April 29: The greatest of saviors

The free world owes a great deal to Raoul Wallenberg, the courageous Swedish diplomat who saved 100,000 Jews.

letters 88 (photo credit: Courtesy)
letters 88
(photo credit: Courtesy)
The greatest of saviors Sir, - Your article "Scholars run down more clues to a Holocaust mystery" (April 28) poses many interesting questions. The free world owes a great deal to Raoul Wallenberg, the courageous Swedish diplomat who saved 100,000 Jews. The International Raoul Wallenberg Foundation is an NGO with a clear mission to preserve, honor and divulge the legacies of the saviors of the Holocaust, but at the same time we keep on struggling to get answers regarding the fate and whereabouts of the greatest of saviors. DANIEL RAINER Givatayim Remember Gilad Schalit Sir, - Yaakov Katz and Herb Keinon devote 23 front page column inches discussing and analyzing the proposed Gaza truce without a single mention of kidnapped soldier Gilad Schalit ("US presses Israel to reach truce before Bush visit," April 28). His name should be first and foremost on any agreement which might be forthcoming. Unless Gilad Schalit is released and the Egyptians pledge themselves to eliminate the passage of arms and explosives into Gaza, no meaningful truce can emerge. I accept that Gilad Schalit was briefly mentioned in your editorial on Page 13. His name and those of his colleagues incarcerated in Lebanon should be on your front page every day. IVOR LEWIS Netanya Some prize Sir, - The outraged Lavinia Oancea finds it unacceptable that Ambassador to the UN Danny Gillerman expressed his feelings about Jimmy Carter, whose credits include a Nobel Prize ("That man of peace," Letters, April 28). Yasser Arafat also was awarded this prize. MARCELLA WACHTEL Jerusalem Kimche's errors Sir, - David Kimche's apologetics for hosting Jimmy Carter are rife with error ("Why we hosted Carter," April 24). He admits that he and colleagues of the Israel Council for Foreign Relations were engaged in "much soul-searching" over whether to invite Carter to address that forum. Claiming that the council is "an independent apolitical body," however, Kimche makes his first error. As anyone who has access to the Web can read, it is actually a "non-governmental body headquartered in Jerusalem under the auspices of the World Jewish Congress." Kimche makes his second error when he justifies Carter's criticism of what Kimche terms "Israel's behavior in the occupied territories" by referring to the behavior of "the settlers in Hebron." Setting aside the gross generalization in the use of "the settlers," by accepting the term "occupation" Kimche is making a very political statement. A more apolitical text should have been employed such as "administered." Another error of Kimche is his claim that Carter "tried to be more even-handed." But when the former US president stated that "despair causes both sides to resort to violence," was that truly even-handed or, more appropriately, was it another example of Carter's moral inequivalency as applied to Israel? Another error of Kimche is his assertion that "the large audience that heard his speech... were impressed by his sincerity and appreciative of his efforts." I was present and I would insist that the audience was a "home court side." There were diplomats, many Arabs from the disputed territories, Israeli peaceniks, representatives of the Christian Peace Team and many journalists. It was a stacked deck. Although I raised my hand, time ran out for my question but it was phrased thus: Mr. Carter, you have met with Hamas, persons you call terrorists but you ignore the Jewish communities in the areas of Samaria and Judea. You were sent several invitations over the years to come see how we have developed since the time you demanded the destruction of a renewed Jewish village that in fact has recently celebrated its 30th anniversary. In not coming, do you think us as worse than the Hamas? Having heard Carter, thanks to and despite Kimche, I now realize that it probably would not have been worthwhile to have invited him. YISRAEL MEDAD Shiloh Clever move? Sir, - Is there anyone who believes that abandoning the Golan will bring peace ("Can Israel afford to live without the Golan?" April 25)? The Kadima/Labor government tells us that it is a clever move as they will demand that Syria separate itself from Iran. But if after Syria reoccupies the Golan it resumes its relationship with Iran? What then? Does anyone believe that our brave leaders will then go to war to enforce the peace agreement? We didn't go to war against the PLO when it violated the Oslo Accords, nor against Hamas which seized Kadima's gift of Gush Katif in the cause of peace. Hamas is running low on weapons and wants six months without Israeli interruptions to rearm. Prime Minister Olmert will probably agree. After all that means six months of peace. The fact is Islam forbids agreements with infidels except if they are more powerful than the Muslims. When 80-year-old Hosni Mubarak leaves his post, Egypt will rejoin the Muslim movement to destroy Israel. For this interlude of peace we gave away the protection of the Sinai and provided the Americans with the excuse to rearm Egypt with state of the art weapons. Giving away land gets us nothing except the image that we really don't believe it is ours in the first place. It is important to elect a party that does not want peace or we will soon have no place on which to stand. CHAYIM SEIDEN Jerusalem Betar reunion Sir, - On Sunday, May 4, as part of the State of Israel's 60th anniversary celebrations, Southern African Betar will be holding a reunion at Jabotinsky Park, Shuni, just two kilometers north of Binyamina. More than 500 Betarim and guests, including about 100 coming from the Diaspora especially for the event, are expected to attend. Participants will meet with friends, share memories, view magnificent displays of photographs and memorabilia from camps and seminars arranged by decades, read messages from those unable to attend, munch on mealies, boerewors and biltong and taste wine. We hope that many will bring their own photograph albums to share with their friends. At sunset, seated in the same Roman theater used 2,000 years ago, the modern audience will be entertained by a spectacular power point presentation of S.A. Betar through the decades and performances by the talented Binyamina Choir and the rousing Groovetron group. For further details contact: [email protected], (052) 365-1037, or [email protected], (03) 761-0803. BERYL RATZER Kiryat Ono Correcting errors Sir, - The April 24 issue of The Jerusalem Post<.i> had two glaring errors that are not in keeping with the high standard of journalism that the Post generally observes. On Page 6 there is an article about the vandalization of the Belarus Holocaust Monument, but the picture is of the memorial wall at Dachau in Germany. On Page 9 the caption under the picture of the light show on the walls of Jerusalem refers to the "upcoming 40th anniversary of the unification of Jerusalem" whereas we are about to celebrate the 41st anniversary of that stellar event. SHERWIN POMERANTZ Jerusalem