August 7, 2017: Kick-Back Nation

Letters (photo credit: REUTERS)
(photo credit: REUTERS)
Kick-Back Nation
With regard to your glaring August 4 lead headline “Police reveal bribery is main suspicion against Netanyahu,” the police recently said that more than one-third of Israel’s local councils are being investigated for similar corruption charges.
Sadly, the Start-Up Nation is looking a lot like the Kick-Back Nation.
Views of Kushner
In support of her assertion that Jared Kushner, President Donald Trump’s son-in-law and adviser overseeing US Middle East peace efforts, has “disqualified himself,” PLO executive committee member Hanan Ashrawi unwittingly underscores why the possibility of resolving the Israeli-Palestinian conflict remains so elusive (“Ashrawi to ‘Post’: Kushner can’t broker peace,” August 4.) Ashrawi accuses Kushner of a “lack of knowledge of the history” of the conflict, which she identifies as recognition that “Israel is the occupying power, enslaving another people, acting outside the law…” and charges, among other fulminations, that Israel “occupied another 22% of the [Palestinian] land in 1967.
This is history. And if we ignore that, we have no tools to resolve the conflict….”
Kushner’s undiplomatic expression of doubt during a private talk about the prospects for an imminent peaceful resolution of the bitter and long-simmering impasse remains, unfortunately – and tragically – realistic as long as Ashrawi and her associates in the Palestinian leadership continue to cling to a narrative that demonizes and delegitimizes the Jewish state.
Melanie Phillips, in “An open letter to Jared Kushner” (As I See It, August 4), is spot on. But in order to understand why Ms.
Phillips is right, Mr. Kushner needs to read these three books first: Ayaan Hirsi Ali’s Heretic: Why Islam Needs a Reformation Now, Ibn Warraq’s The Islam in Islamic Terrorism: The Importance of Beliefs, Ideas and Ideology, and Douglas Murray’s The Strange Death of Europe: Immigration, Identity, Islam. (Murray’s book may well be the one that changes the course of European history.) Mr. Kushner and his father-inlaw, US President Donald Trump, had better read, learn and not repeat the mistakes Europe has made.
With regard to “Kushner: There may be no solution to ME peace” (August 2), it seems ironic that it takes a untrained diplomat to say what we realists living here have been saying for years.
Electoral threshold
It would be easy to misinterpret Yonah Jeremy Bob’s reference to “a 2015 law forcing Israeli-Arab parties to consolidate” (“The legacy of Israel’s first Arab Supreme Court judge,” Frontlines, August 4).
Before the 2015 elections, a law was passed to raise the electoral threshold, which is the percentage of the vote a political party needs to win in order to hold any seats in the Knesset. Yes, it was a threat to small parties representing Arabs, but it was also a threat to small parties representing Orthodox Jewish splinter groups, environmentalists, pot smokers, divorced husbands and all other constituencies that repeatedly try, from outside the power elite, to make their voices heard.
The large parties do not like having to deal with small parties at all, regardless of ethnicity, and ever since there’s been a Knesset, they haven’t stopped dreaming of a single-party government. The public, as history shows, prefers otherwise.
Not fans of Geula Thank you,
Greer Fay Cashman, for “A new definition of chutzpah” (Grapevine, August 4).
I saw the Channel 1 interview with Alan M. Dershowitz that presenter Geula Even Sa’ar had the extreme gall and bad manners to conduct with such an eminent and respected Zionist and defender of Israel. I don’t agree with everything the gentleman says, however he is a straight person with no hidden agenda and is a supporter of Israel.
Is Ms. Even-Sa’ar’s husband, Likud politician Gideon Sa’ar, waiting impatiently in the wings to take over from Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu? I was embarrassed and ashamed by her insinuations. She certainly owes Prof. Dershowitz a big apology,
Geula Even-Sa’ar’s Channel 1 interview with retired Harvard law professor Alan M. Dershowitz on the evening of August 2 was unprofessional, rude, biased and embarrassing.
Even-Sa’ar kept cutting Dershowitz off, peppering this with such gems as “You don’t know Israeli law” (he does), “Did anyone [in Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s camp] ask you to do this interview?” and “Are you getting paid to do this interview?” Her facial expressions showed pure malice.
Nevertheless, she was no match for Dershowitz, who remained cool and professional, and was not rattled at all.
In the same broadcast, what appears to be Even-Sa’ar’s visceral hatred for Netanyahu came through during reports about the current investigations into the prime minister’s activities.
How about changing the presenter?
Nixon precedent
In “Can the president pardon himself?” (Comment & Features, August 2), Alan M. Dershowitz states: “No president has ever tried it. No court has ever ruled on it.
The framers of our Constitution never opined on it. History provides no guidance.”
Whereas I recognize Prof. Dershowitz’s knowledge of law and, more specifically, constitutional law, I beg to differ with him about history.
President Richard M. Nixon had the opportunity to pardon himself before he resigned. Instead, he requested (and received) a pardon from his successor, Gerald Ford. I would take that as a historical precedent saying a president cannot pardon himself.
Petah Tikva
Dancing again
I was so pleased to read Judy Siegel- Itzkovich’s well-researched “Dancing after knee and hip replacement surgery” (Health, July 30) because I can take the opportunity to express my profound gratitude to Dr. Amir Rubin and his devoted colleagues.
About six weeks ago, I was one of the statistics mentioned regarding the “50 or 60 emergency orthopedic cases” at Shaare Tzedek Medical Center, having suffered an acute hip fracture and being operated on within 24 hours of arriving. Dr. Rubin’s upbeat, smiling and encouraging appearance at my bedside five hours later, urging me to take my first steps, was exactly in accordance with his book of guidance.
And it worked.
With the help of the wonderful home-visiting physiotherapists and other medical experts, all supplied by my health fund and the National Insurance Institute, I am back on my feet, almost as good as new – and yes, planning to dance at my grandson’s wedding, God willing, this week.
CORRECTION Rex Tillerson is the US secretary of state, and not as stated in “Trump’s silence speaks volumes” (Comment & Features, August 3).
The Post puzzles that appear as part of the entertainment section on Mondays, Tuesdays and Thursdays are being redesigned to enhance their readability. The new design is scheduled to take effect starting Monday, August 13. In the meantime, a number of clues or parts of clues were inadvertently cut from the Crossword and Quick Crosswords of Thursday, August 3.
The incomplete clues for the Crossword were 26 Across: Pugilist with sweat covering face – ‘Hang on!’ we hear (12); and 22 Down: Object shown in streetside murals (5). The clues missing from the Quick Crossword were: 4 Down: European principality (6); 14 Down: Cosy retreat (4); 16 Down: Rodents (7); 23 Down: From Dublin maybe (5); and 25 Down: Bluish purple (5). We apologize for the inconvenience.