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Letters week of June 14, 2007
Christians Better Friends of Israel Than Some Jews
I once considered "The Moral Majority" a group of scam artists who had nothing to do with spiritual guidance (A Matter of Opinion: "Our Most Unwelcome Ally," May 24).
In latter years, I came to acknowledge that many of them, including the late Rev. Jerry Falwell, are staunch allies of Jews in general and Israel in particular.
Whether they speak in the name of Christian Zionists or of their scripture has no doubt made me change my attitude toward their goals.
Christians -- who we have been taught to fear -- are better protectors of Israel today than certain rabbis who connive with our enemies.
Elio M. Tamman
The Six-Day War: Israelis Won It 'Fair and Square'
This is what I remember about the Six-Day War: I was working in Center City, and every person I spoke to, Jew or gentile, just knew Israel would win. It was inconceivable that the phrase "never again" was just rhetoric.
As American Jews, we believed it without question (Israel & Mideast: "Four Decades Later, War's Bittersweet Legacy Lingers," May 31).
One year later, I made my first and only trip to Israel with my best friend. We were both 19. The mood of the people was ebullient, to say the least.
We prayed at the Western Wall, and were given a brief tour of the Golan Heights. We went to a nightclub in Tel Aviv, where our national anthem was the opening for the show.
We flirted with every guy we met, and when we got to the kibbutz where we were staying for one night, my girlfriend called her parents and told them she wasn't coming back. She was in love with a fiercely loyal Israeli and a fiercely proud country.
Forty years later, Israel is no longer the winner; it's the occupier. Is Jewish spirit so worn down that we all buy into this?
Israel was drawn into war and won it in a whopping six days.
Whatever happened to the phrase "fair and square?"
Arab Rejection of Israel Created Current Situation
Jonathan Tobin's column puts the Six-Day War in perspective (A Matter of Opinion: "The Heavy Burden of Victory," May 31).
He might have gone on to remind his readers that in November of 1967, the Arab League, meeting in Khartoum, issued its famous trilogy: "No recognition, no negotiation and no peace."
From that horrendous decision came many aspects of the current situation.
To requote Abba Eban's famous remark: "The Palestinians never miss an opportunity to miss an opportunity!"
Time of the Essence, as Palestinians Foster Hate
When will we Jews stop flagellating and hating ourselves, creating guilt plots for every thing we do? We are entitled to live just as all humans do on this Earth. With the establishment of Israel as sanctioned by the United Nations and other world bodies, every Jew in the world stood taller in the glow of the Six-Day War.
Why are we now -- 59 years after Israel's creation -- parsing, quartering and reanalyzing every move we made then to preserve our identity? (A Matter of Opinion: "The Heavy Burden of Victory," May 31).
The United States, Britain and Europe must continue to support Israel, and somehow convince radical Arabs that the solution lies in an educated Palestinian citizenry that can also develop a society capable of survival in this century.
Time is fleeting; the Palestinians are concentrating on teaching their children to live in the past and hate in the present.
Arab Ideology Makes Occupation Unavoidable
Jonathan Tobin wrote that the occupation was created by Arab aggression (A Matter of Opinion: "The Heavy Burden of Victory," May 31).
I would like to add that the occupation is also still necessary because of the Arab ideology to annihilate Israel.
Israeli military experts agree that the only way to stop rocket attacks on Sederot is to reoccupy Gaza. A study led by former Joint Chiefs of Staff Gen. Earl Wheeler found in the aftermath of the Six-Day War that "the minimum required for Israel's defense includes most of the West Bank, and the whole of Gaza and the Golan Heights."
The problem isn't the Israeli occupation of these areas, it's the Arab occupation of them!
Highland Park, N.J.
What's Their Problem With 1967? Israel Won!
Jonathan Tobin has said what I and many others have been thinking for a long time. For many years, I've been saying to anyone interested that if all the Arabs want is the land they had before 1967 to make everything right, why did they attack in the first place?' (A Matter of Opinion: "The Heavy Burden of Victory," May 31).
You know what the problem is? Israel was not supposed to win this war. They just didn't know the rules!
For the Record, Note Some Other Anniversaries
I never thought events would compel me to agree with Jonathan Tobin, but history has so far proven him right (A Matter of Opinion: "The Heavy Burden of Victory," May 31).
Israel does need to withdraw, and has tried to. And as far as anniversaries go, 2007 is also:
· The 40th anniversary of Israel's summer 1967 offer to relinquish the occupation for peace.
· The 40th anniversary of the Khartoum Conference's refusal of that offer.
· The 29th anniversary of Israel's 1978 offer to relinquish Gaza to Egypt, and Egypt's refusal to take it back.
· The 15th anniversary of the 1992 start of the Oslo talks, one of Israel's attempts to relinquish the territories.
· The second anniversary of Israel's relinquishing of Gaza, with rocket attacks on Israel from Gaza virtually ever since.
Moreover, 2007 is the time to celebrate 40 years since Israel's deliverance from annihilation.