(photo credit: REUTERS/Handout )
Sir, – With the brave exception of the Israeli Pediatric
Association, which in 2012 called for an end to metzitza b’peh, or oral suction
during the circumcision ritual, the response throughout the Jewish world has
been silence (“Erroneous report on Fox News says child got HIV from circumcision
ritual,” April 10). No voices of outrage, no expressions of shock and horror, no
calls for an end to this atavistic ritual.
Sucking blood from the wound
of a newly circumcised infant’s penis is construed as a mitzvah – even when it
might endanger the life of the child. Where are the grand Jewish principals of
pikuah nefesh? Where is our fundamental sensibility of simple decency? How many
babies will be sacrificed in order to protect this sacrosanct assault on our
tender boys? What is the acceptable number? From the silence of the Jewish
leadership, it seems there is no limit.MIRIAM POLLACK
Sir, – Your report on metzitza b’peh omitted an important bit of
The fact is, major rabbinic authorities allow, even
advocate, the use of a pipette as a means for suction so that the mohel’s mouth
never needs to touch the wound.
The Israeli public would be well served
if a signed informed consent for direct oral suction, as is required in New York
City, becomes mandatory here as well.
is a physician Mourn, don’t copy
Sir, – Margaret Thatcher’s steadfast and
genuine support for Israel and the British Jewish community is to be praised and
admired, but you should have done your homework before writing the editorial
calling on Israel to emulate her model of society (“Thatcher and Israel,” April
It is true that Thatcher made badly needed reforms to a country
where the trade unions were often militant mini-dictatorships, and the statist
economic model was simply no longer working.
However, she moved too far
By the time her Conservative Party was kicked out of office,
hospitals and schools across the country were in decay and disrepair after years
On her watch, Britain became the western European
nation with the highest proportion of children living below the poverty
Thatcher promoted a philosophy that made the attainment of personal
wealth a pre-eminent objective, to be pursued without consideration for wider
society. Indeed, she famously said: “There is no such thing as society. There
are only individuals and their families.”
I sincerely hope that this is
not The Jerusalem Post’s idea of the correct social model for
Sir, – In “NGO: Closing Gaza
crossings strengthens Hamas” (April 8), Sari Bashi, head of the political
advocacy NGO Gisha, makes statements that are inconsistent and
Her foreign-funded group has no expertise on security or
political issues and is unable judge the impact of Israeli responses to rocket
attacks. Indeed, Gisha admits to having no alternative security options – such
essential details are beyond its remit or capability.
invents international law to fit an ideological agenda.
Her use of the
term “collective punishment” to refer to economic sanctions does not conform its
use under international law, which refers to imprisonment and other criminal
penalties within national jurisdictions.
States are free to regulate
their border crossings, and policy makers are charged with the responsibility to
protect their citizens. While Bashi is free to express her opinions, they do not
reflect special knowledge or expertise.
GERALD M. STEINBERG
writer is president of NGO Monitor