Letters to the Editor: Mission impossible

The fact is, normal people cannot afford to live in Jerusalem.

Letters (photo credit: REUTERS)
(photo credit: REUTERS)
Mission impossible
With regard to “Police face tough time recruiting new officers in Jerusalem” (July 29), it is doubtful that the recruiting challenge has much to do with the capital’s unique security situation.
On the contrary. Such challenges are an incentive for men and women who prefer doing real police work rather than responding to domestic arguments in Afula and fender-benders in Rishon Lezion. And there is no better proof than the waiting list among army recruits to join Border Patrol units in Jerusalem.
The problem here is the cost of housing. Period. Cops have to be recruited from outside Jerusalem, as half of our residents are haredim who cannot be recruited for anything. What’s more, residential space equivalent to 20,000 housing units is owned by absentee foreigners who think Jerusalem is their personal Simhat Torah Disneyland.
Hence, they, too, are useless (except for the purpose of elevating property prices).
To expect a police officer to work here when a basic apartment for a family of five costs $750,000 is absurd. The fact is, normal people cannot afford to live in Jerusalem. For those interested in actually working here, let alone as police officers, selling them on our city is a mission impossible.
The writer is a volunteer police officer.
Absurd system
Regarding “Aura of affirmative action at judges appointments” (July 29), how wonderful that a new crop of much-needed judges was affirmed in Israel “without racial, religious or gender discrimination.” Now, how about these judges and the government confront the other discrimination that exists in the country – age discrimination.
This is apparently a left-over from the old socialist system that badly needs to be discarded, specifically the fictional retirement age of 67. Who says that at 67, a person is not able to work anymore? Let the powers that be wake up to the fact that 67 is young by today’s standards.
An example of this discrepancy is where teachers are badly needed in certain subjects and locations, but if the capable, healthy and experienced person who applies for the position happens to be over 67, he or she won’t be hired. I have a friend who is 65 and was told by a potential supervisor that he couldn’t hire him because all the training would be for naught when in two years he would have to leave the position anyway.
How absurd a system! URI HIRSCH Jerusalem A simple test The photo accompanying “Obama says election about democracy itself” (International News, July 29), which shows the US president hugging Hillary Clinton on stage at the Democratic National Convention – their eyes closed like two unlikely, star-crossed lovers – helped me understand how I should vote.
Hillary has shown herself to be duplicitous, self-serving, insensitive and deceiving. For all we know, Trump may harbor those very same characteristics. It’s just that we haven’t given him a chance to show them to us.
So I’ve devised a simple test: If, in the future, it becomes clear that Syria or Islamic State is preparing to rain a barrage of poisonous, deadly gases on Israel and the US president says “Using those gases will be a red line for the United States,” whom would I prefer to be in charge of the White House? Any suggestions?
Ridiculous comparison
I usually enjoy Michael Freund’s commentaries, but I strongly think his recent comments on the environment (“Obama and the war on air-conditioning,” Fundamentally Freund, July 28) reflect a very dangerous viewpoint.
When you get past his sarcasm, Freund’s argument boils down to Islamic terrorism being a greater danger than climate change. The comparison is ridiculous.
If a person with early- stage cancer breaks his leg, the greatest pain and the issue needing immediate attention is the leg – but the cancer will destroy him. It’s the same with our planet.
Islamic terrorism causes greater pain and must be eliminated, but the destruction of the climate will kill the planet. Ignoring climate change will eventually kill ISIS – and all the rest of us, too.
Village of murderers
Regarding “Life in West Bank’s capital of ‘martyrs’” (July 22), Sa’ir is the closet neighbor to our community, which I helped found some 33 years ago.
When we first came here, the relations with neighboring Arabs were moderate to good, but we were warned from the beginning that Sa’ir had a bad reputation, even among other Arabs. At the time, we would regularly drive through the town on the way to Kiryat Arba or Hebron; today, and for many years now, just a few yards into the village, any Jew would be surrounded by a mob determined to kill.
So I was very surprised at the tone of the article – a deliberate attack with a powerful rifle from a car waiting in ambush, shooting at least three bullets into the car of a family returning from Shabbat, is portrayed as a minor incident.
The headline is wrong. Sa’ir is not a village of martyrs. It is a village of murderers.
Evil empire
Double thanks go to Seth J. Frantzman – first, for his informative piece on the struggle of millions of Iran’s Kurds against that country’s ayatollah regime (“Iranian Kurdish leader to ‘Post’: Iran is a common enemy,” July 20), and second, for having gone up to the very gates of hell in Iraq, on the border with Iran, to pen his perceptive report.
Frantzman’s interview with Mustafa Hijri, leader of the Democratic Party of Iranian Kurdistan, highlights a number of the latter’s critical points: • “We want a federal democratic state.”
• “We want each nation [Azaris, Arabs, Baluchis and Turkmen] to have their autonomy.”
• You report on him saying that the Iranian nuclear deal last year “has cemented the regime.”
Yes. Opposition to the regime, even among ethnic Persians, has been paralyzed by the ayatollahs’ victory, thanks to US President Barack Obama’s warped sight.
More so, it is imperative to draw a clear, bold line under these cogent observations – it should be stated pointedly that beyond being the bastion of an evil regime, Iran is an empire, and an evil one at that.
More than regime change in Tehran, the many oppressed peoples of Iran, including the great ethnic Persian people, deserve and should demand constitutional reform if democracy and an end to radical Shi’ite terrorism is in their and our interest.
It is high time for political leaders in Israel, America and beyond to broadcast Iran’s illegitimacy by stating explicitly that it is an evil empire.
Personal peace
Recently, I was sitting at a bus stop, frustrated that my new smartphone screen had gone black. Try as I might, I was able to get neither text nor icons.
Sitting next to me was a young, well-dressed Arab woman, using a smartphone that looked similar.
So I ventured to address her in Hebrew, which she did not speak.
Communicating in a passable English, though, she was able to revive my screen and show me how to lighten and darken it. As my bus approached, I quickly thanked her for her help.
Friendly, person-to-person gestures are a way to make peace without a two-state disaster!