September 17: More than bikes

I don’t know why you insist on printing a picture of children riding their bicycles on Yom Kippur each year.

By JERUSALEM POST READERS
September 16, 2013 23:46
Letters

Letters 370. (photo credit: REUTERS/Handout )

Deal on Syria

Sir, – Not for a fleeting moment will any agreement on Syrian chemical weapons be verifiable or seriously enforced (“US, Russia reach accord to destroy Assad’s chemical weapons in 8 months,” September 15). Barack Obama has effectively ceded every vestige of American international authority, power and credibility that a US president ever could.

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The positives for Israel, providing the government has an acorn of courage, is that this country can now steer its long, overdue course and realize its true independence.

That means making it known that “peace talks” were always a lunatic’s option and that Israel will act and do whatever it has to do to end the Iranian nuclear threat, and there will be no more talk on this.

I. KEMP

Nahariya

Sir, – To US Secretary of State John Kerry I say: Be wary of Russian President Vladimir Putin. Put him in his place! No buts! Do not err.

MOSHE BRODETZKY

Jerusalem

Sir, – The international community has given Syria’s Bashar Assad the green light to murder using conventional weapons.

ISSY HASS
Ra’anana

Sir, – I heard Environmental Protection Minister Amir Peretz singing praises for US President Barack Obama’s diplomacy on Israel Radio. I could only think back to words written about British prime minister Neville Chamberlain by The Times of London in 1938, after the sellout to the Nazis: “No conqueror fresh from victory on the field of battle has come back adorned with more noble laurels.”

’Nuff said!

REUVEN GENN
Karkur

Sir, – What is the rush to judgment about Syria? I ask because there are genuine ambiguities in regard to who exactly was responsible for the chemical attacks.

Why would President Bashar Assad use chemical weapons the day a UN inspection team got there, and on a target that served absolutely no logistical purpose? These contradictions are on top of the fact that Assad had been getting an upper hand in the battles these past few months.

There are so many bad actors fighting Assad right now that our intelligence services don’t even know for sure whether a false-flag operation would be beyond their moral scruples. This would be a more likely scenario than the attack having been an Assad operation controlled from the top down.

Let’s everybody calm down and find out what actually happened, and then take it from there.

JOSEPH JOHN HREVNACK
Burlington, Vermont

Sir, – After reading “Syrian in Israeli hospital: ‘Most fighters know they will get good care here’” (September 15 ), one might be tempted to nominate Israel for the upcoming Nobel Peace Prize.

On second thought, with recipients having included US President Barack Obama, the European Union and the late Yasser Arafat, I would withdraw my nomination. The trinket has become so devalued that it stands for nothing even remotely resembling an honor.

Israel deserves better than that.

FRANK J. VAN BERS
Tzofit

More than bikes


Sir, – I don’t know why you insist on printing a picture of children riding their bicycles on Yom Kippur each year (“Toddler slips and dies in unlocked Bnei Brak ritual bath on Yom Kippur,” September 15).

For a change, how about a picture of the throngs of people going to their synagogues on Yom Kippur eve next year? There is more to Yom Kippur than just children riding their bicycles.

HANNAH SONDHELM
Jerusalem

Threat or challenge?


Sir, – With regard to “On Facebook, Lapid apologizes to God for not drafting haredim yet” (September 15), Finance Minister Yair Lapid has (correctly) apologized for not fixing the high cost of living. Let us all pray that he can work toward lowering the value added tax and the price of new apartments.

Lapid is also on the money on the issue of the media. (I would add to that the low level of morality in many of the TV shows aired here; I stopped watching most Israeli-made shows and many American ones because of the language and values, or lack thereof.) But let me get me this straight – Lapid apologized to God for not having more people desecrate His laws? He is determined to enable more Jews to defile Shabbat (with public transportation) and marry outside Jewish law (therefore dividing the Jewish people even more than they already are), and he tells God he intends to keep trying? Does Lapid think God will accept such open rebellion, or is he challenging God to stop him?

BATYA BERLINGER
Jerusalem

Overlooked

Sir, – The part about the late Errol Flynn, the Australian-born film star (“Errol Flynn’s final days chronicled in ‘The Last Robin Hood,’” Arts & Entertainment, September 15), that The Jerusalem Post (surprisingly) did not publish is that he was known for his anti-Semitic views.

MALKA BOOK
Ashkelon

Had Rabin lived

Sir, – Confused by grief in the wake of the Rabin assassination, much of the Israeli public bought the idea that anyone speaking against a murder victim’s policies was speaking in favor of murder. So the Oslo plan got something of a free ride. Indeed, as Michael Freund recalls in “Will the architects of Oslo finally repent?” (Fundamentally Freund, September 12), Shimon Peres afterward was actually leading in the polls.

Before his assassination, Yitzhak Rabin was already losing because the continual slaughter of Jews by terrorists was well under way.

At one time Israel’s admired and beloved ambassador to the US, he couldn’t even address the Association of Americans and Canadians in Israel without being overwhelmed by indignant hecklers. Polls reflected his unpopularity.

If Rabin had lived, Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu would still have won the election, and likely more decisively.

MARK L. LEVINSON
Herzliya

Real DOB

Sir, – It is now widely accepted by an increasing number of Bible scholars that Jesus was not born anywhere near December 25, but rather at the “appointed time” on 15 Tishrei, the first day of Succot. He was circumcised eight days later on the eighth and final day of the festival.

The 15th day of Tishrei remains the same in the Biblical calendar but appears at a different date in our modern calendar, instituted by Pope Gregory XIII. It usually appears in September or October, but few Christians are aware that the actual birth date comes and goes each year without any fanfare.

Perhaps that is the way Yeshua would have wanted it, as He asked His followers to remember His death, but He never asked anyone to remember His birth.

He was born on a special Jewish holiday. The manger was likely housed in one of those makeshift booths Jews build outside their homes during this special week. It is just a pity the Church doesn’t see this rich significance and prefers to uphold error rather than truth. They’ll be celebrating in December, when it would be far too cold for shepherds to be out minding their sheep, never mind a young mother giving birth.

Jesus Himself said of the religious people of His day that they “prefer to keep the traditions of men, which make the word of God of none-effect.” That is exactly what happens each December.

Happy Succot! Maybe this anomaly one day receive greater attention. But then, what would we do with Santa Claus?

COLIN NEVIN

Bangor, Northern Ireland


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