February 12: Praise for treatment

I was treated in Shaare Zedek Medical Center in Jerusalem and the treatment I received was anything but "impersonal, bureaucratic and inconvenient."

Letters 370 (photo credit: REUTERS/Handout )
Letters 370
(photo credit: REUTERS/Handout )
Praise for treatment
Sir, – Being a cancer survivor I read with great interest “No more falling between the cracks” (Health & Science, February 10), about private community clinics providing chemotherapy to cancer patients.
I think that in many ways this can be a good thing. However, I take exception to the tone of the article in reference to hospital treatment. The sub-headline sets this tone when it refers to hospital clinics as “impersonal, bureaucratic and inconvenient.”
I was treated in Shaare Zedek Medical Center in Jerusalem and the treatment I received was anything but.
Before any treatment I was introduced by my surgeon to a “personal nurse,” Susan Bendheim.
Susan guided me through the whole system without bureaucratic blocks, and was there for me every step of the way. I was even given a cell phone number to reach her whenever I had a problem or question.
During the treatments the staff was warm and caring, and I did not go through any bureaucratic hassles. I am grateful that, being connected with a hospital, I was able to be treated immediately when I had a serious reaction to the chemotherapy.
As stated about an advantage of the private clinic, I also received hugs and encouragement from nurses and my oncologist. Even today, when I return for check-ups, I am warmly greeted by name by many of the staff.
I will forever be grateful to them for the very personal, convenient and uncomplicated treatment I received during one of the most difficult periods of my life.
Take on textbooks
Sir, – I thank Itamar Marcus (“The whitewashing of hate,” Comment & Features, February 10) for giving me insight about Palestinian Authority textbooks and where all the alternative history and downright lies are coming from.
How can we combat this? Where are my Christian colleagues? Wasn’t Jesus Jewish? Did he not live and work in Palestine? Did the Romans not raze the Temple and banish us from our homeland? There were no Arabs then.
They came much later as nomadic tribes. There was never an Arab government in Palestine.
Suddenly, the Jews who returned to their homeland are “colonialists.” “Usurpers.” How can this be? We have every right to be here. More so than Jordan, which was artificially created by the British – and nobody says the Jordanians have no right to be here.
So to all who deny us the right to live and prosper in our homeland, we are here to stay no matter how many lies and historical errors you are willing to believe. This land is my land, where my forefathers lived and died, my promised land.
Ludicrous obsession
Sir, – How many more lives will be lost before Uri Savir (“Welcome, Secretary Kerry!,” Savir’s Corner, February 8) realizes that his ludicrous obsession with the “peace process” brings only lethal results? Israel’s previous territorial and political concessions, be they the Gaza or southern Lebanon withdrawals, or Savir’s own Oslo Accords, resulted in situations where Israel has become more vulnerable and less peaceful.
The solution to the conflict will not come about after Israel gives up more land or after the creation of another Palestinian state. The war is not about settlement expansion, but about the elimination of the one and only Jewish state. It is an irrational, fanatical, genocidal and religious war against the infidel Jews, and will not end after further concessions and appeasement.
Savir buys into the lies of the “perceptions” of young people affected by the Arab Spring about “the fate of their Palestinian brethren under Israeli occupation.”
First, Jews are not occupiers in their own homeland. If anything, the Arabs are the occupiers. Second, the fate of their Palestinian “brethren” is far superior under Israeli rule, considering the freedoms and economic, educational, health and social benefits they have.
Reason to meet
Sir, – It is interesting to read that the haredi rabbinic councils have now suddenly found a reason to convene (“Haredi rabbinic councils meet, solidify opposition to the draft,” February 8). It is also interesting to note that Agudat Yisrael’s council had not met for 16 years.
One would deduce from this behavior that there have been no pressing problems facing the Jewish religion. But we have rampant assimilation in the Diaspora.
We have growing Conservative and Reform movements. And there are growing divisions between sectors of communities in Israel spurred on by religious extremism the likes of which have not been known for years.
One wonders why our current religious leaders have not applied themselves to reestablishing a Sanhedrin instead of blindly sticking to the status quo.
It seems that religious leaders of the caliber of the late Rabbi Abraham Isaac Hacohen Kook are sadly lacking. Kook supported very strongly the reestablishment of the Sanhedrin, and had the gift of knowing how to reduce rifts between the religious and secular.
Sir, – Your reporter Jeremy Sharon writes: “According to Yisrael Cohen, a journalist for the Haredi website Kikar Hashabbat, the fact that so many of the most senior rabbis in the country – and of world Jewry – have assembled together illustrates the importance they attach to the issue of yeshiva students and their ability to continue studying.”
This makes me think of the time that 10 of the most senior Jewish leaders reported to Moses that setting up a Jewish state would take away from their studies in the desert. The insistence and concentration on studying also makes me think of driving students who spend all their time learning the rules of the road but do not take hold of a steering wheel and drive the car themselves.
No reason to visit
Sir, – In “Obama to visit Israel for the first time as president” (February 6), you reported that Barack Obama “came under a great deal of criticism for not visiting Israel during his first term, something that many believed would have reassured a jittery Israeli public of his support....”
I can’t accept that a visit now will increase our trust in him, especially having witnessed so many instances of his hostility toward Israel while president.
Though the visit itself is thought to be an attempt to “kick-start a moribund peace process between Israelis and Palestinians,” I don’t think Israelis on the whole share his enthusiasm for this issue, since so many fruitless attempts have already been made and there is a fear that Israel will be pressured to take unreasonable and dangerous risks for a phony peace.
In polls taken prior to the US elections it was revealed that Obama was unpopular in Israel. I don’t believe the Israeli public’s disapproval will be significantly altered on the strength of a mere visit.
CLARIFICATIONS • With regard to “US court validates halachic prenuptial agreement” (February 11), the Bet Din of America, while being more liberal than parallel ultra-Orthodox bodies, is not “liberal” in the sense of being “non-Orthodox.” Its members are part of the traditional halachic-Orthodox stream of Judaism and any inference otherwise would be mistaken.
• The “executive director” mentioned in the final letter under “Spewers of hate” (February 11) was Gloria Mound, who heads the Casa Shalom Institute for Marrano-Anusim Studies (www.casashalom.org.il).