Wrong to say it
Sir, – I was shocked and appalled reading in your newspaper the
statement that the Utøya youth camp was a “a pro-terrorist program” (“The Oslo
Syndrome,” The Region, August 1).
I do not understand why any
self-respecting newspaper would run such a statement when even the most cursory
fact-checking reveals this to be simply untrue.
The AUF (Labor Party
Youth) has never condoned violence against civilians, or terror. To write that
they have is a pure fabrication.
The Labor Party Youth oppose Israeli
policies toward the Palestinians, but I should hardly need to tell you that this
does not in any way constitute support for terror.
While Barry Rubin
takes care to say that the dead youth didn’t “have it coming,” I have trouble
seeing his distorting article as anything but an argument for just
this.MARTIN GRÜNER LARSEN
Sir, – Equating support for Palestinian
statehood with being proterrorist is a jump in logic that I would expect from a
tabloid, not The Jerusalem Post. But your periodical sadly chose to print Barry
Rubin’s “The Oslo Syndrome,” a twisted piece of logic.
that many Europeans applaud terrorism against anyone, Israeli or otherwise, is a
sad reflection of a state of dialogue lacking in adult seriousness. I expect
Sir, – Shame on your newspaper for
blaming the young victims in Norway for having been supporters of terror with
regard to the conflict between Palestine and Israel.
I cannot understand
the way Israel treats countries like Norway and Denmark when we talk about
rights also for the people of Palestine. You suffered a lot during the Second
World War as Jews, but that gives you no right to behave like you do
Sir, – Barry Rubin has coined Oslo Syndrome
as political sympathy for terrorism resulting in a boomerang effect. There is
also a religious basis at play. It is located at the intersection of Christian
anti-Semitism and Islamic supremacism.
Islamic law is clear that non-
Muslims who do not agree to convert to Islam and who also refuse to live under
Islamic rule as dhimmis are to be killed – hence the glorification of those who
murder Israeli civilians.
Norway is an overwhelmingly Lutheran country, a
religious tradition inspired by the virulent judeophobe Martin Luther. That
hatred, sublimated in modern times into politically correct channels, has
resulted in sympathy for those who kill Jews.DAVID KATCOFF Jericho, Vermont All the wrong reasons
Sir, – Benjamin Yazersky (“The housing protesters
are looking for answers in all the wrong places,” Comment & Features, August
1) is himself seeking answers in all the wrong places.
It is only natural
for olim from the US to believe that free-market forces will solve the housing
problem – never mind that in the past decade the “free” US market failed
abysmally. Nor is our problem socialism or communism – it is the bureaucratic
vestiges that remain of these ideologies.
Much of what Yazersky said is
valid, but he underestimates the power of the country’s developers, the banks
that bend over backward to finance them, and the municipalities that go out of
their way to attract them, offering many incentives primarily because of the
taxes that will come. This situation naturally invites corruption.
the laws, regulations and procedures are outdated and moribund, but the various
national, district and local building committees, with all their faults, are our
only bastion against developers who, if allowed to run wild, will shortly cover
every bit of remaining green space in our country with concrete.JERRY
Tel Aviv A few points
Sir, – Ann Wright and Hagit Borer (“What do
‘Flotilla Folk’ do and why?,” Comment & Features, August 1) have to get
their facts straight.
1. They claim that over 1,000 Palestinian civilians
were killed in Operation Cast Lead. However even Hamas’s claim is lower – that
600-700 gunmen and police officers were killed out of a total of
2. They call Gaza an “open-air prison.” I would call into question
their definition of a prison, for in how many prisons are there shopping malls,
movie theaters, beaches and universities? They are also mistaken about the
conditions of Palestinian prisoners in Israeli jails – or should I say hotels.
That is in stark contrast to our IDF soldier Gilad Schalit, who has not been
seen or heard from in the past two years, a flagrant breach of human rights and
3. They claim that Israel is occupying Yesha (also
known as the West Bank). However, thanks to Deputy Foreign Minister Danny Ayalon
and his film, the whole world should know now that the land is not “occupied”
4. They claim that Israel “has refused to enter
meaningful negotiations with the Palestinians.”
Was it Israel that
refused peace time after time? No. Do the Palestinians even want to negotiate?
No – they hide from negotiations under the pretext of preconditions that are
tantamount to total surrender for Israel.
Finally, a little food for
thought: Why didn’t the Arabs accept the 1947 UN partition plan or the pre-1967
borders, including east Jerusalem? If that was what they really wanted, we would
definitely be living side-by-side, harmoniously and in peace.MOSHE
Nof Ayalon Good riddance
Sir, – The Ethiopian Jewish community will
shed few tears over the resignation of Haim Shani as director-general of the
Finance Ministry (“Treasury chief Shani resigns over ‘difference of opinion’
with Steinitz,” Business & Finance, August 1).
benighted leadership, the Treasury refused to grant the mortgages necessary for
more veteran olim to leave absorption centers to make way for brand-new
immigrants. Consequently, it is currently estimated that by December there will
be no room at absorption centers for people currently awaiting aliya – under
appalling conditions – in Ethiopia.
In a bizarre response to the
suffering, an interministerial committee headed by Shani decided to increase the
period of time these people will remain in Ethiopia to a maximum of four years
from the current three, and to reduce the government-mandated rate of aliya from
six per day (not a typo) to approximately three.
This is simply cruel.
The agonizing wait of 6,000 people, many of them children, is being needlessly
prolonged. Many have been awaiting the chance to rejoin their families in Israel
for over 10 years.
Israel’s financial capacity today is far greater than
it was in the 1950s, when there was a huge influx of Jews from Arab and North
African countries. What has been reduced – greatly reduced – is the country’s
commitment to Zionist ideals.
The government should reject the
interministerial committee’s recommendations. All of the remaining Ethiopians
wishing to go to Israel should be brought within one year, not three or
Aliya should remain the first priority of the State of Israel in
deed, not only in rhetoric. With Shani’s departure, this goal could be more
readily attained. But as he would not have held a stance so hostile to aliya
without the consent, express or implicit, of his boss, Finance Minister Yuval
Steinitz, this is not likely.JOSEPH FEIT
The writer is a human
rights lawyer and a former president of the North American Conference on