Sir, – Your article “Harsher sentences for hit-and-run
drivers” (October 5) indicates that people are looking for a cure instead of
going for prevention – by attacking the root cause of the problem: The pubs,
nightclubs and places of entertainment whose profits rise markedly the more
alcohol they sell to their customers.
The fact that a customer leaves in
an intoxicated state is today no responsibility of theirs. The time has come to
bring heavy civil claims against these places to hold them liable when they let
obviously drunk customers drive off.
A few large successful damage claims
will force pubs and other sellers of alcohol to set up designated driver
programs like they have in the US. Prevention is always much cheaper and more
effective than a cure! DAVID GOSHEN
Kiryat Ono Smaller deficit
Sir, – I was much
relieved to read “Turkey's House of Cards” by Caroline B. Glick, (Our World,
October 4) which describes Turkey as an economically crippled nation.
says Turkey has a current accounts deficit of ”nearly 9 percent,” and will soon
overtake Greece as the country with the biggest economic headache. I lost the
feeling of relief in less than the three minutes it took to look up
International Monetary Fund data.
Turkey’s current account deficit is
only 5.2%, which is not quite the same as “nearly 9 percent.”
record, I would be tickled pink if it really was 9%, but it’s not up to me (or
Beit Shemesh Why the cheers?
Sir, – Why wave the
pom-poms for the light rail? Stephen Rosenberg (“What a great light rail!,”
Comment & Features, October 4) sounds like a public relations person for the
Transportation Ministry or some other entity with an interest in the light rail.
Aside from serious errors in reporting figures – it must carry thousands of
passengers each day, and not just “hundreds” – he also seems to know where
everyone is going. And don't assume people forget their cars and parking
problems, because for many, the stations are out of walking range. After all,
isn’t that why big parking lots are being opened near stations? Should we also
assume that many of the current riders will revert to their cars once the light
rail starts charging a fee? It behooves some fact-checking.DIANA
Sir, – Stephen Rosenberg has clearly not taken the
opportunity to walk up Jaffa Road to see the condition of the stations along the
Convenient and functional they may be – but certainly not
Virtually every station has been vandalized, spray painted with
graffiti, and at the station outside City Hall, the glass ticket machine has
All in all a sad reflection as to how some of our citizens
treat what should be a cause for civic pride.JEFFREY GILBERT
Sir, – I find Stephen Rosenberg’s panegyric on the Jerusalem light rail slightly
Due to a ridge on each side, the seats are not comfortable.
The jerkiness when the train starts and stops is unpleasant. More important,
there are not sufficient “grab rails.” Passengers standing in the aisle between
the rows of seats have little to hold on to.
That said, I certainly agree
with Rosenberg’s views on the aesthetics of the of the project and think
Jerusalemites will eventually boast about it. However, I regret that the
magnificent bridge has been saddled with the lame sobriquet “Bridge of Strings.”
I think a far more eloquent name would be “Bridge of Ties” – reminiscent of the
beautiful bridge in Venice.OSCAR DAVIES
Jerusalem Hands off
Aymenn Jawad’s brilliant analysis (“Security threat from Yemen?,” Comment &
Features, October 3) lights the way for smart policy. The idea is to keep our
hands off as long as the fissures in the Islamic countries keep terrorism
The Arab Spring has deepened sectarian divisions and is leading to
civil war and chaos. The Middle East is now being torn apart by ethnic rivalries
and a religious ethic that sanctifies intolerance and can easily be exploited
for political ends. A civilized outcome is impossible as long as Islamic law
The West needs to muster the humility to admit that
there is little it can do outside of containment.
Ultimately, the people
of the Middle East must come to understand that Islam is the source of their
troubles before a real revolution can take place.DAVID KATCOFF
Vermont You tattletales
Sir, – The problem is not about timing in the building
of more apartments in Gilo, but exposing the fact at all (“Gilo construction
could derail Quartet’s peace initiative, say US, EU diplomats,” October
The media is the most irresponsible organization in the
With the help of your paper as well as the entire media, we speak
much and do little.
Sometimes it is better to use some discretion when
choosing to print certain articles.SYLVIA WEISSMANN
German Chancellor Angela Merkel seems to be outraged that Israel intends to
build in Gilo and in other parts of Jerusalem. She seems to have forgotten,
although I remember it well, that for years after World War II a Russian- built
wall divided Berlin. When it came down, there was happiness and joy and gladness
throughout Germany. Indeed, that was the beginning of the end of the Soviet
Does she want Jerusalem to build a wall through its center so that
Jews should once more be denied access to their most holy site? I wonder if all
those advocating the division of Jerusalem realize where the Green Line actually
From the very beginning, while Israel has made many concessions, the
Palestinians have not altered by one iota their demands. It seems that the UN et
al can see that no matter what arguments they introduce, the Palestinians are
adamant in not altering these three demands.
Pressure is put only on
Israel because they consider it to be more likely to make further
The guarantees of the EU and the UN for Israel’s security
would not be worth the paper it’s written on, as we know how much trust we can
put in international agreements.CYRIL ATKINS
Beit Shemesh A cover-up?
Sir, – Martin Sherman (“Et tu Bill...,” Into The Fray, September 28) is to be
complimented on his excellent analysis. He refers to the violence that soared to
unprecedented levels during the Rabin and Sharon eras, as documented in the
study conducted by the Institute for Policy and Strategy at the Herzliya
Interdisciplinary Center, and elaborates on these findings.
document authored by Christopher Barder, “A statistically- based Survey of the
Oslo Process, its Agreements and Results,” and published in June 2002 by the
Ariel Center for Policy Research covers the period from 1951 to 1998.
later study showed that until the author and his colleagues inquired from the
respective government ministries about such statistics, there were no
comprehensive records of fatalities and injuries suffered at the hands of
terrorists associated with the PA/PLO and others, as if government policy was to
hide these details from the public.
The question needs to be asked: Why
was this? COLIN L. LECI
Letter writer Charlotte Slopak
Goller ("Pray more, pay less,” October 5) was writing about the fees she and her
husband pay to congregations here in Israel, and not where they lived prior to