Watching the evacuation of the 42 families, including 200 children, from Amona (“Amona evacuation meets violent resistance,” February 2), I was reminded of my childhood some 75 years ago.
My father was arrested by the Gestapo in Innsbruck, Austria. After his interrogation, he was threatened that if he did not leave the country within 24 hours, he would be sent to the Dachau concentration camp. He fled, and I fled with my mother to Italy, where later we were joined by my father.
We survived as refugees.
Later, we fled to Cyprus and were evacuated to Palestine on the way to eastern Africa. We were 432 Jewish war refugees, of whom 10 to 15 are still alive.
I have hoped and wished all my life that Holocaust and war refugees, and evacuations, should not be repeated irrespective of race or color. I very much feel for Amona’s 200 children as to how they will cope in the future.JOE GELLERT
Amona is the second self-inflicted heartbreak the people of Israel have gone through in 12 years. First, Gush Katif. Now Amona.
On a very simple, human level, where were the members of the Supreme Court when the residents of Amona were being removed? Safe in their warm homes, eating good food. Not one justice showed any compassion for the families thrown out on a freezing night. How can they sleep soundly? Aren’t we brothers to one another? Are these justices from a different race of beings? The government made a deal with the people of Amona, but it didn’t work out. Is the government helping to find shelter, food and care for these poor, unfortunate people who listened to the government and agreed to leave? That government has an enormous responsibility to help, for it acted very foolishly.
What happened in Amona was something I thought would never happen again in the Land of Israel. We must go on and build, build, build.
That is the answer. And we must also be brothers.TOBY WILLIG
JerusalemTrump means letters
Regarding “Washington to apply ‘extreme vetting’ in refugee swap deal with Canberra” (International News, February 2), US President Donald Trump thinks he is protecting America from terrorists. Actually, he is provoking and creating enemies.
This is not the way to make America great, as greater resources will be needed to guard against real or imagined threats. This will also have to be done without the help of the friends Trump is alienating.
With regard to “Kushner’s Nazi-era refugee grandmother: The world’s doors were close to us” (February 1), the exploitation by some in the media of Rae Kushner’s testimony about her experiences in the Holocaust just to give a dig to Jared Kushner and/or President Donald Trump is morally bankrupt and smacks of Holocaust denial.
Anyone who compares Syrian refugees to Holocaust victims obviously is willfully ignorant of history – regardless of whether one feels Syrian refugees should be accepted in America or not. Syrians are victims of a civil war between two groups of antisemitic, homophobic misogynists.
Holocaust victims were slaughtered largely by Germans who invaded their countries and communities, where they were loyal citizens living peacefully.
Peter Beinart recently asked in an article in the Forward how Jared Kushner could be part of an administration that turns away refugees. The real question is how so many Jews served in the Obama administration – with Beinart’s support – knowing that the then-president stood aside and allowed hundreds of thousands of civilians to be killed or become refugees in Syria, just as president Franklin Roosevelt did to the Jews during the Holocaust.
Apparently, Beinart has forgotten that part of American Jewish history.
Rae Kushner came to the United States with her husband after the Holocaust and built a wonderful Jewish family that was financially successful.
That family has given millions in support of the State of Israel, and their names can be seen as donors at Yad Vashem.ANDERSON HARKOV
Modi’inThere to see
Patricia Rokosh, of British Columbia’s Island School of Building Arts, seems to know little about the situation here other than what she probably garners from watching CBC and CNN (“Canadian college retracts ban on Israelis,” February 2).
Does she know that Jews have lived in Israel for over 3,000 years? There were Jews living here even after the Roman expulsion 2,000 years ago. The Muslims didn’t arrive until hundreds of years later.
The UN, in 1947, divided British Mandate Palestine into two areas, one for Jews and one for Arabs. Unfortunately, the Arabs didn’t agree and invaded with five armies. Well, they lost and have been whining about it ever since.
In 1967, Jordan as well as Syria and Egypt, tried again to remove all the Jews from the area. Well, they lost again, and Israel liberated biblical Israel from Jordan’s illegal occupation.
This information is out there for all to see if one’s laziness and latent antisemitism don’t get in the way of the truth.
NehushaThe post office...
Like reader Rachel Schecter (“Two-way BDS?” Letters, January 31), my experience has shown that the Israel Postal Company is an inefficient, ineffective and antiquated operation.
A single card was received, addressed to both myself and my husband, advising us that a registered letter had to be collected from a post office 1.7 kilometers from our home instead of our regular post office less than a kilometer away. Upon arriving, I was advised that a mistake had been made on the card, and the registered mail was at our regular post office.
Proceeding to the regular post office, I requested the registered envelope and was advised that there were two – one for me and one for my husband. I was given the envelope addressed to me, but they refused to give me my husband’s.
As a result, three return journeys were necessary because of the inherent faults, but also because of the lackadaisical attitude of the post office employees. No doubt they have tenure, so nothing is important.
I lodged a complaint on the postal company’s English-language website. Nobody bothered to respond.
The Israel Postal Company is a complete disaster, and I can only endorse Ms. Schecter’s views. It is time for a drastic change. Heads must roll.
Jerusalem...and Israeli drivers!
New immigrants from the US and Canada are wont to say that Israelis don’t know how to drive.
Nothing could be farther from the truth. Israelis are excellent drivers.
Do you think it’s easy to rapidly cross three lanes of high-speed traffic to reach a highway exit? It’s not easy at all, but Israeli drivers are able to do it.
Do you think it’s easy to change lanes suddenly at high speed and slip in between two cars with nary a five-centimeter clearance fore and aft? It’s not easy at all, but Israeli drivers are able to do it.
Do you think it’s easy to tailgate another auto, kilometer after kilometer, at high speed while maintaining a precise one-meter separation? No, it’s not easy at all, but Israeli drivers are able to do it.
Please! No further remarks about poor Israeli drivers!