Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan says “each day that Jerusalem is under occupation is an insult to us” (“Erdogan calls on Muslims worldwide to flock to al-Aksa,” May 9).
The honorable president underestimates the implications of the Jewish nation’s return to its biblical homeland and our sovereignty over Jerusalem. Our return is not a mere insult to those who cling to a “replacement theology,” where their religion, be it Christianity or Islam, has replaced Judaism in the Creator’s privilege of preference. Our return is a theological negation and devastation of that theology.
We are approaching the realization of the prophetic words of Jeremiah (16:19): “Lord, my strength and my fortress, my refuge in time of distress, to You the nations will come from the ends of the earth and say, Our ancestors possessed false gods, worthless idols that did them no good.”
NACHMAN KAHANA Jerusalem
The writer is a rabbi.
Actually, what President Erdogan of Turkey is doing is encouraging all the Muslims of the world to visit Israel. Our Ministry of Tourism should confer a prize upon him.
EZRA FARHI Tel Aviv‘Ein breira’
I respectfully take issue with reader Samuel Dershowitz (“Roots of hi-tech...,” Letters, May 9). The reason for Israel’s prowess in so many spheres is quite simply ein breira (there is no alternative).
We are surrounded by people who do not want us here and openly avow their intention of eliminating us from our homeland.
Whenever they produce a threat to our existence in whatever context – military, political, economic, etc. – we have to produce an antidote as a matter of survival. In turn, this antidote might produce innovations in other areas. Our cutting edge is thus being constantly whetted.
It is a reality that given the situation in this part of the world, this is likely to continue for a long time.
OSCAR DAVIES JerusalemIrreparable harm
Sometimes our best friends do us irreparable harm. Coaching Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas so that he could speak effectively to US President Donald Trump was such an act (“PM angry Lauder advised Abbas,” May 9).
No true peace can ever be achieved by telling the enemy what to say or what to do. Peace, if it is really to be achieved, has to come from the heart and soul of the enemy himself. The enemy has to understand why peace is preferable to constant slaughter and the killing of innocents. The first step has to be a reappraisal of the Palestinians’ educational system.
President Trump himself is not a god and doesn’t have to be appeased. He has to see for himself what is happening here in Israel and how the settlements in Judea and Samaria are thriving.
He has to see for himself the palace of King David and smell the fragrant flowers around the entire city of Jerusalem.
Jerusalem can never be anything but the capital of Israel, undivided and unique in the world. It belongs to the Jewish people, but everyone can come and worship and feel its majestic spiritually. President Trump will certainly feel the city’s spiritual power and the achievements of Israel in spite of the constant warfare against it.
BATYA KOENIGSBERG JerusalemTrampoline Don
Your opinion pieces written by Jews about US President Donald Trump are full of hope or fear, or swing between them. Jews the world over seem to sit with this huge flower, taking off the petals one by one and mumbling “He loves us, he loves us not....”
The high and low expectations expound well the etymology of the word “trampoline.”
MOSHE-MORDECHAI VAN ZUIDEN JerusalemRest in peace
With regard to “Alexander Zvielli, most veteran ‘Jerusalem Post’ staff member, worked at paper for 72 years” (May 8), it’s a very sad day for me.
The late Mr. Zvielli did what no one else at The Jerusalem Post or other Israeli media did (and we Jews know how important it is to remember and not forget). His column From Our Archives disproved the popular saying that a newspaper lives for only one day.
As a journalist who has been reading that column for many years and translating excerpts for my numerous, mostly Russian readers, I can say with great sadness that Mr. Zvielli will be greatly missed.
Rest in peace, dear Alexander Zvielli!
EFIM MAIDANIK Jerusalem Why the venom?
I found Jeff Barak’s column on who should light the Independence Day torch (“Which US Jew has really influenced today’s Israel?” Reality Check, May 8) odd and nearly pernicious. I assume he was being sarcastic, but what is the need for all this venom against Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu? I am sure that Netanyahu does many things wrong, and sometimes we don’t really see where he is heading, but the people have completely rejected Mr.
Barak’s philosophy in all recent elections. For the foreseeable future, there is no chance the country will elect a person close to his way of thinking.
There are many ideas from the Left that can make our society better, but attacking the prime minister simply for the purpose of attacking him is inappropriate, especially for a former editor in chief of The Jerusalem Post.
MENI KOSLOWSKY Ramat Gan Frantzman nails it
With “Israel is not a Western country, and never has been” (Terra Incognita, May 8), Seth J.
Frantzman hits the nail on the head. “The majority of Israelis today don’t care about being welcomed in Europe and don’t seek European approval.”
We have survived, matured and grown respectively confident in our achievements in the fields of hi-tech, military, economics and science. We have expanded our horizons beyond the early founding fathers’ homeland perspective.
Our nation’s majority population hails from non-European backgrounds now.
Bilaam prophesied: “Behold! It is a nation that will dwell in solitude and not be reckoned among the nations” (Parshat Balak, Bamidbar 23:9). We see and hear the UN remind us all too often of this status, but despite the nations that refuse to accept our return to our homeland, we are here forever.
Our future will be polyethnic and broad-based. This is the new Israel, and I’m proud we have reached this stage with all the olim, sabras and visitors who share our hopes for a brighter tomorrow.
MARSHA ROTH Jerusalem
Undoubtedly, Seth J. Frantzman’s “Israel is not a Western country, and never has been” is a truism that is excellently defined and articulated.
I can definitely identify with his mindset: “...Israel’s Europhile cultural minority is rooted in a different time, the era of Rhodesia [where I grew up] and the Old South, when non-Europeans were still openly called primitives. They cannot accept that Israel is not a western state and that the revolution of Zionism has overthrown Europeanism in ‘their Levant.’” I was two years old when my parents managed to escape from Nazi Germany in July 1939, leaving many relatives who subsequently were murdered by the regime. Socially, the majority of their friends were also German Jewish refugees, which leads me to presume that if they had the opportunity and willingness to immigrate to Palestine, they would definitely have chosen to socialize within that same category, and more importantly, retain their European cultural background.
GISH TRUMAN ROBBINS Pardesiya