Regarding “Egyptian MP invites Israeli envoy to discuss mediation of Nile dispute” (February 25) between Egypt and Ethiopia, the invitation is a lose-lose situation for Israel. In all likelihood, it will not be able to satisfy both parties, and in all likelihood, it will incur the wrath of Egypt if it doesn’t rule entirely in its favor.
The best thing Israel should do is thank Egypt for the offer but decline magnanimously, saying it is not qualified.
ROSY GUBBAY Ma’aleh Adumim Have no shame
With regard to “Looking for a Shabbos Goy” (Comment & Features, February 25), once, well over 55 years ago in England, I was at a friend’s house spending Saturday afternoon. A very religious family.
The father was in shul and the mother was scared of him. She needed something from one of the unlit rooms and asked me to switch the light on. I didn’t think twice about it and did what she asked.
When I got home, I happened to mention this to my father – who nearly blew a gasket! He was furious! How dare she ask a Jewish girl to be a Shabbos Goy! It seems that many religious people have no shame.
JUDY GOLDIN Kiryat Ono ‘Lefty’ leaders
The front-page picture of Kenyan President Uhuru Kenyatta and Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu accompanying “PM to Kenyan leader: Israel, Africa are returning to ties” (February 24) provides a profound basis for the cooperation between our two countries: It shows that both leaders are left-handed.
Maybe this cooperation agreement will convince the world’s sovereigns that they should let our left-handed leaders put the world on the right track.
DOV EDELMAN Petah TikvaWants gutsy gov’t
With regard to “IDF destroys homes of two Palestinian terrorists in West Bank” (February 24), the State of Israel leads the world in many fields and is constantly in the forefront of discoveries. Does anyone else ever wonder why our government acts so absurdly? Following terrorist attacks, it reacts in a way that is insane – by doing the same thing over and over, and expecting different results. When will it become evident that destroying terrorists’ homes brings the families not only new homes, but higher status among Palestinians? The plan to strip terrorists’ families of citizenship and benefits, and even deport them, could correct this horrendous situation. This is an idea being discussed, but who in the government will step up with the will and guts to fight for it? We the people, not to mention the victims and their families, deserve nothing less.
RUBY RAY KARZEN JerusalemLest we forget
Of course Israel has a right to celebrate 50 years since the Six Day War (“Hotovely to mark 50th anniversary of Six Day War by holding series of events in Judea and Samaria,” February 24). But isn’t that in 2017? Why are some Israeli ministers planning celebrations in Judea and Samaria this year? And have they forgotten the terrible aftermath of Israel’s arrogance during the militaristic parade through east Jerusalem on Israel’s 25th anniversary? The price, of course, was the Yom Kippur War and the loss of so many young Israeli lives.
Lest we forget! ISABEL BERMAN Ra’ananaFreedom – and funding!
With regard to “London ‘Apartheid Week’ Tube ads pulled after outrage” (February 23), I suggest that we extend an invitation to the people who put up the posters.
We believe in true democracy – they will be free to put up as many posters as they desire. If they decide to make a film of their activities, they will receive generous government funding!
VIVA SIVAN Jerusalem Count our blessings
Rabbi Shlomo Riskin’s “A shanda!” (Comment & Features, February 23) triggered a barrage of “bless Israel” thought waves for: • The broad coverage of The Jerusalem Post • The committed religious leaders, of whom Rabbi Riskin is an outstanding example • A justice system that punishes even those who commit white-collar crimes • Being recognized as a start-up nation: one that also manages to “start up” even with the most powerful • Advocating self-improvement of individuals and the nation as a whole.
Truly, the shanda is that convicts are permitted to reenter the Knesset.
But let us not forget how proud we can be to be part of this nation, with all its virtues. Let us count our blessings – on a daily basis! ELMER ELIEZER OFFENBACHER JerusalemViews on Olmert
In “Ehud Olmert’s non-political convictions” (My Word, February 19), Liat Collins makes her views about Ehud Olmert clear: “[T] hanks to Olmert as a former mayor, [Holyland] has come to symbolize the ugliness of corruption”; “Olmert’s monumental failure [Holyland] continues to cast its shadow in Jerusalem”; Olmert’s incarceration “seems almost poetic justice for helping that monstrous apartment block to rise.” She also quotes another journalist saying Holyland “is its own indictment sheet.”
Equally clear is that Collins is unaware that the Supreme Court acquitted Olmert of the entire Holyland matter. The court upheld – in my opinion, incorrectly – a lesser charge regarding NIS 60,000 ($15,000) associated with state witness Shmuel Dachner that had no connection to the Holyland matter.
The Holyland project therefore bears no reflection on Olmert, but does raise questions regarding why he underwent years of scrutiny ending in an overturned conviction.
RICHARD HOROWITZ Tel Aviv The writer is an attorney focusing on commercial, criminal, international, intellectual property and media law.
Liat Collins replies: As I understand it, the conviction that was upheld (whether correctly or not) related to money received from Shmuel Dachner and is therefore an inseparable part of the Holyland Affair. The fact that Ehud Olmert was cleared on other charges is largely related to the procedural issue that Dachner died before he could be cross-examined.
Since the other defendants were convicted in the Holyland case, it is likely that the Supreme Court would have upheld the conviction had Dachner been fully questioned in court. In any case, the My Word column is a personal opinion piece and not intended to be a legal treatise.
In “The tragedy of Ehud Olmert in retrospect” (Candidly Speaking, February 18), Isi Leibler describes all the negative details of Olmert’s public service. He includes in his discourse that Olmert proved to be the worst prime minister Israel has ever known.
By this remark, is he suggesting “in retrospect” that previous prime ministers were not all saints, but merely were overshadowed by Olmert? The level of criticism Leibler hurls at Olmert is deserved. There is only one aspect that can be argued about – that Olmert brought the tragedy upon himself.
He was elected mayor of Jerusalem by its citizens. He was elected to the Knesset by the country’s citizens.
Thus, we are partially, if not entirely, responsible for the “tragedy of Ehud Olmert.”
ISSY RIEBACK Kfar Yona Recognizing Goffin
Lincoln Square Synagogue in Manhattan is requesting a few lines of tribute to Cantor Sherwood Goffin from all those who have been touched by his unique commitment to the Jewish people.
An online book is being prepared to honor the cantor, who has retired from the synagogue after 50 years of service. He was also an early advocate for Soviet Jewry.
Please send all submissions to firstname.lastname@example.org.
The deadline for submissions is March 20.
MIRIAM SAVIR Efrat