Socialist Jews? Israel was founded by them
Stanley Orman deplores how “the Democratic party drifts ever more socialist” (Letters, Nov. 21). This remark discloses a profound ignorance of modern Jewish history.
Under the rubric of Labor Zionism, Democratic socialism was the governing ethos of the founders of the Jewish state (Ben-Gurion, Meir, Peres, et al.). And it succeeded marvelously, enacting a modern “miracle in the desert.”
Bottom line: This attack on democratic socialism — of the type espoused by Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) and Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-N.Y.) — is an attack on the pedigree of the Jewish state and, as such, anti-Zionist, anti-Israel and, thus, according to the Zionist Organization of America, anti-Semitic.
Jews who are proud Americans and lovers of the Jewish state affirm that what is good (policy) for Israel should be considered as good for America.
Let’s explore that consideration: The State of Israel has single–payer universal health care. This is not surprising considering that Jewish religious law regards health care as a right rather than as a privilege or a commodity. Furthermore, despite an ever-present terrorist threat, Israel has quite strict gun control laws. Last but not least, if an Israeli prime minister can be indicted, than an American president can be impeached.
The power of ‘the’
In her well-researched article “Dwelling on legal positions doesn’t advance peace” (Voices, Nov. 21), Sarah Stern refers, inter alia, to UN Resolution 242, which was the subject of multiple interpretations and endless negotiations because of the article “the.” The resolution called for “withdrawal from territories,” not “withdrawal from the territories.”
Israel’s late, erudite foreign minister Abba Eban put it best: He said, in the Middle East you can read 242 “from right to left or left to right.”
The writer is a senior analyst for the Middle East Media Research Institute.
The charge covers expenses, not survivors
Regarding Fred Kahn’s “Don’t charge to hear survivors” (Letters, Nov. 14): The U.S. Holocaust Memorial Museum’s Next Generation Group recently held a fundraising event honoring Holocaust survivors. A charge of $85 was assessed to cover expenses. We are thrilled that so many young professionals want to learn about survivors’ experiences and share the museum’s commitment to ensuring future generations will have an opportunity to learn about this history.
The group’s efforts help us bring survivor testimony to audiences in Washington, around the country and the globe through our many educational programs, all of which are free. Our First Person program featuring onstage interviews with Holocaust survivors will begin again this spring, and we welcome area residents and museum visitors, especially students, to attend one of these moving programs. Some First Person programs are also streamed online and can be watched live and on demand from anywhere.
Director, Survivor Affairs
U.S. Holocaust Memorial Museum
Presumably in the interests of space, the WJW condensed my letter.
Here are the parts left out:
Under the rubric of Labor Zionism, Democratic socialism was the governing ethos of the Founders of the Jewish State (Ben-Gurion, Meir, Peres, et al.). And it succeeded marvelously, enacting a modern “miracle in the desert.” Until it was hijacked by Bibi Netanyahu and his crony capitalism, whose mishegas has resulted in Israel currently having an income inequality gap surpassing that of the U.S., while also experiencing a massive emigration rate as the best and the brightest sabras seek better economic opportunity abroad, including Germany. And this carnage (as President Trump might say) has now been capped off by the recently passed nation- state bill, the ethno-nationalist bent of which would make American alt-right luminary Richard Spencer kvell.
Furthermore, despite an ever-present terrorist threat, Israel has quite strict gun control laws. These include not only limiting individuals to owning only a single weapon, but also capping the number of bullets one can possess at any one time at 50; and the latter may only be purchased at government-regulated shooting ranges, at which location the sale of each bullet is recorded.