Let’s not be fools
Sir, – There is an old saying that a fool is easily parted
from his money. If it is true that US President Barack Obama succeeded in
reaching out to Israelis with his recent speech to the General Assembly, then it
is with great sadness that I say that the Jews will be easily parted from their
one and only historic and legal land (“‘Post’ poll finds surge in Obama
popularity in Israel,” September 28).
The process, of course, has already
been started. One must ask the question why only now, when Obama’s popularity is
nearing rock bottom and he is losing the Jewish vote (and money), does he
suddenly do a turnaround. It deserves an answer as we know without a shadow of a
doubt that he still denies us our right to build in all parts of our land,
including Jerusalem, our eternal undivided capital.
Closing our eyes to
the reality that, piece by piece, our home is being taken from us is no longer
an alternative.YENTEL JACOBS
Netanya Undoing Obama?
Sir, – Given the
fact that former US president Bill Clinton is the consummate political animal
(“Et tu, Bill,” Into the Fray,” September 28), I have to wonder what benefit he
expects to derive from his anti- Netanyahu/pro-Palestinian and - Saudi
Surely, Clinton is more aware than is Martin Sherman as to just
how difficult Yasser Arafat made the last part of his presidency, yet he almost
alters history and his own personal facts to hammer Israel.
At the very
moment the Democratic Party and President Obama are doing everything in their
power to prove their undying support for Israel to American Jewish voters,
Clinton steps in. It is almost as if he is deliberately trying to torpedo
Obama’s almost hopeless attempt to establish his pro-Israel bona fides with
American supporters of the Jewish state.KENNETH BESIG
Kiryat Arba Old,
Sir, – Uri Savir (“Alone together,” Savir’s Corner, September 28)
repeats the shibboleth of the Left when he says: “The outcome of negotiations...
is well known to every realist.”
His gramophone needle seems to be stuck
in its 1993 groove.
For him, nothing has transpired since.
“well known” outcome includes the “border based on the 1967 lines, with mutually
agreed swaps.” Is there one Palestinian leader who has uttered a willingness to
cede Ma’aleh Adumim and the Etzion Bloc to Israel? He mentions “a limited
Israeli and international military presence along the Jordan Valley.” Is there
one Palestinian leader who has ever voiced agreement to this? They want a
Palestinian state with absolutely no Jews.
He writes about a “solution of
the Palestinian refugee problem through the right of return to the State of
Palestine.” Is there a Palestinian leader who has ever considered that? If this
is Savir’s idea of realism, I don’t know what surrealism is.AVIGDOR
Sir, – Uri Savir’s essay is written as if he had been a
neutral observer living on Mars. Yet by reaching out to the PLO in Oslo, Savir
and his cohorts in effect affirmed the narrative that the Arabs have a just
cause and the only way to end their aggression against Israel is to endow them
with legitimacy and a right to self-determination (which was marketed to the
Israeli public as autonomy, not statehood).
Savir talks about the “two
sides” and draws inaccurate parallels between Palestinian and Israeli problems.
He is equally critical of the UN speeches by Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu
and Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas, even though the latter’s
diatribe spotlighted a sequence of historical distortions.
the “international system” and the “international community,” which have a long
history of failure in dealing with inter-ethnic conflicts and are extremely
antagonistic to Israel and its legitimate rights in this land.
facts on the ground today in Judea, Samaria and Gaza, in addition to the turmoil
in surrounding Arab states, the current status quo is definitely preferable to
any of Savir’s fantasies.
Indeed, the pre-Oslo status quo would be even
Jerusalem True reciprocity
Sir, – Proposing what he
calls “Reciprocity and mutuality – the key to Middle East peacemaking”
(Encountering Peace, September 27), Gershon Baskin would like to see Israel stop
building in the West Bank while in return the Palestinian Authority would
refrain from suing and boycotting Israel.
Wouldn’t true reciprocity and
mutuality mean that Israel stops building in the West Bank and so does the
Palestinian Authority? Or that the PA refrains from suing and boycotting Israel
while Israel refrains from suing and boycotting the PA? What Baskin is proposing
is that the PA refrain from violating one or two of its obligations going back
to Oslo, while Israel violates the rights of its own settlers in
return.MARK L. LEVINSON
Herzliya Tibi is right
Sir, – A few comments
following criticism over MK Ahmed Tibi’s trip to the UN (“Diplomatic upgrade,”
Letters, September 25): I wish more Jewish MKs would support Tibi when he
declares that the occupation and settlements set the Mideast conflict toward a
never-ending, decadent road while many of our soldiers serving in the IDF
continue to serve as police guards at West Bank checkpoints, blocking civilians
and protecting lawless Jewish fanatics settled in the Judean hills and
Tibi rightfully uses the privileges granted to him under
Israel’s democracy to promote his agenda for the rights of the country’s Arab
minority and the rights of the Arab majority in the West Bank. However, it’s
more important for us to understand that the difficulty of living under
occupation is almost negligible when comparing it to the lasting damage done to
our society when we walk blindly along a path that diminishes and destroys our
sacred values of freedom and equality for all.
The occupation and
settlements hurt us more than they hurt the Palestinians! RAMI LADOR
Ya’acov Wasted standards
Sir, – To import anything electrical into Israel
requires the approval of the Standards Institute, which determines if the item
is safe for the public. To get such approval takes several weeks. This seems no
different from the US or EU. But it is very different.
percent of the electrical items imported into Israel have already been approved
by the parallel standards bodies of the US (UL) or EU (EC). There is no need for
a country of our size to have its own electrical approval process.
should simply be required to have been approved by the UL or EC.
extra bureaucracy does more than raise costs for importers, who must pay for the
approval process while sitting on depreciating inventory.
change so quickly there are many onetime opportunities and closeout buys in the
home appliance and consumer electronics fields that are perfect for a small
country and would significantly (often by more than 50%) lower costs to the
The problem is that many importers are understandably unwilling
to go through the approval process for one-time buys. This also reduces overall
I have been studying the Israeli market for the past four
months and would very conservatively estimate that Israelis are overpaying for
all their electrical and electronic purchases by 15%.
What a terrible
shame! JOEL JAKOBOVITS
The writer is a mechanical engineer with
experience in international consumer electronics