Sir, – I am getting tired reading about the horrible deeds of
former president Moshe Katsav and about our wonderful court system (“A rapist
reduced to blaming the courts,” Legal Affairs, March 25).
As a religious
man, I am truly happy that the law prohibits cohabitation unless it is
completely consensual, and a lack of consent may be inferred from a
perpetrator’s use of force, threat or intimidation, as well as the perpetrator’s
situational advantage. Since the perpetrator in this case was the president, it
is not unreasonable to accept the victims’ version that the relationship was not
completely consensual. In my opinion, such a law is praiseworthy because it
considerably raises the moral standard.
However, in a secular society,
where adultery is unfortunately not uncommon, to demonize the perpetrator for
not maintaining these high standards is in my view hypocritical.
you see that according to these standards, high-ranking politicians can have an
intimate relationship with almost no one? Are we going to close our eyes to the
sad reality and truly believe that only Moshe Katsav is guilty of such
misconduct? I really believe that it was a good thing to try Katsav and show the
public how high moral standards ought to be. However, once the judges decided
unanimously that these standards were not met, it would have been best to
reprimand him and leave it at that. To sentence him to prison is cruel,
hypocritical or both.MOSHE ROSENBAUM
Sir, – An appellant, in
the effective exercise of the right of appeal, is entitled to advance such
submissions as can be justified on the evidence and the applicable legal
principles in order to persuade the appeals court to set aside the conviction or
interfere with the sentence.
It is therefore quite unacceptable to state
that in exercising this right, Katsav is “reduced to blaming the
Ramat Hasharon Must crush to win
Sir, – What
remains unsaid in “Understanding the 3rd terror war” (Column One, March 25) is
that Israel will have to resign itself to killing the enemy – not just the
occasional terrorist, but lots of them.
Turn off CNN and the BBC because
they are not going to like it, but sooner or later Israel is going to have to
fight a war to win, and you win by crushing the enemy. Otherwise, the
Palestinians will again nickel and dime you to death with a Fogel-type massacre
By the way, what has Israel done to avenge that massacre?
Nothing? Well, I’m sure the enemy has taken note.ABE KRIEGER
Park, New Jersey Incomplete picture
Sir, – The latest unemployment statistics
are encouraging (“Unemployment drops sharply to 6.1%,” Business & Finance,
March 25), but one should not overlook the fact that the statistics relate only
to persons actually registering for unemployment or who are qualified to
register as unemployed. They exclude very large numbers of unemployed people who
have lost faith in labor exchanges.
The statistics also do not
distinguish between part-time and fulltime employment, or temporary one-time
Should a survey be done to establish how many unemployed we
really have, the percentage would be dramatically higher.DAVID GOSHEN
Kiryat Ono Lambs chopped
Sir, – “The emergence of Turkey’s hidden Jews”
(Fundamentally Freund, March 24) was most interesting, but it did not mention
the problem of mamzerut among the Donmeh since they almost certainly did not
write proper gittin when they divorced.
Even worse, there was their
“Night of the Lambs,” which was marked by wife-swapping. This was part of the
Sabbatian concept of “descending into the world of the klippot (evil powers)” by
the ritual performance of biblical prohibitions such as sexual relations with
someone else’s wife in order to redeem the “sparks of holiness” lost
In their esoteric theology, only children so conceived could
become the vehicles for receiving the transmigrated soul of Shabbetai Tsvi and
thereby bring the final messianic redemption.MARTIN D. STERN
Most astonishing eyes
Sir, – Regarding “Hollywood icon Elizabeth Taylor dies at
79” (Arts & Entertainment, March 24), during the 1970s I served as executive
secretary of the Hadassah Council in Israel, and our office was situated on the
ground floor of the Hadassah building on Rehov Strauss.
who was a child specialist at Hadassah-Ein Kerem, had a unit for research two
floors up, and one day he asked to use our board room, which was adjacent to my
office, to host Elizabeth Taylor and her husband. They were going to be guests
at a Variety Club event in Jerusalem to raise funds for children whose health
was at risk, and he wanted to show them the model of a complex he was hoping to
There was no elevator in our building, and he explained that
Taylor had broken her leg horse riding in England.
The day of the visit,
Taylor had to go through my office, and she stopped to shake hands with me, so I
managed to get a glimpse of her violet eyes – the most astonishing eyes I have
The visit lasted 15 minutes.
We had been told it was to
be treated with utmost secrecy, but with all the precautions taken, we could not
prevent curious and excited crowds from gathering at the entrance to the
building.MIRIAM (MICKEY) BLUMBERG
Jerusalem Miracles happen
Regarding the possibility of a Hamas-Fatah union (“Hamas divided over offer by
Abbas to visit Gaza for unity talks,” March 21), could a unified Palestinian
people ever find a way to live with the Jewish State of Israel? As Elie Wiesel
stated in his 2002 autobiographical documentary First Person Singular: “If
Israel and Germany could find a way to make peace after World War II and the
Holocaust, why is it not possible that the Israelis and the Palestinians might
not do so as well?” Should Israel be leery of such an alliance between Hamas and
the Palestinian Authority? Yes.
Nevertheless, in a Middle East where
miracles occur every day, maybe, just maybe, radical transmutations might occur
in the Israeli-Palestinian bubble, too.YOEL NITZARIM
Lessons from Japan
Sir, – The tragic earthquake in Japan has served to awaken
many countries to the need to prepare for such disasters. Israel is particularly
vulnerable, and The Jerusalem Post
has accurately cited the urgency to take
steps to minimize damage.
Emphasis, however, has been placed on more
stringent building codes to strengthen old edifices as well as new
Surprisingly, little attention has been focused on public
education, including school safety.
Understanding what causes
earthquakes, and basic safety instructions, are vital to lessening anxiety and
saving lives. As a former teacher who has experienced quakes and was involved in
earthquake safety in the US, I urge the government to create and initiate a
program for its citizens.CHANA GIVON
Razin, shown here, was one of “2 leading Israeli scientists to get Canada
Gairdner awards” (March 24). The photo and caption used for that article were
incorrect. The Post
regrets the error.