January 1: Just terrific...

The 75th Jerusalem Post anniversary supplement (December 29) was terrific.

letters good 88 (photo credit: Courtesy)
letters good 88
(photo credit: Courtesy)
Just terrific... Sir, - The 75th Jerusalem Post anniversary supplement (December 29) was terrific. You can all be proud of a distinguished record of achievement for the only English-language newspaper in Israel that has survived - and even thrived - through so many changes and upheavals over the past seven-and-a-half decades. But one more achievement deserves mention: home delivery in Galilee and the Negev. While always taken for granted in Israel's major metropolitan areas, it wasn't all that long ago that we "country-bumpkins" also started enjoying our morning coffee with The Jerusalem Post. Keep up the good work - I can't wait for the 100th anniversary. GERSHON HARRIS Hatzor Haglilit ...and much missed Sir, - How refreshing to find those two inimitable masters of writing, Alex Berlyne and Sam Orbaum, revived on the pages of your 75th anniversary issue. Both are sorely missed - certainly by me and, I imagine, by thousands of others. Here's my "Ode to Two Greats": "But seriously," Sam / We're all in a jam / The 'Post' can't replace you / We can no longer trace you / But know - you humdinger / Your stories still linger... The British Berlyne / His English so fine / "With prejudice" intellectual / He proved so effectual / None can imitate his style / We remember him, and smile... LINDA STERN Safed Kissinger's psyche Sir, - Yehuda Avner's "Inside Kissinger's soul" (December 27) was the most fascinating piece I've ever read in The Jerusalem Post. Avner's revelations about Kissinger's psychology, gleaned from his conversation with Kissinger's childhood buddy-turned-psychiatrist, were hardly surprising. After all, what sane Jew who barely escaped from Nazi Germany would be so eager to pressure Israel into major territorial concessions following a defensive war? Indeed, Kissinger was acting the masochist, which fits perfectly into his alleged pattern of neurotic identification with power and his disturbed self-hatred. Kissinger's malign legacy lives on as a tradition of appeasement masquerading as land for peace, a policy as dangerous as it is insane. DAVID KATCOFF Jericho, Vermont Vanishing species Sir, - A subspecies of humans is rapidly becoming extinct - the politician with balls, a once-common animal who knew what he or she believed in and acted on it, ignoring both hand-wringers and polls. I attribute its demise to the post-modern cultural environment, whose moral relativism kills off its young before they reach adulthood. The last specimens sighted in the West were probably Maggie Thatcher and Ronnie Reagan, but "Sarkozy ends contact with Syria over stalled Lebanese presidential election" (December 30) seemed to indicate that the new French president may be a surviving member of that endangered species. The question is: Did Sarkozy become president because of a long-overdue change in the cultural environment, or is he an anachronism, a throwback destined to be swept aside by politicians better suited to the climate of political correctness, feel-good policy and Western self-hatred? TUVIA FOGEL Milan It sure ain't 'The Times' Sir, - "'Haaretz' editor told Rice that Israel 'wants to be raped,'" (December 28) should be read in conjunction with "Shame on Haaretz" (November 6), in which Isi Leibler noted that Haaretz wants to be recognized as the Hebrew-language equivalent of The New York Times. During the long Vietnam War, none of the Times's liberal columnists such as Anthony Lewis and Tom Wicker ever portrayed the North Vietnamese, America's enemy, as endearing. The Times would have considered crossing that red line treasonous. At Haaretz, however, Amira Hass and Gideon Levy, particularly the latter, at least once a week seek out human interest stories among the Palestinian adversary, many of whose people support suicide bombings against Israeli civilians. It is always the same theme: how Palestinian individuals or families, winsome victims, suffer at the hands of the Israeli brutes. Little wonder that Levy's columns are regularly picked up by the rabid American anti-Zionist online newsletter Counterpunch, and that his editor made such a foolish, hostile remark. JACOB MENDLOVIC Toronto Sir, - I was sickened and embarrassed by the remarks made by David Landau. If the editor of an Israeli newspaper can speak to anyone - let alone a foreign dignitary - in such a vulgar and offensive manner, we Israelis are in worse shape than I thought. US Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice and the Israeli people deserve an apology. ELLEN-TOBY KAUFMAN Petah Tikva Code sharing Sir, - Mark Feldman's piece on the implementation of a code-share agreement between El Al and American Airlines needed three additional pieces of information: 1. The benefit of a code share to American Airlines' frequent fliers who are eligible for double mileage credits when they fly on an American Airlines-ticketed flight is that they will, indeed, get those double miles on a code share, whereas on an El Al-ticketed flight claiming American miles, they will only get the actual miles flown. 2. That said, travelers should also know that only a limited number of seats on each code-share flight can be sold under an American Airlines flight number; so one has to book early to get those extra miles. 3. Finally, American Airlines miles cannot generally be used to upgrade to premium seating on code-share flights operated by other airlines. Thus while the news of the code-sharing agreement is welcome, as always, caveat emptor... let the buyer beware ("The truth about code-sharing," December 30). SHERWIN POMERANTZ Jerusalem Conduct unbecoming Sir, - My love for Israel runs deep. As a pastor of a church here in New Jersey, one of my great passions is to bring members of my congregation for a visit to the land of the Bible. I will be bringing my fourth group of 45 individuals for a trip in a few months, but I have dropped Bethlehem from the itinerary. On our last trip in 2005 I led our people through the streets of Bethlehem, and was horrified when a group of young men surrounded several of our women. One of them approached a girl in our group who was about 15 years old at the time and began to act as if he was gratifying himself. I could not get our group out of there fast enough ("Bethlehem beyond the Christmas calm," Lela Gilbert, December 23). PASTOR KEVIN BRENNAN North Plainfield, New Jersey Is it necessary, and will he notice? Sir, - I was astounded to hear of the amount of money to be spent on certain areas of Jerusalem in advance of George Bush's visit. Is it really necessary, and will he notice? There is an acute shortage of hospital beds and finding the needed funding is going to take years. It seems as though the financial coffers have not got the correct labels ("Clean streets for Bush, not for rest of capital. Residents deserve same standards, opposition leader says," December 24). SARA SHAW Kfar Saba