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Deteriorating Situation (I)

Re “It’s Bad and Getting Worse” (editorial, March 27):

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It is indeed likely that the fissure between President Obama and Prime Minister Netanyahu (and by extension Israel) is going to get even worse.

However, the real scandal is that there are some Jewish organizations like J Street – which putatively but falsely self-identifies as pro-Israel – and some leaders of the Conservative and Reform streams of Judaism who are clamoring to jump on the bash-Israel bandwagon, so intent are they to “punish” Israelis for their temerity in re-electing Netanyahu.

Fay Dicker
Lakewood, NJ

 

Deteriorating Situation (II)

As you noted in “It’s Bad and Getting Worse,” with “the instability in Syria, Iraq, Lebanon and Libya; the growing threat posed by ISIS; Israel’s experience with Gaza being used as a launching pad for Palestinian terror; and the spread of Iran’s reach as a supporter of terrorism and its looming emergence as a nuclear power, the notion of a genuine political agreement at this time was laughable – and, for Israel, probably suicidal.”

In light of the above, while reading the horrific reports on the German pilot Andreas Lubitz’s deliberate action in flying his plane into the French Alps, murdering 150 people, I was struck by the following analogy:

Just as Lubitz ignored standard policy, locked the cockpit door, took over the controls himself, pulled the switch that would change the altitude on the plane to the dangerous flying level of 100 feet, ignored the pilot’s pounding on the door and demands that he open up and finally the screams of the passengers, so has Obama acted in his presidency.

If he continues to block out Congress, his military advisers, and the pleas of the American people, we are doomed to crash.

We can only hope that Senator Schumer, who will be taking over as minority leader of the Senate, will think more about the fate of the nation than his own personal power and have the moral courage to lead his colleagues in overriding Obama’s threatened veto of the Corker-Menendez Senate bill.

That would at least open the door and allow the people to take some control away from the now out-of-control pilot president.

Helen Freedman
Executive Director
Americans for a Safe Israel/AFSI

 

Deteriorating Situation (III)

In “It’s Bad and Getting Worse” you correctly pointed out that Prime Minister Netanyahu’s skepticism regarding Palestinian statehood is based on the current chaotic situation in the Middle East, including “the growing threat posed by ISIS” and “Israel’s experience with Gaza being used as a launching pad for Palestinian terror.”

There is an additional important factor: Israel’s experience in Lebanon. For years, the international community and the Israeli left claimed that if Israel withdrew from its buffer zone in southern Lebanon, there would be peace between the two countries.

In 2000, then-Prime Minister Ehud Barak did as the left proposed, and unilaterally withdrew all Israeli forces from southern Lebanon. Did that bring peace? No; it had the opposite effect. By 2006, Hizbullah terrorists in southern Lebanon had amassed an arsenal of 13,000 rockets and used them to deadly effect against Israel in the 2006 war.

But that 13,000 is peanuts compared to the situation today. The Wall Street Journal reported last year that Hizbullah now has “around 100,000 rockets” in southern Lebanon, aimed at Israel. It is only a matter of time before Hizbullah uses them. Thus, as in Lebanon and as in Gaza, Israel has learned that surrendering territory does not lead to peace but instead emboldens the terrorists.

Israel has every reason to expect that permitting the creation of a Palestinian state in Judea-Samaria will lead to similar consequences.

Moshe Phillips, President
Benyamin Korn, Chairman
Religious Zionists of America
Philadelphia

 

Diminished Standing (I)

Senior officials have been dropping not-so-subtle hints that the U.S. might not veto a UN Security Council resolution recognizing a Palestinian state beyond the 1949 Armistice Line. That would represent a total repudiation of UNSC 242, which called for negotiations leading to “secure and recognized borders.” It would be a step not toward peace but towards war.

Hopes for resolution of the Arab-Israel conflict have always foundered on the Palestinians’ total rejection of the legitimacy of a sovereign Jewish state in the Middle East and their adamant refusal to abandon “right of return” claims for actual 1948 war refugees and their by now multi-generational descendants.

Unilateral concessions by Israel never have, and never will, alter that reality.

Proposed UN recognition would reward such intransigence, excuse Palestinian Authority-sanctioned terrorism, and ignore the despotic nature of that regime. It would embolden Hamas, Hizbullah, Iran, and other assorted jihadist gangs to intensify their aggressive stand against Israel.

Moreover, the U.S. would also pay a bitter price in the form of greatly diminished, if not totally destroyed, trust abroad in U.S. assurances.

Richard D. Wilkins
Syracuse, NY

 

Diminished Standing (II)

When President Obama came into office in January 2009,one of his first public statements was that the U. S. was not an exceptional nation but one equal to others.

After six years of the Obama presidency, the U. S. is not only not equal to others but actually, as recent events have shown, subservient to Syria, Russia, and Iran.

Republican voters have noted what has occurred and hopefully Democrats will follow as the U. S. continues to sink further in international esteem.

Nelson Marans
Silver Spring, MD

 

Diminished Standing (III)

I am sorry to say that I supported the president’s election in 2008. I now strongly feel that he is an embarrassment to his office and perhaps the worst president in our history.

I do not say this merely because I oppose many of his domestic and foreign policies. Rather, I perceive that under his “leadership” he has severely compromised the status, respect, and standing of the U.S. around the world. He has betrayed our allies and “reached out” to our enemies. The decline of international American respect, power, and influence has opened a vacuum that is being filled by savage terrorist entities. This has greatly increased the danger to American national security.

He has compromised the relationship between the executive branch and the Congress and ignored the question of the constitutionality of several of his initiatives.

He has shown little ability to work harmoniously and constructively with his political opponents, resorting to a hostile, childlike petulance and finger pointing. He is against compromise, holding rigidly to the view that his views (only) are correct. He fails to perceive the many contradictions in his assertions.

I hope that during his remaining time in office he will come to an understanding of his ineffectiveness.

I plan to share my thoughts with my legislative representatives on the federal, state, and local levels. I urge all who feel the same to do so as well.

Jerrold Terdiman, MD
Woodcliff Lake, NJ

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