January 28: Start paying attention

Historical precedents of uniting against Jews show us why we should care over Arab world riots.

letters (photo credit: JP)
(photo credit: JP)
Start paying attention
Sir, – There are riots blowing through the Arab world, from Tunisia to Egypt to Lebanon (“3 killed in Egyptian protests against Mubarak,” January 26).
Why should we care? There are plenty of historical precedents that will show us why.
In the 1930s, when Germany suffered from high unemployment and anarchy, Hitler looked for a way to unite his people and began to persecute the Jews. In 1939, he took his tanks (which he wasn’t supposed to have, as Germany had been demilitarized after World War I) to the Polish border. He then claimed the Poles attacked him with their cavalry – on horseback against tanks. With this pretext, Hitler threw the match into the powder keg and ignited the world.
The Arabs all around us are suffering from poverty and unemployment, and have now taken to the streets. But any one of their endangered leaders can suddenly remember the infallible way of uniting his people. That’s right – attack the Jews. So we Jews had better stop our incessant bickering, get our army in order and start paying attention.
Not callous
Sir, – Regarding “Emotional overload” (In My Own Write, January 26), during an organized tour abroad, a member of our group fell from a cliff and was killed. Her husband returned to Israel with the body and we continued, not exactly as if nothing had happened, but we were capable of enjoying the rest of the tour.
I don’t think we were a non-feeling and callous group of people, but I still was surprised how quickly we recovered from the incident and continued with our trip.
As a witness, the event still haunts me 10 years later.
Sir, – Sometimes, because of the manifest suffering in the world, I can’t abide a “good morning” from a friend. It sounds hollow, like a cornflakes commercial.
It will not be a good morning until the geula (redemption) comes.
Thanks for the thoughtful articles.
Intractable at best
Sir, – Ray Hanania (“A Palestinian tragedy,” Yalla Peace, January 26) makes an astute observation: “The real story is that the Palestinians too offered the Israelis the best deal they can ever expect, and it was still refused.”
He’s right, but the “best deal” meant evacuating Efrat, Ma’aleh Adumim and Ariel (plus a number of smaller Israeli towns over the Green Line). And there’s the rub, for this is why no agreement envisioned by either side is possible, and why it may be better to agree to disagree while making the best of an intractable situation.
This could involve recognition of a Palestinian state in Area A of the West Bank (and possibly B), and shared sovereignty elsewhere – which is what we already (unofficially) have, even in parts of Jerusalem.
Sir, – Why does Ray Hanania always blame Israel for the failure of the talks? As I remember, it was the Palestinians who balked and refused to continue.
He should get his facts straight.
Two intelligent men
Sir, – As he says of our prime minister in “What does Netanyahu want?” (Encountering Peace, January 25), Gershon Baskin “is an intelligent man; his understanding of the issues is not shallow.”
Baskin knows that Arab/Muslim ideology, not borders, is the true barrier to true peace. So why does he imply that Netanyahu, who has zero power to change Arab/Muslim ideology, “has the key to peace”?