Letters to the Editor April 7, 2021: On the Blink(en)

Readers of The Jerusalem Post have their say.

Letters (photo credit: PIXABAY)
Letters
(photo credit: PIXABAY)
 On the Blink(en)
Regarding “Blinken to Ashkenazi: Palestinians, Israelis must equally enjoy democracy” (April 4), I support Palestinian rights, but US Secretary of State Antony Blinken’s statement is absurd.
Israel is a country. Its membership in the UN is older than most. It has all the institutions of a state and has been ranked the ninth most important country in the world.
The Palestinians, so named by the KGB in 1964 when they founded the Palestine Liberation Organization, are a political party. They are not a state, nor have they ever been one.
Palestinians are under the control of the PA and Hamas in parts of Judea, Samaria and Gaza. They would like their own state. Some want to be part of Israel. Some want to replace Israel. Others would like two states living side by side.
Why is Blinken expecting the Palestinians to “enjoy equal measures of freedom, security, prosperity and democracy” that Israel has? It would be more reasonable for them to be similar to their brothers in surrounding countries, if and when they form a state.
Why would he expect them to be democratic? Are any Muslim states Western-style democracies? Do we not remember the folly of encouraging the “Arab Spring” in 2010/11? States across MENA held elections while Western observers and media gloated. The results, of course, were riots and a return to totalitarianism.
So, if this administration wants to fund the PA and infantilize them by agreeing that everything bad in their society is Israel’s fault, go ahead. It will just mean four more years of the same. Palestinian leaders will beg for donations and steal most of it. Those in neighboring refugee camps will suffer.
Israel, meanwhile, is forming meaningful relationships with the Abraham Accord states and others. Perhaps the Arab League or China will step in and persuade the Palestinians to join the Peace to Prosperity plan if the US now won’t.

LEN BENNETT
Ottawa, On. 
Regarding “Blinken puts more focus on Palestinians, security in call to Ashkenazi” (April 4), it’s good to hear that the Biden Administration supports Israel’s vision of “two states for two people” – a Palestinian state co-existing with the nation-state of the Jews, with members of minority groups having full civil rights in their country of residence (as non-Jews have in Israel). 
Unfortunately, the Palestinian leaders still cling to a different vision of the “two-state solution” – one in which all Jews will be banished from the Palestinian state and Israel will be transformed into a Muslim-majority state, overrun by millions of Arabs who, the Palestinian leaders say, have a “right to return” to the homes they claim their forebears lost in the midst of Arab attempts to prevent Israel’s rebirth in the Jews’ ancestral homeland. 
Tragically, those Palestine “refugees” (as designated by UNRWA) have grown up seeing people highly honored and richly rewarded for killing Jews. The Jews of a Muslim-majority Israel would be second-class citizens if they were tolerated at all.
It’s also good to hear that the Biden Administration has recognized that the Palestinian leaders, in refusing to negotiate and reflexively rejecting every peace proposal proffered by Israel, have been acting unilaterally and have, indeed, been prolonging the conflict. But it is not enough to tell the Palestinian leaders to stop inciting their people to violence and to stop rewarding people who answer the call to kill Jews. Steps must be taken to ensure that the money given to the Palestinian leaders is really used for the people’s benefit. 
Here, the Biden Administration could take the Abraham Accords to the next level – getting Israel’s new Arab allies to work on getting the Palestine refugees out of the limbo in which they have been trapped for generations. The Arab signatories to the Abraham Accords could offer the refugees the chance of rebuilding their lives among people with whom they share language, religion and traditions or the opportunity to work on well-supervised efforts at building the first-ever-to-exist Arab state of Palestine as a good neighbor to the world’s only Jewish state.

TOBY F. BLOCK
Atlanta, GA
When will Blinken and the current US administration realize that the Palestinian leadership doesn’t want a state? 
They turned down many opportunities for nationhood. Why? Because perpetually portraying themselves as victims is their most lucrative source of income. For them, the conflict with Israel is a bottomless oil well, a goose that continually lays golden eggs.
Former president Donald Trump had the right idea: stop the money flow. Make fake victimhood unprofitable and you can break their dependence on it. 
