Letters to the Editor September 7, 2022: Like a cult

Readers of The Jerusalem Post have their say.

 Letters (photo credit: PIXABAY)
(photo credit: PIXABAY)

Like a cult

In his article, “Biden is likened to Hitler, and Jews stay silent” (September 6), Rabbi Shmuley Boteach is correct in stating that “America is a nation in crisis,” but is way off base, I believe, in also stating “Democrats and Republicans are equally to blame.”

The Republican Party has become like a cult, supporting former President Trump’s big lie that he won the 2020 presidential election and his many other lies, misrepresentations, and conspiracy theories. Based on that big lie, Republicans are doing everything possible to make it difficult for certain groups to vote and backing other steps to undermine democratic values, in order to regain power, despite the wishes of the majority of the American people.

While there has been a recent increase in mass shootings in the US. it is the Republicans, based on their alliance to the National Rifle Association, who oppose effective background checks and the banning of assault weapons. As climate problems became increasingly apparent, the Republican Party did everything possible during the Trump administration to turn back or weaken legislation that would reduce greenhouse gas emissions and has opposed Democratic efforts under the Biden administration to reduce climate threats.

While Democrats have tried to reach across the aisle to pass comprehensive beneficial legislation, every Republican Congress member opposed the recently passed Inflation Reduction Act, although it included many positive features, including: the largest US investment in history in climate and energy initiatives to fight climate change, potentially reducing greenhouse gas emissions by 40% by 2030; a reduction in the costs of prescription drugs for older Americas; health care subsidies for Americans; and the potential to reduce inflation and the US national debt.



Pathetic attempts

Regarding “Israel admits bullet that killed Abu Akleh in Jenin was likely fired by IDF” (September 6): I find it disgraceful that the IDF makes an official statement conceding that there is a high possibility that Shireen Abu Akleh “was accidentally hit by IDF gunfire.” The death of what other journalist under similar circumstances (and they are a significant number) has generated as much repercussion?

Indisputably, she was voluntarily in an implicitly dangerous combat arena while the terrorists were firing automatic weapons indiscriminately. The fatal bullet, if indeed the one ultimately presented for third-party evaluation was the suspected round, was never in a proven chain of custody. The PA refused a proposed joint investigation and surrendered a badly damaged bullet for appraisal only under pressure from the American administration. 

Therefore, Israel’s quasi-admission of responsibility for Abu Akleh’s death is unwarranted and demeaning. Obviously, the Biden administration felt a need to make a concession to the radical left wing of the Democratic Party at the expense of Israel’s security and posture in the international community. We are a sovereign and leading nation in the world not deserving to be treated as a vassal state. But that requires self-respect rather than pathetic attempts to please one and all.

 Hence, it would have sufficed to issue a simple statement that given all the circumstances both during the anti-terrorist operation in Jenin that day and the events following, no conclusive resolution could be reached.



In light of the IDF’s statement on Shireen Abu Akleh’s death, it is important to identify the truly guilty parties and factors which caused the tragedy. There are several. First, the Palestinian Arab terrorists of Jenin who killed 19 Israelis in a recent wave of terror are responsible, because they forced an Israeli police and military effort to apprehend the murderers. Second, the Palestinian Authority which pays people to murder Israeli civilians is responsible, because it financially incentivizes terror attacks to which the Israeli forces must respond.

Third, the wildly firing Palestinian Arab terrorists who, on the day of Abu Akleh’s death, attacked Israeli forces attempting to arrest the Jenin murderers are responsible. Fourth, the toxic dead end ideology of bloody irredentism and antisemitism which leads successive generations of Palestinian Arabs to attack and kill Jewish civilians is responsible, because it necessitates continual Israeli defensive responses.

Fifth, Palestinian Arab rejections of multiple generous offers of peace and their own state are responsible because the rejections perpetuate the conflict. Sixth, the Biden administration’s resumption of financial aid to the Palestinian Authority in violation of the 2018 Taylor Force Act is responsible, because that aid is used to subsidize “pay for slay” Palestinian payments to terrorists and their relatives.

Abu Akleh’s tragic death was the end result of all of these unfortunate realities. To attempt to attribute her demise to any single one of them misses the forest for the trees. Speculation on who fired the bullet that killed her, as if that was the only proper focus for investigation, is only a way to avoid an unpleasant larger reality. That larger reality is that as long as Palestinians wage war against Israel’s existence, innocent people including journalists are going to perish.


