Letters, May 16, 2018


For shame, Rosenstein, for shame
I was shocked to read that Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein compared President Donald Trump’s remarks after the violent Charlottesville “Unite the Right” march to those of President Abraham Lincoln at the recent ADL leadership summit (“Rosenstein likens boss to Lincoln,” May 10). That march was organized by white supremacist Richard B. Spencer. It was characterized by anti-Semitic chants, mainly “Jews will not replace us,” and “blood and soil,” a nationalist slogan referencing German superiority through its ties to the motherland.

Lincoln was a genuine statesman and his appeal in his first inaugural address to “the better angels of our nature” was delivered to unite a divided nation of which there were obviously many “fine people.” Trump’s concern was to seek political advantage by appealing to his alt-right base, not its “better angels.”

That the president mentioned there are “very fine people on both sides” is not only wrong but laughable. “Very fine people” do not march in white supremacist parades. Shame on you, Rod Rosenstein.
Alexandria, Va.

Rosenstein in an enigmatic position
Unless Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein has walled himself off from all of President Donald Trump’s divisive, demagogic rhetoric of the past years, he cannot possibly believe that this president is like Abraham Lincoln, who urged us to follow “the better angels of our nature” (“Rosenstein likens boss to Lincoln,” May 10). On the other hand, Rosenstein’s presence at the Department of Justice is likely the only thing standing between Trump and the firing of special prosecutor Robert Mueller, an action that would hasten our potential slippery slide into fascism.


So Rosenstein must keep Trump at bay. This is an age-old dilemma, which is particularly familiar to those who recall the painful “choices” presented some Jews during the Holocaust: When should people of good will sidle up to propagators of evil in the hope that they may be able to limit the harm?
Silver Spring

Palestinians need to go beyond removing Abbas
For the Palestinians to have peace with Israel, they need to go beyond just removing Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas (“Time to move beyond Abbas,” May 10). The Palestinians need to implement the 1993 Oslo Accords, which call for the removal of the 26 clauses in the Palestinian charter that deny the State of Israel the right to exist.

This profound approach to Israeli-Palestinian peace earned the Nobel Peace Prize long ago. It’s time for the Palestinians to make good on their promise.
Silver Spring

Most critics have no right to complain
Ben Krull has it backwards (“Israel and China: bait and switch). One should first criticize the egregious acts of oppression and killing by others before one criticizes friends and family in Israel, not the other way around.

Why criticize Israel at all? America has killed and conquered far more than Israel ever has. It is hypocritical to hold Israel to a higher standard than applied to everyone else.

The critics pay lip service to the threats Israel faces and don’t really identify with the Israeli as a person or the Israel Defense Forces as soldiers. What would the critics do if a hundred unarmed Nazis were pounding on their door demanding entry to evict and kill them and their families? That is what the IDF faces at the border, where many Gazans have weapons.

I am not an apologist for the so-called occupation. I support the right of Jews to live, work and pray from the Jordan to the Mediterranean. Why not? Israel’s critics support those rights for the Palestinians.

Every Jew has the right to focus on Israel. However, those not facing the threats, like Krull and Natalie Portman, have no right to join the chorus of critics. Face down the rock throwers and terrorists before criticizing.
Silver Spring

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  1. If the hard-right ZOA/LIKUD-defined “security” of Israel (= no two-state solution) is so very important to Farber that it trumps (sic) all other considerations- including morality and justice- then let him show some integrity and walk the walk and not just talk the talk: he should make aliyah. There are EL AL flights daily.


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