December 26: Readers react to events, statements concerning the peace process

Continuing to talk come what may will not bring lasting peace.

Letters 370 (photo credit: REUTERS/Handout )
Letters 370
(photo credit: REUTERS/Handout )
Sir, – In “PM: We will not tolerate a ‘drizzle’ of attacks from Gaza” (December 25), opposition leader Isaac Herzog says that “the current wave of terror was meant to sabotage peace talks with the PLO and the possibility of a two-state solution.”
I would suggest to Mr. Herzog that the Palestinian Authority’s continued incitement against us, its glorification of terror and terrorists, and failure to condemn terror attacks warrant breaking off negotiations. To do so would demonstrate zero tolerance for the PA’s condoning or supporting terror, and possibly force it to change its stance.
Continuing to talk come what may will not bring lasting peace. It is reasonable to conclude that the same terrorists who carry out attacks to derail the negotiations now will, God forbid, perpetrate even worse atrocities in the face of a future deal.
Sir, – With regard to “A calculated boost to deterrence” (Analysis, December 25), the Palestinians in Gaza were testing the waters to see if they could continue to annoy us without admitting it, and without any reasonable reaction from the IDF. Thank goodness they underestimated our strength and calculations and received a bloody black eye in return. Next time they might think twice.
We are on the alert to a calculated boost to deterrence. In simple language, we are not daft!
HILARY GATOFF Herzliya Pituah
Sir, – In “Stabbed police officer listed in stable condition” (December 25), your reporter refers to Sunday’s bus bomb in Bat Yam by saying “a bomb was detonated on an empty bus.”
The bomb was not detonated on an empty bus. It was purposely left on a bus from which all the passengers were successfully evacuated before it exploded.
Sir, – An absolute miracle took place on Sunday (“Passengers escape Bat Yam bus shortly before bomb explodes,” December 23). The fact that a wonderful passenger detected the bomb and the bus driver made everyone get off in a few seconds saved everyone’s life.
We should note this for the record and make US Secretary of State John Kerry and President Barack Obama realize what is involved in the stupidity of having negotiations with the Palestinians that end in nine months’ time with an agreement the United States is happy with.
There is no use meeting again and again with Kerry unless he tells the truth to the Palestinians: There cannot be a Palestinian state that intends to destroy Israel.
There cannot be a Palestinian State where the US guarantees Israel’s security; Israel has to guarantee its own security. There cannot be a Palestinian state that does not adhere to treaty obligations. There cannot be a Palestinian state where individuals, supposedly acting on their own, terrorize Israelis. There cannot be a Palestinian state where such terrorists are called martyrs.
There cannot be a Palestinian state where hatred of Israel is taught every day. Most important, there cannot be a Palestinian state that includes Hamas.
Kerry and Obama have to realize that it is not the US with which Israel is making peace.
Sir, – With regard to “Israel scheduled to release 26 convicted terrorists next week as planned (December 25), these Palestinian security prisoners are not in prison for petty crimes. Israel should not release them. If it does, terrorists will no longer face the threat of being imprisoned; they will know it’s just a matter of time before they are released.
The Palestinian Authority has claimed that the continuation of peace talks will reduce terrorism.
Israel has only seen an increase in terror. It needs to protect its citizens, not the Palestinian regime.
It’s time for Washington to get the message. Peace is a two-way street. It’s time for Israel to stop negotiating with terrorists!
Sir, – You have openly declared your support for the Livni “capitulation talks” or, as some call it, the “land-for-bombs” movement (“The terrorist threat,” Editorial, December 24). You write: “The status quo is untenable, not just because the international community refuses to accept it, but because it would mean the end of a Jewish and democratic Israel.”
I would like to remind you that the “international community” has never accepted our right to any part of Jerusalem. It does not recognize any part of the city as our capital since long before the “occupation” started in 1967. The status quo has been tenable for almost 50 years, so why not another 50? What is not tenable is thinking the Arabs respect anything but strength.
The Diaspora Jew lives in the deepest recesses of our leaders’ hearts and will not let them see that no matter what we do, we are always wrong in the eyes of the world, even as we improve its lives with our innovations. How can we expect others to respect us if we have no self-respect?
Sir, – I was so disgusted to read about the hijacking of the nativity by the Palestinians, where PA President Mahmoud Abbas claims that Jesus was a “Palestinian messenger who would become a guiding light for millions around the world....” (“Yuletide jeer,” December 24).
Being a Jewish baby, Jesus, had he been among Palestinians, would probably have had his throat slit. Then the wise men and the shepherds wouldn’t have needed to go to Bethlehem, except maybe to mourn.
Surely, Christians are equally appalled. But on second thought, the Church already blamed the Jews for the death of Christ, so I suppose Christians might buy into this as well.
Peace on earth and goodwill to men!
Sir, Regarding “Netanyahu may condition advancing peace talks on Pollard release” (December 24), I don’t equate releasing Jonathan Pollard with giving away our land.
I have worked for Pollard’s release since the late 1990s, when I was posted at the Israeli Embassy in Washington as an assistant to then-ambassador Eliyahu Ben-Elissar. This injustice must be corrected. Pollard has paid for his crime many times over according to American law. But the two issues are separate.
Netanyahu must reject America’s demands concerning the peace process. Israel is a successful sovereign state and needs to act as one.
He must say no and not capitulate.
Sir, – In “It is crucial that Netanyahu creates a coherent settlement policy” (Candidly Speaking, December 22), Isi Leibler contends that the government’s ambiguous policy is the number one issue utilized by our detractors to vilify us.
He makes the claim that “the entire world is deluded into believing that settlements represent the principal obstacle to peace.” I am, I confess, truly surprised.
While Leibler obviously is right about the desirability of a cohesive settlement policy, it would undoubtedly have little effect on Israel’s maligners.
Does he really believe that even a total retreat from a pro-settlement stance would reduce Israel bashing in the least? Does he believe that Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas would then permit an IDF presence in the Jordan Valley, agree to Jerusalem as the non-divided capital of Israel and declare Israel the homeland of the Jewish people? It is important to understand that we face an implacable enemy and therefore must remain forever vigilant in safeguarding and remaining true to our vital national interests, not succumbing to perilous delusions.
Sir, – The best answer to the whole damn world was in your December 25 issue. They keep murdering, insulting and passing resolutions, and we extend a railroad (“Sderot train station opens, residents ride free – for now”).
Congratulations to all of us.