Finance Minister Moshe Kahlon’s new tax on owners of three or more apartments, and with all the “antiwealthy” hysteria he has created, I would like to bring some points to his attention.
I came on aliya from South Africa in December 1966. After my studies, I established a number of successful companies that provided jobs and services to quite a few people. My companies paid taxes on profits, and I was again taxed on my salary.
Thinking of my children’s security, including my eventual retirement, I took some of my income and invested in property, in the process paying a purchase tax and VAT. I have helped keep apartment rental prices down by increasing the supply. Naturally, I have paid a further tax on all the rental income I receive.
All that is normal and acceptable.
But Kahlon’s plan to punish the owners of three or more apartments disturbs me. Is it because we can afford to pay? Because we worked hard and invested our savings? This is not a tax. It is a fine, a punishment, and will prove to be counter-productive.
The finance minister should not apply this policy to pensioners.
They have worked hard, paid taxes and invested for retirement.
As long as interest rates remain low and people have few alternatives as to where to invest their savings, they will diversify into real estate, if not in Israel, then abroad.
Kahlon would do well to reconsider, as his constituents will react after they realize that eventually, he will tax whatever other investments they have.DAVID ZWEBNER
My husband and I have worked hard for many years.
While our friends and neighbors traveled the world and stayed in fancy hotels, we took modest vacations in Israel, camping out with our family. While our friends bought new cars and renovated their homes, we lived simply, saving for our future.
We invested our hard-earned money in real estate and slowly ensured our retirement. The future seemed secure until today.
I appreciate the government wanting to enable young couples to purchase apartments; this is a worthy goal. However, does the end justify the means? A fair clause would state that future purchases of apartments are taxed at this rate. Taxing past purchases is equivalent to theft from citizens who were responsible enough to save for the future.
Spend your money now, because if you save it, the government will take it away. Is that really the message it wants us to learn?
Beit El Lesson revisited
Reader Rich Brownstein’s letter (“Civics lesson,” August 14) contains serious factual errors.
First of all, an absentee ballot is issued by a state, and is counted by that state. This comes with a small disclaimer: If the total number of absentee ballots cannot change the results of the election in the state, they will be recorded, but not necessary counted.
In 2012, President Barack Obama won the popular vote by 3,000,000, so the California absentee ballots may not have been counted, but there is no such thing as a ballot that cannot be counted toward electors.
Second, the 1824 election is totally irrelevant. There were four candidates receiving electoral votes, leading to the fact that there was no majority, and the election was decided in the House of Representatives, with each state having one vote. The popular vote was meaningless because in five states, the electors were chosen by the state legislature independent of any popular vote.
The current situation is totally different.
As stated on the US government website regarding expat voting: “Your legal state of residence is... the state in which you were last domiciled, immediately prior to leaving the United States.”
When I cast my ballot in November, it will be considered an Ohio vote, since Ohio was my last state of residence before I moved to Israel. My vote does count, particularly since Ohio is a battleground state.
Hopefully, Mr. Brownstein’s letter will not discourage US citizens in Israel from voting.DAVID JACOBS
Efrat Personal advice
With regard to “The waiting game” (Encountering Peace, August 11), Gershon Baskin is looking for nations ready to promote the peace process for a two-state solution.
Russia is busy with Syria, Ukraine and improving relations with Turkey. Saudi Arabia is busy with Yemen, Iran and falling oil prices. China has much bigger global ambitions, and the US is engaged in an election campaign.
So there is no real interest.
My personal advise to Mr.
Baskin: Pray that this conflict never ends because otherwise, you will have no reason to write your columns.
Givatayim Be a little nicer
When choosing headlines, can’t The Jerusalem Post
be a little nicer? I call your attention to “Kiryat Arba family wants 292 new settler homes” (August 8).
What is a “settler” home? How does it differ from a non-settler home? Shouldn’t any city in the State of Israel be entitled to build homes for residents? Shouldn’t citizens of Israel be entitled to demand more housing? What would have been wrong with “Kiryat Arba family wants 292 new homes”? You can report on facts, but what makes one home better than another? If a leftist would ask to build homes, would they be called leftist homes? If an Ashkenazi would want a home, would it be called an Ashkenazi home? We have enough antagonists.
We don’t have to create them ourselves.