By throwing money at the PA again without requiring anything of them, the Biden administration is only adding fuel to the fire of their appetite. This is not a path to peace.
FANNIE REDNICK
Ariel
You don’t say
Regarding “Boutique hotel to open in the abandoned Palestinian village of Lifta” (JPost.com, April 1), to my knowledge, there never was a “Palestinian” village of Lifta. There were Arabs living there, but the term “Palestinian” ceased to be used after 1948. In fact, your own paper changed its name from The Palestine Post at that time.
I have asked before, and continue to insist, that your newspaper cease using anti-Israel terminology, such as “West Bank” (coined by King Abdullah I of Jordan to designate his western occupied territories). Israel may have “disputed areas,” but our territory extends to the Jordan River, where our League of Nations-mandated homeland was cut off by Secretary of State for the Colonies Winston Churchill in 1922. Judea and Samaria are the rightful (and Biblical) names for these areas.
I also object to the continued publication of venom-spewing articles by Ehud Olmert. Anyone who has followed his political (and criminal) career would not be interested in accepting any advice from him.
I have previously considered ending my subscription to The Jerusalem Post because of these offensive policies; I see no reason to continue to waste our valuable paper sources on disinformation that abets Israel’s enemies.
NAME WITHHELD BY REQUEST
Jerusalem
As a subscriber of your paper I would like to express my disappointment. I don’t understand you publishing every week the hate speech of Ehud Olmert. His articles are almost the same each week and they are full of foul language and hate.
I read articles I don’t agree with to get another opinion, not just hate (and written by a former prime minister!)
ERIC GOBITS
Jerusalem
A lot of bull
Matadors wave red flags at bulls during bullfights. This is willfully done to infuriate, aggravate and provoke – to incite great anger or annoyance in the animal – and to amuse and entertain spectators.
Your headline “In challenge to Biden, Israel plans to advance Har Homa project” (April 6) is such a red flag.
The Har Homa project is one of 27 projects throughout the city moving slowly through a multi-year approval process. By headlining that project and framing it as an intentional brazen provocation – and by prominently and extensively quoting the propaganda of left-wing group Ir Amim in the article – The Jerusalem Post is waving a red flag in front of Israel’s enemies and practically begging them to notice the project, blow it out of proportion and launch robust and vocal punitive action against us.
This editorial choice may help garner clicks on the Internet (especially by Israel haters ever looking for things to be incensed about), but is it really a service to our country – or to the truth? Whose side are you on?
DAVID JACOBS
Jerusalem
Fine China
Regarding “Philippines: China to occupy more South China Sea areas” (April 5), China apparently will do as they wish.
China’s incursion into disputed waters is an open challenge aimed not only at the Philippines but at the entire world. Their justifications seem to be childish and illogical. Belive it or not, China and rest of the world is the new order. China’s $400 billion long-term investment plan in Iran’s a clear message to rest of the world – especially to the US. China knows very well that soon energy-crunched India too will seek cheap oil from Iran. 
Unfortunately, all other countries remain mute spectators. Today, it may be the Philippines but tomorrow it might be some other countries.
 China’s disruptive trade practices forged their dominance in the field of global commerce by ensuring the extinction of some of the best companies in the world. We have reached a situation where we can’t get through a single day without uttering the word “China” at least once.
 If things go in this way unhindered, then undemocratic China will rule all of the democratic countries soon. As Albert Einstein rightly pointed out, “The world will not be destroyed by those who do evil, but by those who watch them without doing anything”
GIRISH R EDATHITTA 
Kerala, India
It’s no accident
On Sunday April 4, two people tragically lost their lives and another seven were injured needing hospitalization “Deadly crash kills 25-year-old” (April 5). 
Since living near this junction (for less than two years), I know of eight accidents here and have been told of others. Speed cameras where you are permitted to travel 20 kph in excess of the speed limit before being fined are a joke. At this junction, the speed limit should be reduced to 40 kph and cameras installed with a tolerance of five kph before issuing fines. In countries where there is a 40 kph speed limit in school zones, there is a two kph tolerance only before issuing a fine. 
