October 3, 2002
Nobody Likes Saddam
You have posed a question, "So do you think America should go to war with Iraq?" ("Nobody Likes Saddam," Sept. 27). My answer is yes. I understand the cost of going to war, human and financial. I was born in the former Soviet Union. But, in times as these, when to go to a smaller war in foreign lands means to prevent a larger war on your land, then it is worth it.
Victor Mezhinsky, Brea
In Rob Eshman's editorial he listed important pros and cons regarding war with Iraq. I believe there is another important reason against going to war. I am afraid that going to war with Iraq will lead to total mistrust between the United States and Muslims all over the world. It is one thing to go to a necessary war (like in Afghanistan) that we and most of the world supports, but quite another to go to a war that even we, the Americans, are not sure about entering.
Dr. Yona Sabar Professor Near Eastern Languages and Cultures UCLA
The Silencing of the Left
For those of us who have been vocal opponents of the Oslo process, sweet justice might well be offered in the acknowledgement that our view of Yasser Arafat and his thugocracy now represents mainstream Jewish opinion ("The Silencing of the Left?" Sept. 27).
What does it all tell us? That this is hardly "Sharon's War" or a "battle between two old men." It is a struggle between democracy and terror. So choose your side very carefully. The times are far too perilous to risk being wrong a second time.
Avi Davis, Westwood
The extensive cover story, "The Silencing of the Left?" quoted no one from the right. Indeed, the right will tell you that the left has not been "silent," but has united to support Israel in unprecedented and record-breaking ways. The "progressive" left, instead of whining from their tenured faculty positions about being ignored, should be rethinking their unchanged and unrepented policies of appeasement, which have led to war, terror and ruin.
Nathan D. Wirtschafter, Encino
Battle of the Iranians
I am disappointed in the article written by my friend, Tom Tugend, titled "Battle of the Iranians" (Sept. 27). What took place in front of the Goodbar nightclub in West Hollywood was a vicious and shocking hate crime by a mob of 15-20 Iranian Muslim hooligans against two members of the Jewish community in Los Angeles and not a battle amongst members of the Iranian community. Fareed Kanani is an Indiana-born Jew.
The article should have explored the nature of the hate crime and the refusal of the leaders of the Iranian Muslim community to recognize it as such. Instead, the article white-washed what is becoming a bigger and bigger problem in Los Angeles. The parties involved were not drunk and did not even know each other. Two members of the Jewish community were targeted because of their religion and their religion alone. What took place was a hate crime and should be prosecuted fully as such.
Pooya Dayanim Council of Iranian-American Jewish Organizations
As an educated Jew who worked as an office temp from 1992 to 1996, I take umbrage to Mark Goodman's statement that the lack of recognition stems from "internalized anti-Semitism"("Shifting Gears," Sept. 20). Yes, I was definitely looked down upon when I told fellow Jews that I was an office worker, not a doctor or other type of big macher, but I think that what I was getting was an upper-class-snob reaction. Let's not look for hidden motives as to why people collectively don't want to deal with the poor.
Helen Block , San Francisco
Terror Victim Saves Palestinian
While reading though The Jewish Journal this week, I was astonished to find an important article hidden near the middle of the paper. It was a life-saving message, a message of hope, of cooperation, and a message of the bonding and blending of two warring factions. Isn't it worthy of note that the kidney of a 19-year-old, murdered in a suicide bus bombing, was donated to a young Palestinian girl? ("Terror Victim Saves Palestinian Girl," Sept. 27). I wish I had seen it more forward in The Journal. The dissemination of any positive information is vital to our future -- who knows what will help pave the road to peace.
Doritt Diamond, Calabasas
The LAUSD Board again demonstrated its unwillingness to value excellence above mediocrity as it disregarded the voices of thousands of parents, students, teachers, and alumnae of Hamilton, and demoted Jeff Kaufman, the Music Academy's beloved administrator, to a lesser position ("Hamilton High's Sour Note," Sept. 20).
But the vote that stung most was that of Marlene Canter, the alleged "reformer" candidate, who promised during her campaign to support Hamilton Music Academy's quest for greater excellence, not only for its program, but the entire campus.
Come election time, we will remember!
Gail D. Solo , Los Angeles
The terrorists have not so much "spread curiosity" as they have bred self-doubt ("9/11/02," Sept. 6). The worst evildoers can be masters at manipulating the conscience of good people. By this strategy, the caring person is distracted from the aggressor's deeds and refocused on grievances and victimization.
Do Osama bin Laden and company really seem hopeless, depressed, and downtrodden? Or are they confident, enthusiastic and convinced of their superiority? They represent a culture immersed in blood lust. They offer a religion, which makes a virtue of death; which hates liberty and desires Ayatollah/Taliban-style theocracies. In the face of bold and blatant evil, good and otherwise intelligent people are baffled.
Don Ford, Whittier
Of late, you have featured several articles dealing with the growing awareness by Jews that Christian evangelists are Israel's best friend ("The Jews' Best Friends," Aug. 23). However, you have failed to note that Toward Tradition and its president, Rabbi Daniel Lapin, have been making precisely this same point for the past decade.
Just recently, we formed the American Alliance of Jews and Christians as a new coalition of existing organizations and national leaders to serve as the principal media resource in matters pertaining to Jewish-Christian cooperation, with noted public figure Gary Bauer as co-director with Lapin. Strengthening Jewish-Christian cooperation will ensure the preservation of our Judeo-Christian ethic and culture and will preserve the security of Israel; an America that is strong both morally and materially is the best friend Israel can have.
Carl Pearlston Board Member Toward Tradition
Marlene Adler Marks
A leftover Tommy burger, french fries, chili and lots of salty folded pickles washed down by the remainder of a chocolate shake and a little Sprite. This was not a snack, a lunch, a dinner but the most important meal of the day -- breakfast! What possessed me? I'm sure those of you who read, "A Woman's Voice," by Marlene Adler Marks, will get my drift.
My decision to indulge in a tasty-but- "forbidden" food for breakfast was consciously made when I recalled Marlene's written words: "I should have eaten more hot dogs." That moment of reflection, made the decision to, "Yes, go ahead. Enjoy, Indulge. It's OK."
A legacy, a memorial, a thought. Yes, I have been unexpectedly affected.
Roberta E. Bassin, Granada Hills
Burbank Temple Emanu El's full board of 32 people, not an executive board of four as reported, voted 24 to 8 not to renew Rabbi Paula Reimer's contract ("The Silencing of the Left," Sept. 27).