Good relations, based on respect
Sir, - I was sorely disappointed by the statement made by Minister Avishai Braverman at the reception in honor of Turkey's national day. As quoted by Greer Fay Cashman ("Grapevine," November 4), he began by stressing the importance of relations between Israel and Turkey. Fine. But he concluded with "We have to do everything possible to strengthen relations. Israel can't afford to quarrel with the whole world."
Is Braverman placing the onus for the breach and the task of containing the "quarrel" on us? He seems oblivious of the vicious and false accusations made gratuitously against Israel by the prime minister of Turkey. He chooses to ignore Turkey's growing alignment with the two leading anti-Israel terrorist states, Iran and Syria.
The appropriate response by a minister of the sovereign State of Israel must be a non-obsequious and forthright challenge to these base accusations and reprehensible behavior. We must unequivocally declare our positive interest in good relations between our two countries - based, however, on honor, mutual respect and many shared interests.
Bravo, Prof. Friedmann!
Sir, - Justice Richard Goldstone repeatedly asserted that a majority of his critics didn't even bother to read his report. Indeed, to wade attentively through a 575-page document rife with legal jargon and ostensibly judicial analyses is not an easy task even for a legal professional, let alone ordinary working folks. At the same time it appears that the aura of an internationally renowned jurist which shrouded Goldstone deterred many of his opponents, particularly within the legal academe, from coming out openly against his conclusions.
However, with the publication of former justice minister and law professor Daniel Friedmann's article ("The terrrorists' 'Magna Carta'..." October 30), it seems that Goldstone has finally met his match.
Friedmann succinctly deconstructed Goldstone's line of reasoning while exposing the bias, flaws and inconsistencies of his report. Especially impressive was the rebuttal of the report's most outrageous charge: that the Israeli leadership carefully planned to harm civilians and that the IDF consequently deliberately targeted Gaza's noncombatants.
Unpublished material relating to the Goldstone Report
Sir, - Annex III of the Goldstone Report contains a list of 31 submissions received by the fact-finding mission from NGOs and the public that were not published with the report, though some contain highly significant and relevant information that contradicts a number of the conclusions in the report.
Because the undisclosed information may substantially influence an evaluation of the report, it is imperative in the interests of justice that these documents be made available to members of the UN General Assembly.
As the Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR) has refused to publish these memoranda on its web site, the website of "Understanding the Goldstone report" invites all who submitted memoranda to the fact-finding mission to re-submit their documents for publication on its site, including submissions that were unfavorable to Israel. We believe that sunlight is the best disinfectant.
The appendices may be viewed at http://www.goldstonereport.org/procedural-flaws/concealed-evidence and submissions should be sent to Richard Landes at firstname.lastname@example.org
PROF. RICHARD LANDES
Sir, - "'Truth is in the eyes of the beholder,' says ElBaradei" (- November 5 headline quoting the IAEA chief saying there is no proof of an ongoing Iranian nuclear weapons program). But is it the whole truth and nothing but the truth?
"Truth lies somewhere, if we knew but where," said William Cowper; and Lord Byron asked, "What is a lie? 'Tis but the truth in masquerade."