Read these words
Sir, – Your front-page news item (“After Iran nuke talks in
Istanbul, sides to meet again in May,” April 15) brings to mind part of a 1941
essay by George Orwell, called “The Lion and the Unicorn,” in which he referred
to the way Hitler hoodwinked so many leading politicians of the
“After 1934,” Orwell wrote, “it was known that Germany was
rearming. After 1936 everyone with eyes in his head knew that war was coming.
After Munich it was merely a question of how soon the war would begin. In
September 1939 war broke out.”SHLOMO MANNS
Tel Mond Prison conditions
Sir, – Regarding “1,600 Palestinian prisoners threaten hunger strike” (April
15), I am in full agreement that there be a review of conditions for these
I suggest that instead of the conditions under which they are
currently detained, they be offered those that exist in prisons in the West Bank
and Gaza, or in Jordan and perhaps Syria. I’m sure that any of these facilities
would be far better suited to their needs.FRANCES DASH
Opening Jewish homes
Sir, – While the Johnsons think they are doing a nice thing
(and opening one’s home to strangers is a nice thing), it appalls me that Jewish
boys and girls are being hosted by non-Jews for Shabbat (“Evangelical couple
sees calling as welcoming ‘lone’ soldiers for Shabbat dinners,” April
I can’t see the proper Shabbat atmosphere. The food and wine are not
kosher just by virtue of a non-Jew having cooked the meal and served the wine.
They hosts may not openly proselytize, but the influence will be felt and, God
forbid, have an effect.
Where is the Soldiers’ Welfare Association, which
supposedly addresses the needs of lone soldiers and is the organization we
donate to every year? It could ask us, for example, to host someone for
Jerusalem No longer witty
Sir, – Regarding the
question of Jonathan Miller’s faith (“Even our own,” Letters, April 15), I
remember reading years ago that he didn’t consider himself a Jew, only
At the time I thought it quite witty, but not any
Kfar Saba First and foremost, us
Sir, – How can
Peter Beinart accuse Israel of using “excessive force” when in fact it has been
so restrained that it failed to squash or even impede Arab terrorism (“Beinart’s
bomb,” Comment & Features, April 15)? There are only a few cases of Israeli
military commanders who have not agonized over the proper use of force. They
often pay with the lives of their soldiers for such agonizing.
Shame on commanders for having such a cavalier attitude toward the men whose
lives they hold in their hands. Never should their or our lives be sacrificed to
save the enemy, civilian or otherwise.
More than enough Jewish blood
already stains this land because of the weakness and incompetence of
Daniel Doron in his article writes that Beinart seems to
believe Jews should give up their primary duty to protect life, especially the
life of innocents, and forgo the sage’s advice that “he who is about to kill
you, rise early and kill him first.” Imagine the lives that could be saved if we
adhere to this basic principle.EDITH OGNALL
Netanya Mofaz’s plan
After a careful reading and analysis of “The opposition leader’s peace plan”
(Politics, April 12), I was both disheartened and disappointed. It was not easy
to distinguish between this new offering and then-prime minister Ehud Olmert’s
grand give-away of vital territory in exchange for no Palestinian
The plan is cloaked in platitudes of preserving Israel as a
Jewish and democratic state, but they are hardly sufficient to soothe serious
security and political concerns.
Mofaz ignores the Islamization of Egypt
and the fragility of the Jordanian regime, the threat of Hezbollah in the North
and the daily rockets from the South. He displays very limited insight into the
reality of Palestinian demands about refugees, Jerusalem and water, and feels
that agreements about these issues can be pushed off until after Israel has
already given up territory. The sad fact is that the PA will not accept any
agreement where these matters are not settled, with Israel caving into their
As is being increasingly recognized, Israel’s maximum
concessions are unable to satisfy even the minimum demands of the Palestinians.
Unfortunately, the Mofaz program offers us no help.ZEV CHAMUDOT
Sir, – Much like a novice juggler of lottery balls, Shaul Mofaz recklessly
throws land-swap percentages up in the air in his recent interview with The
It is frustrating to note that Israeli military and
political actors still believe that Arab Palestinians can be swayed and
persuaded by percentages to nail their colors to the mast of peace. When is the
ubiquitous penny going to drop? Arab Palestinians want 100 percent of Judea and
Samaria and 100% of Israel. Those unable or unwilling to grasp these undisputed
facts are inebriated on the mothballs of Utopia.
The writing has been on
the wall of history no less than in the PLO Charter and the Hamas
Notwithstanding Israel’s compulsive- obsessive hunt for peace,
it is unbelievable that Israeli leaders still indulge in juggling meaningless,
over-abused landswap figures. These serve to systematically whet Arab
Palestinian designs on Israel rather than the Palestinian appetite for
peace.LEVI J. ATTIAS
Tel Aviv A voter speaks up
Sir, – In “A matter of
culture” (PostScript, April 12), Hirsh Goodman writes: “The number of ministries
has to be cut, the deputy ministers culled, and logic applied as to how the
executive handles itself.”
The problems he identifies are real enough,
and debilitating indeed, but they are the symptoms of the malaise, not the
cause. The cause is our electoral system, which predictably and consistently
generates a plethora of political parties, a multitude of self-serving MKs and a
culture of corruption.
The solution, as everyone knows, is one in which
at least 50 percent of the MKs, but preferably more, are directly elected by the
voters in their districts.
However, the chances of any change of this
nature being implemented by the same MKs who are the prime beneficiaries of the
present system are nil.
The only way in which a change could occur is by
the formation of a special-interest party whose only objective would be to
change the electoral system.
The party would pledge to selfdissolve on
completion of its mission. I would vote for such a party.STEPHEN COHEN
Ma’aleh Adumim Change agencies
Sir, – The Jerusalem Post
is depending too much
on the Reuters news agency for material.
I am sure you are perfectly
aware of Reuters’s hostile and biased attitude toward Israel in most of its
articles. More than once I was so appalled that I could not restrain myself from
writing to them and asking if they had a stake in the destruction of the Jewish
Why in the name of God should you pay Israel’s enemy for pathetic
information that could be gathered and obtained by a far-less anti- Israel press
agency?GIULIO ENZO NAHUM
Rome/Tel Aviv CLARIFICATION
The April 16 op-ed piece
“Burmese politics post-NLD’s overwhelming electoral victory” did not include the
author’s name. It is Nehginpao Kipgen.
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