Letters to the Editor November 7, 2022: Blame game

Readers of The Jerusalem Post have their say.

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

Blame game

I expect more from The Jerusalem Post than to blame Alternate Prime Minister Naftali Bennett on the front page (“Bennett responsible for Ben-Gvir’s rise,” November 6) as the source of the defeat of the Center-Left.

What are you accomplishing by turning the spotlight on him? Add your piece to the diatribes against Prime Minister Yair Lapid that followed immediately after the election results.

And now the Post has delivered a double whammy against the two leaders who tried everything they could to show us how a country could be led.

The anger in your pages is not worthy of you and accomplishes nothing. Please just report the facts but don’t get down in the dirt with the opposition.



Apparently, the democratically expressed will of the people counts for nothing with your editor-in-chief, as we see from his item on the front page of the Post Sunday. Yaakov Katz unashamedly shouts “panic stations, everyone!”

His use of such phrases as “The country now has Itamar Ben-Gvir and the likes of Avi Maoz, the homophobic leader,” “Ben-Gvir and his gang,” the “far- and racist-right” together with the blatant innuendos that Armageddon is upon us, all this totally and purposely ignores the simple fact that this is what the people want. Fourteen seats in the Knesset represent 16.8% of the population of 9 million. 

That means that more than one and a half million people (not including Mr. Katz) are of the opinion that this is what the country now needs. How else are we to ensure that the horrific events of last year’s riots and murderous rampages of the Arab populations of Lod, Acre, Jaffa and so on will not be repeated; that the Supreme Court will not continue to cancel laws of the elected representatives in the Knesset; that the unlimited, unbridled, absolute and unaccountable power of the attorney-general, be curtailed and repositioned in its rightful status within the democratic framework.

During the last two years of the duly elected Netanyahu government (before Bennett), hordes of “disciples of democracy” were calling for the disbanding of the “illegal” government and were banging pots and pans and blasting the peace and quiet of the neighborhood in front of the prime minister’s office on Saturday nights, unable to accept the results of democratic election. 

And this is just what your editor is doing. The people have spoken very clearly, and your editor should concentrate his efforts in encouraging his readers to move forward positively, rather than sow the seeds of panic and dread.



I am sure Post editors have an excellent grasp of English grammar and nuance and hence the editorial’s title on November 3, “Let ’em govern,” was designed for the very purpose the article itself claimed it was not, which is to imply, as they say in English, “you’ve made your bed, now lie in it.”

The use of the slang “’em” instead of “them” is street English and has a subtle meaning and is out of place in the Post. And Katz knew this.

I do not recall such flippant and dismissive language when the Arab parties were invited to govern this country, some of whom seek our destruction, but then the Post no longer speaks for the Right.

How appropriate that next to this editorial, Gershon Baskin, the self-proclaimed “social entrepreneur,” encourages Palestinians to fight against what he sees as the injustice of the Jewish state.

Even more loathsome and abhorrent, Baskin now drops the word terrorist and calls these people “Palestinian resistors” or “combatants,” when they attack and kill Israeli soldiers. Perhaps this is incitement to violence and an offense?

In this democratic state, Baskin can say what he likes, but perhaps he would be more comfortable in Gaza, where his free speech may be less welcome, but he would be among friends.


Zichron Ya’acov

Bibi’s comeback

The underline introducing Herb Keinon’s analysis of “Netanyahu’s unparalleled comeback” (November 4) asking if he will lead… or be led could not have been more understated. 

The former and soon-to-be returning prime minister will have – indeed, most likely already has – two yokes shackled upon his neck. The promises he’ll be making in the coming days will demand of him and his fellow, more centrist Likudniks compromises that two decades ago even he would have found distasteful.

And to maintain what might very well be the least porous coalition in recent years, he will be forced to promote educational mayhem in the haredi (ultra-Orthodox) sector, endorse a threat to the civil rights of the Arab population and create suspicion on the part of the international community.

Or will he?

When viewed through an objective prism, however, Bibi may not have too much difficulty in keeping the boat he is soon to be piloting reasonably steady. The haredim want, for the most part, funds for their yeshivot with no curriculum-related constraints. 

They’ll turn a blind eye to just about anything else. And Ben-Gvir’s bark, I suspect, is louder than his bite. While many of his supporters are expecting he will criminalize homosexuality and herd Israel’s Arabs onto cattle cars for transport to Jordan, Syria or wherever, the chances of that happening are zero to none. And Ben-Gvir knows it. He will have no choice but to hide behind Bibi’s skirt while backing down from the thunder and bluster that his politicking demanded.

What I’d really like to know, though, is what promises Bibi made to the incoming justice minister to ensure the trials he is currently engaged in will be expeditiously erased from the docket. 


Ginot Shomron

What’s in a name?

Numerous articles have appeared discussing the influence the Religious Zionist Party will have on the next government. My belief is that the biggest problems Israel will have to face do not lie in the internal changes that a right-wing coalition will undoubtedly bring about, but rather problems from outside of Israel. 

The oft-repeated, very radical and, in some cases, racist statement made by RZP co-leader Itamar Ben-Gvir, coupled with the name of his party, will very rapidly result in a new definition of the meaning, not only of Zionist, but also of the word religious.

