GAZA: DISPROPORTIONATE RESPONSES, OR HONEST SOLUTIONS?
Yuval Yishal ( Letters, July 25) is disappointed by the July 17 letter to the Financial Times from Independent Jewish Voices protesting against Israel’s bombardment of Gaza. He suggests we are implying that if the siege of Gaza were lifted, this would be a sufficient condition for peace.
Lifting the siege will not be enough to end this conflict. Although Israel pulled the Israeli military and settlers out of Gaza in 2005, it continues to tightly control access by land, sea and air, effectively turning the Strip into an open-air prison.
We deplore the rocket attacks by Hamas and its stated aim of the destruction of Israel, as well as condemning any attempt to present this conflict in racial or religious terms. However, governments of Israel repeatedly claim to represent and act on behalf of Jewish people the world over.
The current assault on Gaza is grossly disproportionate and inhumane. Independent Jewish Voices believe it is crucial for Jews to speak out at moments such as these. We would argue that the true friend of Israel is not one who supports Israel’s actions under all circumstances but one willing to say loudly when its government is bent on a path destructive, not only to the Palestinians, but also to Israel itself. Adam Fagan, Jacqueline Rose Independent Jewish Voices firstname.lastname@example.org
I believe that Israel could attempt to do two things that would go to wards changing world opinion and be genuinely helpful.
Why don’t they make an encampment for Palestinian women and children where they can come across to Israel and be sheltered, fed and watered until a truce is called, and then sent back when it is safe? Their five-minute warnings are really useless if the people have no shelter to go to. Whether Hamas would let the women and children cross to the safe haven of Israel will be a litmus test for the rest of the world and it would be a win, win situation for Israel, no matter which way it went.
The other thing that Israel could try to do openly is to warm up the cold peace deals that they have with Egypt and Jordan and try to act in concert with them to show how that region of the Middle East could be run for all faiths, working together to make the region safe and prosperous. I believe that they would have two willing partners but someone has to start the ball rolling.
Doing nothing bold is not an option; we know Israel has the firepower but that’s not the way peace is going to come. Conrad Sandler Kidderpore Avenue London NW3
No doubt readers will recall the disruption at the Proms a couple of years ago when the Israel Philharmonic Orchestra attempted to play. I see today that the Chinese Philharmonic was allowed to play uninterrupted at this year’s Proms.
In 2008 a UN report found that the use of torture in Tibet was “widespread and routine.” Since China’s invasion of the country, well over a million Tibetans have been killed.
So why does the English left, which hates Israel with such vehemence and disrupts concerts at the Proms, have no concern whatsoever about the plight of Tibetans?
I think the answer is obvious: the English left is antisemitic to its filthy core. However, unlike the fascist right, the fascist left does not even have the honesty to admit that its hatred is aimed at Jews. Gary Soska Coleman Mansions Crouch Hill London N8