Letters to the Editor December 9, 2020: Samaria semantics

Readers of The Jerusalem Post have their say.

Letters (photo credit: PIXABAY)
(photo credit: PIXABAY)
Samaria semantics
In “Settlement olive oil and wine to be exported to Dubai” (December 8), was it necessary to emphasize, especially on Page One with a glaring headline, that the olive oil and wine companies exporting to Dubai are “settlement” companies exporting “settler” goods?
The Jerusalem Post knows very well that the terms “settlements” and “settler” are denigrating propaganda terms used by our enemies to deny Jewish rights to our homeland. Do you refer to Carmel Mizrachi as a “settlement” wine company located in the original “settlements” of Zichron Ya’acov and Rishon Lezion?
Maybe the Post is finally coming to its senses. Or did you mistakenly refer to the Samaria Regional Council as an Israeli municipality?
Ganei Modi’in (a town in Israel)
Shirking Shirbit
Regarding “Government to reconsider using Shirbit insurance after cyberattack” (December 8), in contrast to Shirbit’s courageous stand not to capitulate to the recent ransom cyberattack on its database, the government is reconsidering its ties to the company. Such an inappropriate response in effect is rewarding terrorism and will only encourage similar attacks in the future.
The proper reaction by the government should be twofold: 1) Reward the company with continued and even increased business and 2) Full mobilization of Israel’s vaunted cyber security technology in the apprehension of the hackers along with their severe punishment.
Cyber terrorism is no less dangerous than any other form of terrorism and must be uprooted and destroyed.
We’re with David
The “Right to be Israeli” editorial (December 8) castigates the atrocious behavior of the Interior Ministry in denying citizenship to David Ben Moshe.
Ben Moshe is described as a model citizen with many virtues. His only sin appears to be his non-ultra-Orthodox conversion. The excuse supplied by the population and immigration authorities is a drug conviction in the US many years ago. Many Israelis have stories of their own experiences in inquisition-like torture chambers run by the Israeli bureaucracy in its various ugly forms. In that respect Ben Moshe is being treated much like the rest of us – but with far more dire consequences.
Ben Moshe should sue the population and immigration authorities. In this manner he will demonstrate again his positive contribution to Israeli society. I personally will donate to his legal fees and I’m sure that a great many others will join me.
State repeatedly rebuffs convert’s quest to be citizen” (December 7) took my breath away. So much is topsy-turvy in our world of today and here is another example.
An American black man who discovered Judaism in the library of a jail where he was serving a sentence became completely absorbed with it. When released he became a member of an Orthodox synagogue and was accepted into the fold.
David Ben Moshe did not stop there but came and settled in Israel, got married, once again by an Orthodox rabbi. His biggest problem happened when he applied for Israeli citizenship at the Interior Ministry.
This saga, still going on, is greatly upsetting for Ben Moshe and his family. It is in many ways like the ongoing saga of our so-called government.
My heart goes out to them – I feel so helpless and ashamed.
We learn from the December 8 editorial that the Interior Ministry will not grant David Ben Moshe Israeli citizenship because he has a criminal history.
If a criminal history is a bar to citizenship, the Interior Ministry must annul the citizenship of all Israelis with a criminal history – including government ministers/ex-ministers/president Arye Deri, Ehud Olmert, Moshe Katzav, Aharon Abuhatzira, Shlomo Benizri, Tzachi Hanegbi, Avraham Hirschson, Avigdor Liberman, Yitzhak Mordechai, Rafael Pinhasi, Haim Ramon, Gonen Segev and Saleh Tarif, 17 Knesset members/ex-members, two ex-chief rabbis, and six local government officials/ex-officials, to name just some of the Israelis with prominent current or previous positions in this category. Will the Interior Ministry please explain why someone applying for citizenship should be treated differently from current citizens in this respect?
Beit Zayit
Teetering on the brink
In response to IKEA opening its store, a Health Ministry representative said, “If everyone takes the law unto their hands then we will have anarchy” (December 7). This comment begs the question: In what alternate universe does the Health Ministry live? We already have – if not anarchy, then at least the scent of anarchy!
