Letters: On Words...

Remind Netanyahu of what Churchill said when he was called to the position of wartime PM: “We shall go on to the end."

Letters 370 (photo credit: REUTERS/Handout )
Letters 370
(photo credit: REUTERS/Handout )
Sir, – During Knesset voting for the state budget, Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu was seen to be reading The Last Lion, a biography of his idol, former UK prime minister Winston Churchill (“Netanyahu: Thanks to the opposition, I have time to read,” July 30).
Perhaps I could remind Netanyahu of what Churchill said when he was called to the position of wartime prime minister: “We shall go on to the end. We shall fight in France, we shall fight on the seas and oceans, we shall fight with growing confidence and growing strength in the air, we shall defend our island, whatever the cost may be. We shall fight on the beaches, we shall fight on the landing grounds, we shall fight in the fields and in the streets, we shall fight in the hills; we shall never surrender.”
There was no doublespeak, no betrayal of the British people, no forcible expulsions of citizens from their homes in order to placate the enemy, no grovelling, no concessions, no pleading with enemies to accept land for peace, just faith and courage and the knowledge that his cause was just. That is how wars are won.
If our prime minister had a grain of pride left, the occasional notes he was taking while reading the biography might say: Remember to tell Obama that the two-state solution is dead.
Sir, – Beyond the ethical dilemmas of our senior elected officials reading on the job, I am most upset at their apparent disconnect with the feelings of the nation, which only days before had been told that over 100 terrorists would be set free in an attempt to encourage the Palestinians to restart peace talks.
May I suggest that our leaders instead read the Book of Pslams.
Sir, – Peace is a paradox. It’s sought and taught but can’t be wrought or bought. Why is this? Perhaps it’s because we reflexively polarize, politicize, militarize, weaponize and rationalize, but don’t pensively realize that peace is mutual humility and reception, not cruel, silly deception.
Peace is a retreat from conceit and deceit.
HUGH MANN Eagle Rock, Missouri
...and names
 Sir, – A few years ago Venezuela changed its official name from the Republic of Venezuela to the Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela. Two years ago the Republic of the Fiji Islands changed its name to the Republic of Fiji. In 1935 Persia changed its name to Iran and in 1979 changed it again to the Islamic Republic of Iran.
Israel now should also change its name. Following the example of Egypt (Arab Republic of Egypt) and Syria (Syrian Arab Republic), the time has come to change our country’s official name to the Jewish State of Israel. The Palestinians should be duly informed.
DAVID MANDELGanei Yehuda Schnorring and lust
Sir, – Although we have nothing against them, my husband and I did not attend the Oz- Boteach show (“Oz, Boteach and Sharansky discuss Jewish values in J’lem,” July 30).
What irked us was the fact that, as you reported the previous day in “‘Dr. Oz’ and Rabbi Boteach arrive in Israel with their families,” their trip to Israel was “funded by Dr. Miriam and Sheldon G. Adelson.”
We are sure that both Dr. Mehmet Oz, a professor of surgery and TV Emmy winner, and Rabbi Shmuley Boteach, a popular lecturer and writer, earn enough money to fund their own trips to Israel, even with their wives and children. Why do they need to be funded by billionaires? Our cousins from Denver saved for years in order to visit Israel with their five children. No outside funding for them.
Sir, – With regard to “Talking with Dr. Oz about Israel, Islam and lust” (No Holds Barred, July 30), why on Earth do we continue to see Shmuley Boteach’s drivel in The Jerusalem Post? Boteach seems to write more for purposes of self-promotion than for our knowledge or edification.
His latest column more than bears this out. Surely he can be replaced with someone more deserving of space in your fine newspaper.
Painful hiccups
Sir, – Your story “Claims Conference appoints new German representative” (July 29) says: “The hiatus in appointing a successor does not seem to have caused any major hiccups in the organization’s negotiations with Germany.”
I am delighted that a hiatus of three years without a representative in Frankfurt didn’t cause any major hiccups in negotiations.
However, it does seem to have caused a number of hiccups for Holocaust survivors, who ostensibly are the reason for these negotiations.
A 93-year-old woman in Amsterdam who applied for the Article 2 fund two years ago has yet to receive a reply. The old-age home the Claims Conference funded in Amsterdam is going out of business, and calls for its help have gone unheeded.
These are not unique hiccups.
The negotiated funds may be sitting in the bank, but the survivors are still hungry and cold and getting no help from an organization that boasts of its care for them.
SAMMI BERNSTEIN Berlin Keep Landau coming
Sir, – It isn’t often that economic affairs beyond those directly affecting Israel are commented on in your pages, so the offerings of one of the most astute analysts covering the global economic scene seem to pass relatively unnoticed.
I’m referring to Pinchas Landau, whose brilliantly written weekly “Global Agenda” essays have connected the dots and indicated that they lead to a morass of economic and financial news designed to challenge all but the most dedicated economic wonks.
In warning us of the collective implications of the recent stunning collapse of gold and silver prices; the ominous post-Detroit financial woes of Philadelphia, America’s fifth-largest city; the Dutch real estate bust; the looming bankruptcies fueled by overinvestment, excess capacity and an environmental train wreck in China; and America’s relentless deficit expansion, Landau has become our canary in the coal mine.
That might be a thankless job, but he brings it off superbly.
Mind your time
Sir, – Regarding “Fast time and the aging mind” (Comment & Features, July 28), the older we get the faster time goes. Here’s why.
It took forever to get from our third birthday to our fourth. It was a long stretch from when there were 10 candles on our cake until we turned 11. But now we blink once and it’s next year. A sneeze and it’s the next decade.
It’s a matter of simple arithmetic: One year in the life of a two-year-old is 50 percent of his life – a long, long time. One year in the life of a 50-year-old is but 2% of his life. One year in the life of a 70-year-old is about 1.5% of his life. And the arithmetic continues....
May we live with health and happiness until 120, when one year will be approximately 0.83% of our life and time will really seem to fly!
Deeply touched
Sir, – “On the ‘Serenity Prayer’” (Eisenbud’s Odyssey, July 25) deeply touched me.
I have had a son with cancer (now a survivor ) and have lost a step-son to an accident with alcohol. Lightening striking twice in one family seems so unfair.
The Serenity Prayer, along with shooting my prayers off to the Big Guy in the sky, has helped me tremendously.
DONNA TARCOV BARNETT Rosemont, Pennsylvania