November 28, 2016: Punishing arsonists

For these very reasons, they should not only be stripped of their citizenship, they should be thrown out of the country together with all those who help them in any way.

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November 28, 2016 21:52
Letters

Letters. (photo credit: REUTERS)

 
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Punishing arsonists

Your editorial “Fighting fire” (November 27) states that it is too early to determine whether the recent blazes have been “the fault of nature – parched brush land waiting for promised winter rains being set on fire, perhaps by a careless camper... or the fault, at least partially, of nationalistically motivated terrorists.”

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Surely, there can be no doubt that it was terrorism, as the editorial rightly points out. It begs credulity that more than 200 fires “just happened.” What’s more, you cited Haifa firefighters in “On the front lines of a nation-wide disaster” (November 25) who said they were under direct attack from arsonists – “‘I know for a fact that they deliberately tried to set fire to the [fire] department’s station in Haifa to cause the Haifa fire department to be paralyzed,’ Shimon Ben Ner, a senior Haifa fire fighter, told Army Radio.”

So I am left wondering why your editorial goes on to say that talk of stripping the arsonists/ terrorists of their Israeli citizenship would be “draconian [and] premature, and could be counterproductive, given the propensity of Arab terrorists, with little provocation, to constantly increase the deadliness of their attacks on innocent civilians.”

For these very reasons, they should not only be stripped of their citizenship, they should be thrown out of the country together with all those who help them in any way.

YENTEL JACOBS
Netanya


It has been made abundantly clear that the hate perpetrated by our neighbors has brought them to the position of turning our land into a desert, as they have done to their own countries.

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In their minds, they will take over little Israel and large Europe, and revert all to desert, as they once did to Palestine, which Israel has managed to make flourish.

The World Bank has reported that usable water will soon be in short supply in the Gaza Strip.

Yet again, hatred will lead the Gazans to refuse to talk to those who can help.

Until we establish which Muslims want to establish sanity as versus those who want to destroy all around them, we have to treat them all with suspicion.

That’s not good for either party.

S. GELGOR
Tel Aviv


The fires that have broken out all over Israel have had one positive effect: They’ve brought out help from others, including Jordan and even the Palestinian Authority. This is a statement to the world that Israel has become a true partner in the family of nations.

Even though it is constantly attacked for being strong and a light unto the nations, in reality, Israel has had a positive influence on the people of the world.

We don’t want any more disasters, but we can take consolation in the fact that we have shown that we are one amongst all.

THELMA SUSSWEIN
Jerusalem

Lions and tigers...

After all the bashing of the Right that has taken place in Israel since the assassination of prime minister Yitzhak Rabin, may he rest in peace, and after saying over and over that “words kill,” you had the temerity to publish your cartoon of November 24.

The cartoon depicts the scarecrow, tin man and cowardly lion from The Wizard of Oz, comparing them, respectively, to Russian President Vladimir Putin, Syrian leader Bashar Assad and US President-elect Donald Trump, all under the heading: “And you thought the flying monkeys were scary.”

How dare you compare Trump to Assad, a mass murder who has butchered hundreds of thousands of his countrymen! I think the members of your editorial board need to have their heads examined. I’ll just continue doing the word puzzles and skip the rest of what you publish.

NACHUM CHERNOFSKY
Bnei Brak


...and Schumer, oh my!

Like the cowardly lion from the Land of Oz, US Sen. Charles Schumer (New York), the incoming Senate minority leader, came out against the nuclear treaty with Iran. But with a wink and a nod to President Barack Obama, he refused to lobby his fellow senators to join him in opposition.

Many Jewish and non-Jewish friends of Israel were not happy.

Schumer’s leadership appointments for the Democratic Party’s Senate Minority Conference include the clearly anti-free-market Massachusetts Sen. Elizabeth Warren as deputy chair, and Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders (the first avowed socialist to run for the Democratic presidential nomination) as outreach chair.

Schumer supports Minnesota Rep. Keith Ellison, who is head of the Democratic Progressive Caucus and a former member of the antisemitic Nation of Islam, to be the next chairman of the Democratic National Committee.

As Ellison is a past associate of the infamous Louis Farrakhan, who clearly is no friend of Israel or the Jews, this speaks volumes.

These stances show Schumer genuflecting to extremist leftwing elements of his party. He and other liberal Democrats should practice what they preach when they criticize some of the appointments made by President-elect Donald Trump as being out of the Republican Party mainstream.

Schumer’s first leadership decisions will result in more Jewish voters defecting to the Republicans.

He has become non-kosher to the Jewish community and friends of Israel when it comes issues we care about.

LARRY PENNER
Great Neck, New York


Holy objections

The objections of critics of the proposed muezzin law mentioned in “Proposed ban on mosque loudspeakers fuels bitterness among Muslim worshipers” (November 20) are full of holes.

First, these critics are aligned against Jews and Israel no matter what we do. They would probably criticize us even if we were to build new mosques for them.

Second, how many loudspeakers do synagogues have to call Jewish worshipers to prayer? Right – none! Yet Jews fill them three times a day.

Third, the Jaffa imam calls the proposed law a “challenge” to Islam. I wonder if that means people will forget to pray or attend services unless they are called by loudspeaker.

Moni Aloleimi, a worshiper at the Jaffa mosque, has a real stretch of the imagination when he says that cutting off the call to prayer will eventually “erase the religion.” Is the call to prayer so powerful that Islam will not exist without it? Fellow worshiper Ahmad Jabali says the call to prayer “only lasts a minute or so.” Hey Ahmad, one minute of blaring music at 4 a.m. is all one needs to have his sleep stopped for the night.

Fourth, how does one compare the Shabbat siren – which is only in Jerusalem, only in the late afternoon and only once a week – to the daily 4 a.m. blaring of the muezzin? I suggest that Israel pass the law and then invest in alarm clocks for all Muslims who need to be woken on time.

URI HIRSCH
Jerusalem

Targets for cheats


We have just stayed in Tel Aviv, visiting my son and family, and it saddens me to report that at every opportunity, we were overcharged in restaurants, by taxi drivers and even in supermarkets, often by up to NIS 100 at a time.

I am told that we “look like tourists.” Is it our fault that we are seen as targets to be cheated?

SANDRINE NEWMAN
London

CORRECTION


The capital of Nepal is Kathmandu, and not as stated in the answers to the November 27 Trivia Quiz (“To the Nth degree,” Arts & Entertainment).

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