For example, the police refuse to enter “no-go zones” in Arab and haredi neighborhoods to enforce the restrictions against mass gatherings, such as weddings and funerals. The demonstrations against Bibi, which in this alternate reality are somehow a quintessential part of democracy, are also untouched, as well as the stores that open illegally, from large to small. Some Tel Avivians are partying like 2019 and no one seems to be fined for not following regulations. Those that are fined will undoubtedly have their fines forgiven, especially if they are haredi.
Regulations are not enforced in any of the food stores I go to regularly. The malls, theaters and restaurants have been closed for months, and the number of infections is again rising alarmingly. Why? No enforcement of the law, which is unfortunately way too common in this country, and pathetic capitulation to special groups by our spineless politicians, not to mention their poor personal examples.
“Will have anarchy?” Wake up! It’s here!
Regarding “Gov’t gives PA full tax funds despite terrorist payments” (December 3), again our government has failed the Jews of Israel by not deducting the monthly payment of NIS 50 million – totaling NIS 750 million for the past seven months – from this very large sum, but starting only in January 2021 to again deduct said monthly amount. There is no reason why the Finance Ministry did not deduct said funds as the “Pay for Slay Law” has been on the books since 2018.
Having served in a combat unit as well as in the reserves, putting my life and the lives of my comrades on the line, I am ashamed to watch what our government disregard its own laws.
No wonder terrorists in Judea, Samaria and Gaza continue to attack us violently and verbally, knowing by their logic eventually they will win, as we cave in every time, not having the will to win. However, we the citizens who serve in the IDF know we will win every battle. We will continue to do our duty even if it means giving the ultimate sacrifice for our country.
Kiryat Motzkin
To be perfectly Frank
Happy, heavenly 105th birthday to Frank Sinatra, a staunch supporter of Israel.
His incredible talent in all fields of the entertainment industry is legendary, especially in music. His gift of phrasing a song was exactly that, a gift. Add acting in comedy, drama or musical plus conducting an orchestra and his philanthropic involvement with hospitals and children and we have much to be thankful for when it comes to enjoying the legacy Frank left.
Join me and his legions of fans around the globe in wishing a Happy Birthday to Frank Sinatra. Can you imagine the ring-a-ding-ding birthday bash way up there on his birthday, December 12?
Mooresville, NC
UnAmerican Jews
Jews in the USA often complain that they are falsely accused of double loyalties – to Israel and the USA, to their religion first and only then to the USA. Along comes the Satmar grand rabbi of the Williamsburg Hassidic community (“‘We are not Americans,’ says Satmar grand rabbi,” December 8) and in an irresponsible and terribly damaging public statement says, “We live in America but we are not Americans.”
The Satmar Hassidim are a universe unto themselves, caring only about themselves, oblivious to the world around them, profoundly keen and immersed in their way of life. Many of the non-Jewish Americans are incapable of distinguishing between the Satmar Jews and the “other” Jews.
Can you blame them for accusations of double loyalty?
Violent rioter in Canada
Regarding “Israel probing Palestinian teen killed during riot” (December 6), a teenage Palestinian terrorist participating in a violent riot dies and the EU wants a probe.
Do they want a probe into the PA, which pays generous sums to incentivize and reward Arabs to kill Jews? Do they really want to “bring the perpetrators to justice?” Or are only Israelis allowed to be found guilty in their eyes? Are the terrorists who organized the “protest” and instructed the mob to hurl boulders at soldiers and cars below to be investigated?
In Canada, if I got a gang together, blocked roads with burning tires and hurled rocks and other projectiles at the police, I would expect force to be used against me if I failed to obey a legal order to cooperate. I might even get shot – and the EU would not take an interest at all.
Only as it regards Israel, where civilians, police and soldiers are regularly killed by rock-throwing Arabs, would the European Union, cowed by massive Muslim immigration, call for a “probe,” whose outcome they have malevolently predetermined.
Investigate the terrorists and their supporters – like the EU. Decent law-abiding civilians have nothing to fear from the IDF, which is there to protect them.
