No more groveling
Sir, – Regarding “PA decides to halt talks unless building
freeze reinstated” (October 3) – now is the time to right the wrongs that were
created by the Oslo Accords and the disengagement from Gaza. The Palestinians
have never given us the confidence that they want to make peace with us. In
fact, the opposite is true.
We seem to want a Palestinian state more than
they do. We refuse to take apart their arguments – some of which border on the
absurd, if they are not out-and-out lies – for fear of upsetting
They continue on their merry way because they have never had to pay
a cost for their intransigence.
Building in the major settlement blocks
should be a given with no afterthought of what the Palestinians will do
regarding the peace process. If they want to leave it, so be it. If they refuse
to negotiate, we should build beyond those areas and create facts on the
The Palestinians have to realize once and for all that past
promises must be kept; otherwise, there will be a cost involved.
groveling and begging from our leaders. If we stay strong, as we did in 1967,
the Arabs will understand that they have no choice but to negotiate, and we will
negotiate with strength.
Where else in history has the defeated side, in
a war that it started, dictated the terms of the agreement? BILL WEBER
Nuptial hearing loss
Sir, – Regarding “Noisy music can endanger teens’ hearing”
(in Judy Siegel-Itzkovich’s “Health scan,” October 3): Anyone who has been to an
Israeli wedding knows only too well that the volume of the music is way over the
safe decibel level. One can barely hear oneself think, let alone have any
No one would choose to be near an aircraft preparing for
takeoff (crew members wear ear muffs), yet music at a similar decibel level is
listened to, and the long-term detrimental effect is ignored.SALLY SHAW
Kfar Saba Blaming the GOP
Sir, – Douglas M. Bloomfield worries (in “Can the GOP
block a Palestinian state?,” October 3) that if the Israelis and Palestinians
really want to make peace, then the Republicans would be spoilers, because they
would want to make Obama look bad.
That’s about as ridiculous as saying
that should Jerusalem experience a blizzard, the Republicans would withhold
emergency snow removal equipment just to spite Obama.
Rather than take
the Obama administration to task for leaning on Israel in order to bring about
an improbable peace accord, Bloomfield criticizes the Republicans over a
hypothetical response to a hypothetical nonevent.
His political prejudice
is obvious.DAVID KATCOFF
Jericho, Vermont Tutu no-no
Sir, – In “Jo’burg
University rejects calls to sever ties with BGU” (October 1), Jenny Gross writes
that the proposal to sever ties “had been endorsed by antiapartheid icon
Archbishop emeritus Desmond Tutu.” What Gross does not mention is that Tutu is
also an anti-Israel icon.
Tutu had “greatness” thrust upon him, and he
ventures into areas about which he has no knowledge. And in these painfully
politically correct times, no one has the guts to tell him he is way out beyond
his depth, and his biased slip is showing from under his cassock.
outrageous that Tutu is still a patron of the Cape Town Holocaust Centre, and he
has just been appointed a patron of the new Johannesburg Holocaust Foundation.
Political correctness and appeasement know no bounds.
As an ex-South
African (now Israeli ) I call for Tutu’s resignation or removal from the
patronage of Holocaust centers in South Africa.BENJAMIN KATZMAN
Dror Obstacles to peace?
Sir, – Gil Troy, in “Amateur hour in Obama-land”
(September 29) writes: “[President Obama’s] tendency to see settlements as the
main obstacle to peace broadens his blind spot.”
It is high time to
recall former senator Jesse Helms’s sober declaration (Congressional Record S
6171): “There were no settlements in 1948 to constitute an ‘obstacle to peace’
yet the trans- Jordanians invaded... There were no settlements in 1967 to
constitute an ‘obstacle to peace’ yet the Jordanians invaded again!” KARL
Berlin Aid boats to the British coast
Sir, – Regarding “Miliband’s
mother among supporters of Jewish aid boat to Gaza” (September 27): That’s great
for Israel. Now we have a Jewish leader of the Labor Party with a mother
supporting a ship aimed to land at Gaza.
I am sure that with Mrs. Kozak’s
newfound protekzia Israeli ships full of activists will be able to reciprocate
and bring Christmas gifts to underprivileged British children and come ashore at
Bournemouth, Brighton or anywhere along the British coastline where there are no
What a wonderful idea. I am sure son Ed
would approve of it.CAROLINE BRADLEY
Hampshire Dignified at the UN
– If the UN General Assembly met on a Christian or Muslim holiday, and certain
delegations were absent due to religious considerations, would Jeremy Ruden
(“UN-dignified,” September 27) and others be as critical of them as they are of
the Israeli representatives for not attending Obama’s speech on Succot? Judaism
is not a second-rate religion whose representatives conduct themselves with an
inferiority complex. I and many others were proud to see those empty
New York and Jerusalem
Sir, – Unless our Israeli
delegation never notified either the UN officials or the White House of the
dates of our major festival of Succot, I find Jeremy Ruden’s article an
Those representing our Jewish State appropriately absented
themselves from the proceedings.
The speech never should have been given
on Succot if the focus of discussion was Israel! CHANA SIMCKES
Beit Shemesh Not
a Christian organization
Sir, – In the article headlined “Christian pro-Israel
group opens headquarters in east Jerusalem” (October 1), the headline is wrong:
Our organization is not a Christian organization at all. The Knesset Christian
Allies Caucus is made up of 17 members of Knesset, none of them Christian. The
International Israel Allies Caucus Foundation – the umbrella organization that
coordinates the activities between the sister caucuses – is also a Jewish
The whole goal of the KCAC and IIACF is to reach out to
Christian leaders in order to build direct lines of communication and
cooperation for the State of Israel. We are both Jewish
The Knesset Christian Allies Caucus is Chaired by MK David
Rotem, not Benny Elon. Its headquarters is in the Knesset, though it has offices
in the Shalom Yerushalayim building as well. The caucus was formed in 2004 by
eight members of Knesset.
Our caucus in the US Congress is called the
“Congressional Israel Allies Caucus.” It was founded by Congressman David Weldon
and Congressman Elliot Engel. It is chaired today by Congressman Mike Pence and
Congressman Elliot Engel. The congressman mentioned in the article as our
founder and chair is one of the congressmen who sit on the board of directors of
the foundation.JOSHUA S. REINSTEIN
Knesset Christian Allies