Letters to the Editor; May 20, 2020: Blockade blockheads

Readers of The Jerusalem Post have their say.

Letters (photo credit: PIXABAY)
Letters
(photo credit: PIXABAY)
Blockade blockheads
Regarding “Hundreds of international artists call for end to Gaza blockade” (May 19), the artists and writers who call on Israel to end its Gaza blockade ignore the fact that Egypt has also found it necessary to blockade Gaza. Hamas, long excused from the normal rules of moral conduct, claims victimhood because Israel and Egypt prevent terror groups from continuously arming themselves with ever more lethal weaponry, which they use to attack Israel and Egypt.
The blockade is self-defense.
In their wisdom, those artists and writers overlook Hamas’s diversion of never-ending international aid. That aid, given to facilitate building political and economic institutions for the betterment of Gaza’s people, is exploited to transform Gaza into the world’s largest open-air terror base. The only people genuinely concerned about the people of Gaza are the Israelis who send them food and medical supplies on a regular basis.
Those “virtuous” artists and writers might do well to consider how very essential the Israel-Egyptian blockade actually is, since it keeps Gaza terrorism from getting so bad that regular food and medical deliveries from Israel might be impeded.
JULIA LUTCH
Davis, CA

It is all well and good to call for an end to the Gaza blockade, but where is the balanced call for an end to Gazan violence and terrorism against Israel. Perhaps a movement of “Israeli (Jewish and Arab) Lives Matter” should be started.

SAM ROSENBLUM
Beit Shemesh

Annexation anxieties

Regarding “US cools on annexation after Jordan warns of massive confrontation” (May 17), US State Department Spokeswoman Morgan Ortagus, in remarking that the Palestinians “should have a say,” has apparently forgotten that they were invited to the launch of the “Deal of the Century” but declined to attend and, in fact, harshly criticized the Palestinian businessman who did attend, along with the more tuned-in of the Arab nations.
Unfortunately, for the past year we have been lacking a cohesive government; now that the coalition is in place we trust they can voice determinedly the action they will take on the annexation, which should be Israel’s decision alone – not subject to a veto from our rejectionist non-peace partners.
As far as Jordan is concerned, it has and will always be in their best interest to side with those that need appeasing, but behind the scenes they are only too aware of the real politic as far as their relationship with Israel is concerned.
If a state further down the line with a finance injection of $50 billion plus is not a big enough incentive for the PA, then their people must surely realize that they are being used as pawns by leaders who place hate and contempt for Israel far above the future prospects for its people.
STEPHEN VISHNICK
Tel Aviv

Everyone agrees on the “importance of Palestinian participation in the peace process.”
Israel wants them at the table. The US wants them at the table. The 26 countries and five Arab states who approved of the peace plan when it was announced want them at the table.
Only the Palestinian Authority and Hamas are not interested. To them, peace with Israel is anathema. It would undermine their raison d’etre and cut off their source of income.
King Abdullah II knows this. His statement is theater. He is playing to the Arab street. He doesn’t mean a word of it. He is thrilled at the prospect of Israel being a buffer between him and the PA/Hamas.
Israel will implement the American peace plan. The PA can join in and help demarcate the borders of their own, new country. Or they can fight the plan, lose the $50 billion development fund and continue to play the victim.
Surely, it’s time for the Arab League to exert its influence.

LEN BENNETT
Ottawa, Ontario

Regarding “Seven reasons for not annexing W. Bank territories” (May 12), the writer and his ilk lack courage, fortitude, and vision. They fear the opinions and reactions of our enemies and erstwhile friends. If the people in charge in 1948 were like him, there would never have been a State of Israel, because, “what would the neighbors say?”
The Galut mentality dies hard.