Our enemies will be very quick to start conflating the words Zionist and religious (Jewish) with racism and Jewish supremacy, grabbing the opportunity to make great capital out of these two words in new attacks on Israel and the Jewish people. 

My Zionism and my Jewish religious beliefs, and I’m sure those of the majority of Israelis and Jews in the Diaspora, do not in any way include racism or hatred of the other. 

We should all be going to great lengths to ensure the world understands that Zionism is simply an expression of the desire of Jews to return to Eretz Israel. The RZP leaders do great harm to Israel and the Jewish people by using Zionist and religious for political capital.

There are many variants of Judaism and equally many variants of Zionism, with neither being the exclusive domain of any political grouping. Politicians should be discouraged, if not banned, from using the word Zionist in naming political parties.

Doing so simply sends a wrong and, as in this case, dangerous message.


Kfar Saba

Virtuous ‘Post’

It amazed me when I reread pages 10 and 11 of The Jerusalem Post from October 19. They were filled with imaginative ideas!

Page 10, author Bob Silverman, suggests a coalition, which can last for the future of the country, of Netanyahu, Lapid and Benny Gantz; they are all genuinely patriots! Forget their individual egos, even if Bibi gives a bit of recognition to his partners, it would be a solid coalition!

Page 11, author Neville Teller, tells about the presence of so-called Palestinians, 400,000 of them, which the Kuwaiti people were not happy to have, (same in a lot of other Arab countries) who have been reduced to 70,000! Wherever they go they are considered a nuisance! We have the same problem!

Author Roz Rothstein writes about “pay for slay,” promoted by the PA and others, and the UN’s continuous condemnation of Israel, even in the face of other atrocities committed throughout the rest of the world. Israel is being continuously badgered by the UNHRC, Navi Pillay, UNRWA, the COI (Commission of Inquiry) and the rest of the alphabet!

Author Arnie Draiman writes about who to vote for, and concludes that one should choose first and foremost a person who behaves like a mensch, not for a party! I believe that most people will agree!

Makes a case for changing the system of voting, not as it is now! I believe that constructive criticism is a virtue!


Tel Aviv


Sharm e-Sheikh, where the COP27 UN Climate Change Conference is taking place, is full of five-star hotels, an abundance of fine Michelin-quality restaurants, pristine beaches and clean water, and everybody will have a good time. This is COP27 but Planet Earth is still warming up, the icebergs are still melting, the oceans are still rising, gas emissions are increasing and hurricanes and forest fires are more plentiful.

But, not to worry, there are already about 200 climate-tech companies in Israel that intend to spend about $1.5 billion in 2022 – many of them are already selling their products abroad. 

Business is good irrespective of the unconvincing results.

The best way to fight climate warming is to greatly increase the use of the already sufficient/efficient devices of birth control. 

However, the world economy will certainly suffer because it depends on increasing demand. Either way, increased suffering is on the way.



Boteach’s beliefs

Oh dear, it seems once again Rabbi Shmuley Boteach has been left at the bimah by his beloved. 

Readers have observed for years that it is really all about Boteach, “I did this, I taught that one, inspired this one, opened the doors for him, her, introduced him/her to this and that influential person, etc, etc.”

For a long time it was Cory Booker, whom he even taught Torah to, he says, and nurtured and helped build his career – until Booker became one of the most virulently anti-Jewish US senators, closely linked with the notorious extremists Ilhan Omar, Rashid Tlaib and AOC.

This time it is Dr. Mehmet Oz, the physician running for the Senate, and it is the same story. 

How Boteach was very best friends with Oz, introduced him to all sorts of influential people, and now Oz has let Boteach down.

How? In two particular ways Boteach tells us. Oz is running against a man who some months ago suffered a debilitating stroke that has left the man quite severely cognitively impaired. But for whatever reasons, the Democratic Party did not withdraw John Fetterman’s candidacy, but let him run. 

A very unfortunate consequence was that the two competitors faced each other in a televised debate. Fetterman was given a quite abnormal amount of extra technical help to enable him to put forward his best performance. He was given caption displays explaining the questions in simple form, and captions offering answers to questions.

But these could not prevent Fetterman sadly showing that he is still suffering from the effects of a major stroke. As a physician, it would have been easy for Oz to take advantage of his opponent’s blatant disabilities, but in a decent manner, he refrained from doing so. 

Nevertheless, Boteach still criticizes Oz, apparently for showing he is mentally competent to fulfil the duties of a senator and Fetterman isn’t.

The other big complaint Boteach has against Oz, is that Oz apparently has some sort of positive relationship with Turkish leader Recep Tayyip Erdogan. Given that Oz is of Turkish background, that should come as no surprise, nor that Oz might see himself in some way as a possible bridge between a Turkish outlook and that of an American.

But as with Booker, Boteach’s perspective is so self-absorbed, it is so much about him, that he fails to see more deeply what really influences other people, what their needs are and to whom they are most loyal. 

As a very successful self-publicist, Boteach is attracted to the glitter – and then so hurt and disappointed when the real person fails to identify with Boteach’s beliefs.