Travesty of justice
Yaakov Katz and Jonathan Kessler (“How US Jews can stand in support of Israeli democracy,” April 5) express the correct concern but in the wrong direction. The question should be: How can Israeli Jews stand in support of US democracy?
With the indictment of former president Donald Trump and over seven years of persecution of a man who brought America prosperity and respect throughout the world, the US has tragically turned into a banana republic.
The attempt to imprison a political opponent on what most legal experts say are frivolous trumped-up charges, when he is a front-running candidate of the opposing party for president, puts US democracy in question. The fact that Hillary Clinton, Hunter Biden and indeed President Joe Biden escape legal scrutiny is a travesty of justice, as the US has created a two-tier justice system.
Rather than the liberal Jewish establishment in the US questioning democracy in Israel, as the government here attempts to bring balance between the legislative body and the judicial system, they should spend their time cleaning up the corruption and anti-democratic pursuits of the Biden administration.
Ramat Beit Shemesh
Maayan Jaffe-Hoffman’s article “Israel caught in middle of US-China rivalry” (April 7) on the challenges Israel faces in advancing its relationships with both the United States and China was well-received by this former contracting officer and analyst for the US Defense Department; intellectual property management and technology transfer issues loomed large in that pre-aliyah career of mine, and in a book I subsequently co-authored.
As detailed in Jaffe-Hoffman’s article, the US government has deep concerns regarding “leakage of advanced technologies” by Israel and other US allies into Chinese hands. In setting its technology policies, Israel must be mindful that the US government has caused Israel significant detriment by “leaking” to Israel’s enemies, information Israel has needed to be kept confidential, and must factor those proven risks as it sets its foreign policy vis-a-vis the United States and China.
KALMAN H. RYESKY
For the first time in American history, a former or sitting president has been charged with a crime (“Trump pleads not guilty to 34 criminal charges in New York,” April 5), and so you’d think it would be something big like murder, rape or armed robbery.
The charge laid by Manhattan District Attorney Alvin Bragg doesn’t actually specify what he is charged with. When asked why not, Bragg replied that he didn’t have to. That makes sense!
The article says that the case “stemmed from” hush-money payment made to a porn star in 2016. When Bragg recently campaigned for his position as DA, he did so on the basis that he would “get Trump.”
Do you suppose that this attack might be related to Trump’s recent announcement that he would be seeking a second term, and as such would amount to election interference? Most experts in the field, including many Democrats, say that the case is, at best, very slim. Indeed about half of Americans, including about a third of Democrats, think that the case is politically motivated.
Sitting President Joe Biden was asked to comment by journalists. His response was a grin that would rival that of Lewis Carroll’s Cheshire cat. Biden should take care not to lecture Israel on what constitutes democracy, when there is a risk that around half of American voters stand to be disenfranchised.
This is war
Regarding “US backs Israel’s right to defend against rockets” (April 7): A National Security Council spokesperson said “We remain extremely concerned by the continuing violence and we urge all sides to avoid further escalation.”
What gall. Israel was invaded with dozens of rockets lobbed against residential communities from Gaza and Lebanon. This is not violence. This is war. If Cuba lobbed those rockets into Florida you can be sure that the United States would bomb Cuba out of the Atlantic Ocean.
The Arabs want the destruction of the State of Israel. They don’t want a two-state solution because that would mean they would have to recognize the State of Israel.
How many of you remember the bombing of the Park Hotel in Netanya on Passover? How many of you remember the 1973 Yom Kippur War?
How many of you will remember the Passover of 2023 as we sat down to enjoy the Seder of our freedom from slavery in Egypt?
Not Israel’s concern
The police should not have cleared al-Aqsa Mosque (“Jerusalem tensions high amid violence on Temple Mount,” April 7).
What happens inside the mosque is not our responsibility; if they riot within the mosque, lock the doors, remain inside and don’t allow other Muslims to come to pray, let them.
If they want to stay locked in for a few days or weeks, let them. Muslims themselves would eventually break the siege. So let them; it’s not Israel’s concern.
Then there would be no reason for rockets from Gaza or possibly a war. Things don’t seem to be thought out logically to the end. We don’t have to prove we control the Temple Mount; we know we do.
Perhaps there was an overriding political or personal reason for ordering the police to clear the mosque. But until the police stepped in, only the Arab rioters were desecrating the mosque.
Substantial ill treatment
I read the article “Let Jews into Israel: A plea to the Interior Ministry” (April 5) with great interest. My personal experience was similar to Robert Roth’s. In my case I had already been living here for thirty years when I was required to “prove that I was Jewish.”
The trigger mechanism was the second renewal of my Israeli passport. I found myself in a time-consuming process which ended in the Beersheba Rabbinical Court. I have described what happened in detail in an article published in The Jerusalem Report.
I quickly learned that my lawyer’s father, also a nonagenarian, had similar problems and a letter published in The Jerusalem Report in response to my article described the similar situation of a nonagenarian lady whose daughter was assisting her aliyah. And then, purely by chance, I learned about the problems experienced by another immigrant whose eldest son could not marry.
When one finds the numbers rising in this way without a formal investigation, one concludes that the time has come to examine the situation in order to estimate the gravity of the problem, particularly since the advanced years of the “victims” indicate substantial ill treatment of elderly people. Perhaps a class action against the Interior Ministry is in order, because it ill treats the country’s senior citizens.