YISRAEL GUTTMAN
Jerusalem

How many more times must we be taken hostage by the fabrications of the Palestinians?
For 72 years, we have been offering peace and every single time we are threatened by the Arabs and Europe. When has Israel had a moment’s peace?
Not before 1967, when Judea and Samaria were occupied by Jordan, which had aggressively taken them in 1948 and never thought for an instant of creating another Arab state there.
Not after 1967, when we offered peace and were answered with three obstinate “nos.”
Not after 1973, and certainly not at the time of “peace” talks with the likes of Shimon Peres and Yossi Beilin, who were willing to sacrifice innocent civilians for illusive peace.
We have been shot, stabbed, run over, hijacked, bombed – and also vilified by the very Europeans who don’t know how to honor a treaty (San Remo) that they themselves made.
The seven reasons given in the article for not annexing parts of the West Bank appalled me. Let us finally do something that will, in the long run, realize our rights and ensure our future.

FREYA BINENFELD
Petah Tikva

“A little annexation” (May 19) by Herb Keinon is pure genius.
Annexation of parts of our indigenous land where we have thriving communities is our inalienable right, yet the countries of the world are so used to telling Jews what we can and cannot do – and where we can and cannot live – that they are trying to force us to bend to their will and act against our own interests.
By offering to compromise (i.e. reduce amount of territory being annexed at this stage), we can show our adversaries (friends and foes) that their voices and concerns have been heard, yet still move forward to do what is just, moral and fair.

BRIAN LAZER
Jerusalem

A true man

Regarding “The man from Missouri who helped change Jewish history” (May 17), what a blessing Harry Truman and his political backing for the establishment for the State of Israel were to the Jewish people! His legacy should not be forgotten: his far-reaching background with morality and his ethics as the US president.
Truman was a true example of an excellent leader of people. President Franklin Delano Roosevelt’s policy as a “peacenik,” the antisemitic streak in his White House administration and the pro-Arab oil interests were a threat to Jews. Without Truman’s support we might still be stateless – classified as wandering Jews.
In view of the planned extensive expansion and renovation of the Truman Library and Museum to be completed next year (which was originally established in his home town of Independence, Kansas City in 1957), his historical legacy should be highlighted, for the Jewish Diaspora and the world.

JACK DAVIS
Jerusalem

Bloated government

Regarding “Gov’t sworn in, ending 500 days of political crisis” (May 18), Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu told reporters at the Knesset “I will abide by the agreement exactly as it is written.” That statement would not have been necessary had he not been known to renege on promises.
The biggest and most wasteful government was formed while hundreds of thousands of people have lost their jobs and many businesses won’t survive – the price paid to make sure Netanyahu remains prime minister. Netanyahu told Blue and White leader Benny Gantz that they had worked well together in Operation Protective Edge and he is sure they will work together serving all citizens of Israel. If they are going to work together again as they did in Operation Protective Edge, we are in big trouble, because Gantz proudly said at the time that he had sacrificed his men to save “innocent” civilian terrorists and would do the same again while Netanyahu sent the IDF into war with orders not to win and told Hamas he had no intention of destroying it. Lose-lose for our guys and win-win for our enemies.
Those are the men chosen by our people to lead our country; it won’t be to victory but to surrender of everything so many fought and died for. The Temple Mount is but one example of where our enemies gloatingly reign over us.
EDITH OGNALL
Netanya

Congratulations to Benjamin (Bibi) Netanyahu and to Benjamin (Benny) Gantz, who have agreed to be Israel’s prime ministers for the next 36 months – or until they disagree.
There appears to be a suggestion that perhaps one or both will finally make an announcement about the holy sites in Judea and Samaria. Of course, a few hundred thousand settlers believe that it is all about them, but it isn’t. It is about Jewish access and control for eternity to the burial sites, for example, of the patriarchs and matriarchs in Hebron (Adam, Abraham, Isaac and Jacob and their spouses); in Shechem (Joseph); on the way, Rachel, and other key sites, such as Mount Gerizim.
Another consideration, somewhat less relevant in the age of rockets and missiles, is to ensure that the hilltops are also in Israeli hands – for example, Ariel – as well as those towns and cities that sprung up because of ideology and because of the inability of young couples to purchase affordable housing elsewhere.
The Knesset will need to approve a law that is beyond a mere decision by Netanyahu and Gantz. That might take all of the 36 months of this new government – or less, if there is a change in the occupant of the Oval Office after the November American elections.
And then there is the rest of the world. Many countries will aim to isolate Israel as a consequence. If Netanyahu and Gantz can play politics as well as they did in forming this coalition at the negotiating table, then they should refrain from unilateral laws and decisions on annexation. They should use their acumen and skills to bring the Palestinians, the Jordanians, the Syrians and others to the negotiating table and achieve more than just a symbolic headline.
DR. GLEN SEGELL
University of Haifa

