June 3, 2019: March of hate

Readers of the Jerusalem Post have their say.

By
June 2, 2019 21:51
Letters

Letters. (photo credit: REUTERS)

March of hate

Regarding “1,000 Berliners march for al-Quds” (June 2), it is highly disturbing to learn that German Chancellor Angela Merkel’s administration decided not to stop the annual pro-Iranian regime al-Quds Day march, a distressing reminder that antisemitism is chillingly alive and well in today’s Germany, of all countries

With the added participation of Hezbollah members calling for the destruction of Israel, this exporting of hate against our nation and its right to exist must not be left unchallenged.

With antisemitism raising its ugly head higher in many parts of Europe, and especially in light of Germany’s dark history and current acquiescence on such matters, our government must voice its abhorrence of allowing support of terrorist entities to have such a hate-ridden outspoken voice.

Such marches whose anti-Israel rhetoric clearly morphs into antisemitism are a stain on any modern day democracy. The administrations that allow them must be outed and shamed.

STEPHEN VISHNICK
Tel Aviv


The central issue: nuclear Iran

In “2019 is becoming Israel’s ‘lost year’” (May 31), Yaakov Katz writes: “There was no talk about the issues that Israelis really care about – social equality, matters of religion and state, the lack of civil marriage, education, health and more.”

There was also no talk about the Iranian nuclear threat. Why do Israelis refuse to talk about the only topic the resolution of which is the precondition for all others to have meaning since matters of religion and state, the lack of civil marriage, education and health would be pointless in a rubble after an Iranian nuclear attack?

Are Israelis in collective denial? Netanyahu’s legal troubles or not, we all seem to forget what Albert Wohlstetter wrote in his 1958 paper “The Delicate Balance of Terror” – “A deterrent strategy is aimed at a rational enemy.”

MLADEN ANDRIJASEVIC
Beersheba


Right to bear the right arms

Once again, a weapon of mass destruction was used to claim the lives of 12 innocent victims (Disgruntled city worker kills 12 in Virginia Beach,” June 2). This time the weapon used was “a legally purchased .45 semiautomatic hand gun with an attached sound suppressor and extended magazines, enabling him to fire many rounds.” Which he did.

The National Rifle Association (NRA) and all of its Second Amendment advocates, including US President Donald Trump, know or should know, that the 2nd Amendment provision providing “the right to bear arms” does not mean the right to bear weapons of mass destruction.

LEONARD KAHN
Zichron Ya’acov


Political egos and election rerun

Regarding “Party leaders take off gloves as do-over race begins” (May 31), isn’t it time for the public to remind our leaders that they are supposed to serve the country, not their egos?

The general population should cry, “Enough!” If thousands can demonstrate against Netanyahu’s alleged corruption, why can’t millions show how disgusted they are with the state of politics and refuse to vote instead of being held hostage and forced into yet another general election?

How will subjecting the country to another election change anything?

Each party will have slightly more or fewer MKs, but the overall makeup will be roughly the same. Taxpayers will continue to feel like suckers while main parties form their coalition, demonstrating to the public that they rule, but actually the Orthodox parties again hold the balance of power.

Come on, give up your egos for once, forget your differences – they’re not that great – and try again to form a national unity coalition to allow the vast majority of the population to finally escape from years of black-hatted religious tyranny.

FRUMA KNIGHT
 Modi’in


Israel is going to new elections owing to stupidity and obstinacy of one man. Assuming that the results of the next elections are similar to what they are today, what will then happen? Surely the same thing. The haredi parties have many more seats than Liberman, so why should they back down? As long as Liberman retains his obstinacy and the same thing will happen again. What will have then been achieved. I always had a grudging admiration for Liberman, but it has now dissipated. He seemingly was offered many compromises that would have enabled him to completely or partly fulfill his promises, but he refused them all.

Voters should decide now whether they want someone who is so obstinate as Liberman in the government or someone more flexible. Politics is giving and taking; obstinacy sometimes does not work. It might be better to raise the threshold to perhaps 5% so parties with smallish followings do not get in and have the power to make or break governments. I do not know if parties who stand for elections have to provide a deposit but if not, it may be a good idea for all parties to put up a considerable sum of money that they will lose if they do not receive a certain number of votes. This may stop the ridiculous situation we had in the last election of some 40 parties standing for election. The number of wasted votes determined the impasse in which we find ourselves. I cannot see that a new election will be any more successful if the present situation is repeated.

