Yaakov Katz makes several remarks in “A missed opportunity” (Editor’s Notes, December 30) that are typical of the old-style narrow thinking, and just as wrong.
1. “The Israelis have fallen asleep.” This makes it sound as if we are apathetic. We are wide awake and see with clear eyes how the Palestinians have proven time and time again that they don’t want a state of their own; they simply want to destroy the only Jewish state there is.
2. “The public needs to be convinced that peace is in its interest.”
Really? As if all Israelis who voted for the right-wing majority don’t want peace. Please – we’ve had enough of this condescending attitude. We all dream of real peace, even those of us who (gasp!) voted Likud or Bayit Yehudi.
The key word here is “real.” If the Palestinians really wanted a peaceful state and were reasonable in their demands, right-wing Israelis would be the first to jump to help make a state that is economically thriving, and not just viable.
3. “If he [Netanyahu] wants to renew negotiations with the Palestinians, he can.” Again, really? As if he hasn’t tried countless times, begged, even just to sit down with the Palestinians, only to be rejected because they insisted on impossible up-front conditions that would prejudge any realistic deal. Even when he did bend and halt all settlement activity (“not one brick”) for nine months, it didn’t help.
The person who killed the unholy idol called the two-state solution” is US President Barack Obama and his obsession (yes, obsession) with settlements. His obsession put the Palestinians up a tree so far that they’ve never been able to get down.
It’s time to think outside the box.
A Palestinian confederation with Jordan (whose majority population is Palestinian) should be resurrected, certainly for Areas A and B, but also for Palestinians in Area C if there is good will among them and the Jordanians. This is much more realistic than the harebrained kind of two-state solution Obama has in mind.
It’s also time to establish Israeli sovereignty, at least in all of Area C.
LARRY BIGIO Zichron Ya’acov
There is no such thing as a “moderate” Muslim position on the right of Jews to have a state in the Land of Israel. For this reason alone, Israel has no obligation to grant the vote to Muslims in the eventual annexation of Judea and Samaria. A vote could be granted to those who publicly espouse a Zionist viewpoint.PAUL RABOFF Jerusalem
I fail to comprehend your December 30 editorial “Netanyahu’s Trump moment.”
Why does Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu have to tell US President-elect Donald Trump what he wants? Because both Israel and the Palestinians state in advance that they will never, ever give up Jerusalem, the negotiations will end before they even start. I think we should state a priori before we negotiate that there should be absolutely no violence, and that the Palestinians cannot make martyrs out of murderers.
Let us leave negotiations to the future and continue to build the State of Israel.
THELMA SUSSWEIN Jerusalem Alt-right in Israel
So Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu says Israel will stop funding UN institutions (“Jerusalem furious over US bombshell at UN,” December 25). It’s no surprise, since the UN was founded to oppose conquest, while the Israeli Right likes conquest.
The UN has been consistent. It helped found Israel and supported it before its march of conquest.
It then began opposing the conquests, once again on December 23.
The Israeli Right is really its “altright,” similar to the alt-rightist Donald Trump, who supports interference, conquest and second- class status for people based on race and religion. No wonder the US president-elect supports Israeli expansion in the occupied territories, just as he does the alt-rightist Vladimir Putin’s expansion in Crimea and Ukraine.
No wonder that on Israel’s last election day, the alt-rightist Netanyahu warned that “Arabs are voting in droves,” and more recently, Likud coalition head David Bitan said he’d prefer that Arabs not vote at all. And how typical of the alt-rightist Trump to nominate David Friedman as ambassador to alt-rightist Israel.
Trump will end the “daylight” that existed between outgoing President Barack Obama and Netanyahu.
Both are alt-right – that is, racist, anti-UN and therefore pro-conquest.JAMES ADLER Cambridge, Massachusetts A closer look
The government should ask for clarification from the UN Security Council collectively and from its individual members: Does Resolution 2334 abrogate the Oslo Agreements? If so, who should be the responsible authority in the disputed areas? If that goes back to 1967, it can’t be the Palestinian Authority since it did not exist. Are are resolutions 242 and 338 still relevant? Nor can Jordan be considered the authority since it renounced all claims to Judea and Samaria, which it acquired by force in 1948. In addition, it was never recognized as the legitimate sovereign in those areas.
Ironically, Resolution 2334 may have created the basis for legitimizing Israeli annexation and sovereignty in Judea and Samaria.MOSHE DANN Jerusalem
New Zealand’s position on the UN vote against Israel’s illegal settlements helps me realize why more countries now want to challenge thinking and actions preventing a two-state solution. Such thinking seldom breaks impasses or prevents collateral damage or intergenerational damage.
Israel’s argument, as the region’s only democracy, that its security should be at the expense of freedom for half a million people no longer holds, even if Palestinian leaders cling to violent solutions. Unsurprisingly, fundamentalists divide the world into those who are fundamentalists and those who are not, but when simplistic politics divide societies, finer distinctions need to be applied, including to terrorism – especially when it justifies itself by using the Scriptures as literal truth.
Whatever, good on New Zealand for turning neither a blind eye nor the other cheek, and for being inspired to solutions aimed at breaking circular logics for too long preventing a negotiated justice.
STEVE LIDDLE Napier, New Zealand
Israel will ride out the “Resolution 2334” storm, but the stains of collusion, connivance and conspiracy will remain on the legacy of outgoing US President Barack Obama forever.
No doubt that Obama’s malice and vindictiveness toward Israel are in no small measure due to his belated realization that his failed administration, particularly in regard to the situation in the Middle East, for which he holds Israel responsible, was a significant factor that led to Donald Trump’s electoral victory.SMOKY SIMON Herzliya
In May 1948, Egypt, Jordan and Syria launched a war of annihilation against the new Jewish state. The intent was to reach the sea, but they were forestalled at what became known as the Green Line. From then on, for a period of 19 years, the Gaza Strip, the Golan Heights and Judea and Samaria were occupied territory, administered by the three belligerent Arab states.
In 1967, these countries threatened a second war of annihilation against Israel, again with the hope that their armies would reach the Mediterranean.
Once more they failed their objective. But this time they were driven out of their occupied territories entirely. The lands they had conquered in 1948 and occupied illegally were liberated in1967 and returned to Israel.
So what’s all the fuss about?
BRUM BERKOVITS Haifa