September 14, 2017: New Page

Regarding 'PM: New era of ties between Israel and Latin America' (September 12), I am delighted that Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and his wife, Sara, have undertaken a trip to South America.

Letters (photo credit: REUTERS)
(photo credit: REUTERS)
New page
Regarding “PM: New era of ties between Israel and Latin America” (September 12), I am delighted that Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and his wife, Sara, have undertaken a trip to South America.
Latin America has long been fertile ground for Arab propaganda.
Arabs have besmirched Israel’s name and have made Latin America politically hostile, whereas it could be a region that supports Israel. We could have trade. Those countries could encourage tourism to the Holy Land. The story of Simon Bolivar, the Latin American revolutionary, should be taught to Israeli schoolchildren.
Look how long ago Iran was involved in manipulating Argentina – it was a sure sign that Tehran intended to dominate Latin America, and this for sure should not be permitted. Latin America should be as aware of this as Israel is.
Netanyahu’s visit is a new page in history for Israel and Latin America.
Capital C
At the outset, let me state that I believe Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu should honor the Western Wall agreement. However, I must admit that my support wavers every time Conservative, Reform or other proponents abroad disrespect Israel’s sovereignty as an independent state (“Conservative rabbis, lay leaders demand that prime minister honor Western Wall agreement,” September 12).
Their demand is insulting to every single Israeli. You may request that Israel consider a point of view, but to phrase that request in the form of a demand is chutzpah with a capital C.
Until such time as these leaders treat Israel with the respect it is entitled to, we here in Israel could choose to ignore their demands.
Beit Shemesh
I was raised in Conservative Judaism. I was taught that Reform Judaism did not believe that the Torah was given to Moses, but Conservative Judaism did, although it was trying to make changes that would make our religion more reachable. My husband wrote in his final paper at Hebrew University that Reform Judaism related only to now, Conservative Judaism only to now and the past, and Orthodox Judaism to now and the past, but also the future.
I have since become Sabbath- observant and realize the truth in what my husband wrote, but on the other hand, I have a problem with many things in Orthodox Judaism and cannot see how if, God forbid, something terrible happened anywhere in the world, we in Israel would only accept people who are descendants of Jewish mothers.
Not strange at all Regarding Caroline B. Glick’s “The State Department’s strange obsession” (Our World, September 12), it is neither strange nor new. The people there have been trying to undo their failure of 1948 ever since, presidential policy notwithstanding.
Three related items
In your September 8 edition, there were three items, all of them related: “Talking cease-fire and Palestinian unity with a Hamas founder” (Frontlines), “Six ways to thwart a terrorist attack” (Observations) and “Ending punitive demolitions” (Observations).
In the first, Hassan Yousef makes a big deal about a 10-year cease-fire by Hamas in exchange for a complete opening of the Gaza Strip to the world. In the second, Lior Ackerman examines how Europe and others can cope with the rise of Islamic terrorism.
In the third, Jessica Montell bemoans the destruction of the homes of terrorists, a law introduced by the British Mandatory government and which seems to be working.
A 10-year cease-fire figures importantly in Muslim ideology.
Why a cease-fire and not a peace treaty? Why limit the continuation of hostilities rather than end them? Mohammed came up against much opposition when he was establishing Islam as a religion and made a 10-year cease-fire with the Quraysh tribe known as the Treaty of Hudaybiyya.
Two years later and having become stronger, he attacked and massacred the Quraysh. One often hears Muslim mobs demonstrating against Jews by chanting “Remember Quraysh!” as a way of warning them what awaits them.
Lior Ackerman suggests ways of thwarting terrorism in Europe.
I have a simple suggestion. Terrorism is not warfare and should not be governed by the Hague Convention, which ties the hands of decent people. This terrorism is a desire to kill for the sake of killing infidels and to strike terror into the heart of decent, law-abiding citizens. My suggestion is to fight fire with fire and deport the whole extended family of the terrorist back to their country of origin – together with the imam of the local mosque.
Jessica Montell is one of those liberals who came to Israel with an ideology to devote their lives to our enemies. Arabs good, Jews bad. I would like to change slightly her opening remarks.
She wrote: “If your son didn’t come home from school and you heard he was arrested, whom can you call?” I would have written: “If your son didn’t come home from school and you heard he had been killed on a bus that overturned after the driver swerved because a Palestinian boy just released from detention had thrown a stone, who can you call?”
Unasked questions
Reporter Adam Rasgon profiled Hassan Yousef, a founder of Hamas (“Talking cease-fire and Palestinian unity with a Hamas founder,” Frontlines, September 8).
Mr. Rasgon does not ask for Yousef’s publicly available criminal record and forgets to remind readers that he directs an organization that engages in first-degree murder. Instead, he chooses to portray him as a jolly family man who endured prison as “his second home,” and how he was “pleased to return home to his family.” He also does not challenge Yousef’s fabrication that Hamas, in Rasgon’s words, “is ready to lay its weapons down for a long time if Israel lifts its closure on the Gaza Strip.”
Why does Mr. Rasgon picture the current naval restrictions as “closure”? Why does he not mention that land crossings remain completely open? Why does he not challenge Yousef’s use of the term “cease-fire” since the Arabic terms for cease-fire are hudna, tahadia and hudaybiyya, each of which means continued war after a respite for rearmament.
He accepts Yousef’s statement that since 2014, “we have not been firing rockets into Israel....”
Does he not know that Hamas maintains a tight grip over the Gaza Strip and that no attacks on Israel from there can occur without Hamas’s consent? And why does he not ask Yousef about the fact that Hamas spent the summer training thousands of children in the use of weapons? He also writes: “The IDF...
believes that [Hamas] is building a significant number of tunnels that could be used to launch cross-border attacks from Gaza in a future war.” Why does he only see this as a belief? Perhaps Mr. Rasgon’s next assignment should be to profile people murdered by Yousef’s underlings.
Adam Rasgon responds: I believe I provided ample and sufficient context for Mr.
Yousef’s statement regarding a cease-fire. I mentioned that previous cease-fires had failed.
Moreover, I also stated clearly that while Hamas has not been blamed for firing a rocket at Israel since Operation Protective Edge in 2014, it has encouraged stabbing, shooting and car-ramming attacks against Israelis and is believed to be building tunnels in order to wage attacks against Israelis.