May 31: The new Philistines

In a facade of “humanity,” criminals, terrorists, anarchist-idlers and paid provocateurs are invading us, as did the Philistines of old.

The new Philistines
Sir, – Regarding “Navy braces for showdown with Gaza-bound flotilla” (May 30), it is not enough that Israel is under siege by hundreds of millions fanatics sworn to our destruction. Now, in a facade of “humanity,” criminals, terrorists, anarchist-idlers and paid provocateurs are invading us, as did the Philistines of old.
Why do we think that it will look bad if we fight these tormentors back? What kind of galut mentality is this? We are proudly on our ancestral land.
Aboard our boats we should place huge maps of the Muslim world, from Morocco to Iran, with an arrow pointing at tiny Israel, asking “Who is threatening whom?”
ALFRED INSELBERG
Ra’anana
Uneven coverage
Sir, – A photo on the front page of The Jerusalem Post (May 30) shows Hamas boats demonstrating in Gaza Port.
We, too, had a demonstration by six boats calling to free Gaza from Hamas, which sailed from the Ashdod marina the previous Friday. Why no mention? Is an item newsworthy only if it comes from the other side?
ERNEST WINOCOUR
Rehovot
Sir, – Am I the only one amazed at the interest shown by the world’s press in the boats carrying goods and people to Gaza, compared to the deafening silence that accompanied the British blockade of Palestine, an action that caused the deaths of innocent people, many of them Holocaust survivors?
Maybe that was at a time when Jews weren’t “news?”
STEVEN SCHEINER
Caesarea
Nightmare of whose doing?
Sir, – Regarding your editorial “Sailing for Hamas” (May 28), I just returned from a 10-day stay in Gaza. When you write of the “nightmare reality Hamas has created for Gazans,” it is for me the absolute climax of cynicism.
I traveled Gaza from one end to the other and my impression is – judging from the senseless destruction still visible everywhere – that Israel in December 2009/January 2010 tested its newest weapons on any structures that appeared to be nice targets, with no consideration for the local population.
DR. PETER VOSS
Munich
False claims
Sir, – I’m writing in regard to a letter to the editor (May 30) claiming that the Ir Amim NGO participated in a UN meeting in Turkey.
The claim is false. Ir Amim did not participate. If attorney Daniel Seidmann took part, he did not do so as a representative of Ir Amim, which no longer employs him.
DANA ZIMMERMAN
Ir Amim
Jerusalem
Avoid another Goldstoning
Sir, – Reading Amir Mizroch’s analysis of future wars with Hamas/Hizbullah/Syria (“Desperate housewives don’t count rockets, they count days,” May 30), let us be pro-active and attack them at the time of our choosing, sooner rather than later.
I know the world will jump up and down, but these same people have totally ignored the rearming of Hizbullah despite UN resolution 1701, which brought the second Lebanon war to an end. Every time we are at the point of finally winning, as in Lebanon and then in Gaza, we are forced to accept useless cease-fires that leave the enemy free to defy the UN and ready himself for the next round.
It is about time that our totally useless defense minister start defending us in the court of world opinion so that we don’t face another “Goldstone” after the next event.
JUDY PRAGER
Petah Tikva
Let’s be clear
Sir, – David Horovitz’s column (“Only a drill,” May 28) successfully aroused in me an intense fear for what the future may hold for Israelis. There is only one way we can prevent our neighbors from employing the destructive methods available to them, and that is by letting them, and the world, know that a missile attack on our major residential areas will be dealt with by retaliation that causes unimaginable destruction to their states.
I refer to our nuclear capability, which is known to the whole world.
The Arabs cannot claim that they have built up their arsenals for defensive purposes, as Israel has always made it quite clear it has no intention of attacking its neighbors, whereas they have repeatedly spoken of their aim to eliminate our state.
Making public now, and not later, our projected defense would be the equivalent of a pre-emptive strike. No doubt, many in the Western world would condemn us, but our survival must be uppermost in our minds, and our deterrent strategy must therefore be known to all.
ROBYN ROTBERG
Kfar Saba
Sir, – In the event of a chemical or biological attack on Israel, not everyone has a mobile phone, and not everyone is fluent in Hebrew. It may be a bit late to wait for “birds to start dropping out of the sky,” and certainly to rely on radio or mobile phone warnings after the event.
Should thought not to be given to some form of special audible alarm? Perhaps a variation in siren tone or consistency? It wouldn’t simply be a matter of taking shelter, and many people may arrive without a mask – that is, of course, if they have one!
I. KEMP
Nahariya
Pay attention, Mr. President
Sir, – Herb Keinon’s analysis (“Obama’s abrupt change of tone shows built-in US restraints on veering too far against Israel,” May 28) quotes Democratic senator Charles Schumer on how three out of the last four US presidents initially adopted a strategy of being tough on Israel and nice to the Palestinians and Arabs, before realizing that it was a recipe for disaster.
What neither Schumer nor Keinon query is why Obama chose to fall into the same trap. Do US presidents never learn?
PETER SIMPSON
Jerusalem
Give it a try
Sir, – Regarding “Consternation surrounds Shas joining Zionist group,” (May 28), the willingness of a haredi party to identify with Zionism is of historical import.

It will undoubtedly create challenges and conflict; introducing anelement from a radically different perspective always does. But it isimportant to note that a condition of joining is accepting the WorldZionist Organization’s “Jerusalem program,” which, contrary to theimpression given in the article, was carefully crafted to mentionmutual respect for the multifaceted Jewish people while avoiding thecode word “pluralism.”
From the perspective of a religious Zionist, I welcome thisbreakthrough, although I’m somewhat apprehensive of its practicalramifications.
RABBI YOSEF BLAU
President
Religious Zionists of America
New York
Praise, not protest
Sir, – Instead of Baruch Marzel and Itamar Ben-Gvir trying to disruptthe Emanuel bar mitzvah (“Searching for the elusive Rahm Emanuel,” May24), think about what they could have accomplished by releasing astatement such as the following:
“While we vehemently disagree with the Obama administration’s misguidedapproach to the Arab-Israeli conflict, we are proud that thepresident’s chief of staff brought his family to the Kotel to celebrateZach’s and Noah’s bar mitzvas. Such a gesture shows the world that Jewsof all denominations and political views regard the Temple Mount andJerusalem as the epicenter of Judaism for over 2,000 years.”
ROB ZENILMAN
Ma’ale Adumim