July 15: A man gone astray

Hanegbi was not acquitted. He was found guilty of perjury.

A man gone astray
Sir, – Regarding your lead article “Tzahi Hanegbi: Verdict ‘ruled out criminality’” (July 14), Hanegbi was not acquitted. He was found guilty of perjury, which is considered quite a crime. He may even be guilty of moral turpitude.
Hanegbi is the son of Geula Cohen, who all her life identified so strongly with the creation of the State of Israel in its historic borders. It is a pity that he did not follow his mother either in politics or in character.
He is the kind of figure that novels are made of, a man who had such potential for greatness but went so far astray.
Timely dream
Sir, – Prime Minister Netanyahu’s endorsement of a round-the-clock Hebrew, English and Arabic TV news station shows that this is definitely an idea whose time has come (“PM describes dream of 24-hour, multi-language news network,” July 13).
With today’s satellite and Internet technology, there is really no excuse for not getting Israel’s message out.
But let’s do it right. Let’s recruit the best media talent not only in Israeli broadcasting, but in the international Jewish world so that what we present has the maximum impact.
SHALOM HELMAN Hadar-Israel Council for Civic Action Jerusalem
Elad’s Jerusalem?
Sir, – Alice Shalvi (“Whose city is it, anyway?,” Opinion, July 13) accuses the Elad organization of “Judaizing east Jerusalem” while leaving out the Palestinian “narrative.”
A visit to Elad’s project, the City of David, allows visitors to come away with the knowledge that the Jewish claim to Jerusalem is over 2,000 years old.
In other words, any of Shalvi’s arguments against educating exclusively about Jewish roots to that part of the city can easily be dismissed by the historical facts.
Since Jerusalem was never the capital of a “Palestinian” nation, I’m not sure a Palestinian “narrative” would help bolster her position. While Arabs do live in east Jerusalem today, I would guess that over 90% prefer to live with the freedoms granted to them by the State of Israel rather than under the PA or Hamas.
Sir, – Remarkable discoveries from archeological excavations undertaken through Elad in recent years have confirmed that the historic City of David from 3,000 years ago is situated in what Alice Shalvi chooses to refer to as east Jerusalem. The area has no similar historic significance to what she refers to as the Palestinian “narrative.”
I fail to understand how anyone can complain that Elad is a major player in “Judaizing east Jerusalem.”
Alice Shalvi should know that one cannot alter history with untruths.
Sir, – Alice Shalvi’s op-ed is a valuable and informative article on the political and ideological agenda of the Elad organization, which rules the City of David.
The article accurately describes the tendentious version of history purveyed by Elad’s impressive visitor center, and the “Judaization” program for Silwan (which I have followed for years through friendship with a Silwan Arab family).
Who is financing Elad’s activities? Good question.
Incredibly, the Nature and Parks Authority agreed in 2005 to transfer managerial authority over the City of David site to Elad, a private organization, without a legal tender. A petition to the High Court of Justice seeks to annul the agreement.
Meanwhile, Mayor Nir Barkat wants to create an archaeological park in Silwan and demolish 22 homes that were built without permits (which Arabs are not easily able to obtain). The multistory Beit Yonatan, built without permits by Jews, has not yet been evacuated and sealed, in defiance of a court order.
Stay tuned for further developments in the city of peace.
RUTH RIGBI Jerusalem
Shocking byline
Sir, – I was shocked to note that “Palestinian village of Walajeh to be encircled by security barrier” (July 13) was authored in part by Jerusalem Post staff. The piece reads more like something from the Israel-critical European press.
What the Post brings to the table is reporting on the Middle East that is fact-based and excludes the political clichés of most international journalism.
Overly dramatic language describing the Israeli barrier as a “death-knell” that threatens to “smother” the village is simply not journalistic. Add to that loose regard for facts, such as mention of the “expansion” of “east Jerusalem’s nearby Gilo neighborhood.”
Anyone familiar with the area knows that construction in Gilo, while nearby, has zero effect on the Palestinian village, which is on a different hill.
Please don't allow the standards that distinguish your newspaper to be lost.
The Editor notes: The article has a dual byline. The parts in question are by a reporter from the Associated Press.
Sideline the destabilizers
Sir, – Israel does not need conversion legislation (“Netanyahu: Rotem’s conversion bill won’t reach Knesset plenum,” July 13).
Rather, it needs to sideline a haredi rabbinic underworld that destabilizes the Jewish state. Religious affairs should be consolidated in the hands of rabbis who care about both halacha and their fellow Jews.
It is incomprehensible that the State of Israel, with legions of brilliant, sensitive, worldly and supremely knowledgeable rabbis who care deeply about their society and its future, should abdicate responsibility for halachic conversion to retrograde haredim who are inimical to Zionism, betray the state through word and deed, and are driven by the desire for power rather than by the Torah’s tradition of sensitivity and compassion.
J.J. GROSS Jerusalem
They report just fine
Sir, – Beauty radiates from the soul, not from the hairstyle (“Give us beauty!,” Letters, July 12).
Whenever I see the three television personalities mentioned, I feel inspired by their reporting and find them pleasing to look at.
Having been in Israel for over 50 years, I have watched their reporting for a long time.
Sir, – I can’t believe that Jenny Shipman wrote that letter and am even more amazed that you saw fit to print it. Or is it some tasteless kind of joke? Of course, people on TV should be well-groomed, but to call someone “agonizingly plain” is going too far. An apology is called for.
Givat Ze’ev
Sir, – The letter describing the looks of three television personalities cries out for a response. “They look a mess,” “they look frightful, with frizzy, dirty-looking hair,” and “clever, charming – but agonizingly plain” are an injury to these women. Your printing the letter adds insult.
Britain a world leader
Sir, – I want to compliment Liat Collins (“From blind justice to blind hatred,” My word, July 11) on her accurate and comprehensive description of British hypocrisy and frightening anti- Israelism.
Anthony Julius, in his Trials of the Diaspora, which is a history of English/British anti-Semitism in all its forms, points out that often it seemed England was indeed the leader and innovator for certain anti-Semitic tactics, using the famous story of Hugh of Lincoln as a key example.
These thoughts came to mind as I read Collins’s column because it seems that even today, the UK has the dubious honor of being a leader in the innovation and implementation of anti-Israel actions.
Quite frightening!
Hatzor Haglilit