Drivers will learn to respect the law when they feel the effect in their pockets and get demerit points. Cameras today are so accurate that the driver can be identified and/or the vehicle can be taken off the road if necessary.
FRANK BERGER
Jerusalem
We are all saddened and distressed by the casualties resulting from the latest traffic accident on the Hebron Road in Jerusalem yesterday. 
Israel’s road toll this year through the end of March was 74. This may be contrasted, for instance, with Australia’s road toll over the same period of 61. And this in a country whose population is almost three times larger than Israel’s. While it is true that Israel’s population density is higher, the associated traffic congestion is worse there and Australia’s road infrastructure is generally better engineered and maintained than Israel’s. 
Visitors from Australia and elsewhere – and, indeed, many Israeli’s too – are often appalled by Israel’s “road culture.” Numerous tales of woe are often heard about the terrifying experience of driving in Israel. Drivers’ recklessness, impatience, lack of consideration for others and frequent breaches of road rules are seemingly condoned by the unconscionable absence of serious police enforcement. In light of the resultant carnage on Israel’s roads and the lack of a visible, deterrent police presence, one could be forgiven for concluding that the Jewish value of the sanctity of human life is not taken very seriously in the Jewish state.
Israel’s police force, notwithstanding compelling competing claims on its resources, needs to give higher priority to policing the nation’s drivers or tragic incidents, such as that on Derech Chevron, will continue apace. 
ALLAN BOROWSKI
Jerusalem
‘Religion’ is not one of the 3 Rs
Regarding “Jewish studies just as important as secular studies” (April 3), Moshe Dann’s own words aptly demonstrate the need for non-religious studies in schools.
“The Talmud is full of examples of great rebbes who were Torah scholars and also had a trade and understood the world,” says Dann, but “rebbe” is a title of hassidic leaders. Hasidism arose a thousand years after the Talmud was completed; therefore there are no “rebbes” in the Talmud. The second part of this sentence was true even until recently, but for the past 50 years the haredi community has discouraged work and promoted parasitism as a way of life. 
“Why is seeking a connection to God less important than studying math and science?” Dann asks. If you want a wheel do you follow the Bible (1 Kings 7:23) or mathematics? How have religious studies contributed anything to technology and medicine? Does Dann want a world without electricity and with rampant disease? Given the haredi role in spreading measles, genital herpes and COVID-19 this might indeed be the case.
Why is “joining the IDF, going to university, or working in a store or business more important?” To defend one’s lives and country and not to be reliant on the charity/taxes of others would be good answers. 
The Education Ministry is indeed responsible for this abusive state of affairs whereby children are deprived of key knowledge, and we parents and electors are responsible for allowing this to happen at the behest of the haredi leadership and a government dependent upon their votes. 
KOBI SIMPSON-LAVY
Rehovot
True or false?
“In Virginia governor’s race, Trump’s false stolen-election claim looms large” (Jpost.com, April 2) asserts that former president Donald Trump’s claim was false. But I haven’t read of any actual evidence of this – most courts dismissed voter fraud charges without hearing the cases. 
In Michigan, Wisconsin, and Virginia the courts are starting to rule that the way absentee balloting was handled was illegal. Imagine that! In March, the Michigan State Court of Claims ruled that the secretary of state did not have the authority to rule that signatures on absentee ballots did not have to be checked. In Wisconsin, in December, the state Supreme Court ruled that state officials that modified voting requirements did not have legal authority to do that. Ballots cast following their illegal rules should be invalidated. Over 200,000 ballots were so cast. The margin of victory was 20,000. In Virginia a judge ruled that ballots received after election day with no postmark were illegal, but they were counted in the election. 
Other legal challenges remain. All rulings include the obligatory statement, “there is no evidence of widespread fraud could have impacted the election,” but we know laws were broken and we do not know which illegal votes we did not detect. These are a few of the illegal voter cases that have been adjudicated. Justice Clarence Thomas has criticized the Supreme Court for not having ruled on these election changes before the election and not having ruled on their effects after the election. 
So if one wants want to examine the election validity by a court ruling you are out of luck, but if you think that the media should be the judge you can celebrate. The truth is not as clear as some would want us to believe.
LISA TYOMKIN 
Jerusalem