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Letters week of March 8, 2007
Blame the Man for All Those Killed in Iraq War
Even for a right-wing conservative, Jonathan Tobin's column in defense of Douglas Feith was a stretch (A Matter of Opinion: "When Skepticism Is Dangerous," Feb. 22).
Feith's job was to assess intelligence, not to manufacture lies that caused in excess of 3,000 American dead. This was the result of his actions.
Have you no conscience?
Why Weren't More People Skeptical About War?
Jonathan Tobin complains about the criticism of Douglas Feith (A Matter of Opinion: "When Skepticism Is Dangerous," Feb. 22).
But it was Feith who helped lead this country to war in Iraq against our best interests, and on grounds that were contrary to the assessments of those who knew more about intelligence matters than he did.
Forget about Feith's skepticism about the CIA. More people should have been skeptical about his ideas and those of the rest of the Bush administration.
I find it disturbing that Tobin would defend such a man, and that he writes nothing about the cost of the war, both to the United States and Iraqis.
New York, N.Y.
Iraq: Just One Front in Anti-Islamist World War
Thanks to Jonathan Tobin for his willingness to do what no one else in the Jewish community has done: defend former Undersecretary of Defense Douglas Feith (A Matter of Opinion: "When Skepticism Is Dangerous," Feb. 22).
Feith was right to be skeptical about the CIA, even if some of his own conclusions turned out to be wrong.
Iraq is but one front in a world war America is fighting against fundamentalist Islam and its terrorist allies. Attacks on Feith, who's always been at the top of the list of Jewish neo-conservative thinkers who have been targeted by the left and the media, have significance beyond the question of what he did or did not do.
Regrets about the way the war in Iraq has gone are one thing. But the willingness of so many to single out this former Philadelphian leaves me troubled.
Praise for a Writer Whose Father Killed Jews?
In the last paragraph of her book, Nonie Darwish (City & Suburb: "Egyptian-Born Writer Works for Peace Between Israelis and Arabs," March 1) writes, "My father was an honorable soldier."
He founded the Fedayeen and helped kill Jews. Then, she complains about how her family suffered after the Mossad killed her terrorist father, who is still considered a hero.
Darwish expresses not a word of remorse for his victims. Marketing herself as "The Daughter of a Shahid" is obscene, and an affront to her father's (and his henchmen's) victims and their families.
For Jews to pay to hear her express her love for them is perverse.
Coverage of Gay Marriage Legitimizes 'Abomination'
The Jewish Exponent has once again disgraced Torah and Torah-true Jews. This shows that it cares more about homosexuals than about halachah, Torah and the survival of Judaism.
How do you devote a news page on the mock marriage of two Jewish men in New Jersey, one of whom, it turns out, may become a future Reconstructionist rabbi (City & Suburb: "Couples Praise N.J. Law, but Still Think More Can Be Done," March 1).
There was no mention of how Torah and observant Jews view this. There was no comment by a Torah-true rabbi of how homosexual conduct led to the destruction of Sodom.
In doing so, the Exponent, once again, has lauded horrendous conduct and given it a false cover of normalcy.
The story offered no commentary on Torah's prohibition of homosexual behavior -- a behavior the Torah defines as an "abomination," at least figuratively punishable by death.
Pass the Bicarbonate -- Eating Champ Reveals All
Your claim that Philadelphia's Dave Goldstein was "arguably the best Jewish Wing Bowl competitor" (Sports & Players, " 'U.S. Male' Takes Wing, Then Munches His Way to Glory," Feb. 15) is wrong.
I competed in the 2001 and 2002 Wing Bowls. In 2001, I came in third, and I finished second in 2002.
Since I'm also of the Jewish faith, the distinction of being named best Jewish wing competitor properly belongs to me.
Just for the record, I was also the butter-eating champ of the 2002 Fox Glutton Bowl (I consumed seven quarter-pound sticks of salted butter in five minutes).
I also won, among other competitions, the 2002 Laredo, Texas, jalapeño-eating contest, in which I ate 120 peppers in 15 minutes.
Don "Moses" Lerman
Great Jewish Eaters List Must Include 'Dr. Kugel'
I enjoyed your article on the Wing Bowl (Sports & Players: " 'U.S. Male' Takes Wing, Then Munches His Way to Glory," Feb. 15), however you didn't get all of your facts correct.
I participated in the 2003 Wing Bowl as "Dr. Kugel" (my entry stunt was eating an entire matzah kugel, including a dozen eggs and a box of matzah).
I was also a long shot, but made it into the second round. I, too, am Jewish, and a board-certified internist practicing in Paoli.
However, my total was only a mere 87 wings, so Dave Goldstein must be considered clearly the best Jewish eater in our region, with a whopping 138.
Ira Thal, M.D.