Sir, – Until the Palestinians understand the difference between saving their killers and wanting acknowledgement as a people, there can be no way they can be allowed to establish a state (“Failing to cross the moral threshold for statehood?,” April 18).
The world fantasizes about a peace-loving people and has not yet realized that there is a streak of cold-blooded violence that runs through a certain segment of this population, while the majority, whether leaders or just part of the Arab nation, refuse to understand or cope with the evil that lives among them.
A state built on coddling vicious murderers and allowing school buses to be fired upon cannot exist. That kind of behavior is too abhorrent for civilized people.
TOBY WILLIG Jerusalem Out of context
Sir, – In
your Pessah eve editorial (“Guests for Pessah,” April 18) there appears
the following sentence: “At least one passage from the Haggada – ‘Spill
out Your wrath on the gentiles’ – sounds downright antagonistic to the
In using a partial quotation from the Haggada text, you
have substantially altered the meaning, which in full reads: “Pour out
Your wrath upon the nations that do not recognize You, and upon the
kingdoms that do not invoke Your name.” That is not a blanket
condemnation of “the gentiles,” as said in your editorial, but a duly
qualified condemnation that puts quite a different complexion on this
Perhaps you wanted to sharpen the point you were making,
but that did not entitle you to misquote the text to make it sound more
“antagonistic” than it actually is.
MOSHE AUMANN Jerusalem
– Had your editorial gone on to quote the rest of the sentence, it
would have been understandable: “Pour forth Your wrath on nations that
do not accept You.”
The “You” refers to the commandments
concerning conduct and morality that God laid down for the Jewish
people, and not for the nations around them that practiced idolatry;
worked their slaves, wives and animals mercilessly; had no conception of
society’s obligation to care for the needy; accepted adultery, theft
and dishonesty; gave false witness; and practiced usury and incest. The
list could go on and on.
In contrast, the Jews were enjoined to
be a holy nation, a light to other nations. All this should be explained
to the Seder participants, both Jewish and non-Jewish.
Pessah Seder stresses the right of every nation to be free, that man is
not something to be manipulated and tyrannized, and that he is created
in the image of God.
We are witnessing today the Muslim nations
of the Middle East attempting to throw off the yoke of slavery and
serfdom. Unfortunately, their Koran does not send the same message as
our Bible: “You shall respect your neighbor as yourself. Live and let
LEONARD GOODMAN Beit Shemesh Freedom for whom?
– David Newman (“Thoughts on academic freedom at Pessah,” Borderline
Views, April 18) believes that those who lecture their students to hate
and demonize Israel have every right to do so, but that donors who wish
to support and enrich this Zionist entity have no moral right to decide
what to do with their money.
Newman conveniently forgets Prof.
Neve Gordon, who never misses an opportunity to spit into the well he
drinks from. Has Gordon been silenced? But interestingly, he fails to
Yerucham Levitt, who in fact was fired by BGU for making his views known about homosexual parents.
From his column, one could easily conclude that freedom of speech is limited to those who agree with Newman.
MATTIAS ROTENBERG Petah Tikva They’re just rumors
– It was with great interest that I read “Europe’s Greek debt
conundrum” (Business & Finance, April 18), yet wish to inform you
that Greek Finance Minister George Papaconstantinou and Dominique
Strauss-Kahn, director-general of the International Monetary Fund, have
both dismissed rumors of a Greek debt restructuring.
KYRIAKOS LOUKAKIS Tel Aviv
writer is the Greek ambassador to Israel Keep ’em weary! Sir, –
Regarding “Israeli-US study reveals link between fatigue and unfavorable
court rulings” (April 17), let’s hear it for hungry, tired judges! Rest
assured that I and my fellow law-enforcement volunteers, as well as
professional law officers, would be happy if all judges were on the
brink of collapse from fatigue and starvation. Perhaps that way the
violent and larcenous segment of our population would spend more time
behind bars and not out on the streets murdering, raping, robbing,
extorting, dealing drugs and stealing.
I am convinced that the
sentences meted out for such crimes are far too lenient, so any way to
keep these felons in the slammer for the maximum time is worth a few
cases of low blood sugar.
TREVOR DAVIS Asseret Falsehoods and drivel...
– In his ineffectual effort to counter Rabbi Daniel Gordis’s remarkably
prescient column, Rabbi Scott Perlo (“Why young US rabbis lean to the
Left on Israel,” April 17) resorts to what can only be described as the
“big lie” technique: “My favorite book store in the genteel German
colony (sic) displays Meir Kahane’s writing as a featured purchase....”
and other drivel, such as, “Posters on the streets of Jerusalem
celebrate Baruch Goldstein as a hero.”
In order to verify Perlo’s
claims, I walked today through Jerusalem’s German Colony, in which or
near which I have lived for over 30 years, and confirmed what I already
knew: The neighborhood has exactly three book stores: Tamir, Steimatzki
(both of them large chains) and a “spiritual” book store called Olam
Katan, which features works on Carlebach, Kabbalah, Zen, Bhuddism,
Taoism and other forms of spirituality, as well as “world music” and
similar compact discs. Needless to add, Kahane’s writings are not only
not featured, but are unavailable. Also, there are no street posters
celebrating Baruch Goldstein.
What Perlo has done, of course, is
unmask himself and his many Diaspora colleagues who wrap themselves in a
blanket of “Zionism” and “peace” while spreading big lies and
demonizing the State of Israel and the Jewish people whom they may claim
to love, but work only to undermine in every way possible.
TODD WARNICK Jerusalem
Sir, – I find it regrettable that Scott Perlo fails to realize that being both a peacemaker and realistic is not contradictory.
Israelis don’t have the luxury of being able to talk idealistically due
to the current security situation, we don’t tend to see the realization
of peace as our most urgent short-term priority (although we do see it
as our long-term priority).
I also take offense at the way Israel’s religious communities are generalized as being anti-peace.
generalization disregards many attempts by members of these communities
to move toward peace and places them under the umbrella of extremists.
ORI POMSON Jerusalem ... and more
– Regarding Maureen Dowd’s op-ed on Bob Dylan (“Blowin’ in the idiot
wind,” Comment & Features, April 17 ), let me be the first kid on
the block (I’m 65) to say that Dylan is lying.
He can deny it,
sell out and jump through hoops if he wants, but millions of people know
he is lying if he says those songs he wrote and sang in the 1960s were
just a way to make it in the music business, and that he didn’t identify
with them or his audience.
Obviously, it’s just a shame that he’s come to this.
DAVID ROTENBERG Jerusalem