November 18: Deals with Iran

One cannot easily imagine the world returning to sanctions once Iran is even closer to breakout.

Letters 370 (photo credit: REUTERS/Handout )
Letters 370
(photo credit: REUTERS/Handout )

Sir, – Thanks are due again to Herb Keinon for a most perceptive analysis (“Cavernous tactical gaps on the Islamic Republic,” Diplomacy, November 15).

One need only refer to the incessant and deceptive mantra coming from Obama administration spokesmen, to wit, that the US will not allow Iran to achieve a “nuclear weapon.” On the other side of the canyon, Israel is united, with Arab help, on stopping terror-happy Iran from achieving nuclear weapons capability.
Sanctions should be increased if agreement cannot be reached.
One cannot easily imagine the world returning to sanctions once Iran is even closer to breakout.
How shocking it was to hear, therefore, the wave of applause from American Jewish leaders assembled last week for the Jewish Federations of North America’s GA conference in Jerusalem when the US ambassador to Israel unabashedly repeated the same lulling but near worthless affirmation about a “nuclear weapon.”
Europe, with France in the lead, is finally rubbing its eyes but waiting for America to wake up. This will probably happen only if America, with Congress in the lead, comes to recognize regime evil in the world and makes no excuses for or compromises with it.
It will not benefit Washington to sell its soul for the whole world, not even for Tehran.
The writer is a retired US Foreign Service officer who spent 15 years in Arab or Muslim countries

Sir, – In regard to easing sanctions on Iran as now being proposed by the Unites States, one would like to suggest a test: For the word “Israel” or the term “Zionist entity” used by various Iranian political leaders for the past 30 years, let us, just for argument’s sake, replace them with “America.”

It would be “America” that is to be destroyed, annihilated, consumed, eradicated, exterminated, squashed, obliterated, demolished and sent to hell.
Had the United States been the target of such repeated threats, one thinks the tone and responses would be far different than what we are seeing today from the White House.

They don’t care

Sir, – I’m not surprised that Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu went back on his word to start building 24,000 housing units in Judea and Samaria (“PM: We’ll continue to build, but wisely,” November 14).

Does Netanyahu actually believe that the talks with Iran will be influenced by what he has to say or what Israel does? The international community will do as it pleases, without consideration of the danger to Israel.
What an embarrassment to Israel is the fear of our prime minister! A country that was respected by the world for its strong army and miraculous victories is turning into a banana republic. He is taking away all the respect people once had for us, and removing the fear of our enemies.
Mr. Prime Minister, we have no friends, only allies, and only when it is good for them. Never forget that.
Ma’aleh Adumim

Fine event

Sir, – Regarding “George W. Bush headlines Jews for Jesus event” (November 15), the Messianic Jewish Bible Institute in Texas is not Jews for Jesus. Not every Jewish person who sees Jesus Christ as the Messiah of Israel is working for or at all associated with Jews for Jesus, a missionary organization over 30 years old.

And by the way, why wouldn’t President Bush attend such an elite banquet? Last year Glenn Beck spoke! Both these fine men love and do a lot for Israel. Why try to categorize Bush in a negative light for this? The State of Israel should be proud to have such an ancestor as Jesus of Nazareth. Slandering Jews who are for Jesus is like cutting off your own nose – they are fine citizens, serve in the army and pay their taxes honestly.
While Israel struggles now in trying desperately to hold onto its Jewish identity, we ought to reconsider these Jews and not reject them. Their mothers are still Jewish! Bush knows how to bless Jewish people by showing up at this fine event, yet we don’t bless our own right here in the land.
Rishon Lezion

The Editor responds: The headline should not have included the name “Jews for Jesus.”

You don’t know

Sir, – I read “We know, we know” (Observations, November 15) Carole Zabar with increasing frustration.

I, too, was a very early and active supporter and donor of the New Israel Fund. As it turned more frequently to the Left, though, I backed away – but still encouraged left-wing friends who wanted to support Israel independently rather than through a Jewish federation. Then I made aliya and my whole outlook changed.
People like Zabar simply don’t understand Israel. She doesn’t know and neither do the good people who still support NIF.
Until they take the giant step of moving here, they will never know.
They do not get the daily news that we get and therefore do not understand why organizations like Adalah have a different agenda than what these Americans see. They haven’t been in the Negev long enough to see the growing problem with Beduin settlement. They don’t understand the difference between lethal Palestinian terrorism and the so-called price tag assaults, which they equate.
In short, they have blinders on because of their American liberal experience. But that doesn’t work here, not when we live in a neighborhood that is always out to do us harm.
I would challenge people like Zabar to come live here for six months or a year. Then I might more fully respect what she has to say.

Trust us

Sir, – Regarding “US Jewish Groups condemn Beit Shemesh mayor’s anti-gay comment” (November 13), as a former Washingtonian I would suggest that Abraham Foxman and the Jewish Federation of Greater Washington assume a different manner in their comments to Washington’s sister city, Beit Shemesh.

Beit Shemesh is a vibrant and dynamic city with scores of intelligent, accomplished, talented, charitable and decent people, a city rich in the diversity of its population and blessed with a wide range of schools for its abundant school-age population. Unfortunately, it receives very bad and undeserving press treatment where the achievements of the majority go unreported while the debacles of a minority are exaggerated and emphasized.
The residents of Beit Shemesh respond to our city’s mayor for his comments on all topics, and he is held responsible for what he says. That is appropriate. This is our city.
There is so much of a constructive nature for Foxman and others to do on the other side of the Atlantic. Let them trust us to take care of our city and to hold our mayor to account, to praise him for the good and to blame him for the mistakes. Allow the best of Beit Shemesh to shine through.
Beit Shemesh

Good spin

Sir, – It would be an understatement to say that your report regarding the outcome of author Naomi Ragen’s appeal to the Supreme Court was skewed. It was, in fact, good spin but slanted journalism (“Report: Naomi Ragen wins reversal of judgment against her in copyright case,” November 10).

Ragen was not vindicated, nor can she claim victory. Yes, the court ruled that she would not be called a plagiarist. However, that does not give her a clean slate. If that were the case she would not be obliged to delete the disputed passages from her book in any future printing.
Furthermore, she would have been awarded full compensation, i.e., the return of all funds paid to Sarah Shapiro as part of the lower court’s judgment. That did not happen, and it is an important point that is blatantly missing in your article.
Sha’arei Tikva