March 22: The polls

Who wants to hear wrong results?

By
March 21, 2015 22:03
Letters

Letters. (photo credit: REUTERS)

The polls

With regard to “Why were exit polls all so wrong?” (March 19), at least four polling organizations work here. This is more than a small country needs. Though it provides employment for a few people, it is not productive work.

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Further, endless telephoning to the public is annoying. If anything, the polls sway the candidates and the voters in ways that skew the results. These polls have been proven useless.

The excuses mentioned by pollsters are exactly what pollsters are supposed to overcome. They promote the idea that people want to hear results early, but there is no evidence that this is true.

Even if it is, who wants to hear wrong results?

ROSALIE BROSILOW
Rehovot

Your pollster/reader from Modi’in had it “All figured out” (Letters, March 15). May I refer him to “Arrogance, intellect and prophecy” (Comment & Features, March 18)? Israel is a wonderful, unpredictable country. Miracles do occur.

DAVID BARRETT
Ra’anana

Polls published throughout the campaign showed Benjamin Netanyahu, by a wide margin, as the preferred candidate for prime minister.

This is who the people of Israel voted for, thank God.

JOE GELLERT
Netanya

Not naive at all

In “This is what you voted for, and this is what you will get” (Encountering Peace, March 19), Gershon Baskin portrays Israeli voters as being naive to have voted for Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu.

To the contrary.

I and the majority voted for a leader with proven credentials, who can stand up to an unhinged American president and who has drawn the line by refusing to continue negotiations for a land-forpeace deal with the terrorist group Fatah and its leader.

We are not weak or afraid, nor will we surrender to the absurd demands from US President Barack Obama, the EU or anyone else.

JOEL HANDELMAN
Tel Aviv

My heart bleeds for Gershon Baskin, who describes the result of our election in one word: “disaster.”

I suggest that he can attempt to overcome his sorrow by spending even more time with his confidant in Ramallah, Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas.

While Abbas commiserates with Baskin, the latter can commiserate with Abbas on the “nakba” (catastrophe). In the meantime, a very large section of the Israeli population will celebrate the result of the election, which will enable us to have the only chance to avert an attempt at our destruction by the Iranian ayatollahs.

MYRA ZION
Tel Mond

After carefully reading Gershon Baskin’s terribly dire predictions for the future, I find myself deeply troubled by my inability to determine whether he is stating his honest concerns or rather expressing his wishes.

My dilemma stems from the fact that Baskin, who informs us of his membership in several Israeli-Palestinian peace organizations, has been starkly consistent in his seeming incapability of finding any fault on the Palestinian side while managing to unhesitatingly condemn Israel.

He chooses to be totally oblivious to the turmoil in our region and the existential threats that surround us. He registers his disdain and contempt for the Israeli electorate, which democratically reelected Benjamin Netanyahu by a significant majority in an expression of support for his determination to keep Israel secure.

Baskin is evidently disappointed in the large number of Israelis who choose life and reject his biased, bigoted and one-sided programs and opinions.

ZEV CHAMUDOT
Petah Tikva

I find it highly ironic that while Gershon Baskin and others repeatedly take Prime Minister Netanyahu to task for “fear-mongering,” they are now engaging in precisely the same tactic.

DAVID GLATT-GILAD
Beersheba

Darkened doorway


Amidst all the understandable post-election hubbub, the one unmentioned name is that of Tzipi Livni. One may understandably assume that her 11th-hour, preelection- day termination of the rotation agreement was a last-ditch effort by Zionist Union co-leader Isaac Herzog to salvage a win. But it could just as easily have been Tzipi herself, acting in character by stabbing yet another host in the chest once she recognized that the Zionist Union was a sinking ship.

If it was indeed Herzog who dumped her, the Israeli public can take comfort in knowing that this self-serving politician is gone forever from the political stage. However, if it was Livni once again playing the black widow, all of us – Left, Right and Center – must be vigilant against her yet again darkening our collective doorway.

J.J. GROSS
Jerusalem

Thanking Obama

The success of Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s Likud party in the general election is due in no small measure to the breathtaking ineptitude of the foreign policy of the Obama administration and its strong whiff of appeasement in dealings with Iran and Syria – and even with Russia.

Israelis no longer feel confident that they can rely for their protection on assurances of American support. Thus, they perceive that strong leadership has to be the overriding consideration.

RAYMOND CANNON
Netanya

There are many factors that can help explain Prime Minister Netanyahu’s astounding victory. One of the most important is the blatant interference by President Obama’s team of advisers. Another is that the same team let it be known how discourteous and rude the president of the United States was to the prime minister of Israel.

The animosity is not a matter of social invitations to dinner. It is about relationships between the two countries. The ongoing destruction in the Middle East is due in large measure to Obama’s failure to heed the opinions of Israel.

We have a long history of being a stubborn and stiff-necked people, as Moses observed. You cannot step on us and expect us to love you.

The average Israeli does not want to be told what is good for the United States alone. If President Obama really wants to influence Israel, he has to use many more carrots and not threaten the relationship.

THELMA SUSSWEIN
Jerusalem

President Obama manages to pay great respect to the tyrants in Iran, and obeisance to the dictatorships in Saudi Arabia. He talks regularly with the anti-Semitic leader of Turkey. But he cannot bring himself to acknowledge that the Israeli electorate, in an open, democratic and hard-won election, has spoken decisively.

Obama is supposed to represent the United States. His personal peeves are beside the point. By allowing his personal animus to take over, he does no service to himself or the country he represents.

Perhaps he realizes, too late, that his hostility and open attempts to influence the Israeli election were a major contribution to the last-minute pro-Netanyahu surge.

Obama is hoist on his own petard.

ESTELLE FELDMAN
Jerusalem

Views from abroad

Kudos for showing good common sense by reelecting Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu.

I was especially dismayed to learn that our government tried to interfere. It was wrong and I’m glad you overcame the insult.

Your prime minister is an extremely fine man and leader.

BRUCE ALEXANDER
Lake City, Florida

Congratulations to Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu on his victory.

On behalf of the many Americans who support Israel, I wish him well and pledge my support now and in the future.

Sadly, I must also apologize for the behavior of our current president.

Please keep in mind that Barack Obama’s stay in Washington is limited and he does not speak for the majority – the silent majority – which, I assure you, will always be here for the people of Israel.

PAT MANLEY
Columbus, Ohio


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