Letters to the Editor April 25, 2023: Climate threats

Readers of The Jerusalem Post have their say.

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

Climate threats

As president emeritus of Jewish Veg and the author of Vegan Revolution: Saving Our World, Revitalizing Judaism, I believe that “MTE announces world-first meat from chickpeas’’ (April 23) has the potential to be a game changer in efforts to reduce climate threats.

It is the latest example of the increasing number of plant-based substitutes that have the appearance, texture and taste very similar to meat and other animal products. If many people shifted to these substitutes, it would not only reduce the current horrendous treatment of animals on factory farms but would also help in efforts to shift our imperiled planet to a sustainable path.

Reducing meat consumption would reduce the emission from cows of methane, a greenhouse gas over 80 times as potent as CO2 per unit weight in heating the atmosphere. It would also reduce the current destruction of trees to create additional grazing land and land to grow feed crops for animals.

Most importantly, it would enable the reforestation of the vast areas now used for animal-based agriculture. This would result in the sequestration of much atmospheric CO2, reducing it from its current very dangerous level to a much safer one.

 Chickpea meat burger (credit: RUTI AMANO) Chickpea meat burger (credit: RUTI AMANO)

Bottom line: We have a choice between a mainly vegan world and a devastated one. Please become part of the solution by eliminating or at least sharply reducing your consumption of meat and other animal products.



Fascinating to learn about this exciting new technology, not Israel’s first (and hopefully not its last) foray into vegan meats. I do love this company’s name: MTE (Meat. The end), and also that the founder, Dr. Yishai Mishor’s motivation for these meats, was global warming.

Without insinuating myself into the current politics of inner-Israeli issues which many of us (from around the globe) find so heart-wrenching, my fervent hope is that we can all come together for this, to leave a viable world for future generations by going vegan.

The few moments of stuffing one’s face with carrion surely aren’t worth the repercussions. When I first went vegan, almost 50 years ago, none of these delicious alternatives existed. I am proud to say that this didn’t deter me. Once I learned about all the repercussions from the meat/dairy/egg industries, I just knew that I could no longer financially subsidize them.

Fast forward to 2023 with so many delicious choices (now including chickpea meat), how can anyone not want to be part of this vegan journey?

 Vgarden Tuna Salad. (credit: HAGIT GOREN) Vgarden Tuna Salad. (credit: HAGIT GOREN)



More peaceful

Once again, journalist Douglas Bloomfield goes full bore in his anti-Trump rant (“Trump has previewed his resurrection,” April 20). In going through his usual list of topics against former president Donald Trump, he makes extensive use of sarcasm.

The novice reader of the pundit might be forgiven for reading the sarcasm at face value and taking Bloomfield as an avid supporter of the Make America Great Again movement, aka MAGA. In his litany of things against Trump, the journalist tellingly omits two items. The first relates to the January 6 riot at the Capitol, which Bloomfield previously called an insurrection, even though it did not meet the legal definition of such, and that not even one of the more than 1,000 people charged to date have been charged with that crime.

Bloomfield doctored Trump’s speech of that day to make it sound damning, and the recent release of more than 40,000 hours of security camera footage revealed that the entry to the Capitol was more peaceful than was formerly presented to us. The second item omitted was the Hunter Biden laptop story that was suppressed short weeks before the 2020 election with 51 former intelligence agents getting together to label it as “Russian disinformation.” The current and ongoing whistleblowing by an IRS agent promises to keep the laptop story going for some while longer before it comes to its conclusion.

With Trump having announced his run for the 2024 race, and current president Joe Biden continually stating that he is running, but strangely not yet ready to announce, the next 18 months should be of great interest to watchers of the American political scene. One wonders how Bloomfield can keep it up for that length of time, keeping all his balls in the air for so long.



Most resilient people

The article “The shining sun” (April 21) was so beautifully written by David Weinberg. It brought to my mind all the reasons I made aliyah 15 years ago from the US.

Israel was discussed at our table, news was always on about the country, especially during conflict times, but we were not die-hard Zionists. We cared, but not enough, I guess, to talk about aliyah at that time.

Fast forward a few years, when my husband and I came on our first Israel trip, a year-and-a-half after the ‘67 war. The country was on such a high and we reveled in the joy and celebrations. Our three children all came on gap years after high school and then, aliyah became a subject talked about constantly.

Then, in 2003, my daughter announced her intention to make aliyah, with her husband and their four children under the age of five. Their fifth child was born in Israel three years later. Our seven other grandchildren and parents are still in the US but hopefully, they will come, as well.

So, you guessed it, we were going to join our daughter and did three years later, and then made aliyah, two years after that. It was an exhilarating time for all, and certainly had some stressful moments, but I have never been happier, have never felt the belonging like I do here, and never felt so proud of what this country and its people are and have done.

Aliyah stories galore, we managed to get through the bureaucracy with our minds and bodies intact, and learned that crying is one great way of eliciting compassion. We learned enough Hebrew to be able to shop and make doctor appointments, which is a major part of our retirement activities.