The shortcomings of our soon-to-be appointed government are myriad. However, one of the glaring features is its lack of women. Despite having a colossal 36 ministers, at the time of writing it looks like only six of them will be women. This reflects the ongoing battle that women have to face in the political arena, one of which is the fact that only 29 of the 120 Members of Knesset are women.
Obviously, it is wonderful that Pnina Tamano-Shata will become the minister for Immigrant Absorption. However, in reporting this milestone, your reporters Jeremy Sharon and Gil Hoffman fell into the time-honored trap of crediting a man for the achievement of a woman. This is how they reported the event: “(Benny) Gantz made history on Thursday when he told MK Pnina Tamano-Shata that she will become the first Ethiopian-born minister in Israel’s history. Really? Gantz made history? Not Tamano-Shata?
It is really about time that this kind of biased statement gets thrown into the dustbin of history.
ELLIE MORRIS
Asseret

Unequal justice

“The Duma lesson (May 19) gets it wrong when it suggests that in the interest of “equal justice for all,” the home of Amiram Ben-Uliel, the Jewish Duma terrorist, should be destroyed, just as we destroy some of the homes of convicted Palestinian terrorists.
The destruction of Palestinian terrorist homes is a lesson to the Palestinian leaders and the society, who largely refuse to accept the existence of Israel and overtly support terrorism. The lesson is that we will not be led like sheep to slaughter. The Israeli courts alone cannot win the war against the Palestinians.
When the Palestinian Authority and Hamas bring Palestinian terrorists to justice instead of paying them generous salaries, stops under and over the table support of terrorism – or, equally absurd, when the Israeli government starts paying salaries to incentivize and reward Jewish terrorists – that will be the time for the utopian cry of “equal justice for all.”

YIGAL HOROWITZ
Beersheba

The power of letters to the ‘Post’

Related to your recent article about the elephants in the Jerusalem Zoo (Grapevine, May 7), I had an interesting experience concerning this subject.
Soon after I arrived in Israel in 1968, I heard that the only elephant in the Romema zoo had perished from Jordanian fire in the Six Day War. Because of limited budgets, no immediate replacement was planned. However, I read an article in The Jerusalem Post, which reported that one of the African countries was planning to thin its elephant herds because of overpopulation. I wrote a letter to the Post suggesting that Zim Lines might donate shipping one of these elephants to Israel if available. The next thing I heard was that two African elephants were on their way to Israel!
A few years later, I took my grandchildren to the new zoo. I approached one of the zookeepers and asked if he knew the story of how the zoo got the elephants.
“Oh yes,” he said,”someone convinced Zim Lines to contribute space to bring an elephant here from Africa.”

GARY STEINMAN, MD, PHD
Jerusalem

Three significant recent studies indicate that there is an effective antidote to the COVID-19 virus.
One part is easy: Take three 5,000 IU vitamin D3 doses daily with about 70 mg. of K2, which aids absorption and reduces the risk of blood clots). Research shows that no one over age 50 with high levels of vitamin D has died from the coronavirus.
The other part is more difficult: To avoid all sugar (particularly white flour and white sugar), since sugar suppresses the immune system.
Please publish this information to bring it to the attention of readers.
MIRIAM ADAHAN
Jerusalem