Labor of love in Lodz
Greer Fay Cashman (Grapevine, December 6) hit on a very important subject in her description of Pawel Kulig, who has undertaken to organize the records for the Lodz cemetery.
 Several years ago, while on the March of the Living, our bus made a detour to that very cemetery because a member of our group had been raised in Lodz and was seeking to visit her family’s graves.
 The Lodz cemetery is very impressive for its size and the preservation of the monuments, but unfortunately many corpses were added to it during the days of the Ghetto (1940-44) in unmarked graves, and immediately after the war a group of about 50 young Jews who had come to restore the graves were brutally massacred by locals and buried right there.
Sadly, our friend was not successful in finding her family, and we had to leave disappointed.
It is indeed a wonderful project that Kulig is involved in and he richly deserves recognition for this mitzvah of helping people find their family histories.
Beit Shemesh
Where there’s a will
The multiple recent articles regarding estate planning in The Jerusalem Post and Winter 2020 supplement were well-written and comprehensive. However, as a halachic estate planning attorney, I want to point out that all of the objectives addressed can likewise be achieved in a manner which comports with Torah law.
The continuing/durable power of attorney (introduced to Israel in 2017) contains personalized options such as: exempting a proxy/guardian from accounting how an incompetent person’s money is spent (an onerous chore); allowing for insertion of additional instructions to consult with a rabbi regarding medical procedures; choosing a caretaker who will try to ensure religious compliance; and placing state-mandated caps (which can be lowered regarding charitable giving, gifting, etc.).
A Will deals with distribution of assets after death, but a halachic Will gifts those assets right before death via halachic constructs and kosher witnesses.
Jew-hatred goes Wonka
Regarding “Roald Dahl’s family apologizes for author’s antisemitic comments” (December 7), the reprehensible things about Jews that Dahl thought and uttered, such as that Hitler didn’t pick on Jews “for no reason,” really make me wonder why otherwise intelligent and sensitive people can believe the most outrageous falsehoods about Jews.
Writ large, this same mysterious hate dynamic, I believe, is behind much of the massive anti-Israel prejudice around the world.
It is nice that his family has apologized for his remarks. I pray for the day when many anti-Jewish and anti-Israel activists realize the error of their ways and follow that family’s example.
Bat Yam
Biden to widen the gap?
Regarding “Biden and Congress will face a turbulent, combustible Mideast” (December 8) by former Gen. Ephraim Sneh, whose side is Sneh on?
He writes that the US “has to restore its status as an honest broker between Israel and the Palestinians.” Is he kidding? Does Israel really need Biden to restore “daylight,” Obama style, between the US and us? The US is our ally, not an ally of the Palestinians. Why does Sneh want us to give that up?
To make matters worse, he wants the US to work “together with the Arab Quartet (Egypt, Jordan, Saudi Arabia and the UAE) and the other members of the Mid-East Quartet (Russia, UN and EU) to resume the effort to achieve the two-state solution.”
This is a disastrous recipe for pressure on Israel to capitulate and withdraw back to the 1949 armistice borders with a divided Jerusalem, international observers in the Jordan Valley and an Arab-only apartheid state in Judea/Samaria, while giving the Palestinians a free pass. As a former general and deputy defense minister, it is incomprehensible on what basis he can make such an absurd suggestion.
Doesn’t Sneh realize that for the past 27 years, the PA has had absolutely no reason to negotiate with Israel in good faith because the international community has been putting pressure only on Israel and not on them? As long as money keeps rolling in from the EU and Arab states (and soon from the Biden Administration), the PA will be very happy maintaining the status quo for decades because the leaders are living very well and they are adept at suppressing any dissent among their people. Why should they give it up for anything less than a deal that will enable them to get “Palestine from the river to the sea”?
What Israel really needs is a Biden Administration that will recognize Israel as an ally, will pressure the PA to negotiate face-to-face in good faith with Israel and will pressure the EU to stop funding pay-to slay and UNRWA. (Hmm... sounds like the Trump Administration, doesn’t it? Very sorry!)