America’s angry reaction (“US slams government intentions to build 98 new homes in Shiloh,” October 6) was predictable.
Whether these homes would be legal or not is beside the point.
My point is whether they are worth antagonizing the Americans.
HYAM CORNEY Netanya
The White House says friends don’t build homes without US permission. I say friends don’t erase Israel from our eternal capital, Jerusalem!
LEAH S. WOLF Meitar
The State Department should berate its employees for not reading the news. The plan to build in Shiloh was announced many months ago, and it is ridiculous for the US to wake up its propaganda machine so many months later.
The State Department should be ashamed of itself for focusing now on building projects in Shiloh.
It should be concentrating on rescuing one of the most wonderful cities in the world, Aleppo
TOBY WILLIG JerusalemMore on Peres
I wish to thank Orit Arfa for her frank “Peres, the idol of peace” (Comment & Features, October 6).
Shimon Peres made the murder of Jews respectable for terrorists and the world. He championed their cause, and we became the sacrificial lambs for peace to this day.
FREYA BINENFELD Petah Tikva
Why, oh why, did you have to reprint that sleazy New York Times op-ed piece by Tom Segev (“Shimon Peres: A man of peace?” Comment & Features, October 5)? Do you have a contract with the Times that requires you to print everything it runs? After the beautiful funeral and the sharing of heartfelt tributes to Peres, it felt almost like someone dumping garbage on his fresh grave.
I spoke to friends and family in the States last week after this piece appeared in the Times. They were disgusted even though they are regular readers of the Times, and liberal Democrats in their politics. I told them that Segev spoke only for himself, that he doesn’t represent most of the Israeli people, and that I thought the Times deliberately picked him and his piece to reflect its own anti-Israel bias.
Must you keep forcing these pieces on your readers?
JAN GAINES Netanya
I disagree with the headline “Conflicting messages from funeral” (Analysis, October 2).
There were no conflicting messages at the burial of Shimon Peres.
Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas, the single foreign Arab leader in attendance, came because it would have been diplomatic suicide to do anything else. With much hesitation, he bit his tongue and attended. For years, he has been asked to meet with Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu to sit and discuss an agreement. But he doesn’t.
So when a dove who gave full concessions to the Palestinians dies, non-attendance remains detrimental to Abbas in the eyes of the world. Though dead, Peres could expose Abbas’s lies.
YEHOSHUA PINTO Tel Mond
We were appalled by reader Roy Runds’s letter (“Peres’s passing,” September 30), in particular his statement: “Peres’s blind fanaticism in seeking peace with the Arab and Muslim world was largely responsible for the 1993 Oslo Accords, which, under the prime ministership of Yitzhak Rabin, almost plunged Israel into civil war – something prevented only by Rabin’s assassination.”
Mr. Runds is entitled to his opinion, however distasteful it may be, about the achievements of two of Israel’s greatest leaders.
But to suggest that the assassination of Yitzhak Rabin may have been good in that it prevented Israel from being plunged into civil war is shocking and deplorable.
Mr. Runds may do well to consider the cause of some of the major civil wars that have occurred in history – the French Revolution, the American Civil War, the Russian Revolution and the ongoing civil war in Syria. It was not a peaceful call by “leftists” (to use Mr Runds’s terminology) for democracy, civil rights and morality that caused these civil wars, but the forceful reaction by entrenched regimes or factions that considered those “leftist” ideals to be a threat to their undemocratic and immoral ideologies.
History has shown that democracy and morality always win out in the end, and hopefully this will prove true in the case of Syria. But Heaven forbid that Israel has to undergo a civil war for those noble principles to win out here.
NESTA LESSEM Kfar Saba MICHAEL TUCKER Netanya
Shimon Peres did good and bad. Enough said already.
ESTER ZEITLIN Jerusalem No wits at all
Seth J. Frantzman’s “How Russia outwitted America in Syria” (Terra Incognita, October 5) was right on target. However, the headline is way off base: It assumes either that US foreign policy employs wits or it is not intended to support Shi’itebased terrorism.
Neither fact has been in evidence since President Barack Obama took office.
CHAIM ABRAMOWITZ Jerusalem Flags down under
It is misleading to say that “Australia is one of the few countries that has three national flags,” as was stated in your October 5 Grapevine feature.
The national flag of Australia is a defaced Blue Ensign: a blue field with the Union Flag in the upper hoist quarter, and a large white seven-pointed star known as the Commonwealth Star in the lower hoist quarter.
The fly contains a representation of the Southern Cross constellation made up of five white stars – one small, five-pointed star, and four larger, seven- pointed stars.
There are five other flags designated as flags or ensigns of Australia, including the Aboriginal flag and the Torres Strait Islander flag, but these are not regarded as national flags; most Australians would regard them as sectoral flags only.
MERVYN DOOBOV Jerusalem The writer made aliya from Australia and was a senior policy adviser to the government in Canberra.Power of the press
On September 16, you boldly printed two items that showed you believe in freedom of the press. The items I refer to are the article “MKs call for greater religious pluralism following ‘Post’ poll” and the editorial “Jewish unity.”
Thank you for realizing that we need a change. One stream of Judaism should not run this country.
Not only did you take a stand, you took a poll to see what the people wanted.
The percentages show that our people are ready for change. Getting things in print is a tremendous way to encourage change; there is power in the press. Now it is my hope that what you have done will be printed in the Hebrew press.
This country needs all the Jews who want to come home to be accepted for who they were born to be. God bless you in your endeavors to do what is right.
TERRI MOREY Poriya Illit Debt to Pollard
On a recent trip to New York, I had the privilege to meet with Jonathan Pollard. Despite his continued incarceration (released from prison on parole but subject to harsh terms limiting where he can go and what he can do and say), I found him to be a wise, reflective and humble man who generates a great warmth to others and has an obvious love for our country.
We were not permitted to discuss his situation or even have a photo taken with him, but I will not forget the honor of spending some time with him. The Israeli government should not forget the debt it owes him and must continue its efforts to secure his full release.
MOTTI BEN YITZHACK Ashkelon
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