After the UN
Sir, – Most people in Israel, after the vote in the United Nations
General Assembly (“‘Palestine’ wins historic upgrade at UN,” November 30), are
wringing their hands and saying that “it is a terrible situation, but what can
we do?” We can do many things. The choice is ours.
We can tell our prime
minister that we have had enough groveling to the United Nations, which really
is dominated by the Arab world. We can tell the Palestinian Authority that we
have had enough of its tantrums and refusals to accept the right of Jews to live
anywhere, any place at any time.
Our trouble is that since the Oslo
Accords we have been weak and meek. We could not have done worse than to adopt
such a strategy. Let us now do what we must to build up Israel from
We will never be liked, but we will at least be
Sir, – Recent statements made by
some Israeli leaders, that the UN vote “won’t change anything substantive on the
ground,” may be true. But they miss the point.
People who do not fully
appreciate that Israel has very little support in the UN, Europe or many other
places may wake up one day and be surprised to find the UN attempting to force
this virtual state called Palestine on Israel, regardless of any promises the
Arabs made to negotiate.
What the Palestinians did by going to the UN
violated the terms of the Oslo agreements, and no one seems to be talking about
this, especially UN members.
This is an issue that can only get
Before the UN begins threatening us, we need to complete our own
country. We will catch hell either way. It is better to make a decision that is
in our own best interests rather than be forced to respond.MIKA’EL BEN
Sir, – The international community, led by the US and EU, is
constantly urging Israel and the Palestinian Authority to return to the
negotiating table. It would be well advised to invest its boundless energies in
persuading the PA and Hamas themselves to first return to the negotiating table
to settle their own differences.
It would seem that our next government
should invest all its efforts in solving our pressing economic problems first,
leaving the PA and Hamas agenda to those in the international community who are
sincerely searching for a Palestinian-Israeli settlement.
It is difficult
to understand why this eludes those who keep pressing Israel to take the
Sir, – The prime cause of the
ever-rising anti-Israel and anti- Jewish upsurge around the world is the Israeli
government – it has not told the world that on April 25, 1920, at San Remo in
Italy, an international agreement was signed that created Syria, Mesopotamia
(now Iraq) and Palestine.
Palestine, the agreement clearly said, was
created for no other reason than to be the national homeland of the Jewish
The borders were very roughly the same as biblical Israel,
covering both the western and eastern banks of the Jordan River.
the Jewish nation that was cheated out of its lands, first by the British, and
later by the UN.
For heaven’s sake, let the world know it is Israel that
has been cheated, not the Arabs.DAVID LEE
Sir, – David Ben-Gurion
may not have had a choice when he decided to accept the UN partition of
Palestine, as at the time the yishuv had a small population and almost no means
of self-defense. What’s the excuse today? ANNABELLE HOROWITZ
All that happened last week at the UN is that Mahmoud Abbas bought himself an
“upgrade” using frequent terror points.ZALMI UNSDORFER
Shlomo Slonim (“Accomplices in a campaign to annihilate a UN member,” Comments
& Features, November 29) is right in that it is so clearly unjust to call
for a Palestinian state at the UN when Gaza is run by Hamas terrorists, and the
West Bank is run by Mahmoud Abbas, whose institutions openly glorify terrorists.
The borders of this “state” are not even demarcated.
It’s about time the
head of an Israeli government, when talking to the media, made simple reference
to our Father in Heaven, who is always protecting Israel against all odds.
Perhaps God is waiting for us to acknowledge His role and not imply we think all
is from our own hands.BEN KLEIN
New York Missing the point
Sir, – Gil
Hoffman, in “Myths and facts about a dizzying week in Israeli politics”
(Frontlines, November 30), seems to miss the point in his analysis of apparent
implications of the outcome of the Likud Party primaries and the fact that
Bennie Begin, Dan Meridor and Michael Eitan are in unrealistic
It’s not that the party has moved to the right vis a vis the issue
of the conflict with the Palestinians. It’s that the three “ousted” individuals
all believe in democracy (including respecting the minority), the rule of law,
implementing decisions of the Supreme Court, etc., while many of those who were
voted into more realistic positions do not.
That is the “move to the
right” that the Likud Party has made, and it is an exceptionally dangerous one,
in my opinion.LINDA EPSTEIN
Jerusalem Take the plunge
Sir, – Regarding
“Energy expert: Fuel choice necessary for robust car market, but electricity not
the answer now” (November 29), I strongly disagree with Dr. Gal Luft’s
assessment about electric cars.
I believe Luft is looking at it from a
theoretical rather than reality-based viewpoint. If he actually owned a Better
Place car he would know that electric cars right now are most certainly not a
“utopian” dream, but completely doable and practical in the
We purchased our Better Place 100 percent electric car over
the summer. We are very pleased with our choice to do so and with everything
about the car.
Better Place’s customer service is the best I’ve seen in
any market here in Israel (I have lived here 17 years), with 24/7 phone
availability and constant assistance, battery-changing stations popping up
everywhere, and our own charging station right at home.
Admittedly, we do
have to plan our travels more carefully.
But this is an easily
surmountable inconvenience and I have no doubt the company is working toward
technology that will allow larger-capacity batteries.
As far as the
price, thanks to reduced taxes the purchase price of a Better Place electric car
is about the same as any comparable new car. And loans are available through a
special arrangement with Bank Igud on terms that are better than loans for
anything else anywhere. The monthly fees for charging and changing batteries are
slightly less than we spent on gasoline.
We did not expect to save huge
sums, but we are definitely spending less.
I also strongly differ with
Luft’s lack of confidence in Israel’s ability to lead the way in this
He lives in the US, where thus far they haven’t been able to work
out all the details of electric cars. But here in Israel we have the unique
opportunity to work out all the kinks in an geographical area that is small
enough to drive through in a day. We can – and will – be a light unto the
nations in the field of electric cars, as in so many other areas.
highly recommend to anyone and everyone to take the plunge and make your next
car 100% electric. There is no reason whatsoever to allow Luft’s pessimism to
become a self-fulfilling prophesy.DEBORAH BUCKMAN
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