January 21: Harper’s welcome

What a breath of fresh air! What an example to the world! What a man of principle! What wisdom!

Letters 370 (photo credit: REUTERS/Handout )
Letters 370
(photo credit: REUTERS/Handout )

Harper’s welcome

Sir, – Prime Minister Stephen Harper of Canada and his entourage are most welcome guests here in Israel (“Netanyahu receives Harper with honor guard, blaring trumpets,” January 20).

What a breath of fresh air! What an example to the world! What a man of principle! What wisdom! We, the people of Israel, salute you, Mr. harper, and wish you every success.

Petah Tikva

Sir, – Your reporter writes: “With the ceremonial trappings generally reserved for kings and presidents, Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu warmly greeted his Canadian counterpart Stephen Harper to Jerusalem on Sunday, praising him for his ‘courage, clarity and convictions.’” This seems to mean that Prime Minister Harper did not deserve such a welcome. Because he is such a great friend of Israel, it is said that he is considered a “rock star” in our community. So, besides my friends who went to Israel as part of his entourage, my other friends who made aliyah have been on the roadside welcoming him.



Sir, – A note to the current US administration: This is what true friendship is all about. Canada walks shoulder to shoulder with Israel while you claim you “have our back.” All you have in our back is a sharp, deadly weapon so that we do what is good for you.

Take a long, hard look at the moral courage and certainty, the honesty and clarity that are Canada’s trademark under Prime Minister Stephen Harper, and let this be a lesson. Americans need to see how they have been led astray by you from what used to be their core values.


Delight to read

Sir, – What a delight to read the authoritative article by Sari Schwartz enumerating the amazing contributions by Israel to the welfare of African nations (“Israel, migration and international development: The inextricable link,” Comment & Features, January 19). The information provided there should be made freely available to all critics within and outside the country concerning our handling of the problematic illegal migration from Africa.

The clear humanity shown by our country makes me proud and may exceed any similar actions by Western countries that habitually criticize us for all that we do. Of special interest is the news about the recent significant contributions to South Africa despite that country’s severe criticisms and support for the boycott, divestment and sanctions movement against Israel.

Tel Mond

Two can play

Sir, – UNESCO has rejected the exhibit on the 3,500-year relationship between the Land of Israel and the Jewish people because the Arabs claim it would be harmful to the (going-nowhere) negotiations with the Palestinians (“UNESCO delays exhibit on Jewish ties to Land of Israel,” January 17).

Israel’s response should be loud, clear and immediate: No more negotiations or release of murders unless the exhibit is reinstated.
The Palestinians use the bogus negotiations exclusively for their immediate benefit. They should be told that two can play this game.

Jerusalem Sir, – We read about UNESCO and its desire to preserve balance and help keep the peace process alive. In the same issue we read “UN chief Ban launches ‘Year of Solidarity with Palestinians’” to help keep the peace process alive.

Nice balance.

Jerusalem Welcome back!

Sir, – With regard to “Pernicious wishful thinking” (Another Tack, January 17), welcome back, Sarah Honig! We don’t begrudge you your long vacation, but we truly miss you and are relieved and happy when you return. Thank you for your great articles! TAMAR and YOSI GINAT Yehud Fresh air Sir, – Caroline B. Glick’s “The truth hurts” (Column One, January 17), about the publication of Moshe Ya’alon’s impolitic but accurate private remarks about my former senator in Massachusetts, US Secretary of State John Kerry, was right on the mark. But like other analyses I’ve read, it made no note of the implications of Kerry’s words: “I will work with the willing participants who are committed to peace and to this process.”

Kerry obviously meant the inverse as well: I will not work with the unwilling participants who are not committed to peace and to this process.
Since the leaders of the Palestinian Arabs, most prominently PA President Mahmoud Abbas, have made it abundantly clear that they are not committed to peace, it would appear that Kerry no longer will be working with them. This should reduce air pollution, since there will no longer be an excuse for him to fly back and forth between Washington and Ben-Gurion Airport every couple of weeks.


Ya’alon’s courage

Sir, – Congratulations to Defense Minister Moshe Ya’alon, who had the courage to speak out regarding US Secretary of State John Kerry and express the view of many Israelis, if not the majority.

Why do our other leaders remain silent and act as if Israel were a vassal state needing the approval of other countries, especially the US? What are the secret agreements that seem to tie the hands of our government instead of taking action? As recent events indicate, agreements are not worth the paper they are written on, so we should not be hesitant in having pride in ourselves and our accomplishments.
BRYNA FRANKLIN Jerusalem Sir, – At about the same time Defense Minister Moshe Ya’alon proclaimed what many Israelis were thinking, the Iranian government proclaimed that the West had surrendered to Iran concerning the nuclear weapons deal.
The US State Department issued a statement saying that even though these comments were inflammatory, “we look at actions, and not at words.”
It is strange that the State Department over-reacted to Ya’alon’s statement while Israel carries out actions, like releasing mass-murderers from jail in pursuit of peace.


He’ll be missed

Sir, – This month saw the passing of David Froehlich, an outstanding citizen of Rehovot who contributed much to its English-speaking community.

In 1939, Dave, age 11, fled Germany with his family. They settled in St. Louis. Dave joined the Democratic Party and became a community activist. He later moved to New York, where he worked on the campaigns of Walter Mondale, Gary Hart, John Glenn and John Lindsay. After he moved to Israel he became chairman of Democrats Abroad in Israel and worked for the Clinton-Gore ticket.
When Dave moved to Rehovot he organized its English-speaking community and promoted its interests. He was an avid theatrical actor and producer, and founded the English Theater of Rehovot and RESO, the Rehovot English-Speakers’ Organization, an umbrella organization of the city’s various English-speaker groups.
He also founded and edited The Rehovot Reporter, the publication of RESO, until his retirement.
Under Dave’s leadership, RESO persuaded the local bus company to run direct bus lines from Rehovot to Jerusalem. It also lobbied successfully for placement of traffic lights at dangerous intersections.
Those of us who knew Dave as a good friend, an observant Jew and a man dedicated to his community will miss him.