WHY CAN’T WE ELECT CHIEF?
Dr Lionel Kopelowitz is being incredibly patronising when he asks “How do you expect average shul members to decide between candidates”?
Things have changed greatly since 1964 and most “average shul members” are well educated and quite capable of electing a new Chief Rabbi. After all, it is we who pay the shul fees. Why should we not have a say in who is to be our spiritual leader? Thea Valman Bridge Lane, London, NW11
EVEN AT a time of global economic crisis, and with huge events seemingly taking place every day this month, the revolution against the Syrian Baathists ought to be at the top of any editor’s news list. Let me count the ways in which the Assad crime family is worthy of our attention. Although everyone throws around accusations of racism, the Syrian state is an authentic Apartheid regime. Members of the Alawite sect, who make up 11 per cent of the population, monopolise power. They shut out the Sunni majority on sectarian grounds and subjugate the Kurdish minority on racial grounds.
In terms of realpolitik, the West had nothing but a moral interest in seeing the Egyptian or even the Libyan dictatorship fall. It has every interest in seeing the fall of Syrian dictatorship, which is a sworn enemy. Syria is collaborating with Iran, promoting terrorism and looking to acquire nuclear weapons. Its fall would make the West a little bit safer.
If you can see beyond national interests to consider the suffering of the population, then you will not find it hard to imagine Syrians’ fears of a wider massacre. As well as the regular army