CYRIL ATKINS
Beit Shemesh


Avigdor Liberman is not the villain, as so many politicians wish to make him out, but the hero. He has saved the country from being ruled and robbed by the haredi parties. It is time that some politicians did some introspection before opening their mouths.

LOUIS ZETLER
Yokne’am


It’s surprising that such a learned man as the admor of Gur doesn’t seem to be familiar with the fable of the fisherman who catches a magic fish. The fish fulfills wish after wish for the fisherman in return for its life, until the greedy fisherman goes too far and demands that the fish be his slave for life. Then all the benefits of the previous wishes disappear together with the magic fish.

The ultra-Orthodox parties were offered all the money they wanted and relief from any requirement to teach basic skills and enable young men to enter the workforce. They were all set to demand Shabbat czars in all ministries, costing millions in the service of preventing anything they consider to be a desecration of the Sabbath. But they held out for torpedoing the most lenient possible plan for military service and magic fish Netanyahu disappeared back into the sea.

NAOMI SANDLER
Jerusalem


Promulgating Palestinian propaganda

Gershon Baskin is an intelligent honest man, but like most fanatics, uses any argument, however preposterous, to further his cause. To write (“Money can’t buy you love – or your independence,” May 30) that there is equivalence between the Jews in 1948 and the Palestinians of 2019 in their desire to have a homeland is akin to someone, who after murdering his parents, asks for clemency because he is an orphan.

Mufti al-Husseini created the myth of the Jewish-Arab problem; the Palestinian Arabs then followed him and in 1948 started the war. They lost it, but they, and many in the West, including Baskin, can’t accept this fact. He and his ilk cruelly keep alive the Palestinians’ hope that Israel will disappear and they will get the keys to their abandoned homes.

I, too, feel for the Palestinians (although I think “stateless Arabs” is a better term). Most of them were lured to pre-state Israel from their own countries by the prospect of work on the new kibbutzim, deceived by their leaders into a foolhardy attempt to eliminate the Jews, offered food and lodging by UNWRA to register as refugees, and are now political pawns either as second class non-citizens in refugee camps in adjacent countries, or effectively the same in Gaza or Judea and Samaria under Hamas and PA corruption and repression.

Yes, we can feel for them – but that doesn’t mean we have to keep spouting their propaganda for them and promote a suicidal “two-state” solution.

BOB KNIGHT
Modi’in


This is where Baskin should have stated his imaginary Truman telegram scenario: Truman offering Ben-Gurion the following: 90% of the land the Ben-Gurion requested, Jerusalem as the capital of Israel, a serious discussion on refugees, financial aid, and international recognition and no war. Let’s imagine Ben-Gurion was offered this and rejected it three times.

This is what the Palestinians have been offered time and again and what they have turned down because it does support their maximalist demands. This conveys the honest scenario, not the one that Baskin conveniently uses to support his well-known theme that the Palestinians can do no wrong. Perhaps his myopic insight into these complex issues would be better served if he were to try to convince his pals, the Pals, how they need to behave in a moral society.

The Palestinians were intransigent in their position, prior to Trump, prior to Netanyahu. The Palestinians do value their national aspirations. But these would come at the expense of Israel. Their national aspirations are the following and anyone who does not believe this is at best naïve: They desire all of Israel, from the river to the sea; the death of all Jews living in Israel and the total destruction of any Jewish history in this country. They tell us this, unashamedly, time and again. There are some of us who just refuse to believe them and their declared positions and desires.

M. LEVENTHAL
Jerusalem


Buttigieg’s odd Jerusalem comment

The report that Democratic presidential candidate Pete Buttigieg from Indiana “took exception” to President Trump’s move to recognize Jerusalem as Israel’s capital (“Let’s start talking,” May 26) is quite surprising. After all, Trump’s decision was in accordance with an act of the US Congress, the Jerusalem Embassy Act of 1995, which was adopted by an overwhelming majority in both houses. The Statement of US Policy in that act contained the following points:

1) Jerusalem should remain an undivided city

2) Jerusalem should be recognized as the capital of Israel

3) The US Embassy should be transferred from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem.

