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Letters Week of Nov. 17, 2005
Cartoon Shouldn't Portray Fence as a Berlin Wall
The Jewish Exponent is a place where you expect to see Arab anti-Israel propaganda exposed and countered, not perpetuated. But your editorial cartoon of Oct. 27 perpetuates the latest "big lie" to come out of the Middle East.
Less than 10 percent of the security barrier that Israel is constructing is a solid structure akin to a "wall." The remainder is a fence.
Jewish media outlets such as the Exponent should provide their readers with the facts, not a Berlin Wall-like image that Arab-Palestinians and their supporters would like the world to believe Israel's self-defense measure is, even done as satire or political commentary.
Roberta E. Dzubow
Don't Rewrite History; Don't Paint Man as Saint
Concerning Jonathan Tobin's column on the 10th anniversary of the death of Israeli Prime Minister Yitzhak Rabin (A Matter of Opinion: "What Kind of Legacy?" Nov. 3), please do not change history.
If you want to canonize someone, wait for the death of current Prime Minister Ariel Sharon.
Make him into a "saint," if you like. He did more for the State of Israel than Rabin.
New York, N.Y.
What Price Survival? Do Lives Exact So Much?
The column by Douglas Bloomfield, "Bush Has It Right: Israel Must Freeze Settlement Expansion" (Editorial & Opinion, Oct. 27) stabbed Israel right in the back.
The idea that tossing Jews out of their homes, destroying their livelihoods and vilifying them is good for Israel is brutal and absurd.
If one reason to remove Jews is that it costs too much to protect people surrounded by hostile Arabs, as stated by Bloomfield, then by this logic America should stop foreign aid to Israel, and Israel should continue taking active steps to just fade away.
If terrorists start blowing up Jewish communal institutions in the United States, should the police stop protecting Jews because it costs too much? Will the Jewish Federation turn its offices and the Jewish Exponent over to Islamic institutions in the hopes of making peace?
Perhaps, but it probably won't save any more Jewish lives than Jewish institutional appeasing of Nazi demands did in my father's time in Poland.
Appeasing Islamic terror creates more terror. The president of Iran has called for "wiping Israel off the map." Shrinking Israel to resemble a concentration camp surrounded by jihadi terrorists will just make it easier for Iran and Islamic warriors to more efficiently and cost-effectively kill more Jews.
A true Jewish "exponent" does not endorse: 1) the ethnic cleansing of Jews; 2) a surrender to Islamic terrorism; or 3) diplomatic anti-Semitism.
Education: A Vital Tool to Keep Memories Alive
The recent resolution by the United Nations designating Jan. 27 as a worldwide annual Holocaust Remembrance Day marks a historic moment in that forum.
It is particularly significant, as the date commemorates the liberation of the Auschwitz death camp.
The United Nations' recognition of the horrific history and events of the Holocaust charges us to not only serve as bearers of memory for future generations, but to translate the universal lessons of the Holocaust into societal action that can build bridges of understanding to transcend divisions based on race, religion or ethnic background.
Indeed, the U.N. Resolution, while addressing the Holocaust specifically, can also speak to other victims of genocide, giving hope that civilized society will not continue to accept such persecution.
Significantly, the Pennsylvania Holocaust Education Council - a state-wide organization comprised of volunteer educators, liberators, theologians, survivors and children of survivors - is committed to educating teachers about the Holocaust and its connections to contemporary issues.
For example, through its Clara's Trunk Project - in memory of the late Holocaust survivor and educator/author, Clara Isaacman, and supported with the help of private donors and grants - teachers who attend a workshop can apply to receive a trunk full of selected Holocaust materials.
Now, more than ever, we of this generation need to realize the true significance of the U.N. Resolution by supporting educators who are committed to teaching about the Holocaust, so that they can, in turn, prepare future generations to assume their responsible place in a civilized society.
Deanne Scherlis Comer
Abington School District Holocaust Education Curriculum Committee
'Desperate' for Jewish Characters on the Soaps
I was intrigued by the Nov. 10 Arts & Entertainment article on "Desperate Housewives," especially your next-to-last line: "Why are none of the housewives Jewish?"
Perhaps you can get in on my campaign on the same theme.
My two favorite soap operas, "All My Children" and "One Life to Live" are the brainchild of Agnes Nixon, a local resident, and are 35 years old. In all that time, I've never seen a Jewish family or a rabbi, although there have been multiple marriages, all performed by priests or ministers.
I have written to Agnes Nixon and chief executives of the ABC soaps, but never received even the courtesy of an answer.
How could they answer me? They have no answers!
Eleanore K. Bell