By LETTERS TO THE EDITORThe facts are on our side Further to the ongoing arguments with Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas and his associates (“Netanyahu: Abbas speech shows Palestinians don’t want peace,” January 16), I find it amazing that we do not stop this futility and once and for all confirm to the world that the modern State of Israel was founded on the irrefutable testimony not of the Jewish people, but the nations of the world.We must react only with the following to hostile arguments:• In Luke 2:46, we read that Jesus debated with the doctors [rabbis ] in the Temple. Every practicing Christian is aware of this, but possibly some reminding would not be out of place.In Rome, there exists an 1,800-year-old monument recording in writing and illustration the destruction of a people, Jerusalem and its Temple.The Arch of Titus has been and is seen by millions who might need a reminder that this vanquished people has been reborn in its ancient homeland.• In 1922, the League of Nations, by a vote of 52-0, agreed to the establishment of a national home for the Jewish people “whereas recognition has hereby been given to the historical connection of the Jewish people with Palestine and to the grounds for reconstituting their national home in that country.”Advertisement• In November 1947, the United Nations, by a vote of 33 to 13, with 10 abstentions, confirmed a much-reduced area for the establishment of a Jewish state.• Palestine was not part of any Arab state or country but, prior to British control, was a part of the Ottoman empire, which was dismantled after World War I and divided into independent Arab states.It is quite clear that Israel was not founded by any Jewish conquest or aggression, but by the logical action of the gentile states of the world well before the horrors of the Holocaust could be imagined. It is most disconcerting and costly in life and energy that our successive authorities have not made an effort to disseminate these historical facts to at least the non-Muslim countries of the world.BERNHARD LAZARUSTel AvivThe hysteria emanating from Mahmoud Abbas, leader of the terror-sponsoring Palestinian Authority, is laughable. As he always does – and must continue to do – just to survive, Abbas is playing to his base and to the go-along-with-anything-against-Israel media.Israelis need to stop saying it’s about time that someone such as President Donald Trump tells Abbas about the harsh reality of the situation.It’s time for Netanyahu to tell Abbas, the PA, Hamas, Europe and the rest of the world the truth: An undivided Jerusalem is Israel’s forever, and if you want any semblance of a functioning Palestinian entity, keep quiet, stop the incitement, end the support for terrorists and begin the long road toward educating your people to accept the fact of a Jewish state that could actually benefit all lives in the region.ALLAN KANDELLos AngelesMahmoud Abbas’s politics – rejection, negation, delegitimization of a Jewish connection to the area – is presented as despair. Despair it is, indeed, over the loss of his unconditional supporter in the White House and the dawn of the new era in Middle Eastern and world history – the Trump’s era.Despair it is indeed that his dream of destroying the Jewish state and the Jews hasn’t come true (and never will since the Almighty stated otherwise). Yasser Arafat’s devoted follower and ideological heir is unwilling to change, whether by granting him financial incentives or diplomatic support, or denying or reducing them.PETER ROTBERGRamleHaving and eating the BDS cake The juxtaposition of two articles on your front page of January 16 indicates the ridiculous environment in which Israel finds itself.At the bottom of the page is a report about Lebanon and its desire to enforce strict compliance with the boycott of all things Israeli or in any way linked to Israel (“Lebanon bans new Spielberg film ‘The Post’”). Immediately above it is an article concerning Hamas leaders entering Israel for medical treatment (“State takes hard line on Hamas medical requests after Goldin family’s petition”).I guess when it comes to the Arabs’ well-being, strict compliance with the boycott can be ignored.Israel should cease all payments and services, such as electricity, to those Arab countries and entities that appear to be strict adherents of BDS until that movement is defeated. After all, one cannot have his cake and eat it too.ARTHUR MILLERBeit SHemesh Silence says it best Regarding “PM indirectly confirms Israel source of Trump’s leak to Russia” (January 11), perhaps our prime minister and the rest of his government should pay heed to Pirkei Avot: Nothing is better for the person than silence.SAMUEL ROSENBLUMBeit ShemeshNo similarity whatsoever I strongly object to Ilan Baruch’s suggestion in “Sigmar Gabriel is right” (Comment & Features, January 9) that “Israel’s relationship with the Palestinians in the territories is reminiscent of Apartheid.” As a South African whose father was a fervent anti-apartheid parliamentarian during the Apartheid era, I can confidently assert that there is no similarity whatsoever.There are a number of reasons why the “hope of liberty and dignity” for the Palestinians has not been achieved, but very few of them have anything to do with Israel.The first comes with their rejection of the 1947 UN partition plan and the attack by Arab countries on the nascent Israeli state. Six thousand Israeli soldiers and civilians died in this futile war. Confirmation of the rejection was written into the Covenant of the PLO in 1964. Article 19 stated: “The partitioning of Palestine in 1947 and the establishment of Israel is null and void whatever time has elapsed.”The “occupation” referred to occurred in 1967,when Israel was forced to defend the state against existential threats from Arab countries. After the victory, Israel took control of land that had illegally been annexed by the Jordanians in 1950 and to which they, after the war, gave up all claims. This is the same land designated for a Jewish homeland by the Balfour Declaration and confirmed by the League of Nations.No Palestinian state ever existed on this land or anywhere else in the area. Despite this fact, Israel was prepared to negotiate. At a conference in Khartoum, the Arab response was no negotiations, no peace, no recognition of Israel.In 2000 and 2008, the Palestinians were offered more than 95% of their demands for land for the establishment of a state that could lead to the fulfillment of their “liberty and dignity.” They once again walked away from the opportunity. In response to the 2000 offer, then-Palestinian Authority president Yasser Arafat instigated a vicious intifada that killed and maimed thousands of Israelis.Incitement and encouragement to hate and kill Jews is rampant in the territories, and attacks on Jews have continued unabated over the years. It is their intransigence and obstructionism that has played a large part in the creation of the “humanitarian crisis on the way” that is often spoken of.No! Sigmar Gabriel and Ilan Baruch are not right. To blame only Israel for the condition that the Palestinians find themselves in today is a travesty and should not be allowed to go unchallenged.BARBARA BROWNNetanya
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