Letters to the Editor March 20, 2023: Facts expunged

Readers of The Jerusalem Post have their say.

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

Facts expunged

Regarding “What we are fighting for” (March 16): Gershon Baskin equates the striving of the Jews for an independent state, in which they have succeeded, with the Palestinians striving for their own state, in which they have not succeeded, when there is absolutely no comparison. 

There are certain facts expunged from a history of the Arab-Israeli conflict. While the Arab and Muslim world accomplished making its countries Judenrein – a token number of Jews remain in Morocco, Iran and Turkey – Israel allowed 150,000 Arabs to remain in 1948, a quarter of the new Jewish state’s population at the time, even though they sided with the enemy. They have since multiplied ten times.

In contrast, other countries and jurisdictions curtail the growth of outsiders. For example, the ultra-liberal French Canadian province of Quebec enacts language and religious laws discriminating against Anglos and Muslims. Hundreds of thousands of them have fled Quebec.

The world indulges the Arab nation with some 20 countries in which they can express variants of their nationality. What exactly are the differences between a Palestinian, a Jordanian and a Syrian, when they all share the same language, most of them the same culture and religion?

Why don’t Jews play the same game? There are major differences between Ashkenazi, Sephardi and Ethiopian Jews; before the Holocaust between Polish and German Jews; today between Russian and Israeli Jews. Yet Jews have united to form one nation. Let Palestinian Arabs unite with their brethren. Why must there be another Arab country to signify a Palestinian identity?

One of the great ironies of history is that while Muslims have denied the territorial root of Jews, they have appropriated so many of the religious roots of Judaism into their Koran and Hadith, with alterations. Without Judaism there would be no Islam; without Jerusalem, there would be no Al-Quds. 

Finally, Baskin writes about the discrimination Israeli Arabs confront. Here, 450 Jews were killed fighting for Canada in the Second World War, the proportion to the Jewish population the same as non-Jews killed to their population. This was at a time when Jews in Canada faced ugly antisemitism and for Jews fleeing the Nazis, the immigration policy was “none is too many.”

In contrast, let all Israel’s Arabs show their loyalty to the country. Three of them initiated the new brutal wave of terrorism last March when they murdered civilians in Beersheba and Hadera. And I will never forget the Ma’alot school massacre within Israel in 1974 – 31 slaughtered including 22 students – perpetrated by three terrorists, two of whom were Israeli Arabs. 



Before commenting on the specific article, I want to make the following comment. I hope that Baskin is required to read, as per his contact with The Jerusalem Post, the letters that were and are written in response to his articles. It would be a shame for him to believe that all people actually approve of his immature, rainbow, unicorn fairytale view on the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.

He plucks various statistics to give credence to his point of view, and in doing so he does not honestly acknowledge the issue from both sides. In his mind, the Palestinians are right in everything they do, and Israel is always in the wrong. I suspect he suffers from a severe case of “Stockholm syndrome.”

He claims to know what all honest Israeli citizens claim; he claims that Israeli Arabs are really Palestinian. By what measure does he make such claims? The fact that he puts it in print does not make it real.

He is trying to falsely establish an idea that all Arabs living from the Jordan to the Mediterranean view themselves as Palestinian. Do they really? He wants to create a demographic certainty which does not exist. What does exist is that the PA and PLO, et al, want to destroy Israel, wipe out the Jews and claim the land as theirs. Those are facts clearly stated by the PLO, PA, etc.

Baskin will never acknowledge this inherent animosity and pure hatred. Palestinian mothers live to see their children die – as martyrs; the schools are rife with academic Jew-hatred as principle subjects. The murder and slaughter of innocent Jewish women and children is celebrated by the Palestinians with great joy and fervor. Until Baskin is prepared to make this reality a part of his equation, he is nothing but a journalistic hack.

Until the Palestinians have their own “Baskin” who excoriates the PA, PLO and Palestinian people for their shocking lack of moral standards and lack of dignity for all human life, he should realize that he is nothing but a shill, a fig leaf for the Palestinian machine. They really laugh at his simplistic point of view. They are happy to see him constantly bash Israel and help them with their plans.



Legacy to our children

Yaakov Katz’s article on March 17, “Israel has lost the story,” is a compelling take on the craziness gripping the nation now. However, I don’t think Israel has lost anything. I believe that we are starting to flex more muscle, especially in the international community; we are our own people and we need to make the laws and rules.

Katz mentions lots of reasons for us to contemplate, but the one he doesn’t give enough time and energy to is what the United States has had to say and do. My birth country has descended itself into a madness of its own making, with the “woke” culture, the insane illegal border crossings, Biden’s family under the microscope, and much more. Why they and much of the international community feel that they have a right to issue ultimatums and diss our elected officials is mind boggling.

Can Israel, Katz asks, be able to tell a story that “can once again captivate the world?” Yes, and then some.

