I had hoped beyond hope that health correspondent Judy Siegel’s article on the fiasco at Hadassah’s pediatric hemato-oncology department (“Jerusalem parents look to High Court of Justice to ‘save’ their sick children,” June 12) would help me understand, once and for all, the “real” reason(s) behind this nightmarish blight on medicine in Jerusalem.
Alas – through no fault of the journalist, nor of the umpteen other reports and articles I’ve read, and interviews I’ve heard on the radio and seen on television – the only conclusion I can come to is that at this sorrowful point, the reasons are no longer relevant because all the parties involved are right, and all the parties are wrong.
My own personal plea is – as a “frequent-user” of Hadassah, as a volunteer at the hospital for the last 14 years, as a mother who gave birth to three of her four children at Hadassah, as a grandmother who had four of her 10 grandchildren born there (ken yirbu), as the mother of a third-year resident in internal medicine there, as a very active member of Hadassah-Israel, as the great-aunt of one of the children who was treated at the department for eight years and is now a patient at Schneider, and as a 46-year resident of Jerusalem... my plea to Health Minister Ya’acov Litzman, to the hospital’s Director-General Prof. Zeev Rotstein, to the doctors, and to Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, whose silence on the matter is deafening: grow up!
Leave your egos aside, leave your petty, as well as your large-scale, grievances aside, and leave the politics aside.
I am well aware that the public has surely not been privy to the behind-the-scenes goings-on, but whatever they are, have been, and, heaven forbid, might be in the future, the results are nothing short of horrendous. Fight it out after a reasonable solution has been found.
The children’s lives are at stake, the future of Jerusalem as a city with unparalleled medical treatment for all segments of the population and people of all ages is at stake, and the once-hallowed reputation of Hadassah is at stake – if not besmirched beyond repair.
Regarding the lessons the Israeli Left can learn in Reality Check columnist Jeff Barak’s June 12 piece “The Corbyn playbook,” there is really no reason for anyone to be surprised at Labour’s performance in last week’s elections. But the Left needs a lot more help than that.
Yes, as Barak mentions, Teresa May was practically a “lame duck,” and on top of that nothing went her way during the whole campaign. She was an easy target for opposition leader Jeremy Corbyn.
But the Israeli Left has proven to be incompetent in recent decades and “waging a campaign over the high cost of housing, the unreasonable government subsidy of the ultra-Orthodox lifestyle and this government’s attempts to muzzle the High Court” won’t help them at all, even with that being the Left’s supposed “strength.”
Their only real hope is for the Right to produce a weak candidate, just as May became.MARK BRAND
Herzliya Not impossible
Regarding June 12’s report “University heads condemn proposals to muzzle profs’ political comments,” I must disagree with the following statement that Ram Shefa, chairman of the National Union of Israeli Students, said: “It is impossible to separate politics from other fields of life.”
This is patently untrue.
Many of us have close friends with whom we spend vast amounts of time, discussing many topics but never politics. We agreed to disagree about politics and share all fields of life with no interference from this inflammatory subject.
When I was in university, the professors did not offer political views, not even in political science classes.
It is grossly unfair to have students intimidated and silenced by professors’ differing views.
Far better for the professor to hold his tongue and permit his or her students to express their views, however different they may be, and to learn to form their own opinions.
Perhaps all the professors could even insist that only one person speak at any one time – and actually listen to each another, rather than trying to drown someone out by shouting louder.
This is one of the most valuable things our young people can learn, unfortunately not transmitted at home or in previous schooling.
In response to the report about the ultra-Orthodox trying to change Israel’s conversion law, “Shas pushing explosive bill denying citizenship for Reform converts,” May 12, and most recently mentioned in the June 14 report “Rabbi accuses government of turning immigration into political game,” I find the idea of changing the conversion law very troubling.
I happen to be a Jew by choice who would love to travel to Israel one day and see the land of my people.
To have your conversion looked down on and not being “Jewish” enough is so hurtful, as many of us have had to go through so much to join our people and hearing such hurtful things from other Jews is even more painful.
Yes, I understand that some convert for ulterior motives and only want to come to Israel for their own agenda but Israel was founded as a safe haven for our people if ever there was danger and Jews needed a place to go.
There should be other ways to check a person out who is making aliya to make sure they are not doing so for superficial reasons.
It doesn’t matter if you are Reform, Conservative, Orthodox, Haredi, Renewal, Reconstructionist, or Humanistic – we are all Jews and we need to unite as one.
Downingtown, Pennsylvania Look back
Regarding the article “Chief Rabbinate opposes legislation to regulate circumcision,” June 13, the proposed regulation to license all mohels appears to be a solution to a non-problem.
The report states that only one to two of the 65,000 circumcisions performed each year result in critical medical cases.
However, it does not state if these cases were from unlicensed mohels’ work, pre-existing medical conditions or licensed mohels’ work.
I would think that the Knesset has more pressing problems to deal with than a non-problem such as this.
Place the “problem” of unlicensed mohels in its proper historical perspective; unlicensed mohels were performing circumcisions for 4,000 years without significant resulting medical complications.DAVID FEIGENBAUM
The writer is a doctor.
In the report “Hamas warns of ‘explosion’ as Israel cuts Gaza electricity,” June 13, by settlements correspondent Tovah Lazaroff, we read in the lead paragraph that “Hamas warned of an “explosion” in the Gaza Strip after Israel’s security cabinet decided on Sunday to cut the amount of electricity the country provides to Gaza by 40%.”
We also read a few paragraphs later that “Maj.-Gen Yoav Mordechai unsuccessfully turned to the international community, both organizations and governments, in an effort to raise funds for covering the Gaza energy bill.”
How about some new, original, outside-the-box thinking, according to which nobody lifts a hand to help Hamas, there is no further hand-wringing about the “suffering of the people of Gaza” and everyone joins in to tell Hamas that if they really are interested in the well-being of the Gazans, they will give up the fight and finally accept the existence of Israel as a fact? Of course, I’m not holding my breath.