March 17: More on Itamar

Once again, innocent Jewish blood has been spilled by perpetrators who are supposed to become our peaceful, sovereign, neighbors.

More on Itamar
Sir, – Once again, innocent Jewish blood has been spilled by perpetrators who are supposed to become our peaceful, sovereign, neighbors. To think that the mind-set that promotes such horrors will suddenly disappear when a “peace treaty” is signed is not only ludicrous, but very dangerous.
Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas and his PA henchmen can sit back and apologize to our prime minister forever, but until such time as they can honestly say to their people – in Arabic – that this activity not only must cease, but is reprehensible, there will be no peace, no agreements, no cooperation and no end to violence.
HAIM M. LERNER Ganei Tikva
Sir, – Ahmed, a Palestinian who lives in a village near Tulkarm, who works with me everyday, spoke to me with tears in his eyes after the atrocity at Itamar.
He said the killer of the Fogel family had no God and could not claim to have one.
Upon hearing the news of the savage murder he looked at his own children and couldn’t fathom how a human BEING could commit such an act.
Will Palestinians rise up against their dictators as their brethren are doing in other countries? I don’t know, but I’m waiting for Palestinians to mass in protest against the terror that was committed at Itamar.
Sir, – PA President Abbas has spoken out against the heinous crime committed at Itamar.
Responding to the accusation by our prime minister that it was the result of hatred promoted by constant incitement, he claimed there was no incitement, and to prove his point, he suggested that a joint commission be formed of Israelis, Palestinians and Americans to examine the matter thoroughly.
Why does our government not accept this invitation immediately and show the world what the reality is? It’s there, in school curricula, newspapers, on television, and in the innumerable instances where Abbas himself has directly or indirectly shown his approval for terrorist acts.
Sir, – Hearing about the savage killing of five Israelis in Itamar, I am reminded of the constant accusation of disproportionate responses leveled at Israel. By this logic, I can only assume that Israel should send in IDF troops to stab to death a young family of Palestinians as they sleep, including a three-month- old infant.
While the world may not like to admit it, it knows that Israelis would never countenance such barbarity. Not in a million years did even Northern Ireland’s worst terrorists contemplate such acts.
JOHN LALOR Lucerne, Switzerland
So it’s our fault?
Sir, – I sit here in shock as Gershon Baskin looks to blame Israel for the lack of progress in the so-called peace negotiations (“The clock is ticking,” Encountering Peace, March 15). He babbles on and on about a Palestinian narrative of how Israel stole all the land, made the Palestinians refugees and now denies them their dignity.
Wow! That’s a great excuse for the slaughter of five members of the Fogel family.
Baskin goes on about how the Israeli people don’t want peace with the Palestinians. They don’t want to make concessions. But how far have concessions gotten them? How many Israelis have been murdered due these concessions? There aren’t many in Israel – even on the Left – who have any faith in the ability of the Palestinians to deliver anything but incitement, hatred and murder.
We are all grateful – and I’m sure the Fogel family is very comforted – that Baskin condemns, along with all Palestinians, the slaughter at Itamar. But he does note that Itamar is home to some of the most fanatical settlers. I am sure that a three-month-old infant fits into this group.
Perhaps Baskin should look for another place to live. Why be part of such an awful nation that, unlike the loving and caring Palestinian people, doesn’t want to be a partner for peace?
What’s truly shocking
Sir, – I certainly agree with your March 14 editorial (“The real obstacle to peace”), but I want to point out that the Palestinian penchant for naming streets, plazas, halls and children after suicide bombers is something that can’t be unlearned.
For many decades, Palestinian leaders have injected the venom that courses through their veins into their children. There is no antidote. This condition has mutated into an auto-immune disease that eats away at the heart and mind, without surcease.
It’s been 100 years and more in the making, so no one should be shocked at anything. What’s shocking is that we continue to convince ourselves that these people want to live in peace with us, or even want us to live.
The only way
Sir, – In reply to Julian Israel’s letter (“Collateral damage,” Letters, March 13), there doesn’t seem to be a better way than a strike to solve a seemingly insoluble problem.
As the writer states, the right of social workers not to be slaves is clear. Unfortunately, those who suffer most are their clients, who really need their services.
But those who employ the social workers refuse to pay them a proper wage, and to my knowledge there is no better solution – a strike often has an effect that nothing else can muster.
We can only hope and pray that the social workers’ “masters” will wake up soon and cooperate by offering a decent wage.
A note from Japan
Sir, – It is so sad and heartbreaking to find ourselves helpless and uninformed. I am sick of seeing nothing other than destroyed towns, lost lives and interviews with survivors who say what they lost and what they hope for.
We get almost all our news from local reports in newspapers and on television regarding what happened and what is going on at the Fukushima nuclear power plant, and they cite merely what’s stated by government officials and the electric company.
There are no clear explanations or open discussions on why there were explosions, even after we learned that the US had offered to airlift huge cooling generators. We heard nothing about why the Japanese government refused this help and started instead to pour sea water into the reactors.
We should have known that these incidents could happen, as we had a similar experience in July 2007, when an earthquake seriously damaged one of the world’s largest nuclear power plants here. The plant was shut down for 21 months, and part of the reactor has yet to resume operations.
In Japan, people who put questions to the plans and practices of the government and semi-government corporations are criticized as if they are antigovernment and extreme leftists.
We live on islands where earthquakes and typhoons attack, and know the real power of nature.
Sometimes we feel nature is a great gift and we enjoy every moment of beauty. We all know why we love the sakura (cherry blossom) – we know how precious it is to see another spring come after a long and cold winter of hardship, as if God promised our nation a gift to anticipate and enjoy. We are attached to the sakura because its blossoms don’t last long, but it gives us a promise and something to look forward to each year.
Nothing remains forever, so we remember what is important to us.
I really hope people on this planet remember the images they’re seeing now and can enjoy the sakura with us in Japan when the next spring comes.
Kanagawa, Japan