April 28: Baskin’s world

In that world, the Arabs and Muslims are not dependent on Jew-hating and -baiting for their daily bread.

Letters 370 (photo credit: REUTERS/Handout )
Letters 370
(photo credit: REUTERS/Handout )
Baskin’s world
Sir, – Yet again, Gershon Baskin has written a brilliant article, with every word and concept being what we all want to hear (“Buy Palestinian,” Encountering Peace,’ April 25). But we have to ask him about the world he lives in.
In that world, the Arabs and Muslims are not dependent on Jew-hating and -baiting for their daily bread. There are no Malmos, Clackmannanshires or daily calls for the extermination of pigs and Jews, no academic boycotts, no Holocaust denial.
(Remember that in 1945, Dwight D. Eisenhower demanded that his generals record every detail of Belsen and the other camps “because, rest assured, their existence will be vigorously denied.”) There is now no part of the Arab/Muslim world that can exist without blaming the Jews for the tragic lot of their downtrodden and underprivileged.
Freedom to bark
Sir, – With regard to “Economic policy isn’t baseball, it’s war” (Comment & Features, April 25) by Zev Golan, we are prisoners of war in the ongoing battle between liberty and totalitarianism, chained by our personal finances and opportunities. Luckily, we live in a political democracy that allows us to bark at the end of our chains.DANIEL ABELMAN Jerusalem
United Nuts
Sir, – Regarding the article about the message of the United Nation’s Richard Falk that America is embracing Islamophobic falsehoods (“UN’s Falk ties Boston bombs to Obama’s Israel trip,” April 24), I don’t think he really believes that. I think his reason for living is to blast Israel and Jews. It is all he ever rants about.
The UN is the most hypocritical organization on Earth. What its members don’t get is that destroying Israel is only one step toward taking over the world.
I hope these United Nuts will be patient because they will be the ones living under Shari’a Law if they don’t wake up.
Hail Machiavelli
Sir, – As an alumnus of Yeshiva University and its department of political science (Class of 1969), I cannot fathom the brouhaha over the award given to former US president Jimmy Carter (“American Jewish leaders: Stop the rot now,” Candidly Speaking, April 23).
The award was for conflict resolution, specifically for engineering the peace treaty between Israel and Egypt in the late 1970s. Nothing else! The peace with Egypt has lasted so far, even under a Muslim Brotherhood regime.
No other world leader has been able to achieve a similar feat. The treaty changed the dynamics of the Middle East until the so-called Arab Spring.
If someone believes that the former president is anti-Semitic or anti-Zionist – despite his comments and apologies – that person should take a lesson from Machiavellian thought: Keep your friends close and your enemies closer.NAFTALI BERTRAM Netanyah
Sir, – It’s not often that I can agree with the columns of Isi Leibler, but “American Jewish leaders: Stop the rot now” is one I can fully go along with.
Knowing what sort of president Jimmy Carter was (not much), I was amazed, not just surprised, that a Jewish organization (of students, yet!) should grant him an honor of any kind, let alone one having to do with peace.
This man seems to have no regrets about his anti-Semitic behavior, nor does he try to hide it in any way – yet a Jewish group feels it correct to grant him a peace award. Unbelievable! For shame!
Mercy and cruelty
Sir, – With regard to Shmuley Boteach’s “And hate the sinners, too” (No Holds Barred, April 23), the rabbis of the Midrash said it so succinctly: “He who has mercy on the cruel will ultimately be cruel to the merciful.”
DAVID MARTIN Ra’anana Green issues
Sir, – Having participated in the first Earth Day gathering in 1970, I am overjoyed at seeing the increase in environmental awareness and activism here. My happiness, however, is dimmed by the designation of the proposed train to Eilat as worthy of a “Black Globe” award (“And the 10th annual Green Globe awards go to...,” April 22).
As with any large-scale project, the Negev will suffer damage from the laying of tracks, but the benefits of mass transportation via electric trains as opposed to fossil fuel-powered cars and trucks far outweigh this.
I suspect that the goodwill of green organizations is being manipulated by vested economic interests that stand to lose from the train. It wouldn’t be the first time.
I suggest that we embrace the train project and all its economic, social and environmental benefits, and bring pressure to bear on the Ministry of Transportation to cancel the destructive plans to rebuild the Sde Dov and Eilat airports, which would be rendered superfluous by the inauguration of a high-speed rail line.
Sir, – Many people do not know that used batteries must never be thrown into the trash because they contain toxic substances that penetrate the ground and poison the water. This should be widely publicized.
There are only a few places where one can discard used batteries.
Every place where batteries are sold should have some container – even if only a cardboard box – where customers can dispose of used batteries.
A minimal effort could mean maximum improvement for the protection of the environment.
Sir, – I want to tell you about a wonderful incident involving Jerusalem’s recycling containers.
I had some very important documents in an envelope and accidentally put them into a bin for recycled newspaper. I was distraught.
I looked online and called the city’s services for the elderly. I got a very nice woman, who got me the number of the person who empties these bins. His name is Avi Miio and he called to tell me when he next would be at this particular recycling bin.
He came, and he and his coworker climbed into the top of the truck where the bin had been emptied and searched through all the papers until they found my envelope. You can imagine my delight! Only in Israel can such a thing happen.
Sir, – What’s happened to all our “green” citizens who are so worried about the environment? Lag Ba’omer is a terrific holiday and fun for kids, but why must our lungs be impacted with yet another day of fire, smoke and haze? A closer look should be taken at what occurs during this holiday, which causes too many injuries.
It is time for our lawmakers to establish areas where fires are allowed and where they are not allowed, insuring that bonfires are not built in heavily populated areas. They also should ensure that fire safety is a focus of school curriculums at this time of year to keep our children safe and our air cleaner.
Sir, – It is nice to observe the tradition of Lag Ba’omer, and nice to sit around the bonfire together.
What is not nice about the holiday is the national phenomenon of children “borrowing” shopping carts from supermarkets, very often with the collusion or indifference of parents – who would be outraged if someone stole $100 from them. (The supermarkets are also to blame for not taking precautions.) It’s not so trivial. Let’s try to do something about it.