Hence, Trump’s proclamation was designed, after many years, to bring the executive and legislative branches of government into co-ordination on the subject of Jerusalem.

Buttigieg’s comment seems designed to sow doubt about the wisdom and permanency of that move, which will hardly endear him to many voters.

SHLOMO SLONIM
Professor Emeritus of American History
The Hebrew University of Jerusalem


Where there’s smoking...

“22 Israelis die daily from smoking-related diseases” (May 29) highlights the fact that the addiction to the nicotine and pernicious additives in tobacco has a stronger effect on most smokers than their awareness that smoking causes disease and death. While the health warning on tobacco packaging may do some good, it seems to me that more is to be gained by efforts to deter people from starting to smoke.

If the resources of the behavioral and social sciences were recruited to support this objective, it should be possible to make progress in this direction.

The moral culpability of drug peddlers results from the effects addictive drugs have on addicts. What, therefore, can one say about those who manufacture tobacco products?

GERRY MYERS
Beit Zayit


Equality under the law

Sara Netanyahu got off easy with a slap on the wrist in her plea bargain with state prosecutors. (“Sara Netanyahu signs plea deal,” May 30). It requires her to repay only NIS 45,000 of the NIS 360,000 (approximately $100,000) that she fraudulently misappropriated from the state.

Where is the goddamn justice in this country? If any of us regular folk had “misappropriated” NIS 360,000 of state funds, we would be sitting in a prison cell and wearing our fresh, new orange jumpsuits.

The plea bargain is a joke that makes a mockery of Israel’s justice system. It tells us that Israel is no different from any other country. There is one set of laws for the rich, powerful and well-connected, and another set of laws for the rest of us peasants. It’s an absolute disgrace.

NAME WITHHELD

“State Refuses to prosecute PA’s Rajoub for incitement” (May 30) shows that everyone is not equal under the law.”

The article reports that IDF West Bank Chief Prosecutor Lt.-Col. Asim Hamid, Attorney-General Avichai Mandelblit and the IDF Military Advocate General Maj.-Gen. Sharon Afek have all come out with the opinion that arch terrorist Rajoub should not be indicted for incitement despite the fact that the state has admitted that Jibril Rajoub’s statements constitute incitement. Why ? Well, “wider considerations beyond the evidence were taken into account (i.e. “diplomatic factors”).

So Rajoub is not equal under the law, because the consequences of his indictment would have a negative effect on the diplomatic manipulations of our government. (prosecutor advocate Maurice Hirsch calls this “moral bankruptcy”)

Just compare these “consequences” to the consequences to our country, if Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu were to be indicted for his penchant for Champagne, cigars, and a desire to improve his image in the press. Not for taking money ! No. This is likely to be the first time someone is indicted for bribery where no money changed hands.

So there is an element of “proportionality” in everything, even in the criminal system. Not always should everyone be equal under the law.

LAURENCE BECKER
Jerusalem


There already is a two-state solution

Regarding “Jordanian King to Kushner: Pal. state only possible on pre-1967 lines” (May 30), the Jordanian king insists that a Palestinian state is the basis for peace. Oh, really?

There already is an Arab Palestinian state. It is called Jordan. Jordanians are by a wide majority of Arab-Palestinian descent. Jordan was culled from Mandatory Palestine by the nefarious British by insertion of Section 25 in the British Mandate.

Jordan is in Palestine, ruled by Hashemites from the Hejaz. The Hashemites tried to throttle Arab-Palestinian nationalistic
aspirations in Jordan in the 1970s and continue to do so. Much Arab-Palestinian blood was spilled by the Hashemites, who consider Arab Palestinians as dangerous to Hashemite rule as termites to a wooden house.

LEVI J ATTIAS
Gibraltar


Correction

A phrase in the article “Europe’s spas celebrate innovation...” (June 2) should have read “Nazi death camps” and not as printed.


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