October 14: Vanishing Jews

Those who are so concerned about intermarriage are aware that the solution, as with assimilation, starts in the home with traditional Jewish education.

By JERUSALEM POST READERS
November 13, 2013 21:52
Letters

Letters 370. (photo credit: REUTERS/Handout )

Only real issue

Sir, – With regard to “PM to lobby Hollande, Putin against Iran deal” (November 12), many months ago Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu was demanding that Tehran be given an ultimatum to dismantle its nuclear program or face imminent attack. He realized at the time that the fabled table having all the options on it, including the military option, did not actually exist.

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The US decided against any military option, probably long ago. Therefore, it came to the mirage of a bargaining table in Geneva with no cards in its hands.

The results are apparent. The lack of a military option is the real and only issue.

PAUL RABOFF
Jerusalem

Releasing Pollard

Sir, – In your report “Rafi Eitan: US told Israel Pollard would serve 10 years” (November 12), the former cabinet minister claims he was only following orders from then-prime minister Shimon Peres, saying he has deep regrets for incriminating Jonathan Pollard and that he is devoting his last years to bring about Pollard’s release.

Esther Pollard once wrote that Eitan had informed her his only regret was that he did not put a bullet through her husband’s head to prevent the affair. I tend to believe Ms. Pollard’s side of the story.

DANIEL ABELMAN

Jerusalem

Sir, – Though I applaud The Jerusalem Post for its sincere effort to extricate Jonathan Pollard from a fate worse than death (“Pollard’s fate,” Editorial, November 10), the arguments presented will fall on deaf ears.

Every one following Pollard’s saga already knows that his sentence was the longest and harshest in US jurisprudence for one count of passing classified information to an ally. It was not treason. Pollard spied for Israel, an ally, and it was recently confirmed that the US has long been spying on Israel.

The US reneged on a plea-bargain agreement.

Then-secretary of defense Caspar Weinberger and others presented false information to the judge. Pollard’s original counsel was ineffective, and the US Jewish leadership and the State of Israel were less than daunting in their support for him.

Leading officials who prosecuted the case against Pollard are now his greatest advocates for executive clemency. If all of the above arguments were not sufficient to obtain Pollard’s release, surely all the “righteous indignation” of all the Cal Thomases and other pundits will not move President Barack Obama to release Pollard.

Whatever lesson the US originally had in mind by throwing the book at Pollard, it no longer makes any sense. He has already served more time than any other spy for his crime.

The point was made! One thing for sure: No leaders of other ethnic or religious groups would tolerate such gross injustice.

There is only one reasonable approach that might motivate Obama to release Pollard.

Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu must forcefully remind the president that on numerous occasions in the past the US has pressured Israel to free Arab terrorists (even with blood on their hands), endangering Israeli citizens, as “good-will gestures” to the Palestinians. It is unfathomable that Israel cannot ask for the same reciprocity for Pollard.

That’s what friends and allies are for!

ROBERT DUBLIN
Jerusalem

Grand jury

Sir, – Regarding “After acquittal, Liberman returns as FM” (November 12), the acquittal of Avigdor Liberman after 17 years of investigation demonstrates the wisdom of America’s founding fathers, as seen in the Fifth Amendment of the United States Constitution.

In the relevant part it mandates that “no one can be held to answer for an... infamous crime unless on a presentment or indictment of a grand jury.”

Under such a criminal justice system, the decision of whether or not to fully prosecute a suspect does not sit with the unbridled discretion of the office of the prosecutor alone, but with a group of the accused’s peers.

The Liberman file highlights the fact that the sole power to prosecute given to one unchecked office is a concentration of power that is the antithesis of a healthy democracy.

If Israel had a mechanism similar to the grand jury to provide a check and balance to the state prosecutor, it would have returned a “no true bill” pronouncement on the insufficient indictment presented to it by Attorney-General Yehuda Weinstein, thus saving the Israeli taxpayer countless shekels in the investigation and adjudication of an indictment lacking sufficient evidentiary support.

ANN LEVIN
Ginot Shomron

The writer is an attorney and lecturer on the faculty of law at Ono Academic College


Carte blanche?

Sir, – With all due respect to a prominent rabbi, it ill-behooves Warren Goldstein (“Ministers of international polarization,” Sinai Today, November 8) to write what appears to be libel about someone in another country who was democratically elected.

Or can the media now write whatever it likes as long as a byline is attached?

J. FISCHER

Michmoret

Vanishing Jews

Sir, – I feel sure that those who are so concerned about intermarriage are aware that the solution, as with assimilation, starts in the home with traditional Jewish education.

A Jewish person meets a gentile.

Both eat the same type of food. Both dress according to the fashion of the day. Both speak the same language. Both know the name of a place where they do not go to pray. In short, they have the same cultural traits. So which one is assimilating? One could weep at the paucity of Jewish knowledge that gradually brings on what is known as the “silent holocaust.” May the All Merciful preserve us! LEONARD BOOK Ashkelon Sir, – In light of all the talk about intermarriage and Jewish continuity, love kills more of Jewry than does hate. But for God’s sake, don’t tell this to anti-Semites. If they start to love Jewry they will destroy it.

Hatred of Jews has saved world Jewry for thousands of years. This is an age-old truth.

MARY and JAKOB BEILINSON
Gedera

Sir,

Dropping out isn’t a phenomenon limited to Jews or to America.

Multiculturalism has swept the Western world, prodding people to ignore differences and to celebrate the “fact” that everyone is alike.

This attitude erases the special characteristics of many groups, such as Jews, and disposes young people to blend in with the masses.

The fact is that Jews are extraordinary by most measures, and Jewish thought is the foundation, in tandem with the ancient Greek philosophers, of the Western world. For Jews to give up their ancient heritage and join the masses is disturbing not only for them, but for the future of humanity.

It is incumbent on the Jewish community to show young Jews that separating themselves in certain areas is not “racism,” but a natural inclination to promote a unique culture.

Being Jewish has never been easy, but that difficulty certainly has something to do with the extraordinary achievements of the Jews. Breaking the link with Judaism will diminish our children’s lives and the lives of further generations.

While I don’t believe that all Jews should up and move to Israel, it appears that being comfortable in the Diaspora may lead to a dead end.

STEVE KRAMER

Alfei Menashe

CORRECTION In “Netanyahu awards $1 million prize for biofuel innovation” (November 13), the philanthropists were Eric and Sheila Samson, and not as stated.


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