January 22, 2017: The search goes on

The search for the truth goes on, and I am convinced that eventually it will emerge.

January 21, 2017 21:03

Letters. (photo credit: REUTERS)


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The search goes on

With regard to the excellent “Our debt to Raoul Wallenberg” (Comment & Features, January 17), the general opinion is that Wallenberg was murdered or died of a heart attack in prison in 1947, as the Soviets claimed.

Yet over the years, there have been reports of sightings of Wallenberg in prisons, prison hospitals and psychiatric wards well into the 1980s.

In 1984, as chairman of the Jerusalem Wallenberg Rescue Committee, I personally took sworn testimony from Avraham Chanukayev, an elderly Soviet Jewish immigrant, to the effect that in 1972, while imprisoned for Zionist activity, he spent four days with an elderly Swede in a prison hospital in Krasnoyarsk.

The man was very sick and Avraham helped feed him.

The man told him his name was Wallenberg and that he was a Swedish diplomat who had saved many Jews in Budapest during the Holocaust.

I have heard of other sightings of Wallenberg as well.

The search for the truth goes on, and I am convinced that eventually it will emerge, perhaps in evidence from Soviet Jewish immigrants or new Soviet archival material, or even from President Vladimir Putin’s stated efforts to right Soviet wrongs.


Ominous echoes

The recent Paris conference (“World ministers in Paris endorse two-state solution,” January 16) has ominous echoes of the conference held in Munich in 1938.

At that time, British prime minister Neville Chamberlain commented that the Czechoslovak crisis was “a quarrel in a faraway country between people of whom we know nothing.”

His attitude to Jews was no less condescending, as he wrote regarding Kristallnacht: “No doubt the Jews aren’t a lovable people; I don’t care about them myself, but that is not sufficient to explain the pogrom.”

“Peace in our time,” as Chamberlain declared after Munich, is an unlikely outcome of the Paris conference. As the philosopher George Santayana put it, those who cannot remember the past are condemned to repeat it.

Salford, UK

That we should have to be concerned in this day and age over the growth of antisemitism and it’s anti-Zionist by-product is troubling indeed. Yet should we not be shouting mea culpa? It was Edmund Burke who stated, with some veracity, that the one thing necessary for the triumph of evil is for good men to do nothing. Indeed, that is just what Israel and world Jewry have been doing in the face of the artful, insidious and sophisticated propaganda campaign mounted by our enemies. The result is what we currently have to fight in international forums, sadly, with little chance to overturn the hostility or turn back the clock.

What has been achieved in the arena of public opinion by the enemies of Jews and Israel has been because we Jews did not strangle the weeds of misinformation, untruths and halftruths when they first began to sprout some 50 years ago. We just watched them grow into the monster they are today.


End the appeasement

On the front page of your January 15 issue, there is a photo of the pope and Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas smiling happily together.

What kind of world do we live in when we accept Israeli, American and other world leaders sharing light moments and laughter with enemy leaders who send brutal murderers to kill us and our families? Why do we accept this? In Israel, we allow these terrorists to have TVs, entertainment and college courses while their victims’ families mourn and grieve endlessly. Why are we so callous? We suffer these massive, violent outrages in great pain, and then support these barbarians with perks and comforts, and talk and smile with their leaders.

The time must come soon when we stop such appeasement.


Pain and hope

Regarding “4 soldiers killed in J’lem truck ramming attack” (January 9), our brilliant and beloved son and grandson, Erez Orbach, was murdered with three other innocent soldiers waiting to tour Jerusalem as part of their officers’ training program.

We would like to thank The Jerusalem Post for its in-depth, unbiased coverage of this tragic story. We would like to thank President Reuven Rivlin, Chief Rabbi David Lau, MK Avi Dichter, Deputy Foreign Minister Tzipi Hotovely, Deputy Defense Minister Eli Ben-Dahan, MK Rachel Azaria, Defense Minister Avigdor Liberman and the thousands of people from all over the country for honoring the memory of Erez with their presence and stories about his inspiration to all who knew and loved him. We would also like to express our thanks to Donald Blome, the US consul-general in Jerusalem, for his heartfelt condolence call.

We, our children and grandchildren are proud to be American- Israelis. We cherish the ideals of democracy and freedom.

We are definitely not “obstacles to peace,” but have longed for peace since the days of the Bible. Unfortunately, these ideals are not shared by many of our neighbors – the murderer of our dear Erez was exposed to virulent incitement to violence in a sermon by an imam the Friday before the ramming attack.

We sincerely hope that Erez’s determination to serve his country despite all odds, and his legacy of fortitude, determination and compassion for others, will serve as an eternal example of the spirit of the Israeli people and all those who treasure democracy and strive for a future of peace in this region and the world. May his life be an inspiration to all, and his memory for a blessing.


Alon Shvut
The writers are the mother and grandmother, respectively, of Erez Orbach.

Azaria trial

Why was anyone surprised at the kangaroo-court verdict for IDF Sgt. Elor Azaria (“Court convicts Azaria of manslaughter,” January 5)? From the moment the video of the shooting appeared and prior to any investigation, the defense minister and IDF chief of staff condemned him.

I would like to ask Chief of Staff Lt.-Gen. Gadi Eisenkot one question: You send your soldiers out on missions on cold, rainy nights and days. They get shot at and have heavy articles thrown at them. When was the last time you accompanied them to show them what they can and cannot do?


Jerusalem’s future

I recognize that Jerusalem is holy to Jews, Christians and Muslims, and I believe it should remain a united city, open to all.

Favoring two states for two peoples, I hope that the borders of the proposed Palestinian state will soon be determined in direct negotiations between Israeli and Palestinian leaders in consultation with all neighboring Arab nations, the UN and major western nations.

While peace is being negotiated, the United States could move the process forward by recognizing Jerusalem as the capital of the State of Israel and of the State of Palestine. It could build two embassies – one in west Jerusalem and one in east Jerusalem.

It is also my vision that Israel will continue to welcome Arabs who wish to reside in Israel and will grant them the right to choose to be Israeli or Palestinian citizens, and that Palestine will welcome Jews who wish to reside in Palestine and grant them the right to choose to be Palestinian or Israeli citizens.



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