Letters to the Editor 01/07/2016: Ban’s opportunity

Ban has the opportunity to show the world that the UN means something other than hatred of Israel.

Letters (photo credit: REUTERS)
(photo credit: REUTERS)
Ban’s opportunity
With regard to “Ban calls for ‘political horizon’ on eve of Quartet report” (June 29), outgoing United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon has a wonderful opportunity to leave office having achieved something: He can speak out and negotiate with Hamas for the return of the two Israelis and the remains of the two soldiers Hamas is holding.
Haven’t the Muslims been taught about keeping things sacred? Ban should point this out and, even more, use his good offices to see to it that there are extreme sanctions placed on Gaza if Hamas cannot be persuaded to do the civilized thing.
Ban has the opportunity to show the world that the UN means something other than hatred of Israel.
Wrong victims
Regarding “Police temporarily close Temple Mount to visitors, arrest 16 youths after Muslim rioting resumes” (June 29), the government of Israel must change its policy of punishing the victims.
As the article states, following rioting and stone-throwing attacks by Arab youths, police closed the Temple Mount not to Arab or Muslim visitors, but to non-Muslim visitors – the victims of these attacks. So instead of the perpetrators being punished, the victims were punished.
I agree with the police that following such attacks, the Temple Mount should be closed to visitors – but of the faith that mounted the attacks! Concerns that the Muslim community will be offended should be considered.
Therefore, the police should post permanent notices saying that in the event of riots, attacks or other disturbances to worshipers of other faiths, the community the attackers come from will be banned from the Temple Mount for three consecutive days. If subsequent riots or attacks occur, the ban will be extended by one day for each incident.
This policy should be enacted into law by the Knesset and strictly enforced by the police.
The ban on worshipers of non-Muslim faiths who pray quietly while visiting the Temple Mount should be canceled.
It’s time for the government to do the right thing.
Stop punishing the victims!
I object to the wording of your headline. The police closed the Temple Mount only to peaceful non-Muslim visitors. Muslim visitors, some of whom have been rioting for the past few days, were allowed to continue to visit the area freely.
Further, your use of the word “visitors” to refer to non-Muslims implies that the Muslims have more of a right to be there. This attitude only serves to support the rioters and the resulting discrimination against non-Muslims.
The Temple Mount should remain open to all peaceful citizens at all times. Those who riot should be dealt with appropriately and should not be allowed to interfere with the rights of peaceful people.
In addition, the comment of Jerusalem City Councilor Meir Margalit, that “the only solution is to remove both Jewish and Muslim extremists from the site,” is mind-boggling! Who has been throwing stones at whom? Later in the article, Dr. Margalit clarifies his definition of Jewish extremists: “The issue is those who go up there with a political agenda.”
With all due respect to him, in a free and democratic country, citizens are entitled to their opinions and their agendas. Comparing someone with a “political agenda” to someone who throws rocks at the police and at citizens by referring to both as “extremists” is unacceptable and counterproductive, and only serves to support the rioters and the discrimination.
Sharon no Cameron
One has to admire the integrity of British Prime Minister David Cameron, who announced his intention to resign within hours of losing the Brexit referendum. This is in stark contrast to then prime minister Ariel Sharon when lost an internal Likud Party referendum on the evacuation from Gush Katif: He promptly ignored and overturned the outcome!