Act of pure evil
With regard to “Cabinet approves ‘aggressive steps’ in wake of attacks” (July 4), there is far too large a misanthropic, pathological element within Palestinian society. This is a society responsible for cultivating a 17-year-old boy who breaks into a Jewish home a stabs multiple times a 13-year-old girl sleeping in her bed.
We denounce the Palestinians – and they are many – who salute this murderer and anoint him a hero and martyr. We denounce Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas and other Palestinian leaders whose ongoing incitement encourages heinous deeds such as this. Anyone, including Israelis, who attempts to twist this act of pure evil and point the finger at the State of Israel, its government or the “settlers” acquiesces to the murder of Jews.
We remember the Fogels. We remember the Henkins. We remember all the innocent victims of cold-blooded, purposeful Palestinian terror.ARDIE GELDMAN Efrat
Regarding “Was Elie Wiesel happy?” (July 4), all the praise lavished upon him makes me think that his voice should not be silenced with his death.
There is so much to say about this man. His descriptions of the Holocaust will be remembered in history, but, most important, what he had to say should be part of living humanity. He also taught for many years at the 92nd Street Y in New York City, where his special approach to the Bible helped so many in the audience know more about faith.
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We must never forget him or allow his voice to go unheard.
I would like to suggest that an organization like Yad Vashem set in motion a course of study to allow people to understand pain and hope, evil and God, horror and Israel. Let us begin with Yad Vashem, and let us begin with ourselves.THELMA SUSSWEIN Jerusalem German chutzpah
In reference to “German MPs: NGO bill ‘endangers Israeli democracy’” (July 4), Volker Beck, together with other German legislators, has the chutzpah to criticize the necessary Israeli legislation aimed at uncovering the unfriendly sources from which certain sick Israeli NGOs receive large amounts of money to continue their anti-Israel/ pro-Palestinian activities.
Shamefully, it seems that Germans are among those who are only too eager to be those funders, a fact that should be a point of embarrassment to today’s Germans as a whole, seeing that Germany is the country that cold-bloodedly murdered 6 million Jews, including hundreds of my mother’s and father’s families in Austria, Czechoslovakia, Yugoslavia and Hungary.
TRUDY GEFEN Kiryat Ono Far-seeing pol
Zionist Union MK Amir Peretz comforts us with the idea that 10 years of quiet mean the war he conducted in Lebanon in 2006 was a success (“Peretz takes credit for decade of quiet since war,” July 1). He goes on to assure us that it matters not about Hezbollah’s 120,000 rockets. They are only of concern, he asserts, if they are launched.
Might this bromide be also applied to Iran? It does not matter if the Iranians have a nuclear bomb if they do not use it.
Words of wisdom from a far-seeing politician.
SIDNEY HANDEL Tel Aviv South African light
With regard to “Orthodox groups file petition to stop egalitarian section at Western Wall” (July 1), there is a wonderful Reform congregation in Cape Town, South Africa, the country that produced Nelson Mandela, the great peace maker. This congregation is led by Rabbi Greg Alexander, who qualified at the Leo Baeck College in London and has now started to practice reaching out to the Muslims of South Africa – Muslims who used to be really close to the Jewish community before suffering from the current contagion of worldwide racism and bigotry.
Rabbi Alexander is walking in the footsteps of Nelson Mandela.
He has Muslims, Christians and Jews coming together to pray and communicate in his Temple Israel. South Africa avoided a bloodbath in 1994, and the healthy seeds of reconciliation survive. It is a Reform rabbi who is leading this wonderful process.
Here in the so called Holy Land, Jews can’t co-exist with Jews, let alone reach out to Muslims and Christians.
The Reform movement is a holy movement that promotes unity in the best sense. It will survive because it is relevant, creative and Godly. The narrow mindset of some Orthodox groups will never survive because there is a groundswell of sanity among the Jews of the world.
Judaism survives because it is fundamentally sane, creative and goodhearted. In South Africa, it is a light unto the nations, led by Temple Israel.SUSAN TUCKER Netanya Old habits
Yesh Atid MK Elazar Stern (“It’s time for a new rabbinate,” Observations, July 1) seeks a rabbinate that will make kosher every American/western ideology (e.g., feminism, egalitarianism) that’s in vogue, so as to be inclusive of US Jews who by and large do not live here and do not want to live here. Yet he has no qualms about spewing lies and inciting against the “haredi- run” Chief Rabbinate of the State of Israel, saying its rabbis “despise the IDF.”
Does Stern really believe that Chief Rabbis Lau and Yosef hate our soldiers? Religious Jews, haredi or otherwise, try to serve God by following Jewish law. In other words, is the cream cheese kosher, is the conversion kosher? The answer to these questions should not be based entirely, or even primarily, on whether the ruling will be unpopular or offensive. Jewish history would have unfolded in a dramatically different fashion had our rabbis and leaders taken this approach.
We might not have offended those Jews who believed we should adopt Greek culture. We might not have wished to alienate those Jews who accepted Jesus as the messiah.
Stern’s boss, Yesh Atid leader Yair Lapid, made a wise decision to reinvent his party so that it now supposedly stands for something other than haredi- bashing. Too bad old habits are so hard to break.
DANIEL YELENIK Beit Shemesh
Gil Troy makes a valiant but unconvincing attempt to justify the call by citizens of the UK to leave the European Union (“A Zionist’s two cheers for Brexit,” Center Field, June 29).
Putting aside the fact that the UK was not a full partner in the EU to begin with (it was outside the Euro zone, never joined the Schengen agreement on open borders, and received all kinds of special rebates and favors), and that fear of Muslims and terror has nothing to do with being in the EU, the politically correct elites were actually right on this occasion, as painful as it is to admit it.
There was wall-to-wall (and very rare) agreement among labor and capital, green Left and nationalist (at least Scottish ones) on remaining; a clear majority of young and better educated people were in favor of remaining as well. I am the last person to claim that the EU is fair or perfect. Very far from it.
But the future will not be made safer and more prosperous by splitting, spitting and quitting.
It is absolutely disingenuous for Troy to blame anyone for this fiasco except the elderly, little Englander imperialist diehards, Jeremy Corbyn and a motley assortment of ignoramuses, anti-immigrant bigots, racists and opportunists.ANTHONY LUDER Rosh Pina
The writer describes himself as a “very depressed UK-Israel citizen.”
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