Williamsville, NY

Some type of closure

Your poignant op-ed on the Munich Massacre (“The Munich Massacre also killed our faith in the postwar order,” September 5) highlighted what were obviously shocking and haunting experiences for the Israeli families whose loved ones were at the mercy of terrorists five decades ago.

It also reminded me of my own attendance at the Munich Olympics in ‘72 which I recollect most clearly, especially the day of the massacre when I witnessed firsthand the authorities racing toward the Olympic Village.

I was leaving the area early that morning to drive to the airport for my return to London and as all flights were heavily delayed, I watched in horror on the TV screens as the events unfolded.

What amazed me perhaps naively was that there was no consideration to abandon the games after such a heinous murderous act, only a short delay and a little hand-wringing with a message that the Olympian ideals must carry on.

Since then until now in every subsequent games there has been scant recognition of that very dark day.

I’m sorry to say the world has very short memories and until a long overdue acknowledgment in Japan, any hope we had they would even attempt to remember the murder of innocent Israeli athletes, appeared to be a futile exercise.

This long overdue compensation agreement between the involved families and the German government will hopefully afford them some type of closure. As we witness today in Israel, the media outside our own environment rarely comment on the ongoing terrorist acts which we unfortunately continue to experience. 


Tel Aviv

Smeared and prosecuted

Those who read only the headline, “FBI finds more than 11,000 government documents and photos at Trump’s Florida home” (September 4), will have no idea of what really happened at Mar-a-Lago. They will be unaware that these supposedly damning “government records” include photos, books, magazines, personal letters, clothing items, empty folders and, most troubling, documents protected under the privilege of attorney/client confidentiality.

Less than one percent of the seized documents had any classification markings on them. Even those may well have been declassified by president Trump before leaving office.

The presence of government documents at the former president’s home is neither surprising nor necessarily incriminating. The Presidential Records Act contemplates that former presidents may have access to and even possess records produced while they were in office. Note that former president Obama reportedly took an estimated 30 million pages of material, none of which has ever been the subject of a search warrant or demand for return.

The government unwittingly revealed its malign intent in two ways. First, it admitted that, following preliminary review, the documents are now being scrutinized more closely to determine whether they are evidence of some underlying crime. This suggests the real purpose of the unconstitutionally broad search warrant. It was not to protect records, but to identify other ways the leading Republican 2024 presidential candidate and his advisers could be smeared and prosecuted.

Further, the Department of Justice has vehemently opposed the appointment of a “special master” (an independent, objective third party to determine whether any documents were seized improperly). Apparently, either the DOJ knows that some of the documents that it intends to retain should properly be returned to Trump, or it did not find anything incriminating but plans to continue vilifying Trump and his supporters through unfounded innuendo.

It is becoming clearer by the day that the DOJ and FBI have been weaponized for political purposes.  The current administration is doing everything it can to fend off the challenger it fears most. 


Zichron Ya’acov

Billions or trillions

Regarding “Iran boosts civil defenses as Mossad Chief heads to US” (September 4): Whether or not JCPOA-2 is signed, Iran will race forward and develop its nuclear bomb as quickly as possible.

Iran cheated in the past. They are cheating now. They will cheat in the future. Taqiyya is an honored Islamic tradition; lying to the enemy to gain an advantage. The West is the enemy. America is the big Satan. Israel is the small Satan. Europe is in decline and being swallowed up by Islamic immigration. China and Russia will support Iran, either way.

A nuclear bomb will be mounted on an intercontinental missile on the same day, regardless of whether JCPOA-2 is signed or not. The only difference is whether the Iranian regime will get billions or trillions of dollars with which to strengthen its hold on power and finance terrorism in the Middle East and around the world.

No JCPOA member will lift a finger to stop Iran nor protect Israel. Both Iran and Israel know this.



Opposite direction

Regarding “Following the American money trail” (August 30): I share Yisrael Medad’s concerns. If President Biden were truly committed to the vision of two states for two peoples, meaning a Palestinian state coexisting peacefully with the nation-state of the Jews, the new infusions of US funds into Judea and Samaria would be directed toward Jewish communities in Area C, as well as Palestinian communities in Areas A and B.

In fact, the Jewish businesses in Area C, which employ both Israeli and Palestinian workers and serve both Israeli and Palestinian consumers, would be the model on which further good relations could be built. Unfortunately, the Biden plan goes in the opposite direction, directing funds to Palestinians only.