November 23: Boot camp Knesset

Peres probably felt quite at home at Oxford U. with people yelling at him and interrupting his speech.

letters 88 (photo credit: )
letters 88
(photo credit: )
Boot camp Knesset Sir, - We saw and read about Shimon Peres delivering a speech in Oxford University where he was heckled, and I am sure by British standards, quite intensely ("Peres: Land for peace, not land for rocket fire," November 20). Yet he didn't seem to be too upset. Perhaps his years in the Knesset helped him keep his cool. In fact, he probably felt quite at home there with people yelling at him and interrupting his speech. DAVID AMINOFF Jerusalem Dressed up politics Sir, - What a crazy world we live in. A group of high-spirited Oxford University undergraduates have a party dressed up as Jewish girls, and the whole of the Anglo-Jewish community cries oy gevalt! Racism! Anti-Semitism! ("Oxford investigates anti-Jewish party theme," November 19). Meanwhile, the British government actively promotes and works for a policy that calls for the removal of Jewish settlers in order to reach its goal of creating a Palestinian State - spreading the canard that this is the obstacle to peace. This could be rendered the most blatantly anti-Semitic and racist policy one could pursue, but barely a peep or a squeak from the Anglo-Jewish community. Only when the British government realizes that there is no reason what so ever (other than racism) as to why there should not be a Jewish minority in a putative Palestinian state, just as there is an Arab minority in Israel, will there be any chance for real peace in this part of the world. HELEN ANISFELD Jerusalem Country gone mad Sir, - Has this country gone completely mad? A soldier was sentenced to 21 days in prison for yawning during a speech delivered by his base commander in remembrance of slain prime minister Yitzhak Rabin ("21 days for yawning in Rabin speech," November 13). In the USSR during the Stalin period, people were afraid to stop applauding lest they be accused of disrespect. Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn wrote in The Gulag Archipelago: "For three minutes, four minutes, five minutes, the stormy applause, rising to an ovation continued. But palms were getting sore and raised arms were already aching. And the older people were panting from exhaustion. It was becoming insufferably silly even to those who really adored Stalin. However, who would dare be the first to stop?" Is Israel in 2008 beginning to resemble in some way the USSR of the 1930s? We should all demand that the soldier be released immediately and that the base commander apologize. MLADEN ANDRIJASEVIC Beersheba No tzedek Sir, - What ever happened to tzedek, tzedek tirdof (justice, justice shall you pursue)? Why is Prime Minister Ehud Olmert not indicted with so much evidence against him? Why is it that he will be permitted to do more damage to Israel before he is removed from office by freeing another 250 terrorists who will resume their activities ("Olmert pledges to free 250 Palestinian prisoners," November 18)? Why does Mr. Olmert not demand the immediate safe return of Gilad Schalit? I ask: who is willing to be the next victim of a released terrorist? CHANA GIVON Jerusalem Sir, - Once again Olmert has promised President Mahmoud Abbas that he will release more prisoners as a goodwill gesture, this while we are being bombarded with ever longer range missiles, and while Abbas tells his people that he intends to keep to the path of the shahids (martyrs) and to the path of Yasser Arafat whom he cherishes. Did our people sacrifice themselves to build the Land of Israel in order for egocentric creatures like Olmert, Tzipi Livni and Ehud Barak to relinquish it to our enemies? We have leaders like Moshe Feiglin, just waiting to step in and end the farce, so that once again, we will stand with head held high as proud Jews in our own land. EDITH OGNALL Netanya Green fools Sir, - In a broad definition of "grassroots" Gershon Baskin describes the Green Movement as "composed of hundreds of NGOs, groups working for social change and social justice, supporters of the environment... people who have a wide world-view which focuses on quality of life for all, and has in sight the individual good as well as the collective good..." ("The greening of the political map," November 19). But let's face it, the Green Movement is the new emotional vote getter - sufficient enough, it is calculated, to empower those who want to force Israel's withdrawal to the 1967 borders. High on the agenda will be the resolution of what Baskin terms, the "Israeli-Palestinian conflict and the Israeli-Syrian conflict." For making this sacrificial contribution in the cause of the promised universal Utopia, Israel will have received the false pledge from them that the Jewish identity of the state will be guaranteed. MIRIAM L. GAVARIN Jerusalem Dealing with fear and rage Sir, - When reading Larry Derfner's columns I usually react to his rambling and rumblings on the "peace" process with laughter or amazement ("Clueless in Gaza," November 20). Today, however, my reaction was total outrage. After totally ignoring a half-year of rockets and shelling from Hamas, he states that these resulted in "a few minor injuries and a great deal of fear and rage." How dare he comment on what are "minor" injuries without suffering them himself? How dare he speak of "fear and rage" without subjecting himself and his family to the same daily experience as those that are bombarded by rockets? I did not get much farther into his column because I know who is responsible for the constant rocket attacks and attempted terrorist incursions - it is the Orwellian Left and their spokesmen, such as Derfner, who call Israeli self-defense "over reactions," and Jewish blood "the price of peace" which only encourages our enemies to strengthen their attacks. DAVID STAR Ma'ale Adumim Sir, - I would agree with Larry Derfner to end the Gaza occupation by "letting the people there come and go by sea and air" and by "letting the trucks go through with no more than normal inspection." However, my agreement would carry one stipulation: that Mr. Derfner would be willing to relocate to one of the communities on the Gaza periphery once the policy is implemented. I'm sure he could find a beautiful home at a very, very low price. DAVID JACOBS Efrat