After the horrific act of setting fire to a Palestinian home in the West Bank village of Duma, killing a baby and leaving other family members in a grave state (“Palestinian toddler’s murder sparks violent clashes,” August 2), the only solution is to find the perpetrators and sentence them to dozens of years in jail, like a court would any kind of murderer! MIRIAM GLUCKSMAN Netanya
The tragedy in Duma is horrible. If the perpetrators are religious people, I am certain they did not intend to murder. Yet they should have considered the full consequences of their actions. No one can condone this type of terrorism.
On the other hand, the world’s response has been repulsive. I do not remember having seen international headlines or a UN condemnation when the Fogel family was intentionally murdered in cold blood at Itamar in March 2011.
The latest act is unforgivable, but so is the hatred of Jews, which is evident on a daily basis.
ANNABELLE HOROWITZ Petah Tikva
Yishai Schlissel, a recidivist perpetrator (“J’lem gay parade stabber remanded for 12 days, August 2), is clearly an unbalanced person. As such, he should never have been released unsupervised to repeat his crime. The police and the justice system failed miserably to protect the public.
In fact, our society is not well organized to deal with this type of situation. Incarceration is not appropriate for a person most of us would consider insane. On the other hand, the public needs and deserves protection. I would suggest a life sentence for Schlissel, with immediate parole on condition that he stays within the confines of his own community.
Today it is not difficult to ensure that he complies. He should be forced to wear an ankle bracelet that reports his location on a continuous basis to a computer, which would immediately notify police of his whereabouts should he stray. This humane solution would protect the public and be infinitely cheaper than confining him to either prison or a mental institution.
STEPHEN COHEN Ma’aleh Adumim Rabbis who, in their silence, condone extreme right-wing stabbings should be sentenced to death together with the perpetrators.
Maybe that would convince them to exercise their responsibilities.
BEN MIRKIN Beit Shemesh
Times now call for a great moral authority. This can be the chief rabbis – if they would only not be afraid. There is great need for them to excommunicate those who want to decide for all of Israel what is right or wrong.
According to Jewish law, capital punishment is decided by the Sanhedrin, not by individuals.
Individuals, no matter what provocation, have no right – legally, morally or Jewishly – to take the law into their hands.
They are guilty of murder.
Now is the time for the chief rabbis to make this clear to all the people of Israel. The rabbis’ moral stature will be greatly enhanced, and all the people will know that murderers are murderers.
TOBY WILLIG Jerusalem
Look who’s talking
Opposition leader Isaac Herzog says the Right has to do heshbon nefesh (personal accounting), indirectly or not so indirectly, for the two heinous crimes perpetrated at the end of last week.
Did I miss something? Is he saying that the recently released recidivist Yishai Schlissel is part of the Right? And the arsonist/murderers of the Palestinian child in Duma haven’t even been caught or identified, yet Herzog automatically puts them on the Right.
While the working theory is that the Duma incident was part of the so-called price-tag attacks, there is no proof. And even if it is true, I don’t think the perpetrators could be considered part of the mainstream Right.
Who’s guilty of incitement now?
LARRY WACHSMAN Jerusalem Lesson of Pollard
A careful reading of Dov Lipman’s “The lesson of Jonathan Pollard” (Observations, July 31) leads me to believe that he fails to properly understand the multi-layered issues of the Pollard affair and provides us instead with a deeply disturbing, overly simplistic and self-aggrandizing message.
Lipman’s raw, unmitigated assertion – “Jonathan had broken the law, and people who break the law must pay the price” – suffers from moral anemia.
While no one connected to the events ever questioned Pollard’s violation of the law or, indeed, his need to be punished, what has been the central theme of the protests and long struggle on his behalf has been that his life sentence and 30 years of incarceration represented from the very beginning a gross miscarriage of justice.
When considering that Jonathan’s efforts were on behalf of an American ally, the mysterious transformation of his agreed-upon plea bargain – mandating a 10-year sentence – into a disproportionate life term testifies to the iniquitous manner of its birth. It is an absolute fact that no law breaker, even if involved in far more grievous crimes of spying for enemies, has received a comparably harsh sentence.
It behooves Lipman to pay more attention to the palpable discriminatory atmosphere that surrounds the Pollard travesty, and to try to fathom its implications for American Jewry and the State of Israel. It is also no less important that the former MK show far more sensitivity to a blatant perversion of justice.
ZEV CHAMUDOT Petah Tikva
Many people do not know or want to know about the extreme details of Jonathan Pollard’s very serious crime.
I agree that 30 years is sufficient punishment, but the talk of him receiving a hero’s welcome in Israel (or anywhere else) is totally appalling and ridiculous, and undeserved in every possible way.
May Pollard go home in peace and good health to his family, but no public acclaim is warranted.
LIONEL MALLACH Haifa
The Obama administration, in releasing Jonathan Pollard, seems to be undertaking an act to placate the Israeli government in the wake of the agreement concerning Iran’s nuclear ambitions.
While many of us here do not trust President Barack Obama – who, while seeking a legacy, is leading us down a dangerous path – we must remember that Pollard was caught spying.
Sorry to disagree with many of your readers, but, simply put, you do the crime, you serve the time.
HERBERT W. STARK Mooresville, North Carolina The magician Obama
US President Barack Obama’s foreign policy has been a total disaster.
The deal with Iran, no doubt, was to salvage his reputation and produce some kind of “success” as his legacy and for his memoirs.
Obama would be the magician who pulls the rabbit out of a hat with a deal with the most radical of countries, a fomenter of terror.
Unfortunately, the deal will have a terrible effect on the rest of the world. It will earn Obama the same contempt shown to British prime minister Neville Chamberlain following his “peace for our time” with another tyrant.
It should be clear by now that tyrants respond to appeasement with more violence, and ultimately with war.
JOE FRANKL Savyon Costly pinch
With regard to “Gov’t probes underweight Tnuva cottage” (Business & Finance, July 23), a much worse scandal is the fact that Tnuva charges NIS 3 more for 200 grams of salted butter than it does for the same amount of unsalted butter.
Could a pinch of salt cost NIS 3? It is time that this scandal is corrected!
MOIRA SCHER Even Yehuda