June 20: No room

"Peace will only come when PM makes it clear to the Palestinians that they must either join Israel or Jordan, and that there is no room for a third state in the region."

Letters 370 (photo credit: REUTERS/Handout )
Letters 370
(photo credit: REUTERS/Handout )
No room

Sir, – In the article “PM reaffirms two-state solution after Bennett says it’s reached dead end,” the impression given is that there is a conflict between Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu and Bayit Yehudi leader Naftali Bennett, a senior minister in his cabinet. Bennett is direct in saying the two-state solution is dead, while Netanyahu affirms a two-state solution and his policy up to now calls for security of the new state to be in Israel’s hands as well as a disarmed state with no possibility of a divided Jerusalem.
Netanyahu is in effect agreeing with Bennett, while using diplomatic words to satisfy the US.
Peace will only come when the prime minister makes it clear to the Palestinians that they must either join Israel or Jordan, and that there is no room for a third state in the region.
Sir, – Can Netanyahu and Bennett put aside their differences and work together for a secure and peaceful Israel? The question of whether a Palestinian state is possible will only be settled in the future. Such a state that makes demands on Israel that would result in its national suicide and names Hitler as a hero is not a worthwhile goal.
It is not Israel’s government that prevents a Palestinian state now, but what has been taught in Palestinian schools since 1996 and the PLO’s glorification of violence against Jews. When the entire West and most of the Arab world wakes up to the fact that Islamic fundamentalism is a major threat to them, not just us, then a Palestinian state may be possible.
Rabbi rousing
Sir, – There is no better argument for the abolishment of the Chief Rabbinate than the recent physical attack against Rabbi David Stav, a good and decent man (“Politicians rabbis express outrage over attack on Stav, June 18).
This was nothing less than horrific.
The verbal vitriol coming out of the mouth of Rabbi Ovadia Yosef is a clear and unambiguous manifestation of the dementia that is now afflicting him. Any member of Knesset who visits, or shows deference to this individual should be sanctioned in the Knesset plenum.
It is absolutely clear that the haredim, having failed in their quest to turn the State of Israel into a 14th century Lithuanian shtetl, are now driven by fear and trepidation regarding the decisions the new government will be making that impacts their community, such as studying the state’s core educational curriculum and participating in periodic scholastic evaluation examinations, performing military or national service as their non-religious fellow countrymen do, preparing themselves for a vocation that will enable them to earn a respectable living and support their ever-expanding families, and learning how to coexist with members of the opposite sex in a normal, interpersonal and egalitarian manner.
These are the principles that Stav stands for, and they will do nothing in the long term but benefit the ultra-Orthodox community.
The overwhelming fear and insecurity of this community regarding efforts to bring them into the mainstream can be overcome with Stav’s leadership.
If not, Israel will descend into a downward trajectory, and we will all be living in a state with two different societies having absolutely nothing to do with each other.
Ashdot Ya’acov
Sir, – The recent extreme hostile pronouncements by the spiritual head of the Sephardi haredi community in Israel and former chief rabbi against a nationalreligious MK for his insistence on “sharing the burden,” and towards the national-religious rabbi who is a candidate for the chief rabbi position, reminded me of a story that appeared in Rabbi Maimon’s book, Sarey Hameah, that has a moral lesson to it (“Tzohar calls on Shas leader to repent for comments against Stav,” June 17).
“One day, Satan complained to God that He created the angel Michael to be Israel’s pleader and defender of Israel and myself as the prosecutor of Israel, a task that I undertake with great dedication and devotion.
However, now you gave to Michael a ‘helpmate unto him,’ Rabbi Levi-Yitzchak from Barditchev, to aid him in his task, and I remain by myself without a helper. I beseech you to give me several righteous people that will help me to find fault with the people of Israel.”
It appears that Satan’s request was fulfilled.
Sir, – Rabbi Ovadia Yosef’s description of Rabbi David Stav tells us only what opinion to have about Yosef.
Sir, – Rabbi Ovadia Yosef called Rabbi David Stav wicked and dangerous and unfit for the post of chief rabbi. As in this week’s Torah portion of Balak, if Balam the Wicked can be castigated by an ass, why cannot Stav be reprimanded by Yosef? DANIEL ABELMAN Jerusalem Voice of women Sir, – Firstly I would like to congratulate Barbra Streisand on the honor bestowed upon her at the Hebrew University (“Streisand receives honorary doctorate from HU, June 18).
At the ceremony she said “it is distressing to read of women in Israel being forced to sit at the back of the bus.”
I would like to point out that women are not forced to sit at the back of the bus anymore as there is a law against it. In addition, the Women of the Wall are out of order by their insistence of doing everything that is against the practice at the Western Wall. They know very well that it is provocation, and do it as a way of getting attention.
Would they put on tefillin and tallit if it was expected of women to do it? I doubt it.
Would they have the temerity to go into any of the Orthodox synagogues and behave like that? If they are so sincere in their prayer, why do they not just come and pray in a respectful way and in that way show respect for the place. The fact that they are abused by protesters from the other side is despicable and unacceptable and that cannot be tolerated.
Maybe a little bit of research would be in order.
Sir, – Israel is indeed blessed to have Barbra Streisand visit. It is unfortunate she had to make a comment about Orthodox Jews and their treatment of women, collectively criticizing a whole community, which was reported extensively in the foreign press.
It was as much out of place as if she would have commented on Arab honor killings in our part of the world.
With the current issue of pricetag related graffiti giving incentive to incitement, words should be chosen carefully.
Sir, – I found it interesting to read that Barbra Streisand, on her recent visit to Hebrew University, praised the fact that Jews and Arabs sit together in classrooms, the cafeteria and learn from the same professors.
She went on to say that “this is proof that people from different backgrounds can live in peace.”
Yes, it is, but largely because Israel is a democracy which promotes mutual respect for all people.
In her aspiration to see equality in Israel for Arabs and Jews, Ms. Streisand, who generally is known for her liberal positions, must understand that a Jewish majority and Jewish control is the only way that these rights and equalities will be preserved.
To our dismay, the vast majority of Arab cultures do not allow for these freedoms and equalities to exist, so it is vital for this “larger than life” celebrity to understand the importance of Israel remaining a Jewish state with Jewish elected leaders who make it possible for her to visit freely and express all of her ideas, thoughts and aspirations in the democratic and free society that we are today.