Letters to the editor: March 9, 2017

Letters (photo credit: REUTERS)
(photo credit: REUTERS)
BDS and Toronto
With regard to “Bill banning boycotters from Israel becomes a law” (March 7), I find it ironic and tragic that Israel has for years been calling on Palestinians to take up non-violence in their struggle for nationhood, and has now banned supporters of the BDS movement from entering the country.
Forget for a moment the anti-democratic nature of the new law. Forget for a moment that a blacklist of human-rights supporters is being drafted at this moment. Israel maintains its grip on Palestinians through one simple principle: demonize them as sub-human, paint them as savages and say they are antisemitic.
When they mobilize peacefully and call for boycotts, divestments and sanctions, it keeps demonizing them and keeps the rhetoric going.
Go one step farther now: Ban all supporters of BDS from entering Israel at all.
As an Israeli-Canadian Jew who loves Israel, I have one simple thing to say: Please boycott, divest and support sanctions on Israel.
Why would proponents of the anti-Israel boycott want to come to Israel anyway? Aren’t they supposed to be boycotting it? The bill will protect them from their own hypocrisy.
How hypocritical!
Because of Defense Minister Avigdor Liberman’s recent statements regarding the potential diplomatic, demographic and political damage to relations with the US over officially annexing Judea and Samaria, Caroline B.
Glick (“Avigdor Liberman vs.Israeli democracy,” Our World, March 7) accuses him of “adopting the anti-democratic practice of Israel’s political Left,” adding that Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has joined “this sort of behavior” because of his warnings about the dangers of the passing of the Settlements Regulation Law.
Besides her usual fierce vindictive against anyone who does not share her extremely right-wing views, Glick totally ignores the fact that her own ideological colleagues were guilty of the exact same thing when they expressly and enthusiastically proclaimed that Israel must now remove all restrictions on construction in the “territories” thanks to the election of Donald Trump as president of the United States – not thanks to Israeli sovereignty, the will of the Israeli people or the Knesset, but rather to the president of the United States and naïve assumptions that anything Israel does will have his support.
How hypocritical!
GERSHON HARRIS Hatzor Haglilit
Put up or shut up
Regarding “A two-state solution: The only pragmatic path forward” (Comment & Features, March 7), a reasonable definition of “pragmatism” is character or conduct that emphasizes practicality. So the assertion that the two-state solution is pragmatic is refuted by simply quoting the words in this piece.
Authors John Rosove and Joshua Weinberg note that the Palestinians have rejected several proposed agreements, beginning with the partition plan of November 1947. They go on as follows: “We recognize that Palestinian leadership throughout the decades perpetually has failed its own people.
We know that among its leaders are sowers of terrorism, and we appreciate the grave risks of having a militarized enemy so close to Israel’s population centers. We have no illusions about the murderers of Hamas and Hezbollah. We know that agreement is only possible if future Palestinian leadership demonstrates the ability and willingness to suppress terrorism and maintain security.”
So, given the quoted material above, by what strange logic is the two-state solution currently pragmatic or practical? Is it moral to commit suicide? The two-state solution is at this point in time at best a futuristic dream.
Most Israelis I know understand that any two-state solution is a long, long way off. If the authors want to use their positions as the leaders of the Association of Reform Zionists of America to propose a practical step-by-reciprocal-step plan to move toward a two-state solution, let them propose it.
Otherwise, they should stop asserting false pragmatism.
Put up or shut up.
I think the term “two-state solution” is now passe.
Almost everyone (except Jerusalem Post columnist Caroline B. Glick) is against including more than two million more Arabs into the State of Israel.
There are a number of ways that these Arabs could be accommodated without being such a danger to Israel.
The most miraculous would be if they moved somewhere else. More realistic would be if their areas were combined with Jordan. I hope that there are other ways to solve the problem.
The real thing that nobody wants is an independent PLO state. Therefore, what I am proposing is that people stop talking about being for or against a two-state solution, but for or against a PLO state.
This would make things much easier to understand.
A father’s angst
I, the great-grandparent of a child who has undergone extensive treatment primarily at Hadassah, was stunned and troubled to read “Six leading Hadassah oncologists resign in protest” (March 6).
For more than a year and a half, my great-grandchild was in the capable hands of compassionate, caring oncologists who struggled to save a one-and-a half year old from a very serious and stressful illness. The reaction to the news by the child’s father, my grandson, appears below in a message to my wife and me. My grandson’s name and the name of the child are being withheld.
“Dear Grandma & Grandpa, First, I must explain to the best of my knowledge some facts that the article seems to be misleading about: • The six doctors who resigned are in fact the entire senior medical staff of the pediatric hemato- oncology department. They treat all types of children’s cancer, not only “blood cancers.”
The doctor who treated our child is one of the senior oncologists who resigned.
• This situation does not affect only “30 young patients.” There are many more kids with cancer who are treated in Hadassah at different stages of treatment.
There are some 20 in-patients at any given time, and many more out-patients who come every day. Add to these the many children who (like my child) have finished their treatment but require checkups and tests periodically.
(Prof. Michael Weintraub personally handles these checkups).
All will be drastically affected.
• To the best of my knowledge, Prof. Zeev Rotstein, [Hadassah Medical Organization’s director- general] wants to move kids undergoing bone marrow transplant to the adult bone marrow unit. Prof. Weintraub and his staff feel that this will be harmful for the kids.
I support Prof. Weintraub and the rest of the doctors. I believe that they truly have the well-being of their patients in heart and mind. I know them to be hardworking and caring professionals.
They are putting much at stake by resigning, while the easiest course of action for them would be to accept and move on. By resigning, they are putting up a fight for us and our children against a very bad decision.
I believe that a protest should be made against Prof. Rotstein for causing this situation and refusing to rectify it, even though all relevant professionals are opposed. I also believe that a protest should be made against Health Minister Ya’acov Litzman for not allowing the pediatric hemato-oncology department to relocate as a unit to another hospital.
I am still hoping that somehow, things will be able to return to normal. Hoping for the best.”