I have been around long enough now to see many Israeli consuls general come and go ("Death to Fanatistan," Oct. 3).
Some made a big difference; some had almost no discernible impact. But on a warm September day on Wilshire Boulevard, Consul General Yaakov Dayan, with one giant moving gesture, assured his place among the very best.
The blue and white now waves proudly on prestigious Wilshire, along with the Stars and Stripes. And we are all the more enriched for it. Kol hakavod!
The West Coast Friends of Bar-Ilan University in Israel
My response to David Rintels' full-page ad (Sept. 19) telling how proud he is to be an FDR Democrat because "FDR defeated monstrous enemies in World War II without stooping to abuse" is: Is he kidding?
FDR had every American of Japanese descent forcibly removed from their homes, rounded up and put into camps where they were kept until the end of the war.
These were not Japanese who were suspected of espionage or even pro-Japan politics. To the contrary, every man, woman and child of Japanese descent lost his or her home, business and, most importantly, their freedom solely because of place of origin -- place of origin of ancestors that is.
People of Japanese descent who were born here were rounded up and put in camps, just the same as people who themselves came from Japan. Maybe Rintels should speak with someone who was in Manzanar, which was open for three and a half years, or to someone kept at one of the other 10 camps where Japanese were forced to live.
Their memories of lining up for meals, or to use the latrines, or laundry, or to have no place to return to after three years in a camp might cause them to have a different reaction to FDR.
Dee Dee Quinn
How I Returned
What a wonderful tribute Rob Eshman wrote to his wife and marriage, a beautiful love letter that you invited your readers to share ("How I Returned," Sept. 12).
Thank you. L'Shana tova umetuka.
Clash in Jordan Valley
"Clash of 'Right and Right' Festers in Jordan Valley" by Daniel Heimpel (Sept. 26) focused mostly on Palestinian complaints, while ignoring the main reason for the Israeli army's presence in this area of great strategic importance for Israel.
Jordan's Palestinian majority may one day overthrow the monarchy and scrap the peace treaty with Israel. Then an anti-Israel axis would run from the Jordan Valley through Iraq to Iran. The valley must remain under Israeli control to block any ground attack from the east.
Heimpel made Israeli settlers the problem, while omitting mention of Palestinian terror attacks in the valley, by focusing on Palestinian resentment of the new, small settlement of the Maskiyot -- six of whose eight families are Israeli evacuees from Gaza.
The story was illustrated by one photo of Maskiyot and four of Palestinians or their homes. Palestinian resentment is inevitable, given that most Palestinians reject Israel's right to exist as a Jewish state.
The Palestinian Authority demands that any final peace must allow 4.5 million Palestinians to move to Israel, thus turning Israel into an Arab state. Peace must be based on a Jewish majority in a secure Israel with defensible borders, including the Jordan River.
Kudos to the authors of the articles "Czech Republic Surprises With Jewish Treasures" and "Propaganda Film Disguised Horrors of Terezin" (Oct. 3).
One of my ancestors was involved in the giant synagogue project around 1892.
However, the Catholic church protested against the gothic style planned originally, and the building would exceed the Catholic cathedral in height.... The plans had to be redrawn.
I was imprisoned for almost three years in Terezin and remember the filming. Before the movie was made, a monthlong "beautification" was organized, with 7,500 seniors deported to the East. A bank was shown where useless ghetto currency was used.
Shops were opened where prisoners could "buy" merchandise they had to return afterward. A true documentary type story was filmed in 2002 in the United States, showing fragments of the propaganda movie.
A famous star named Kurt Gerron is the tragic victim of the hoax. You can get the DVD called, "Prisoner of Paradise."
Debates Won't Matter
Marty Kaplan's fear of an unfair election at the hands of the GOP ignores the overwhelming evidence that the Democratic Party has also benefited from voter fraud ("The Debates Won't Matter," Oct. 3).
Since John F. Kennedy's victory in 1960, thanks in large part to the fraud of the Chicago political machine and the Teamsters Union, the Democratic Party has systematically engaged in watering down the voter pool. The Democrats and their surrogates have opposed ID checks for elections at every opportunity.
The readers of The Jewish Journal deserve fairness and should start soliciting viewpoints from both sides of the political spectrum before all journalistic integrity is lost.
The Pope's Outreach
Well done article ("Pope John Paul II's Lifetime Outreach to Jews," Sept. 19) -- very moving and I enjoyed it. Pope John Paul II did a lot to bridge the gap with many faiths. He set an example of compassion, understanding, learning, forgiving and peace. Very good qualities to have. The program at the Skirball Center is an excellent idea.