Map of justification?
Sir, – Regarding “Jerusalem teenager stabbed in apparent
terror attack” (October 23), the Post seems to feel that describing Ramot as
being “over the pre-1967 Green Line” helps the reader understand that it is in
an area occupied by Israel. So are the Jerusalem neighborhoods of Ramat Eshkol,
Does this justify – or encourage – the stabbing of a teenager? LEO BERG
Jerusalem Follow the money
Sir, – Palestinian Authority President
Mahmoud Abbas is handing out huge sums of cash to the Palestinian murderers just
let go from Israeli jails (“Abbas to reward prisoners released in Schalit deal,”
October 23). I wonder if the American taxpayers and the various NGOs that
support Abbas know how their financial support is being used.
them if they know and simply don’t care.JOSHUA J. ADLER
Sir, – After reading “Rioters block march against segregation
in Mea She’arim” (October 23), I wondered what the reaction would be if a group
of haredim paraded in an absolutely nonreligious neighborhood and quietly
chanted prayers and perhaps blew a shofar or two.
Wouldn’t we – myself
included – say that they were troublemakers? Surely, if the marchers mentioned
in your article were to demonstrate in Arab towns against gender segregation
they would be considered intolerant.
Why the difference? Similarly, in
Rabbi Uri Regev’s op-ed (“Social justice, religious freedom and the tent
protests,” Comment & Features, October 23), I find a clear lack of tolerance
and true liberalism.
Although I don’t personally see the necessity for
gender segregation on buses, I can respect a different opinion, especially if
the bus travels through haredi neighborhoods.
As Regev heads a group that
espouses freedom of religion, I would expect more understanding on his part. I
would respectfully suggest that instead of threatening a culture war, he promote
more Jewish culture and thus help lower the very high rates of intermarriage in
Conservative and Reform Judaism.YITZCHOK ELEFANT
Dimona The writer is a
Sir, – If, as Rabbi Uri Regev says, the Israel Democracy Institute ranks
religious freedom in Israel no higher than in Syria, Saudi Arabia or China, then
maybe the IDI is less than objective.
At midday on Yom Kippur, if I feel
like it, I can put a big cross around my neck and walk down Tel Aviv’s Allenby
Street singing “Jesus Loves Me” while eating a ham sandwich. Maybe not in Mea
She’arim, but around Tel Aviv and, I dare say, across most of the country,
anyone can easily find a place to express any religious feelings in public as an
individual or a community.
At midday during Ramadan in Saudi Arabia,
where can I wear a crucifix in public? I can’t even bring one into the country.
I can’t openly organize a prayer meeting if it isn’t Islamic.
The IDI has
evidently let its own agenda overwhelm its sense of proportion.MARK L.
Herzliya How very encouraging
Sir, – After seeing the bloody way
Muammar Gaddafi was summarily executed (“Gaddafi killed in gruesome mob attack,”
October 21), the world can now rest assured that in the Arab world, a Benjamin
Franklin, Thomas Jefferson or Abraham Lincoln will arise to lead the people into
a democratic future.SONYA FEDERMAN
Jerusalem Under the boards
Sir, – The
reason Maccabi Tel Aviv lost to Olimpia Milano (“Mac TA defeated by Milano in
opener,” Sports, October 21) was not poor shooting, but the lack of an inside
game and rebounding. It’s amazing that Maccabi would field a team without three
or four big men to match European competition.
Why doesn’t your reporter
write more critically? Maccabi’s management should be soundly berated. You
cannot win relying on perimeter shooting alone.P. RABOFF
army of one
Sir, – Tzahi Hanegbi’s account of his interaction with Gilad
Schalit’s grandfather (“Let’s learn the lessons,” Comment & Features,
October 21) raises profound concerns about the prisoner exchange.
says that “Zvi Schalit sought to persuade me that the state should not draft
tougher principles on negotiating with terrorists until his grandson was safely
returned to his family.”
This shows at least one Schalit family member
recognized that the deal under consideration might have been contrary to the
best national policy, yet the elder Schalit pushed for the government to make
the deal to release his grandson before greater societal interests were
Far from a principled stand on the value of any single Jewish
soldier’s life (as many have described it), this was a deal in which Schalit
placed the value of his grandson above that of all other
Hanegbi says he decided to express his opinions on this issue
of critical importance only in private discussions with government officials so
as “not to worsen the family’s pain.” In failing to make his views public, the
then-chairman of the Knesset Foreign Affairs and Defense Committee allowed the
Schalit family and sympathetic news media to control the public debate, leading
to a potentially dangerous outcome. An important elected official acted at the
request of a single individual rather than focusing on the safety and security
of all Israelis as his overriding priority.EFRAIM A. COHEN
Ya’acov Tenacity, not stupidity
Sir, – Caroline B. Glick, in her inimitable way,
has blasted the media for exploiting the Gilad Schalit campaign (“Marketing
Gilad Schalit,” Column One, October 21).
She is not happy that her idol,
our prime minister, caved in to public pressure inspired by the media. Her
bottom line is that it’s “only a matter of time before the public again is
convinced to support policies that it knows endanger the country.”
one, did not need the media to convince me to actively support the campaign for
Schalit’s freedom. Instead of admiring the tenacity of the Israeli public, Glick
is treating us as if we are all stupid.ZELDA HARRIS
Tel Aviv Sentence
with a twist
Sir, – Shmuley Boteach, in “Israel must have a death penalty for
terrorists” (Comment & Features, October 21), seeks to preempt the next
Schalit affair by proposing to eliminate the lures that motivate Hamas to
undertake kidnappings. Alas, his proposal lacks viability inasmuch as various
streams of Israeli democracy and the expected international outcry might join to
block its enactment.
Accordingly, I propose the following scenario:
Israel legislates that individuals convicted of terrorism be sentenced to death,
although the sentence will be held in abeyance pending the next
Then, by dint of its pre-publicized legislation, Israel will
put the onus on Hamas by declaring that each day (or week) that it refuses to
release the kidnap victim will trigger the execution of a previously sentenced
Think about it: Hamas, not Israel, will possess the triggering
mechanism for carrying out a death sentence on one of its own.
approach would require numerous refinements and would have to withstand the
unforgiving test of wisdom. But at least it would be part of the discussion
taking place in Israel.PINCHAS COHEN
Teaneck, New Jersey