June 17: Much more to do

Zionism sets out to enhance the renaissance of the Jewish nation after two millennia of Diaspora existence.

letters (photo credit: JP)
(photo credit: JP)
Much more to do
Sir, – There are those who believe that the Zionist dream was fully realized with the creation of the State of Israel. They are fundamentally wrong! While the State of Israel is, indeed, the fulfillment of a major goal of Zionism, it is not the only goal. Zionism sets out to enhance the renaissance of the Jewish nation after two millennia of Diaspora existence.
It has a vital role to play in establishing and defining Jewish values there and in the homeland.
Without these values, Israel could easily evolve into a marginal Jewish experiment (“Zionist Congress is indeed relevant,” June 15).
The World Zionist Organization presents a forum to encompass all kinds of Jewish thought and beliefs, and must thrive as a seedbed for future Jewish leadership in Israel and abroad.
HAIM M. LERNER Ganei Tikva
Large headline needed
Sir, – Regarding “Jerusalem mayor warns kids about drugs” (June 15), the original article on the tragic deaths of the two young people in the city appeared in the “News in Brief” section a few days before.
Surely, this horrific story should have been printed on the front page, with the headline in large letters, so that the kids would be forewarned that many of the drugs, such as methadone, are tainted and therefore quite dangerous.
Let’s try and ensure that the kids see these warnings.
Bnei Dror
 Some ‘independence’
Sir, – Knesset Speaker Reuven Rivlin has indefinitely delayed the implementation of a 7-1 decision by the House Committee to strip Balad MK Haneen Zoabi of selected parliamentary privileges (“Israel Beiteinu fumes at Rivlin for delaying vote on Arab MK’s privileges,” June 15).
Rivlin consulted with senior government officials. He concluded that a vote “would create heavy pressure against Israel from the US as well as Israel's friends.”
We are not protecting Israel’s interests by looking first to see who will be upset. Everything we do upsets the world.
We have become so servile as to be unable to assure the most basic tenets of our survival – security roadblocks and other forms of restrictions put in place to protect Israelis are removed in order to placate our “friends,” leading, of course, to the deaths of our people (“Palestinian gunman murders policeman in West Bank ambush,” June 15).
Valid right of way
Sir, – Greer Fay Cashman (“Reclaiming the sidewalk,” June 14) makes a valid point in her opinion piece about the difficulties of walking on sidewalks.
I would agree that motorcycles must be banned from sidewalks; they belong on the roads. However, what is one to do with wheelchairs and scooters for the mobility- challenged? I for one use such a scooter – I, like others, have a right to roll along sidewalks.
As for Cashman’s understandable frustration about not being able to get by cars parked on the sidewalk, she can at least step into the road, whereas people on scooters or in wheelchairs cannot if there is no ramp.
I and a small group called Negishut Yerushaliyim (Jerusalem Accessibility) have been working with the municipality since 2006 – with less success as the years go on. We have been waiting for nearly a year for it to produce a flyer and sticker we designed that can be placed on offending vehicles.
I invite Cashman and others to help us make the city more accessible and user-friendly.
If 6 were 9 (or 13)
Sir, – Regarding “Group urges Knesset to raise minimum age for leaving child alone from six to nine” (June 14), I cannot believe that the law allows children to stay home alone at the age of six! Even nine is ridiculous! I would say 13 is nearer the correct age.
Kiryat Ono
Delicious irony
Sir, – Am I alone in noticing the irony of Israeli potatoes being boycotted in Dublin supermarkets (“BDS: Nuisance or genuine threat?,” June 15)? SYDNEY FABER Jerusalem Appealing explainers needed Sir, – Each time there is a confrontation between Israel and its adversaries – we just saw it again with the Mavi Marmare – the world media use every argument to delegitimize our country.
We have to admit to a failure of our hasbara.
Imagine if Abba Eban were alive today. Most likely, he would be far superior to our current spokesmen.
Why do we not have a Ministry for Hasbara, whose task would be to assemble a team of political analysts and speakers with pleasant and appealing demeanors, to present the case for Israel eloquently and convincingly at every possible forum? NAFTALI WAGSCHAL
 Don’t overlook Ankara
Sir, – If Israel is setting up a board of inquiry to examine Israel’s role in the death of nine Turkish passengers aboard a Turkish ship, who’s going to investigate Turkey’s role?
Petah Tikva
Good sign?
Sir, – With reports from The Times of London noting that Saudi Arabia has agreed to turn off its air defense system to enable Israel to deal with Iran’s nuclear threat (“’Saudi airspace is open for Iran attack,” June 13), the adage that holds in multiple languages – the enemy of my enemy is my friend – is encouraging.
Who knows? Is an exchange of ambassadors next?
Los Angeles
 No equality
Sir, – While Knesset members object to some Israeli MKs visiting “enemy” countries, others endorse, participate in and incite law-breaking activities with impunity.
MK Arye Eldad helped rebuild a structure originally built in the West Bank, clearly violating the construction freeze. “I would be happy if you would include me in the rebuilding now,” Eldad proclaimed.
“I would be happy to be invited for additional building.”
MK Haneen Zoabi’s “crime” was participating in the Gaza Freedom Flotilla and making some extremely hurtful, cruel and inciting statements.
And not being Jewish. For this, MKs advocate revoking diplomatic privileges.
Eldad’s crime was in violating the freeze, inciting others to flaunt the law by his example, and indicating his clear intent to break the law again. Eldad is Jewish. For him, MKs are silent. Welcome to “rule of law” in the “only democracy in the Middle East.” The tragedy is that our silence gives tacit approval, allowing this to continue!
O’Connor, Australia
Cup, shmup
Sir, – Am I the only person in Israel who doesn’t give a hoot about the World Cup? The obsession with this event, and the fact that it has been receiving the lion’s share of air time on national television, make me question the judgment of programming decisionmakers, as well as the viewing preferences of the national audience.
Isn’t there room for programs that promote brains rather than brawn?
Sha'are Tikva
Sir, – A large number of Englishspeakers are being deprived of their daily English-language news because of the “necessity” of broadcasting the World Cup on Channel 33.
There are at least two other channels that have been broadcasting these games from the beginning.
Why, then, cannot these mostly elderly individuals, who have not managed to learn enough Hebrew, get their daily “dose” of English news? I urge all fair-minded individuals to stand up and protest this highly unfair and unnecessary move by the Broadcasting Authority. Give these people back their English news!