October 31: Height of chutzpah

Mr. Rivlin, you have brought shame on yourself and on the Knesset. Hopefully, this will be the last time you have the opportunity of misusing your honored position as speaker for your own political purposes.

Letters 370 (photo credit: REUTERS/Handout )
Letters 370
(photo credit: REUTERS/Handout )
Height of chutzpah
Sir, – Reuven Rivlin (“Rivlin at Rabin memorial: Oslo is dead,” October 29) deserves a prize for the most tasteless and rude behavior of any Knesset speaker.
To use his position as an excuse for turning the session dedicated to the memory of Yitzhak Rabin into a diatribe against Rabin’s willingness to make peace, demonstrating at intolerable length how absolutely wrong Rabin was, is the height of chutzpah.
What made Rivlin think that this was an appropriate setting for such a lecture? Tact was never his strong point but this really went beyond the bounds of appropriate parliamentary behavior.
Mr. Rivlin, you have brought shame on yourself and on the Knesset. Hopefully, this will be the last time you have the opportunity of misusing your honored position as speaker for your own political purposes.
Playing games
Sir, – With regard to “Government to provide ‘full protection’ within 7 km. of Gaza at cost of NIS 270m.” (October 29), when will our leaders stop playing games by applying band aids against the terror raining down on us in the South? Let’s stop all the talk about government outlays for increased defense. Isn’t it time to go in and destroy Hamas once and for all? Is there a nation on this planet that wouldn’t understand our intentions?
Sir, – Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu says the decision to fortify schools and public buildings “will provide security for residents of the South.” But the plan does little, if anything, for people who are caught in cars, streets or fields at the time of a rocket attack.
Israel’s citizens must be protected to the fullest extent possible.
Unfortunately, the latest plan is an insufficient response. The best protection for our citizens is to stop future attacks before they occur.
The scope of the recent rocket barrage from the Gaza Strip – one of the most severe in recent years – shows that Hamas no longer feels obliged to limit its actions.
Under internationally accepted laws of war, a country has the right to use the level of force necessary not only to respond to attacks, but to alleviate the threat of further attacks.
Failure to respond quickly and with sufficient force (not just taking out one or two rocket crews) is an open invitation to even more rockets in the future.
EFRAIM A. COHEN Zichron Ya’acov
Sir, – “I think that this is what residents of the South have been hoping for, they have been calling for it for a long time,” said Prime Minister Netanyahu.
No, Mr. Prime Minister. What is more likely is that the residents of the South and elsewhere have been hoping that their government would authorize action against those terrorizing them, action that once and for all destroys these enemies, as any self-respecting government would do. The reason the attacks are much greater is because we have allowed our enemies to become more powerful.
Netanyahu asked his Likud central committee members to approve his venture with Foreign Minister Avigdor Liberman’s Yisrael Beytenu party on the grounds that it “leaves Likud as an independent party that will continue in its path protecting Israeli security, the Land of Israel and Jewish tradition” (“PM to Likud c’tee members: Joint list will strengthen us,” October 29). If the security mentioned above is what we can look forward to, we are in for an even rougher time than at present, with our enemies secure in the knowledge that after years of killing us, we don’t fight to win, only to contain, and that any time they need a ceasefire to ready themselves for the next attack, we will accommodate them.
Likudniks need to seriously reconsider their options.
EDITH OGNALL Netanya Changing its spots
Sir, – Jeff Barak’s latest column (“Is Likud abandoning Jabotinsky?,” Reality Check, October 29) is really a bit frightening. Right-wing or not, the Likud has always believed in democracy, but with this latest step, engaging with Avigdor Liberman, one has to wonder whether Jabotinsky is turning over in his grave.
Like it or not, the Liberman-type of democracy is a bit too Russian for many (if not most) Likudniks.
I fully agree with Barak when he states that the Likud is now in danger of losing many of its adherents. Instead of gaining significant numbers of new voters, the Likud is in very real danger of losing many of those it cherishes most because of this step.
Does the leopard change its spots? Not too likely, many Likudniks will say before looking elsewhere.
That’s a very real danger for the Likud.
Sir, – Jeff Barak should realize that saying Prime Minister Netanyahu does not care a damn as to what happens to the Likud is disgusting while being patently untrue.
When Ariel Sharon broke away from the Likud, Netanyahu clearly revealed his own loyalty to the party even though it diminished his chances of becoming prime minister at the time.
Sir, – Reading Jeff Barak’s farre-moved- from-reality check, one can imagine him snarling, gnashing his teeth and snapping his pencils as he struggles for that ever-more vituperative word to deride our prime minister.
Barak’s usual and predictable anti-Netanyahu rhetoric is now sadly ritualistic, repetitive and boring. Is it too much to ask him to turn his considerable talent to matters conducive to promoting unity among Israelis rather than this continual, unwelcome, unnecessary and unwanted Bibi-bashing?
DAVID S. ADDLEMAN Mevaseret Zion
Mine’s more kosher
Sir, – In “Ethical nation or political corruption” (Elections 2013, October 29), Shalom Hammer takes to task a rabbi for derogatory remarks about the kashrut adherence of a restaurant under the supervision of Chug Hatam Sofer of Bnei Brak.
It seems to me that ethical people should follow the law.
The law requires a certificate from the local rabbinate in order for a restaurant to present itself as being kosher. The restaurant in question was not kosher according to the law despite the fact that Hammer may not have eaten non-kosher food.
What the writer refers to as the “legitimate organization” in Bnei Brak has no legal right to grant a kashrut certificate unless the restaurant has local certification.
So the restaurant and the organization are law-breakers. I don’t think people who care about kashrut and ethics should be patronizing such a restaurant.
Hammer should also be careful in characterizing as respectable an organization about which he apparently knows very little. Perhaps he confused it with the respectable organization known as Hatam Sofer Petah Tikva.
It is also beneath him to ascribe monetary incentive as the reason for the actions of the local rabbinate. Its members do not get their salaries from kashrut license fees.
TZVI MEIR Jerusalem
Sir, – My Freezee syrup is under the supervision of Chug Hatam Sofer of Bnei Brak. When I visited its offices and mentioned the article, I asked if it also gave the certification to McDonald’s since the photo accompanying the article was of a McDonald’s restaurant.
The staff explained that they would never oversee the kashrut of a restaurant in a chain that has non-kosher branches. So I was misled by the picture.
Hammer was careful not to mention the name of the restaurant where he ate, but by placing that photo with this article, The Jerusalem Post may have caused problems.
JOE OFFENBACHER Hashmonaim The writer is CEO of Brisk Beverages, Ltd.