October 9: Not so easy

October 9 Not so easy

Not so easy Sir, - As government ministers prepare to approve the swap of hundreds of terrorists for our soldier ("Gov't expected to approve Schalit swap by wide margin, 'Post' finds," October 5), let them also begin preparing their responses to: 1. the families of the tens of Israelis who will be murdered by many of the freed terrorists; 2. the parents of the next soldiers who will be kidnapped in order to free more terrorist prisoners; and 3. other countries whom we have condemned for capitulating to terrorists' demands. Shame on our government for succumbing to populist pressures and choosing the "easy" way out. MAYER BASSAN Jerusalem Normalization Sir, - In "The demons of normalization (September 29), Uriya Shavit quoted historian Bernard Lewis as suggesting that the "triumphant" behavior of Israelis (visiting Jordan) is one of the impediments to normalization. The real problem - as Lewis and Robert Wistrich have been writing for years - is the genocidal anti-Semitism purveyed by the Palestinian Authority and other Arab Muslim governments throughout recent decades. It is part of their culture, and therefore dangerous. Simply, normalization cannot exist in such a climate; or only if one defines it as success in making our Islamic neighbor states Judenrein. Demanding an end to incitement as if it were only a political propaganda weapon that can be turned off is a falsification and trivialization of the real problem. ZVI EYAL Jerusalem It's OK, till we do it Sir, - Further to "Goldstone... so far" (Editorial, October 7): The principle seems to be that everything is allowed until Israel does it - and then it is forbidden. Take the charge of ethnic cleansing of the Palestinians 1947-9. Between 1945-1950, the ethnic Germans of Eastern Europe were forcibly expelled from homes and villages where they had lived for centuries, stripped of everything they could not carry. Thousands died. Prague had been as much a German city as a Czech one, but there are no longer any German communities in Eastern Europe. The only thing that has guaranteed the peace of Europe since WWII is the fact that there is no German demand for a "right of return." We're Hebraizing place names in order "to destroy Palestinian cultural ties to the land"? Almost every city between the Rhine and the Don has two or more names in various languages. Is it Aachen or Aix; Vilnius or Vilno? Seventy years ago, no one had heard of the Polish city called Gdansk; it was Danzig. Kaliningrad is Koenigsberg; the Germans who lived there were forcibly expelled. In the second Battle of Fallujah in the Iraq war, the US Marines destroyed the city using large quantities of phosphorous artillery shells, killing hundreds - and not a Goldstone to be seen. In Occupied Ireland, the British built a wall between the Protestant and Catholic neighborhoods in the Falls Road of occupied Belfast. They called it "The Peace Wall." Eliminating friction between the communities assisted in their ongoing reconciliation. The same was done in occupied Derry. Then the Jews copied them, and wall-building became a crime against humanity. JOSEF GILBOA Jaffa