September 13: Open window

For all practical purposes, the Syrian leader has lost the Golan forever.

Letters 370 (photo credit: REUTERS/Handout )
Letters 370
(photo credit: REUTERS/Handout )
Open window
Sir, – In his analysis “The Syrian deal: More bad than good for Israel” (September 11), Herb Keinon seems to have overlooked a very positive outcome for the whole fiasco regarding a response to the use of chemical weapons in Syria: In the foreseeable future no sane person can expect Israel to come down from the Golan Heights and turn the territory over to the madman Bashar Assad, even in the framework of a so-called peace agreement.
For all practical purposes, the Syrian leader has lost the Golan forever. No Israeli government would dare talk to him about bringing his murderous regime closer to the heart of our country.
Now would be the perfect time to sponsor settlement of the Golan and preserve this part of our country for future generations. We have a window of opportunity that should not be missed.
P. YONAH Shoham
Sir, – It is highly commendable of the United States to be determined to protect the Syrian population against further chemical weapons attacks by the Assad regime. But who are the Americans to serve as the moral apostles and conscience of mankind? They had no qualms about being the first to use atomic weapons against an enemy in wartime. Nor did they show any pity when using napalm in Vietnam during that country’s civil war.
Nowadays, the US and Russia are in a position to totally eradicate smallpox by destroying their sizable stockpiles. Instead, they hide behind the ludicrous excuse that they do not want to be the first people to deliberately bring the extinction of a living species and wish to study their remaining smallpox reserves for research purposes.
Against whom are these stockpiles aimed? If America would temper its horror at other people’s war crimes with remorse about its own, its case against Assad might be more persuasive.
Negative values
Sir, – Here are some facts not mentioned in “Tensions rise in Jerusalem neighborhood over premises for haredi kindergarten” (September 11):
• The Israel Scouts were given their building in the Ramot 02 neighborhood by the municipality after they were driven out of their original premises of 20 years in Ramot 01. The method used to drive them out was arson – committed three times.
• A day before Rosh Hashana the scouts’ building in Ramot 02 was broken into, their furniture and equipment was thrown into the yard and a haredi kindergarten was set up without any permission.
Where I come from this is called breaking and entering. Phone calls ensued, reaching Mayor Nir Barkat, who ordered the haredim to evacuate the building immediately.
The children need a kindergarten. We get it.
But the scouts also need a home – and right now this building is their home! We live in a land of laws and protocol, not vandalism and anarchy. If we allow such negative values to rule, what does it say about our society?
CAROL KATZ Jerusalem
Protecting women
Sir, – I love Seth J. Frantzman’s passionate, intelligent and trailblazing Terra Incognita columns. He shows that exposing and analyzing deep societal ills can be refreshing, no matter how sad the wrongs. An added bonus is that a bow tiewearing man consistently and systematically speaks up for non-Caucasians, the socially weak and women (“The preventable murder of Zahira Jijini and her daughters,” September 11).
I hope that someone will pick up at least one of Frantzman’s many creative suggestions for protecting women who need protection.