The point of my musings: Israel is everything David Weinberg so eloquently wrote about. Israel is the homeland we all dreamed about, prayed for and died for. Israel is vibrant, peace-loving and so child-oriented.

Israel has accomplished what few, if any nations have done, in the 75 years since its founding. Israel will never implode or disappear because Israelis are the most resilient people I’ve ever known.

 ISRAEL AIR FORCE pilots rehearse for the Independence Day flyover in the skies of Tel Aviv, earlier this week. (credit: AVSHALOM SASSONI/FLASH90) ISRAEL AIR FORCE pilots rehearse for the Independence Day flyover in the skies of Tel Aviv, earlier this week. (credit: AVSHALOM SASSONI/FLASH90)

They will protest, yell at perceived bad drivers, and always seem to be in a hurry. But look no further when you need help on the street. You will always smile when you’re wished Shabbat Shalom or Hag Sameach by perfect strangers in gas stations, stores and restaurants. That is the Israel to which I made aliyah 

Happy 75th birthday, Israel. You are truly “The shining sun” of all your peoples.



A state of war

I am a religious person, but I strongly oppose giving special allowances to haredim to avoid military service (“‘People’s Army model is only one that can succeed,’” April 21). Do they learn Torah?

Is it not written in the Torah that every man over the age of 20 is required to join the army if the land is threatened? And who can honestly claim that our country is not being threatened? Yes, there are certain exceptions, and if a war is declared out of choice, one may decline to serve. But if there is a state of war where the land is endangered, all must serve.

I am also against giving national financial support to other than exceptional Torah scholars. Why is optional study in yeshiva different from study in university, where financial support should also be given to outstanding students?  

We are proud to be a democracy, so let us be democratic and treat all our citizens who claim to love our land, equally.


Petah Tikva

Guilt and shame

In “Germany seeks forgiveness for Warsaw Ghetto liquidation” (April 20), Tovah Lazaroff describes an event of monumental significance. It is vitally important that the Holocaust be remembered not only by Jews but by all mankind, especially the nations most implicated in the crimes.

Thus it was of historical significance that Germany, the arch-perpetrator of the genocide, and Poland, the location where the bulk of the crimes took place, joined together with the representative of the victims – President Isaac Herzog – to pay tribute to the heroes of the Warsaw Ghetto uprising.

The most forthright remarks were those uttered by German President Frank-Walter Steinmeier who acknowledged his country’s guilt and shame, as well as its historical imperative to accept responsibility and oppose brutal aggression in the future. He said that Germany “seeks forgiveness for crimes it committed in Warsaw during World War II, including the liquidation of the city’s Jews.”

The meeting of the leaders of Germany, Poland and Israel refutes the claims of the Holocaust-deniers and affirms the responsibilities of the perpetrators as well as those who assisted them or simply stood idly by. Also very poignant was President Steinmeier’s use of the expression “Never Again” in referring to the brutal war in Ukraine.

I firmly believe that this gathering of leaders to honor the Warsaw Ghetto revolt was a brave act of historical greatness which should be honored with the Nobel Peace Prize. Such a gesture would enhance the significance of what they did and publicize its message across the world.



Vile and unrepentant

This ought to be an absolutely defining moment of truth for the UN (editorial, “Fire Albanese,” April 19). If Secretary-General Antonio Guterres and High Commissioner for Human Rights Dr. Volker Turk will not immediately fire this vile, unrepentant and even defiant official, the UN will have lost any last shred of legitimacy.

Albanese has repeatedly exhibited the most outrageous anti-Israel and antisemitic bias, by condoning the brutal murder of three Israelis peacefully driving on a highway, and denying the right of Israel to defend itself, exposing herself as totally bereft of any moral compass. Her position as special rapporteur on the Occupied Palestinian Territories, which itself provides official imprimatur to such anti-Israel bias, ought now to be abolished.

At the UN, though all other nations are equal, Israel, perpetually, is less equal. How ironic that an organization, established in the wake of the Holocaust, should now have become among the chief purveyors of antisemitism in the world.


Syracuse, New York

You rightly request that UN Special Rapporteur on the Occupied Palestinian Territories Francesca Albanese should be dismissed from her position. As we are well aware, this person has a history of defending the so-called downtrodden Palestinian terrorists whose raison d’être is to kill Jews.

Her anti-Israel rhetoric coupled with her pro-Palestinian stance that has included her participation in events hosted by terror groups makes her position as an honest reporter indefensible.

The fact that she states that Israel has no right to defend itself against such heinous acts perpetrated on innocent civilians is tantamount to saying, it has no right to exist.

It is therefore clear that UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres and High Commissioner for Human Rights Dr. Volker Turk must act immediately and dismiss Albanese for being complicit in violating the UN Charter’s aims they represent and are meant to uphold. I, for one, won’t hold my breath on this happening anytime soon. However, such anti-Israel antisemitism must be outed whenever and wherever it raises its ugly head.


Tel Aviv