letters good 88.
(photo credit: Courtesy)
Sir, - I was surprised to read Michel Zlotowski's piece in The Jerusalem Post concerning the trial of the al-Dura libel case ("Paris prosecutor calls for dismissal of al-Dura libel case," September 17). To judge from some elementary errors in the article, it seems that the reporter was not even in the courtroom: He refers to the prosecutor as "he" rather than she; he reports that the trial was on Friday, when it was Thursday.
At the end of the article, he says that France 2 has at least five further lawsuits for defamation against me. I have certainly never heard of this. Is this one more basic error, a reference to two other defamation suits against two other people?
The details aside, the major thrust of the article is equally poorly informed. He says that I failed to prove my claims that the video taken by France 2's cameraman was a "blatant forgery." The prosecutor had the opposite opinion, and even a French newspaper, Le Figaro, got that impression.
He says that the judge submitted me to a very thorough cross-examination and that he did not think that I brought conclusive evidence. But the judge didn't cross-examine me, although he did ask me some good questions. The judges and the prosecutor seemed quite impressed by the evidence we furnished.
Why didn't Zlotowski interview me and some of the witnesses, rather than limit himself to talking with the absent France 2 Jerusalem bureau chief Charles Enderlin and France 2 officials?
Head and founder of Media-Ratings
Elections not enough...
Sir, - Carolyn Glick's idea that elections are the only true "commission of inquiry" Israel needs is naive, to put it mildly, because it has been tried - and failed - incessantly ("Israel's strategic rot," September 19).
We've had more elections in less than five years than most democratic countries have in a decade, and even when we thought we would see major changes, the one prime minister elected by a landslide simply changed his mind - and policies - leaving myriads of voters baffled, betrayed and angrier than ever.
Then there is the nauseating phenomenon of ideologies and election platforms being tossed to the wind for political, financial and even personal gain by our illustrious MKs, who, once in office, seem to completely forget or ignore the public which elected them.
New elections are not enough. Without a major overhaul in the entire process, they will only make matters worse, which unfortunately has been the case time after time.
...yes they are
Sir, - Caroline Glick hits home again. As the old adage goes, "Politicians are like diapers, they need to be changed often, for the same reason."
Sir, - Re "Why give money to beggars on the street?" (Shmuley Boteach, September 20). I'm not saying don't give money to people begging on the street, but don't delude yourself into thinking you're repairing their dignity if you look them in the eye and treat them like a child by making them promise to do good with the money, and God bless, God bless.
You want to repair their dignity? Talk to them like an equal and don't feel sorry for them. Be compassionate, but not pitying. Treat them like an equal, not like a charity case. Wish them good luck, or good day, and get on with it.
Use Iran's tactics
Sir, - In his very gloomy assessment of the situation in Iran and the possible military option open to the West essentially by the US, Charles Krauthammer overlooks an alternative solution that might be able to achieve maximum results with a minimum of Iranian reaction ("Iran: An honest look at the military option," September 20).
Just as Iran uses proxies to do its fighting and cause internal strife, why would it not be possible for the US, with all its resources, to activate a strong dissident, internal Iranian force that would work for the overthrow of the present government.
Looking back at the situation in Iraq, think of how much better off it would be if internal forces who opposed Saddam Hussein would have caused the overthrow of his government.
The irony of the situation would be that we would use Iranian tactics as a means of overthrowing the Iranian regime.
Sir, - I was deeply moved by David Forman's "The binding of Isaac" (September 20). To have a child die accidentally as was the case with David Forman's sister is painful enough, primarily because it is a death with no purpose.
Yet to have your child die in an ill-conceived war, one that could have been prevented, is perhaps more painful, for it is death with a false purpose.
We must choose
Sir, - Seraphya Berrin (Letters, September 20) says that the Jewish Diaspora is way ahead of Israel in activism against genocide of non-Jews in Darfur. That may well be the case, but the Jewish Diaspora, in Europe at any rate, is way behind in activism in defending Israel in the media and against the anti-Semitism that is growing in Europe.
Each of us has to choose.
Pinner, Middx., UK
In need of cleansing
Sir, - Re "Lots of mistakes in war, but how deep should we probe?" by Anshel Pfeffer (September 19).
While it is obvious that major faults were involved at all stages of the Lebanese war, I don't agree with Pfeffer's reasoning that the investigation shouldn't be too deep as it may cause excessive short-term damage to the army's ability to confront a new situation and possibly be unfair to the politicians who, despite their crass stupidities, should not be accused of any criminal offense.
If the army and our political leadership need a cleansing, as I maintain they certainly do, then it should be done very thoroughly and as soon as possible, so that confidence can be restored down through the ranks and also in our political leadership. Would our reservists be so anxious to report once again for active combat duty under the same leadership? I think not!
Criminal charges were never contemplated by anyone, rather a thorough independent investigation that will apportion blame where it belongs so that the individuals concerned can be dismissed and replaced by a more competent leadership.
It would be a tragedy for Israel and be regarded as symptomatic of a sickness in our society should these same individuals remain in power due to an administrative fiat that in effect subverts the cause of justice and denies the public access to the truth.
Sir, - The Jerusalem Post should be strongly commended for printing Anne Bayefsky's "Good-bye UN, hello United Democratic Nations" (September 19). This is literally the most superb commentary on terrorism and counterterrorism that I have read in a long time, and I agree 100 percent with the author.
Calling all Pardos
Sir, - I wish to find Pardo families in Israel. I am looking for my ancestors and cousins, and I would like to go to Israel in order to write a book in Sephardic Jews.
I am looking also for Dr. Jose Pardo who 20 years ago worked in internal medicine at the Rambam Medical Center in Haifa.
I wish all Pardos reading this letter would e-mail me at firstname.lastname@example.org.
FR. JOSE PARDO HIDALGO