Letters to the Editor: Confronting terrorism

A popular definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over and expecting different results. May I suggest that it’s time to try something different.

Letters (photo credit: REUTERS)
(photo credit: REUTERS)
Confronting terrorism
With regard to “15-year-old Palestinian arrested for Otniel murder” (January 20), the script is well known. We find the killer. There will be other terrorist attacks and other people killed. Yet the mantra of the government is “Return to your normal lives.” And we do.
A popular definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over and expecting different results. May I suggest that it’s time to try something different.
For years, we were told that there was no military solution to terrorism, yet Ariel Sharon defeated terrorism with targeted assassinations and a forceful crackdown on villages. By not trying a new, more forceful approach – which will surely antagonize the United States and the EU – our government is, in essence, saying that the lives of Dafna Meir, those murdered before her and those who surely will be murdered in the future are an acceptable price to pay for diplomatic relations.
Where is our rage? Have we grown so accustomed to Arab terrorism that we accept it as part of our daily lives? I, for one, refuse to accept this. Let’s not go back to our jobs and our lives. Let’s not accept terrorism as part of our daily existence. Let’s take to the streets and demand that our government protect us with every means available. Let’s not be insane, continuing to try the same things while expecting different results.
Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu is said to be so angry at the horrific murder of Dafna Meir that he plans on having the murderer’s family home destroyed.
It is not the house that caused the murder, Mr. Prime Minister, it is the people who live in it. They are the ones who should be punished. As their home is blown up, they will stand and count the money they are rewarded with for having such a “hero” in their family.
You can huff and puff and blow their house in, but they are as happy as can be.
The people who announce to your face that they are proud of what their son did to this beautiful, innocent woman should be deported now; they have no right to live in this country.
When will you finally stand up and protect the Jewish people you are supposed to lead? I pray that it will be soon, for none of us are safe.
Where is the outrage? Daily stabbings and families torn apart in grief. Yet turn on any foreign news channel – is it even mentioned? If it is and the perpetrator is shot, the headline is “Palestinian shot by IDF,” followed by some idiotic statement about a “disproportionate response.”
Our hasbara (public diplomacy) is non-existent. The WZPS (World Zionist Press Service), which used to send Israel’s point of view to 120 papers in 17 languages for free, has not existed for the past 30 years.
Mark Regev, our best spokesman, is now off to the UK. The most professional anchors for IBA TV’s English news have lost their jobs.
There is no one to tell Israel’s story in a lucid, convincing way, and all we hear about Israel is BDS and condemnations for building in our own tiny land.
We are supposed to be leaders in so many fields – hi-tech, agriculture, science, medicine and more – yet where it is really needed, in telling Israel’s story, we have failed miserably.
he writer is a former writer for WZPS and author of 13 books.
Bibi vs. Dan
With regard to your January 19 lead article “Netanyahu, Shapiro trade jabs over ‘two standards’ of law in West Bank,” as an American citizen, I wonder what the US reaction would be if the Israeli ambassador to the United States, speaking at an American conference, got up and questioned the fairness of the US justice system – say, toward African-Americans, as seen in Ferguson, Baltimore, New York and many other places.
None of those places are under terrorist threat, as Israel is, except in the most general way, yet it would be unseemly for a foreign ambassador to intervene in the American justice system, which strives to the best of its ability to be fair, as does Israel’s.
It seems that US Ambassador Dan Shapiro sees his role not as a diplomat, but as a roving critic of Israel’s democratic society and its duly elected government.
Most recently, it was Israel’s justice system. The day before, it was legislation being prepared for submission to the Knesset.
Who knows what tomorrow will bring? It is odd that Ambassador Shapiro has had nothing to say about the justice system of the Palestinian Authority, or those of Syria, Lebanon, Jordan and Iraq.
Nor did his colleague in Riyadh find a conference there to criticize the summary execution of 47 defendants. Somehow, only Israeli democracy comes in for such criticism.
Under the assumption that Ambassador Shapiro receives his instructions from above, I guess this is just another example of the Obama administration’s disdain for its allies and the democratic world in general.
US Ambassador Dan Shapiro says Washington “is concerned and perplexed by [Israel’s] settlement policy.” He need not be. The US has been flogging a dead horse ever since the 1969 Rogers Plan.
The Palestine Mandate advocated “close settlement” by the Jews in Palestine. Considering the 865,000 square miles of purely Arab lands, Britain’s Lord Balfour hoped that the “small notch” of Palestine east and west of the Jordan River, which was being “given” to the Jewish people, would not be “grudged” to them by Arab leaders. However, it did not stop there, for as a matter of pragmatism, the British reduced the “small notch” with the creation of Transjordan.
Immediately following the Six Day War, Earle G. Wheeler, chairman of the US Joint Chiefs of Staff, wrote in a memorandum to defense secretary Robert McNamara: “From a strictly military point of view, Israel would require the retention of some captured territory in order to provide militarily defensible borders.” The subsequent return of Sinai to Egypt and the 2005 disengagement from the Gaza Strip has more than satisfied that recommendation.
ALEX ROSE Ashkelon
‘New York values’
With regard to “The sickening charge of anti-Semitism against Ted Cruz” (No Holds Barred, January 19), I don’t accuse the GOP presidential hopeful of anti-Semitism. However, criticizing “New York values” invokes certain undertones.
Whether or not Cruz is deeply committed to the Jewish people, there is no question that his mention of “New York values” is benefiting him politically, and that this benefit is at least partially dependent upon people’s perceptions of New York’s large Jewish population and the values it represents.
This makes it especially disheartening that Shmuley Boteach would give Cruz a free pass based not on his willingness to stand up to just the kind of anti-Semitic insinuations he is peddling, but because he is, according to Boteach, “one of the staunchest, most dependable allies of Israel to ever exist in the United States Senate.”
The two, to me, seem unrelated.
As a Jew, I do not want to be defined by Cruz’s brand of irresponsible, unwavering support for Israel. And Jews should not belittle themselves by accepting the kind of petty political transaction advocated by Boteach.