Deception is permitted
Unfortunately, Edward Stern (“Grand mufti’s falsehoods are revealing,” Letters, WJW, Nov. 5) is not correct about the grand mufti being condemned to torment and ignominy for his false statements about our Jewish Temples or any other falsehoods against Jews and Israel. In fact, the religion of peace actually allows the practice of Al-teqiyya or lying, especially to infidels, to further the cause of Islam. This is a well-established tenet of the religion and a good reason to suspect anything the Muslims say about Israel or anything else for that matter, like the Iran deal.
Candidates’ remarks regarding Israel worrisome
The responses elicited in the conversations both with Donna Edwards and Chris Van Hollen (“Van Hollen, Edwards, talk Middle East,” WJW, Nov. 5) give little comfort to Maryland voters concerned about the security of Israel. While I have been aware of blatant anti-Israel bias of Edwards ever since she came into office, I would have hoped that Van Hollen would not have a similar agenda. With both [candidates for Senate] supporting enthusiastically the flawed Iran deal and now stating their views on Israel and the peace process, I have become convinced that no matter who the Republican candidate is, I, as a registered Democrat for the last 53 years, will vote for that individual if he or she favors Israel, no matter how objectionable that candidate may be otherwise.
WJC acts as Jewish parliament
Having read Rabbi Jack Luxemburg’s very excellent article on the 37th Zionist Congress (“Why the World Zionist Congress still matters,” Voices, WJW, Oct. 29), let me add a Zionist shekel. In a sense, the Congress acts as a Jewish parliament, addressing issues of concern and contention among the various political, religious and organizational streams of the Jewish prism. There is yelling, screaming, name-calling during debates of issues as diverse as LGBT rights in Israel, access to the Kotel, religious pluralism in Israel, or management of settlements. Sometimes one side or another will spark fierce debate on one issue, primarily to delay or avoid a second, unrelated issue. For those of us who attend from outside Israel, it is a chance to feel like we contribute to Jewish life and thought, inside Israel and beyond.
This one was subdued compared to those I have attended in the past. But it always ends with the singing of Hatikvah, with feelings of good will among the participants for one another, even those who called each other vile names. Next year in Jerusalem.