Concern over anti-Israel claims
Your editorial (“No hoax in Paris,” WJW, Jan.22) expressed appropriate concern about the statements by Turkey’s president and others alleging that Israel was secretly behind the massacre in Paris.
Perhaps of even more concern, however, is when Israel’s next-door neighbors indulge in such wild conspiracy-mongering. Last year, senior officials of the Palestinian Authority repeatedly claimed that Israel was secretly plotting to destroy the Al-Aqsa mosque in Jerusalem. Such lies helped whip up Palestinian hostility toward Israel and undoubtedly contributed to the wave of stabbings and car terrorism against Israelis.
Secretary of State John Kerry said that the Jerusalem synagogue massacre in November was “the pure result of incitement” by Palestinian leaders.
In recent years, senior PA officials have publicly claimed that Israel distributes chocolates laced with mad cow disease in Palestinian areas (the PA’s director of Consumer Protection said that); that Israel infects Palestinian children with AIDS (acceding to the PA’s representative to the United Nations in Geneva); that Israel carried out the 9/11 attacks (PA Radio); that Israel murders Palestinian children in order to harvest their organs (according to the official PA newspaper Al-Hayat Al-Jadida); and that Israel uses naked women to lure intifada youth into police ambushes (Al-Hayat Al-Jadida again).
The policy implications are significant. We all have to ask ourselves: Would it really make sense to give a sovereign state to people who are either crazy enough to believe such things, or cynical enough to make such allegations in order to encourage bombings and stabbings of innocent Israelis?
MOSHE PHILLIPS, president
BENYAMIN KORN, chairman
Religious Zionists of America
Disagrees with Knesset member
With all due respect, Rabbi Lipman’s analysis is deeply flawed (“Working with moderate Muslims to end the Arab-Israeli conflict,” WJW, Jan. 22).
World leaders did not equate 9/11 to terrorism against Israel and will not recognize a relationship between the recent terrorism in France with terrorism against Israel. Europeans saw no relationship with Nazi treatment of Jews and German invasions into their countries. Partly to stay safe and partly out of 1,000 years of inbred anti-Semitism, Europeans saw the Jews at fault for Nazi persecution and Israelis and Jews at fault for Muslim terrorists, while they were innocent victims.
While Arab countries fear ISIS, as Europeans fear radical Islam, their attitudes toward Israel and Jews are unchanged. The enemy of my enemy is not my friend when it comes to Israel. [Egyptian President Abdel Fattah el-] Sisi sees Hamas as an enemy of Egypt, but don’t expect Egypt or any Arab country to “nudge the Palestinians” to make compromises.
Rabbi Lipmans’s descriptions of the Israeli Left and the Right are accurate. The Left unrealistically expects peace to emanate from talks with Abbas. The Right wants to manage the conflict. However, the Yesh Atid approach is equally flawed. It expects support from despots and dictators, whose Islamic views are either hostile to Jews and Israel or who fear terrorism by their extremists. They are not friends of Jews or Israel.
Relying on the world leaders or moderate Arabs is a fool’s errand.
People should consider that there is no solution. Maybe managing the conflict is the best that can be done. We managed the conflict with the Soviet Union — until it collapsed. The Israeli-Palestinian conflict, based on land claims and religion, may have no solution now or in the future.
Thanks so much for the excellent front page article (“Far-flung: Small-town communities flourish on their own terms,” WJW, Jan. 22) on the small-town Jewish communities.
We grew up in the small towns of Eastern Pennsylvania, where it was a struggle to find a minyan and kosher food.
It is also a struggle in many small communities like Pinellas County, Fla., where the Jewish community is 1 percent of the population. The glory is in the struggle.
RABBI STUART L. BERMAN,
Pinellas County, Fla.