Finally let me comment that the use of the word “bloodline” or similar types of expression reminds one of nineteenth century racism. We are in the 21st century, and it is both preferable and more accurate to refer to “carrying Jewish genes.”
Denial of Jewish history
Neville Teller (“Smotrich & Palestinians,” April 4) makes many salient points in support of Bezalel Smotrich and the pro-judicial reform crowd yet comes to contradicting and troubling conclusions in the name of getting along. He’s protective of false Arab accounts with no rebuke for their lack of truth and damaging narratives now accepted worldwide. Israel, for decades now, has publicly gone along with these lies and has helped convince the world of the non-existent veracity of the Arab cause.
For example, if Israelis had fought back these many years against the Palestinian lie of their “long, productive” history and identity as a distinct people, it wouldn’t be accepted as it is today everywhere. It wouldn’t allow serial liar and sponsor of murder Mahmoud Abbas to spout his hatred for Jews and denial of Jewish history. Instead, Israel itself has legitimized him and his lying, murdering band of cohorts to operate and steal with impunity and be accepted by most of the world as having the high road in the Middle East conflict. That the “Palestinian” people have barely a half-century lifespan is indisputable to any thinking and non-prejudiced observer (including the anti-Israel, moronic US State Department).
The same goes for those who truly accept the Israel-Jordan peace treaty. Everyone knows that without Israel’s protectorate, King Abdullah would have been murdered decades ago. We should not be afraid to say it out loud instead of allowing him to badmouth us at every turn.
There is, of course, so much more, yet Teller buys into the need of the false-narrative-parade to protect our mortal enemies. If we had been up front and truthful on day one, our position vis-a-vis the outside world would be strong and respected instead of being seen as weak-kneed and lacking any legitimate claim to our own land; our land, never theirs.
Most perilous nuclear threat
Regarding “What’s next after Iran, IAEA cut dramatic deal?” (April 3): What is there left to say after reading Yonah Jeremy Bob’s account of how Iran has once again reneged on its promises to cooperate with the IAEA?
Anyone who cares to look can see that the terrorist tyrants of Tehran have no agenda besides obtaining an industrial strength nuclear arsenal and then using it in apocalyptic conflicts with those it regards as infidels, chiefly Israel, the United States, and the West.
How many times do we have to go around the same fruitless track of negotiations, putative agreements, Iranian violations of those agreements, and then more negotiations? At what point will the IAEA, the United States, the EU, and the world at large wake up to the fact that an Iranian nuclear arsenal will pose the most perilous nuclear threat that the world has ever faced?
It will be a threat that makes the Cuban Missile Crisis, the Cold War, and even the North Korean nuclear arsenal seem relatively manageable in comparison. Why? Because the Soviet Union, Communist China, and even North Korea were or are largely rational actors not driven toward nuclear warfare by religious imperatives.
On the other hand the Iranian regime is driven by its Shia religious fundamentalist agenda to bring about the return of the Twelfth Imam through an apocalyptic war with the infidels, nuclear if necessary.
That’s why Iranian regime blandishments, promises, and agreements concerning its illicit nuclear proliferation are worthless. It’s why concessions to this regime only encourage more such proliferation. It’s why Iran’s signature on the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty and its agreement to the terms of the JCPOA (Iran Deal) were meaningless.
And in the end, it’s why only a credible military threat with an imminent deadline for the complete elimination of all Iranian nuclear infrastructure will have a chance to end this deadly risk – the sooner, the better.
DANIEL H. TRIGOBOFF
Less expensive and more permanent
Regarding “Johns Hopkins surgeons receive $21.4 million for pig-to-human organ transplants study” (April 9): Such efforts to use technology to reduce health problems are commendable, but as president emeritus of Jewish Veg and author of Vegan Revolution: Saving Our World, Revitalizing Judaism, I wonder, respectfully, why the medical profession seems to be generally ignoring the many studies in peer-reviewed respected medical journals that show that life-threatening diseases can be prevented and sometimes reversed through vegan diets and other positive lifestyle changes.
Modern science, consistent with the Torah teaching in Genesis 1:29, has found that the natural diet for humans is herbivorous, based on an analysis of our teeth, hands, stomach acids and size of out intestinal system.
Here are just three examples of the health benefits of plant-based diets:
The Cornell/Oxford/China study showed that the more animal protein consumed, the greater the incidences of diseases. Studies by Dr. Dean Ornish showed that serious heart problems could be reversed via a very low-fat, almost vegan diet. While insurance companies were initially resistant to providing insurance for his approach, many now do because they recognize it is less expensive and more permanent than surgery.
In his splendid book, Save Yourself From Breast Cancer: Life Choices That Can Help You Reduce the Odds, longtime breast cancer surgeon Dr. Robert M. Kradjian analyzed many peer-reviewed articles in respected medical journals related to epidemiological studies, migration studies, animal experiments, wartime studies, and others to conclude that reducing the consumption of meat and other animal products is the best way to prevent breast cancer.
Shifting toward vegan diets would also be consistent with basic Jewish teachings on preserving human health, treating animals with compassion, protecting the environment, conserving natural resources, and reducing hunger.
RICHARD H. SCHWARTZ