September 18: Judge's Failure

September 18 Judges Fa

Judge's failure Sir, - Re "UN probe alleges Israeli crimes against humanity in Gaza" (September 16): A point which I don't think anybody has raised is that commission head Richard Goldstone, being Jewish and with family in Israel, should have recused himself. In such a position he was open to obvious charges of bias and, as we have seen with Jews in positions of authority throughout the last century, they lean over backwards in order to avoid any such accusation - and so show an opposite bias. One only has to think of Bruno Kreisky, Pierre Mendes-France, Bernard Kuchner and Henry Kissinger. Doesn't the report itself prove this - especially as Goldstone is a brilliant jurist? If it were a simple criminal case with this kind of personal connection, wouldn't he have recused himself? And what about my own human rights, and those of millions of others? Goldstone has empowered the forces of terror and tyranny to continue to threaten them. ARYE BEN DAVID Jerusalem Sir, - This resembles yet another blood libel. How come the Gazans can store lethal weapons in hospitals, schools and private homes without any reprimand or warning of any sort while we here have to take anything the UN gives us without any consideration of eight years of missiles being fired at us in the south? Let's hope that the new year brings just a little bit of justice from the international community. JOYCE KAHN Petah Tikva Bash Israel tour... Sir, - Re "IDF draft dodgers embark on US college speaking tour" (September 15): It is the shame of all Israelis that two citizens who flouted the laws of Israel are allowed to go to the US to speak against our country. Instead of 40 days' detention, they should have been given two years in a military jail, the time they would have served in the IDF. What kind of education can they have received if they are going on a tour to bash Israel? We have enough of that without two Israelis doing it for our enemies. CHAIM GINSBERG Ma'aleh Adumim ...gets under way Sir, - Draft dodgers Maya Wind and Netta Mishly are making a joke of our pain ("The price of survival," Editorial, September 15) - the unbearable pain of Rona Ramon and her children; and also of me as a mother who lost a son in Gaza in a battle against Palestinian terrorists. Also the pain of the nearly 50 percent of Israelis who have lost a son, daughter or family member. Pain? Let us also not forget the terrible pain of parents and siblings whose sons or brothers were taken prisoners or kidnapped, and either never came back or were returned in a body bag. Let us not forget the pain of the Schalit family, whose son was kidnapped more than three years ago by those nice Palestinians those two girls champion. Have Wind and Mishly never learned about loyalty to one's country? If we criticize our government here in Israel, that is allowed. We're a democracy, after all. But abroad? In my opinion, what those girls are doing makes them traitors to their country. Perhaps they'd better stay away. We don't need them here. (JULIA) JUUP SOBELMAN Petah Tikva Sir, - Give it all back and we will live happily ever after - do these two young women really believe that this will bring the peace all of us Israelis crave? After the Gazan reaction to the IDF's withdrawal from Gaza four years ago, on what basis can they expect anything different from a similar retreat from the West Bank? RON BELZER Petah Tikva To the rescue? Sir, - When we read "Ten Israelis mobilize to rescue US woman held captive by Palestinian husband for three years near Tulkarm" (September 17), didn't we all think the same thought: Next - Gilad. M.M. VAN ZUIDEN Jerusalem