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Jewish Journal

Cluster bombs; again with the ‘Dumb Jews;’  Democrats vs Republicans one more time; Jews in Space!

November 9, 2006 | 7:00 pm

Cluster Bombs

Calling for condemnation of the IDF's use of cluster bombs against Hezbollah would degrade Israel's ability to defend herself, thus encouraging Hezbollah to again employ their vast rocket and missile inventory to terrorize and murder Israeli civilians and to damage Israel's economy ("Cluster Silence," Oct. 31).

When the IDF's attempt to neutralize Hezbollah's missiles with precision guided explosives failed to reduce Hezbollah's rate of fire against Israel's civilian population, the only alternative approaches remaining were area suppression weapons, such as airborne cluster bombs.

Howard Laitin
Lt. Col. U.S. Army Reserve (ret.)
Torrance

My brother says you are a coward. You sit in Los Angeles and give morality lessons to those who risked their lives every day during the Lebanon War. If the choice is between your children being killed by Hezbollah's Katyusha rockets and the enemy's children being killed by Israel's cluster bombs, what do you prefer?

My brother and his family -- as well as thousands of Israelis in the north -- were in danger whether they sat in their homes or went out to get food. They are among the Israelis who thank the IDF for dropping those cluster bombs on Hezbollah, their supporters and future Hezbollah members.

Lilly Cohen
Via e-mail

Interesting, you've received a torrent of protests against your "Dumb Jews" headline, but judging by the Nov. 3 Letters, minimal reaction to your courageous "Cluster Silence" editorial. Don't know what that says about Jewish sensitivities, but where I come from, two wrongs don't make a right, and if the innocent on their side are killed or maimed in the course of protecting the innocent on our side, then we who know better should be the first to admit the shame.

Betsy Korbonski
Pacific Palisades

The real problem is Israel's survival -- nothing less. Bomblets spread throughout southern Lebanon in the recent imbroglio are a lesson that Israel can make life very miserable for all Israel's enemies, no matter what. The bomblets say, "Never Again."

Jerry Green
Los Angeles

Truth About CAIR

It is perplexing to see an extremist, anti-Muslim voice make the pages of The Jewish Journal ("L.A. Times Violates Ethics in Council Race," Oct. 20).

Steven Emerson's real aim is for the Jewish community to shun Council on American-Islamic Relations's (CAIR) , solely on the basis of guilt by association. CAIR is the largest advocacy group representing American Muslims, with hundreds of volunteers and tens of thousands of members. It is ludicrous of Emerson to hold CAIR responsible for the alleged infractions of former affiliates acting on their own volitions.

Emerson also attacks CAIR for defending the civil rights of unpopular individuals. Organizations are judged on the quality of their work and substance of their statements. Like the ACLU, we, as a civil rights organization, are bound to defend the rights of all Americans, even those perceived to hold unacceptable views.

CAIR (www.cair.com) is a human rights organization. As such, it is our duty and Islamic obligation to speak out against human rights abuses, whatever the faith of the victims or the perpetrators. We recently issued a statement against a predominantly Muslim country, Tunisia, for banning Muslim women from wearing the head scarf. We have regularly been critical of our government's handling of the Iraq War. Yet, we are not labeled anti-American, anti-Christian or anti-Muslim. However, when we denounce human rights violations committed by Israel, we are quickly criticized as being anti-Israeli or anti-Semitic.

People of all faiths must challenge and repudiate extremists. CAIR, through initiatives like its fatwa on extremism, is doing its part. Will the mainstream Jewish community do the same with extremists like Emerson?

Hussam Ayloush
Executive Director
CAIR Southern California

Jews in Space

I was thrilled to see the "Jews in Space" cover and stories, two subjects near and dear to my heart (Nov. 3). I was less thrilled when I realized that every single scientist and engineer mentioned was male.

While it may not be possible for reporters to get every side of a story, the omission of female voices reinforces the idea that the hard sciences are strictly a male preserve. Yes, there are female Jewish astronomers, engineers and space scientists -- a pity that their thoughts on their work and their religious feelings weren't presented.

Jo Pitesky
Via e-mail

Dems vs. GOP

I am tired of Bill Boyarsky and others of the radical left who would foist on society judges who wish to legislate through fiat nonmainstream positions.

I am tired of advocates of eliminating Israel, whether by calling for one state, confederation or any other euphemism. I am tired of cartoonists who think if they draw anti-Republican, they are drawing Jewish.

And that's just politics. Don't get me started on religion. There's sure to be something exasperating every week. Thanks, Jewish Journal.

S.Z. Newman
Los Angeles

The Republican Jewish Coalition's ad campaign has appropriated my words (which are solely mine and don't necessarily represent the views of Democrats for Israel, Los Angeles) to advance an agenda quite the opposite of my own.

I emphatically do not advocate that Jews abandon the Democratic Party. Jews who are concerned about Israel's welfare must redouble their commitment to the Democratic Party to combat the influence of the ill-liberal left and maintain the party's historic support of Israel.

Paul Kujawsky
Vice President
Democrats for Israel, Los Angeles

Dumb Jews

Which "dumb Jew" thought up the cover story for Oct. 20 titled, "Dumb Jews"? Horrible! Perhaps they will put Jesus' picture in a December issue.

Lois Zelickson
West Hills

Ed. Note: An artist's rendering of Jesus appeared on the cover of our Feb. 20, 2004 issue.

CLARIFICATION

As stated in "Feathers Fly" (Sept. 29), the chicken roaming Pico-Robertson before Yom Kippur was neither the property nor the responsibility of Pico Kosher Deli.

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