Romney Versus Obama
In refreshing contrast to President Obama’s recent and belated (and no doubt temporary) change of course in his Mideast policy, it seems clear we can expect a decidedly pro-Israel policy from Mitt Romney from the moment he takes office (“Romney Triumph Signals Return to Traditional GOP Foreign Policy Approach,” front page news story, April 20).
In fact, it was not too long ago that Romney said it would be inappropriate for an American president to make decisions about the Middle East without consulting the Israeli prime minister, for which he was roundly criticized.
Arthur Bergman (Via E-Mail)
Bibi And Hebron (I)
Thank you for publicizing Prime Minister Netanyahu’s earlier statements on Hebron and showing how they differ from his current attitude (“The Hebron Expulsion,” editorial, April 20).
Not that anyone should be surprised. Despite his stated commitment to give his all to protect the Jewish interests in the oldest Jewish city in the world, he gave away more of it in his first term as prime minister than any other Israeli prime minister before or since.
And now he is acquiescing to the turnover of buildings there to Arabs – even buildings owned by Jews. How can there be any question about who owns Beit HaMachpela when an Arab has been sentenced to death for selling the property to the Jew claiming ownership? It is a scandal. Things are not looking good for Israel’s future with this kind of leadership.
Yerachmiel Gordon Jerusalem
Bibi And Hebron (II)
Your editorial was justly critical of Benjamin Netanyahu, whose pledges of support for Hebron in 1994 and 1995 belied his current craven capitulation to Ehud Barak’s blatantly political decision to forcibly remove the Jewish occupants of Beit HaMachpela even before the “legitimacy of the purchase” was investigated and verified.
The ultimate betrayal was that this forced evacuation of Jews was carried out just days before Pesach, leaving scant time to find alternative accommodations and despite a mutual agreement to delay the eviction.
Barak’s confession that his decision was primarily based on his anti-settler mindset – “I won’t allow settlers to dictate how the government runs the country” – raises the question of whether the current Israeli government represents all Israelis.
Sadly, Bibi in effect colluded with self-aggrandizing Barak by piously pontificating that “no one is above the law,” thereby relegating his previous Hebron promises null and void.
Fay Dicker Lakewood, NJ
Bibi And Hebron (III)
I will never understand why the Israeli government accepts the claims of Arab ownership, even from those who have valid deeds. Why doesn’t Israel follow the American model of monetary compensation for disputed land rather than land transfers?
No one would dream of saying the U.S. has to return downtown Denver to some Indian tribe. Compensation is another thing, though. That’s what you call nation-building, especially when the “occupied land” was seized in a war the other side began in an attempt to destroy the state of Israel.
Sharon Weissman (Via E-Mail)
Editorial ‘Way Too Kind’
You were way too kind to Hilary Rosen (“Hilary Rosen on Women,” editorial, April 20).
While I can appreciate trying to cast her comments in the best possible light so that your criticism would be all the more compelling, others in the media had no problem slamming her without any qualifiers for her slur of stay-at-home moms.
Perhaps your criticism was more pointed – you were right that it wasn’t quite that simple a matter – but I don’t think you captured the moment, certainly not the political one. Her attitude is representative of elitist feminists who look down their snooty noses at women who live a more traditional lifestyle. Remember Hillary Clinton’s arrogant statement, when Bill was first running for president in 1992, about her decision not to stay home and bake cookies?
Martin Sarles Los Angeles
The Academic Left And Israel
Dr. Richard L. Cravatts (“How the Academic Left Came to Hate Israel,” front page essay, April 20) offered an interesting take on the anti-Zionist/anti-Jewish academic Left.
To my mind, however, that ilk is substantially made up of those who rebelled against the political and perhaps religious orthodoxy of their day and saw academia as an acceptable way out. Israel, as a close ally of the U.S. and a military power in its own right, was natural fodder for individuals desperate to identify with so-called oppressed peoples in underdeveloped parts of the world.
Ellen Klineman (Via E-Mail)
MDA And The Star Of David
Jonathan Feldstein’s carefully nuanced and seemingly fact-filled opinion piece on the Magen David Adom controversy (“Truth, Lies, and Saving Lives,” op-ed, April 2) left me wondering. It’s still not clear to me as to why the Star of David standing alone is no longer MDA’s identifying symbol across the board, and what it was that prompted the change? Was it the agreement with the International Red Cross? Or is there another reason? It really should be a simple question to answer.
Sholom Weber Beersheba, Israel
Koch And Friedman
Ed Koch (“Tom Friedman’s Skewed Vision of Non-Violence,” op-ed, April 20) was rightfully shocked by how Thomas Friedman, a Jew, can support violence against Israelis by calling rock-throwing “peaceful protest” and asked “how would Friedman feel if a child in Israel were to be struck by a stone, perhaps losing an eye … ”
Friedman’s total lack of common sense becomes clearer, and almost comical, when you apply his twisted definition of “peaceful” closer to home.
If the Occupy Wall Street protesters, for example, threw rocks at cops or passersby, would anyone consider that peaceful? The protesters would be arrested immediately.
Would throwing rocks at the columnist or other New York Times employees be acceptable to Friedman as a “peaceful” means of protest? My guess is not.
It’s outrageous that anyone can show more concern for the misguided territorial claims of the Palestinians than for the lives of Israelis (who are constantly being bombarded with rockets). And that such a spurious pretense of compassion can come from a Jew, directed against his own people, only shows how shamefully disgraceful some individuals have become.
Josh Greenberger Brooklyn, NY
Maoz And Wallace
Jason Maoz’s comments on Mike Wallace were right on the mark (Media Monitor, April 20). Wallace was a liberal ambusher of non-liberals. He would delight in throwing high hard ones to the likes of Richard Nixon while serving up marshmallows and softballs to the leftists he so adored and emulated.
As for his “interviews” with and subsequent comments about mass killers like Arafat and Khomeini, they were the work product of a quintessential self-hating Jew who felt the burning desire to disabuse anyone of the notion that he was a “real” Jew. He paved the way, in a distasteful manner, for the Jewish bashers of Israel all around us.
Myron Hecker New City, NY
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