December 19: New York Times

"It’s about time someone punched the schoolyard bully in the nose."

Bully pulpit…
Sir, – Right-on Ron Dermer (“Netanyahu to ‘NYT’: Take a hike,” December 16)! It’s about time someone punched the schoolyard bully in the nose.
We’ve suffered too long putting up with The New York Times’s hypocritical, insidious liberal blabber.
Sir, – While agreeing that The New York Times has not appeared to be pro-Israel in either its editorials or its op-ed columns for some time, I believe it is extremely short-sighted of our prime minister to eschew the opportunity to express the positive aspects of Israeli actions and policies in any media, especially those that appear to be hostile.
Sir, – This timely material brings to mind the suggestion that The New York Times change its slogan from “All the news that’s fit to print” to “All the news we print gives fits.”
Ma’aleh Adumim
Sir, – Isn’t it about time you yourself tell The New York Times to take a hike and replace the NYT content you use with that of the Wall Street Journal?
MALCOLM DASH Zichron Ya’acov
…or just bully? Sir, – Thomas Friedman’s take on the US-Israel relationship in his December 13 New York Times column “Newt, Mitt, Bibi and Vladimir” is based on the false assumption that the Palestinians deserve a state of their own. The issue is not statehood. The issue is peace, and the Palestinians have shown no regard for any solution that countenances a Jewish state.
As Israelis routinely take to the streets in support of peace, how does Friedman explain the conspicuous absence of any grassroots peace movement among the Palestinians? Where is the Palestinian Peace Now? Where are the imams sermonizing for peace? Why aren’t Palestinian mothers marching in Ramallah demanding an end to incitement that teaches their children to commit suicide? Can Friedman identify a single concession proposed by the PA to advance the peace process? Friedman would like us to think he is one of a handful of rational defenders of Israel.
Whom does he think he is kidding? He is an appeaser. He is motivated by fear and, as Winston Churchill pointed out, exemplifies how “the malice of the wicked is reinforced by the weakness of the virtuous.”
Friedman is right about one thing: He doesn’t speak for American Jews.
Melville, New York
Sir – Your December 16 editorial “Friedman is wrong” is strong and truthful about the role of The New York Times, and specifically columnist Tom Friedman.
The Times long had a reputation as a paper designed for truth and intellect. It is now a paper of left-wing ideology. The overwhelming majority of its columnists are left wing. One of the worst offenders in terms of bias and lack of comprehension is Friedman.
Friedman is full of bravado but short on knowing that he and many others have never dealt with the rise of Islamic fundamentalism in the Middle East and what it means for Western nations to battle a civilization that is totally different in ideology.
It is time for his paper to once again be one of truth and importance.
Sir, – Your editorial included the following statement in the fourth paragraph: “The settlements are a consequence of the conflict, not its cause.”
Would you like to retract this statement? It implies that Zionism is a consequence of Arab terror.
Do you really mean that?
Their elders’ fault Sir, – Regarding “We won’t let extremists spark a war” (December 16), today’s problem has roots in our recent past.
It began in 1993 when the Oslo Accords passed the Knesset by one vote. That vote was purchased with autos and cabinetrank positions for two members of the now-defunct Tsomet Party.
Our youth saw their leaders violate the law.
The government followed this with an era of capitulation. Some 10,000 Jews living in Gush Katif were evicted from their homes and thriving businesses, which were destroyed while they watched. Thousands of missiles subsequently rained down on our southern towns and cities. Our youth saw this and learned from hypocritical adults.
The first step to correct this situation is to cease all destruction of Jewish homes in Judea and Samaria. Second, plan out this territory for the construction of attractive communities. First priority should go to the victims of Gush Katif, who should be subsidized.
This would introduce a new term into our political vocabulary: justice.
Not all like that Sir, – I consider myself a God-fearing Jewish woman who tries to keep Torah and mitzvot. That said, I want the secular public to know that many, many people like myself are absolutely outraged by self-styled haredim who are anything but. I know many haredi people who just want to live quiet and decent lives without bothering others who do things differently.
I am also outraged at the way a small sub-group of youth coming from Judea and Samaria are acting recklessly and dangerously toward our army and others who do not agree with them. And I am outraged by the silence of rabbis.
I grew up with rabbis. I am from a rabbinical family. Rabbis lead and speak up and set people straight. They don’t remain silent when they see wrong being done.
I say to your readers: Please don’t look at people from the observant public and decide that because of the way they dress they must also be from these fringe groups or agree with their tactics. I know right from wrong, and so do most people who call themselves observant.
Beit Shemesh
Just detour Sir, – Regarding “Mugrabi Bridge reopens, with fortification planned next week” (December 15), there is an alternative to rebuilding and using the bridge to the Temple Mount’s Mugrabi Gate that is cheaper, more secure and easier to access: the Chain Gate.
One can easily access the Chain Gate directly from David Street, from the Jewish Quarter or from the Western Wall plaza.
There is a police station at the site that can provide security.
An elevator can be installed from the plaza to provide access for the handicapped and elderly.
There would be no need to interfere with archeological excavations, and the area for women at the Western Wall could be expanded.
Jewel in the crown
Sir, – As the year 2011 draws to a close and amid a flood of heavily critical letters to your newspaper concerning journalists and the content of their articles, I have been struck by the jewel in the The Jerusalem Post’s crown: Greer Fay Cashman.
Even though I hale from a country where “gossip columnist” is a term of thinly-veiled abuse, this lady confounds that view by repeatedly producing pages of consummate skill, interest, novelty and erudition, one of the latest (“A Murder that remains a mystery,” Grapevine, December 14) being a perfect case in point.
Long may she and the Post continue to produce such articles of quality, even though they are sometimes to be found hiding among gems of gossip.