Pillar in retrospect

Sir, – It is of no consequence that the entire Gaza Strip was given to the Gazans on a silver platter for them to begin building a peaceful country. It is of no consequence that they themselves rejected this, and for seven years took to firing over 10,000 missiles at purely civilian targets in a reign of terror. It is also of no consequence that more recently they broke the cease fire that had been in place by firing additional rockets with the aim of murdering innocent civilians.

Israel and the world may feel sorrow for the forced death of innocents by their terror masters.

But that is the government they chose. In no way should Israel or the world feel any guilt; it lies with Hamas and its Iranian handlers.

DAVID WAPNER
Beit Shemesh

Sir, – How could Egypt possibly be an objective mediator when it facilities the supply of rockets to Hamas, indulges in non-stop, virulent anti-Israel rhetoric, completely ignores missiles fired from Gaza into Israel and refuses to mention the name of our state?

RAYMOND CANNON
Netanya

Sir, – Regarding “In new book, brother of Toulouse killer says family’s anti-Semitism was reason for attacks” (November 12), this courageous mea culpa constitutes the ultimate measure for decoding the intentions of the Islamists in Cairo – a cabal afflicted with cultural anti-Semitism and Jew-hatred, and foisting an unsustainable cease-fire upon Israel.

Israel is the victim of indiscriminate assaults on its civilian population by an appendage of Egypt’s Muslim Brotherhood, ipso facto making this member of the United Nations an accessory to crimes against humanity as well as a violator of the UN Charter.

KARL HUTTENBAUER
Berlin

Sir, – Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu has only bought time. Surely, the cease-fire with Hamas will bring upon us in the near future a repeat performance of hostile actions from the barbaric entity occupying the Jewish land in Gaza. Only next time, woe unto us! The conflict will be far worse and harder to bear.

AVIGDOR BEN-DOV
Jerusalem

Sir, – If our government could not deliver a final and decisive blow to our sworn enemy and be responsible for its total and crushing defeat, our upcoming elections may well see the government itself receive a total and crushing defeat.

DAVID S. ADDLEMAN
Mevaseret Zion

Sir, – If we gave knighthoods in our country, Mark Regev, the prime ministerial spokesman, would be at the top of my list.

His unstinting efforts at hasbara (public diplomacy) over the eight days of fighting were unparalleled.

Praise, too, for all the superb native English speakers who graced the screens and airwaves of the international television and radio media.

HELEN ANISFELD
Tel Aviv

Look who’s writing

Sir, – Without wishing to express approval or disapproval of the sentiments expressed by Gilad Sharon (“A decisive conclusion is necessary,” Comment & Features, November 19), I wish to express my extreme resentment at the Post for publishing letters from people living 10,000 light years away from the nearest rockets, yet who preach morals to us regarding Sharon’s comments (“Wrong to publish,” Letters, November 21) and other aspects of the recent fighting (“Readers from abroad weigh in on Pillar of Defense,” Letters, November 20).

The silence of these letter writers when over a thousand rockets landed in Israel over the past year was deafening.

Before preaching to us they should spend a year living in Sderot or another town southern Israel. They could run into their safe rooms in the 15 seconds they have after a Red Alert, where they could practice huddling with their children and perhaps with their invalid mothers. The Red Alert might come in the middle of the night, or during the day, perhaps when they are in the shower or bathroom. The rockets don’t wait.

When they send their children to school in the morning, they wouldn’t know if they’ll come home on their bicycles or on a stretcher. Perhaps they would never even see them alive again.

DAVID STEINHART
Petah Tikva

Doors remained open Sir, – In “Israel’s hospitals continue to treat patients from Gaza” (November 19), The Jerusalem Post published an important article providing a brief look at the daily contact that continued between Israelis and Palestinians despite the hostilities.

It is to Israel’s credit that we continue to provide medical services to the population of the Gaza Strip and the West Bank. It is one of the traditions that has always been a foundation in our religion, and due to this practice the citizens of Gaza are granted access to these services.

At a suitable time, it would be an excellent idea to provide an expanded survey of medical services that Israel provides to its neighbors, and indeed to the world. Perhaps you could include the humanitarian project Save a Child’s Heart at the Wolfson Medical Center, which has been carrying on routine weekly cardiac clinics and cardiac surgery since 1996, providing these services to the people of Gaza and the West Bank, as well as to other children who are here for treatment.

SALLY ESAKOV
Herzliya
The writer is a board member of Save a Child’s Heart

Go tell them

Sir, – Gershon Baskin (“Are you worthy of my vote?,” Encountering Peace, November 20), wonders who will lead our country. I do not yet know who is worthy of my vote, but my overriding fear is that whoever is in power here, there will be no one to talk with on the Palestinian side.

Baskin has to be realistic about the fearless leader of the Palestinian Authority, who states for world consumption one thing and for Palestinians something entirely different; who celebrates the martyrdom of terrorists who murdered innocent women and children; whose schools teach little children blatant lies; and whose own doctorate was one whopper of a lie that denied the Holocaust.

Peace is a good thing. But Baskin’s efforts as a peacemaker should be concentrated on the other side.

NAOMI FEINSTEIN
Nordiya

Sign the petition

Sir, – I would like to encourage the US citizens among your readers to visit http://wh.gov/X0w0 (the section of the White House website called “We the People,” which was set up for the sake of citizen petitions) and sign the petition in favor of freeing Jonathan Pollard. The White House promises a considered response to any petition that quickly enough reaches 50,000 signatures.

The petition says: “Jonathan Pollard remains a victim of cruel and unusual punishment for passing intelligence information to Israel – information he (and many others) believed was being withheld in violation of a signed agreement between the countries.

He has already served far longer than many who spied for enemies. At one time it was believed that, as an amateur, he inadvertently let information slip out to the USSR. Years ago, that information turned out to have been supplied by other spies. There are other rumors of further aspects to Pollard’s guilt, but because the USA preferred to tempt Pollard with a plea bargain (which it found a pretext to break) for him and his ailing wife, there was never a proper trial to determine the facts. He should not be punished for what he was never even accused of.”

MARK L. LEVINSON
Herzliya

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