In the midst of the protests, arguing, mudslinging and more, life went on for most Israelis. New life came into the world, with the birth of our great-granddaughter, here at Sheba Medical Center, last week. She defied the odds, being premature and in the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit, with a feeding tube and IV, but after two days, it was discontinued and she’s feeding on her own. Welcome to a new Sabra.

My point in the telling of this miraculous story: Israel has proved itself as a strong, vibrant, democratic country, with the means and people to save lives and promote new growth. Saving babies, saving trapped people in earthquakes, protecting us from the dangers on all sides, and always, always being strong on the outside and mush on the inside.

That is our story to the world. That is our legacy to our children. That’s everything a nation needs to be.



Time to be honest

The article headlined “Honesty can advance Mideast peace” (March 14) written by Josep Borrell, the EU high representative for foreign affairs, needs an honest answer.

It’s time to be honest and acknowledge that the Palestinians have rejected every offer of a Palestinian state living in peace with Israel. It’s time to be honest and acknowledge that had the Palestinians accepted a state in 1948 in accordance with the UN Partition Plan, there would be no Palestinian refugees in the world.

It’s time to be honest and acknowledge that UNWRA has been set up to perpetuate the problem of Palestinian refugees and is never going to solve anything. It’s time to be honest and stop the descendants of Palestinian refugees from receiving perpetual refugee rights that no other refugees in the world have ever received.

It’s time to be honest about the fact that Palestinians have received billions of dollars in aid and have done almost nothing to advance peace. It’s time to be honest about the fact that the Palestinian Covenant has never been altered and is uncompromising in its stated objective of a Palestinian state from the river to the sea. It’s time to read the Hamas charter and internalize their Islamic religious fanatical obsession to obliterate Israel.

It’s time to be honest about the indoctrination of hatred for Jews that is taught in Arab schools. It is time to be honest about aid money being used to promote terrorism. It’s time to be honest about the corruption that exists within the Palestinian leadership. It’s time to condemn the Palestinian program known as “pay for slay” that rewards the killers of Jews, by granting pensions that increase in proportion to the number of Jews killed.

It is time to stop accepting the Palestinian narrative that rejects the fact that Jews have lived in the Middle East for over three thousand years. It’s time to acknowledge that after the 1948 War of Independence, 900,000 Jews who lived in Arab countries were stripped of all their assets and expelled.

The vast majority arrived in Israel with nothing. They immediately received citizenship. What a contrast to the plight of the 700,000 Palestinian who left Israel.

It’s time to stop accepting the Palestinian claim of victimhood and blaming Israel for all their problems. It’s time to stop thinking that the EU knows what’s best for the world.

It’s time for the EU to be honest and acknowledge that after over 2,000 years of European antisemitism, blood libels, crusades, forced conversions, expulsions, ghettos, confiscations of Jewish property, pogroms, and finally the unthinkable systematic murder of six million Jews in the Shoah, it is absolutely clear that Europe has lost its claim to have any moral authority to offer advice to Israel about how Israel should behave.

It’s time for the EU to be honest.



Totally undemocratic

I could not let the editorial “Hands off the A-G” (March 19) pass by without expressing the strongest reaction which it deserves. I should like to point out to your editor that the entire institution of attorney-general as implemented today in Israel is totally undemocratic in itself.

It does not fit in to any of the basic powers (legislature, judiciary and executive) which are the very core requirements of a democracy. In Hebrew, the function is called “legal adviser to the government” and as its name implies, it is an advisory function only. Democracy gives the attorney-general no authority whatsoever to make determinations and certainly not to demand the performance of any action – only to advise.

The Israeli system has, unfortunately, developed in such a way that there is no supervision of the A-G, he/she is answerable to nobody, nobody at all – a law unto their own. There are many examples, the latest being her interference in the cancellation of the dismissal of a police officer. This is unheard of and totally ultra-vires.

And when this ridiculous situation is further complicated and blackened by the obvious one-sided bias in the decisions of the present A-G, there is indeed no reason at all for your editor to call, “hands off the A-G.”



Zealots, separatists and loyalists

For the second consecutive week, Amotz Asa-El (“Who wants civil war? (IV),” March 17) continues to stereotype all reform supporters as zealots, separatists and loyalists. To make his point ‘holy,’ he brings biblical references such as the Golden Calf and Moses’s royal upbringing.

One could just as easily bring allusions from the prophets – “I will restore your judges as before (Isaiah).” Need I remind the author of recent judges using sexual favors, or judges who brand anyone who disagrees with them as their enemies, as reported by Ayala Chason, currently on Channel 11.

No, Mr. Asa-El,  there are loyal citizens who work and serve and sincerely support the judiciary, but believe that there is room for reform. Perhaps those who think like Amotz Asa-El are afraid to lose their golden calf.


Petah Tikva