Letters the Week of Aug. 28, 2014

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Readers share their thoughts on the Michael Levin Memorial Fund for Israel, terror tunnels and the culpability of the people of Gaza. 

Michael Levin Fund Has Had Major Successes
In the article about honoring lone soldiers (Headlines, “Group to Honor Lone Soldiers,” Aug. 14), you mentioned Michael Levin as the most well-known lone soldier who gave his life for Israel. Yet you failed to mention the fund that was established in honor/memory of our son, The Michael Levin Memorial Fund for Israel. 
 
In the past eight years, we have established four Lone Soldier Centers in Israel that are doing incredible work by catering to the needs of thousands of lone soldiers before, during and after their service in the Israel Defense Forces. The Michael Levin Lone Soldier Center is the only full-time organization in Israel solely dedicated to the needs of Lone Soldiers. For more information go to: aheroinheaven.com or lonesoldiercenter.com.
Harriet and Mark A. Levin | Langhorne
 
Does World’s Attention Have Tunnel Vision?
Where was the world’s attention when terrorists murdered several children in a school in Misgav Am? When terrorists killed innocent civilians in an attack on Ma’alot? When terrorists killed many Israeli Jews on a bus near the Mediterranean Sea? When terrorists killed many students with a bomb in a knapsack at Hebrew University’s lunch room on Mount Scopus?
 
When terrorists from Lebanon flew into northern Israel by hang gliders and shot to death sleeping Israeli soldiers? When a terrorist entered a shop on Ben Yehuda Street in Jerusalem — the day after I was in front of that very shop — and emerged from the changing room with a machine gun, ready to kill, but was thwarted by a quick-thinking and armed Israeli? Where is the world’s outrage when Jews are victims? Where was the world’s outrage in our time of need?
 
I hope and pray that not one more innocent Israeli or Palestinian is killed, that the war in Gaza ends quickly, and that the two sides can live side by side in peace.
David Broida | Haverford
 
Gazans’ Collective Guilt Is Unjustified
In a recent “Kvetch ’n Kvell” column (“Did ‘Innocent Civilians’ Not Vote for Hamas?” Aug. 14), David Harrison appeared to argue that there are no innocent Gazan adults because Hamas had been elected in a democratic election. According to Wikipedia, during that 2006 election, about 75 percent of all eligible Gazans voted, with about 44.5 percent voting for Hamas. Even if you agree with Harrison’s outrageous underlying assumption that simply voting for Hamas in an election qualifies one for the death penalty, that still means that the majority of 2006 voters did not pick Hamas. 
 
 Harrison also seemed to argue that all Gazans were culpable because the disposal of the large amounts of dirt required to dig the tunnels “can only be accomplished with the full cooperation of the residents.” Really? That assertion makes Harrison’s voting-equals-death argument seem almost plausible.
 
I understand that God would have spared Sodom and Gomorrah if Lot had found even 10 people who deserved not to die. On Passover, we diminish our wine to remember the suffering of the Egyptians during the 10 Plagues as well as the Egyptian soldiers who perished at the Red Sea. Surely we Jews can be strong backers of Israel without completely discounting and ignoring the suffering of Gazans, even those who voted for Hamas and then sat back and watched them spread dirt in their neighborhood.
Steve Mendelsohn | Penn Valley
 

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