Letters to the editor

Exact opposite I just read “Rivlin receives official election results” and the president’s comment.

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March 28, 2015 21:14
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Exact opposite

I just read “Rivlin receives official election results” (March 26) and the president’s comment: “One who is afraid of votes in a ballot box will eventually see stones thrown in the street.” Is it just me, or is what President Reuven Rivlin said much worse and more irresponsible than what he is criticizing Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu for? Netanyahu attempted to avoid a skewed result that would not be an accurate reflection of a normal election in Israel when it appeared that a concerted, massive, foreign-funded effort was underway to provide bus transportation to one specific segment of voters. Those voters, everyone would agree, were out to vote for one particular party (which happens to be anti-Zionist).

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Our president has been trying to establish a reputation as a builder of bridges and a peacemaker, and he has done some good things to that end. But by jumping on the trendy leftist bandwagon and again taking Netanyahu’s statement out of context, he is doing the exact opposite.

DAVID KAPLANSKY Hashmonaim

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A good start

The trial in the lawsuit brought by the former manager of the Prime Minister’s Residence (“Trial of Naftali against PM’s office opens in J’lem,” March 26) raises some interesting questions, which for some reason our media have never asked.

Here are some points to consider: • Naftali left his employment in 2012 yet it took until 2015, when the election slogan “Anyone but Bibi” started to appear, that he suddenly found he had such serious complaints. Why? • On whose recommendation was he chosen for the position? • Did he leave or was he fired? • Naftali said he would provide certain information only if given immunity. Is this a sign of complete innocence? • The media reported that he owed a large sum of money to a bank, yet it transpires that apart from a lawyer, he also has a public relations specialist. Who is funding all this? There are many more problematic issues. If we get answers, it will be a good start.



EMANUEL FISCHER Jerusalem

US-Israel tensions

With regard to “US Jews, Israel drifting apart” (Washington Watch, March 26), after observing the shocking responses by US President Barack Obama and his administration to the democratically elected prime minister of Israel, we are now being reprimanded for our voting choice by many among the 70 percent of Jews who gave Obama their support.

These Jews would like Israel to conform more to their ideologies.

They want civil marriages.

They don’t want settlements.

They cry for the end of occupation.

(Gaza is occupied by Hamas terrorists. Is that what they are referring to?) The Obama view of the Middle East is that of so many Jews who still are mesmerized by their president.

I guess a loyalty oath of “American first or Jew first” can’t be far off. I expect it to be authored by one of the 70-percenters.

JONATHAN SURASKY Ra’anana

Instead of congratulating Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu on his sweeping, comefrom- behind electoral victory, US President Barack Obama threatens Israel with a reassessment of policy (“J’lem: US ‘reassessment’ threat aims to distract attention from nuke deal,” March 22).

After successive foreign policy fiascoes, Mr. Obama is desperate to negotiate a deal with Iran, curtailing its nuclear program.

Who else, if not Netanyahu, should be concerned with the outcome? Once the US and other world powers sign a deal, Israel will have lost its military option, and its Arab neighbors will be scurrying for their own nuclear bombs.

With Iran threatening to wipe out Israel, a bad deal will not leave us with many defensive options.

We should not dare depend on the assurances of America that it “has our back.” If there is one thing Jews have learned when the going gets tough, its that Israel can depend only on itself.

ROBERT DUBLIN Jerusalem

Those who took umbrage over Prime Minister Netanyahu’s urging supporters to go to the polls to counterbalance the unusually large Arab vote have chosen to ignore two important facts.

First, the suspicion that foreign funding, including by the US under various guises, was used to influence Arab voters has been sufficient to bring about an investigation by Congress.

Attempting to influence a foreign election is apparently something American liberals oppose – unless they have their own predispositions with regard to the preferred winner.

Second (and even more significant), in many countries – and in all the Middle East, aside from Israel – those who go out “in droves” to vote against those in power are generally met with violence or arrest. In Israel, they encounter nothing more than words directed, not at them, but at people who are urged to exercise their right to vote in support of those in power.

JAY SHAPIRO Jerusalem

Never has there been such a biased, anti-Israel US administration.

Not being able to swallow Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s victory, it jumped on his unfortunate Election Day utterance about Arab voters and turned it into a major obstacle to peace.

Do the American as much as mumble a word of condemnation when Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas glorifies convicted terrorists or denies our historical right to Jerusalem? RUTH SAMSON Petah Tikva Prime Minister Netanyahu clarified his pre-election statement about there being no Palestinian state on his watch, affirming that he does, in fact, accept the twostate solution although conditions are not ripe at this time. Yet the White House has refused to accept this, and a State Department spokesperson went so far as to scold him, declaring: “When you say things, words matter.”

I recall presidential candidate Barack Obama’s 2008 speech to AIPAC, where he announced that “Jerusalem will remain the capital of Israel, and it must remain undivided.”

Mr. President, when you say things, words matter.

DAVID JACOBS Efrat

For shame

With regard to “Yehuda Avner, speech writer to four prime ministers, dies at 86” (March 25), Israel has lost one of its greatest souls. Yehuda, a neighbor and good friend, was certainly one of the best and brightest of the Foreign Ministry’s luminaries.

It is shameful and highly embarrassing that the government did not see fit to send at least one representative to his funeral, which was attended by thousands.

The failure to do so is shocking and should be investigated.

Is it possible that the country’s current diplomats want to ignore the passing of one whose accomplishments put their current efforts to shame? HARVEY SCHWARTZ Jerusalem

Start at home

“I’m Palestinian and I want a normal life” (Comment & Features, March 24) is a heartfelt appeal for peace and peaceful coexistence between Israelis and Palestinians. But it is not Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu that the writer should meet with.

Hayat al-Hakim should petition her own leader, who proudly proclaims that the Palestinians will never recognize the Jewishness of the State of Israel, and who clings to the Fatah constitution with such stated goals as the complete liberation of “Palestine” and eradication of Zionist economic, political, military and cultural existence.

It would be extraordinary if Hakim and like-minded Palestinians could pressure their own leaders to make the changes necessary for any kind of meaningful dialog to take place.

GIDEON HACK Zichron Ya’acov

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