September 7, 2017: Watch the western

“When you have to shoot, shoot. Don’t talk.”

Letters (photo credit: REUTERS)
(photo credit: REUTERS)
Watch the western It is rather surprising and shocking to hear and read daily about North Korea turning a deaf ear and blind eye to all the warnings issued by the United States (“Haley at UN: North Korea is ‘begging for war,’” September 5).
A lesson should be learned by watching the western The Good, the Bad and the Ugly, where actor Eli Wallach’s character says: “When you have to shoot, shoot. Don’t talk.”
Chump change
With regard to “Bennett pledges $1 million in aid for Houston Jewish communities” (September 5), it might be the politically correct thing for Education Minister Naftali Bennett to do, but come on! We are not dealing with a poor community or poor country. It would take five minutes to have a whip-round among wealthy Jews in Houston and the US to raise this money.
Offensive photo
I almost choked on my morning cup of tea when I saw the picture illustrating your article “Extra law enforcement ordered to curb prostitution at strip clubs” (September 5).
Were you trying your best to offend religious readers? Were you hoping against hope to infuriate those women – and for that matter, those men – who find such pictures dehumanizing and humiliating to women? Leave such pictures to pornographic websites, where they belong.
Beit Shemesh
Then and now
Regarding “Conservative Judaism in Israel: Then and now” (Comment & Features, September 5), as one who grew up in Conservative Judaism in the 1950s and early ’60s, the move leftward, both religiously and politically, has been astounding.
Just a simple observation: Where the ultra-Orthodox are always ready to put up another fence and never say that perhaps this custom or this tradition is no longer applicable to the age we live in, Conservative Jews continue to find “halachic” reasons to just say yes, starting not from the premise of what the Torah says, but from the premise that we want to make such-and-such a change, so let’s find something in the Torah that we can hang our hats on. (And how many Conservative congregants even care what their rabbi has to say?) There is no fence they are not willing to tear down. Look at the numbers. While the children of Conservative Jews are intermarrying with no shame, the Orthodox who imbue their children with Jewish learning from an early age and make it a central part of their lives are keeping their children and multiplying – and they do this without redefining Jewish conversion to increase their numbers.
There are many serious Conservative rabbis, but look at their parking lots and tell me how many of the congregants are serious and educated, and come to synagogue on a daily basis and Shabbat, not only for joyous occasions and two major holidays.
The only way both sides can come closer is for Conservative Jews to start having a serious educational system for their children.
About Mongolia
Reading “Mongolia and the Jews” (Comment & Features, September 5) was very pleasant, but there were a couple of mistakes.
My city is Ulaanbaatar, not Ulan Bataar. It means red hero, not black hero.
Mongols, especially Evangelical Christians, pray for peace of Jerusalem, blessing Israel. About 2% of those living in Mongolia are Christians; they love Israel no matter what.
I, personally, am writing a lot of positive things about Israel and its history, news and views.
Mongolians are very interested in Israel and its development.
Cold, hard look
Shmuley Boteach (“The disappearing kippot of European Jewry,” No Holds Barred, September 5) wants to maintain a thriving Jewish presence in Europe, but this would require an unsentimental look at the factors that could derail such a worthy goal.
There is, of course, the antisemitism of native Europeans, which is seldom expressed as outright violence, but often sublimated as sympathy for the Palestinians. In addition, add in the flood of Muslim migrants, many of whom hail from cultures that have social attitudes toward women, gays, free speech and religious minorities that are far to the right of what would be acceptable in the West. Should their numbers exceed a certain threshold, it would be logical to assume that Jews, as well as others, would come under similar pressures that were experienced by minorities in the Muslim countries the migrants fled.
Despite these dangers, most European Jews have not turned to anti-immigrant parties. Some reasons are moral: Judaism teaches us to love the stranger.
Others are experiential: Jews identify with refugees. The net effect is that Jews are undermining their own well-being in order to appease their conscience.
It would be one thing if the European governments were taking time to vet the refugees for extremism, selecting only the truly decent and persecuted. But they are not. Instead, they have thrown their doors open to any and all from some of the worst places on Earth. It is a kind of cultural suicide driven by the best “road to hell” intentions.
And let’s face it, George Soros is a major enabler.
Many of the eastern European governments, like that of Hungary, want none of it. Neither do savvy Israelis like Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu. It’s time to get real and look out for ourselves.
Charleston, South Carolina
Shmuley Boteach’s eloquent column begs us not to abandon European Jews – although he surely knows that our gates are always wide open to secure the well-being of any Jew who wants to settle here. This pertains to all Jews abroad who are adversely affected and weakened by the dangerous, twin-headed dragon of assimilation and intermarriage, such as exists in Boteach’s own area.
The pertinent American adage “Speak for yourself, John” especially applies now to Shmuley.
Kotel crescendo
The front-page article “Women of the Wall subjected to body searches despite High Court order” (August 24) brought to a crescendo the abominations to which the Women of the Wall are subjected by order of Rabbi Shmuel Rabinowitz.
Three questions:
1. When will Rabbi Rabinowitz be prosecuted for his illegal act in disregarding a High Court order?
2. Why is a scofflaw allowed to continue as “rabbi of the Western Wall and holy sites”?
3. How do you justify giving comfort to Rabbi Rabinowitz by publishing his columns every Friday in The Jerusalem Post Magazine?
Beit Zayit