Apology not enough
Sir, – Finance Minister Yair Lapid calls the unnecessarily
long process of finding a governor for the Bank of Israel “shocking” (“In
surprise turnabout, Karnit Flug nominated as BoI governor,” October 21). He then
goes on to say: “I don’t mind apologizing to Ms. Flug if it will make everyone
That’s jolly decent of you, Mr.
Lapid! I think
Karnit Flug deserves more than “I’m sorry,” and the country deserves an
explanation from Lapid and Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu.
Why did it
take so long to appoint the right person – the person outgoing governor Stanley
Fischer had highly recommended for the job?
Sir, – Prof. Ruth Arnon warns Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu that
failure to immediately sign an agreement on scientific cooperation with the
European Union can bring “irreversible damage to Israeli science in particular
and to the state in general” (“Israel Academy of Sciences president: Government
must sign Horizon 2010,” October 21).
This is the same EU that has
attempted to force Israeli companies to halt all operations in east Jerusalem,
the Golan Heights and the so-called West Bank. It should know that this is not
1933 and that Jews no longer pay attention to “edicts” instructing us what we
may do and may not do.
Water always finds its own level, and Israeli
science will prevail in the international arena with or without co-operation,
mutual assistance or collaboration with a so-called scientific body whose agenda
includes political antics.
DAVID S. ADDLEMAN
Sir, – Surely
somebody as scientifically intelligent as Ruth Arnon must know that her argument
about not signing the cooperation agreement with the European Union equally
applies to the EU and its scientists.
In an ideal world, politics would
not interfere with science.
But the EU (through faceless bureaucrats) has
come up with a political formula that is to be applied solely in relation to
Israel and the West Bank when it comes to science, the total opposite of what it
does with other countries involved in territorial disputes, such as North Cyprus
and Morocco/Western Sahara.
Why is Arnon not at least telling the EU to
avoid being inconsistent?
Sir, – Ruth Arnon’s warning
is outrageous. She ought to know that the Europeans put a poison pill in the
accord that makes it more of a political instrument than a scientific
Agreeing to the EU’s terms means accepting its
notion of what Israel’s borders ought to be – borders that Abba Eban once
defined as “Auschwitz borders.”
Does Arnon forget the age-old oppression
and persecution of Jews in Europe? This oppression is a tradition that goes back
1,700 years to Constantine or before. Have the Europeans honestly given up their
traditional Judeophobia or are they simply hiding their bigotry behind Arab
grievances against Israel (real, invented or hyperbolic)? Does Arnon wish to
collaborate with contemporary Europe’s advocacy of an apartheid policy against
Jews in Judea and Samaria, which the Palestinian Authority promises to implement
if and when it gets a state in the territories it claims? Israeli science
flourished before the cooperation accord with the EU, and funds come in from a
variety of sources. Sales of natural gas are likely to make up for whatever
money is lost by the rejection of Horizon 2020.
I hope that Arnon is not
being disingenuous and that perhaps she has just forgotten the political and
historical issues at stake.
However, in view of the extreme, often
fanatic politicization of Israeli academia, one cannot be sure.JACK
Jerusalem Pay for it, too
Sir, – “New X ray system at Allenby to
increase Palestinian exports by 30%” (October 20) describes the updated Allenby
Bridge crossing between Israel and Jordan, which will allow greater and easier
transport of people and goods on a daily basis. At the top of the same page you
describe how upset peace negotiator and Justice Minister Tzipi Livni is (“Livni
moves to squash bill prohibiting talks on J’lem”).
I was a proud soldier
in the IDF in 1989-1990, stationed in Jericho and involved in daily security on
the Allenby Bridge. We had a lot of work to do, but we made sure to treat
everyone crossing in and out of Israel with the proper respect. Well, I think it
is time that Israel received some respect.
It is very nice that the Dutch
government has already donated all the equipment to upgrade the current system,
but why are we supplying the remaining NIS 35 million to complete the project?
Where is the Palestinian money to upgrade a service provided by Israel for the
Palestinian people? If the Palestinians want the service, why can’t they pay for
the upgrade? Why must we always bow to everyone else’s needs? If we are giving
permission for what they want, would it not be fair if they paid for the
project? So how does this relate to Livni? Very simple. Who made her prime
minister? She barely crossed the threshold to make it back to the Knesset, and
now she says that if she is not given authority to negotiate our final status
borders there can never be peace with the Palestinians.
On the same day
and on the same page in your paper, we learn that anything the Palestinians want
we should not only give them, but pay for.YECHIEL AARON
Falling for propaganda
Sir, – I read “Opening a new chapter in the China-Israel
relationship” (Comment & Features, October 21). This is not the first time
Israeli media have fallen for propaganda from representatives of the Chinese
communist regime who are trying to put on a “nice face.”
It was also
disappointing not to find any reference to the harvesting of organs of Falun
Gong practitioners in China, the transfer of funds to terrorists through the
country’s national bank, or Beijing’s support for the Iranian nuclear program –
so hot a topic for us now.
I choose not to sit silently in the face of
organ harvesting and other bad things the Chinese communist regime is doing that
can affect life in Israel.
Rishon Lezion Trade cooperation
Sir, – With regard to “Carolina on my mind” (Global Agenda, Business &
Finance, October 18), New York State signed a memorandum of understanding for
research and development with the State of Israel back in September 2009. It was
followed with an implementation agreement for advanced nanotechnology
cooperation between the College of Nanoscale Science and Engineering at Albany,
New York, and the Israeli Industry Center for R&D, known as
This agreement has been in the works for months, and dozens of
Israeli companies are actively collaborating with the college’s engineers to
produce the next generation of wafers and chips.
In addition, the
Technion–Israel Institute of Technology has connected with Cornell University to
establish a multi-billion-dollar campus for advanced engineering and computer
science in New York City.
Furthermore, Israel is the state’s
fourth-largest trading partner, importing over $5 billion of merchandise from
New York, more than Germany, France or Britain! So, long-term for New York, it
is science, engineering and stateof- the art manufacturing and
The writer represents New York
State’s trade interests in Israel