December 5: The good, the bad and the elderly

Tensions are mounting in east Jerusalem, but that there are kind Arabs who want no part in doing wrong.

December 4, 2010 22:47

letters. (photo credit: JP)

The good, the bad and the elderly

Sir, – Recently, while on a personal tour of Jerusalem, I was walking up the Kidron below Silwan, trying to find the steps up to the City of David near the Gihon spring. I am an elderly lady who uses a cane, but I was alone. Then I saw rocks being thrown at me, whizzing past my head – some the size of golf balls.

I ducked behind a boulder and called out to the stone throwers.

My voice echoed down the valley.

There were about four of them, aged about 10 to 12.

I then saw steps going up the hill to the City of David. I ran over and climbed quickly to the top.

Along the way, a nice little Arab boy offered to help me.

This incident shows that tensions are mounting in east Jerusalem, but that there are kind Arabs who want no part in doing wrong.


Shades of Chelm

Sir, – Your editorial “How to solve the water crisis” (December 1) was supportive of government plans and kind, kind because you chose to refrain from any criticism of this and previous governments for their abject and ongoing damaging failure to effectively deal with the problem decades ago.

Even today, one can question whether the Water Authority is serious about reducing domestic consumption. It had an effective promotional campaign and spoke about delivering water-saving devices to consumers. When I phoned to ask when I would be getting them, I was told that I had to wait for someone to come to our house. Some two months later a young lady appeared and tried to fit them, but without success.

I asked her to leave me a few, but she said I was entitled to only two! If the devices really save water, why were they not immediately available in the number required ? Why ration them and why the delay in distributing them?


Ramat Hasharon

It never fails

Sir, – We are in the midst of a terrible seven-year drought. The too little, too late policies of the government are much too slow.

We are all (I hope) praying daily for rain, with almost no success.

Therefore, I wish to propose an action which should blacken the skies and bring massive amounts of rain for the rest of the winter.

Every Friday must be designated “National Car Wash Day.”

During my 57 years behind the wheel, this has never failed for me.

Ma’aleh Adumim

With Hamas, who needs WikiLeaks?

Sir, – I read with great disgust the various human rights groups’ complaints about the lack of improvement in the lives of the Gazan Arabs (“Rights groups: Israel failed to improve Gaza’s humanitarian situation,” December 1).

What a chutzpa! What other state would facilitate anything going in or out of an enemy entity bent on the destruction of the said supplying state.

The Gazan government, Hamas, makes no bones about its ambition to annihilate each and every Israeli. We don’t even need a WikiLeaks, as Hamas declares this openly, nonstop.

UNWRA, whining about lack of school space, has had billions of dollars donated over the years.

Where has all this money gone? When we see Gilad Schalit released and the retraction of Hamas threats, maybe it will then be time to discuss humanitarian aid.

Petah Tikva

A second opinion

Sir, – David Newman (“Yes to a referendum,” November 30) raises the usual question: Why, if we have a Knesset elected by the people, should we have a referendum? Obviously, because the MKs, especially the government, are not doing what they were elected to do. If elected officials do the opposite of what they promised to do, we the people should be able to give “a second opinion.”

Of course, that opinion just might not be what Newman is so sure it would be. After all, before the Likud referendum, Omri Sharon convinced his father that the results would be what he desired. They weren’t, and he went against them.

We have read ad nauseam that a majority of the citizens are in favor of giving away portions of this sliver of a land to our enemies.

What if this frequently stated “evident truth” turns out to be a canard? No, the holding of a referendum does not raise serious questions for a democracy; it strengthens it. After all, not all peace lovers are on the left. Just because the Left claims to be the sole supporter of peace, this doesn’t make it so. We on the right just believe in a different peace, one from the vantage point of power, not weakness.

In the same issue, you print an op-ed co-authored by Yuval Rabin (“The Israeli Peace Initiative, a pragmatic ‘yes’ to the Arab Peace Initiative,” November 30). When we compare what he would like us to support with his late father’s views, as cited in Martin Sherman’s op-ed (“The death of a frog,” November 30), it now seems apparent that, with the passing years, the “peace camp” is leaving us Jews less and less of our ancestral home.

Which brings us to The Story of B which Sherman quotes at the head of his article. No, Yuval Rabin and David Newman, the Left is not the peace camp. It is the frog camp, and you don’t understand why we object to being heated to death.


Sir, – David Newman raises the argument that elections are the true referenda. That may be true in most cases, but in Israel as well as in other democracies politicians say one thing to get elected and act differently once they are in office.

While it is impossible to hold a referendum on every major decision facing leaders, the bill that was passed in the Knesset concerns the future survival of the State of Israel. The citizens of this country have a right to be involved in such a life-and-death decision.

We can’t be sure that any agreement will be honored by the Palestinians, as their previous record clearly indicates.


How many hands on the wheel?

Sir, – I understand that it is a breach of the law in Israel, as in many other countries, to drive a car using only one hand, unless the other is engaged in changing gear or some other essential operation.

However, on studying passing traffic, I rarely see a driver with two hands on the wheel, and frequently drivers have no hands on the wheel. Recently I was in a taxi, and the driver had his pelephone in one hand and was talking with the other. Bus drivers drive with one hand on the wheel, while the other is either taking or changing money or resting on the seat.

I also see very few, if any, traffic police these days, and yet driving with one hand is, I am informed, an offense and subject to a fine. I am told that the shortage of traffic police is because there is insufficient money to pay for more police officers; but were there to be prosecutions for every one-handed driver, the country could make a fortune out of fines.


Make ’em think twice

Sir, – Day after day we read of juvenile attacks on innocent civilians.

In the latest, “Man attacked because of drink” (November 30), two youths attacked a man and seriously injured him for refusing to give them his alcoholic drink.

Because of our overly compassionate courts, the attackers will probably receive (if at all) a light sentence of a few months of public service.

Rotten parents make for rotten children. The courts should impose on parents an extremely heavy fine plus damages to the victim for their boys’ bad behavior.

It might make them think twice before allowing their children to run riot.


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