May 15, 2003
Just read your review of Queen Noor's book ("Regally Blonde," May 9). That really needed to be said. Keep up the good work.
Dr. Charles Rosenberg, Newport Beach
Queen Noor chooses very conveniently to forget Jordanian "Black September." I'm sure the families of the thousands of dead Palestinians remember that date.
Margaret Zetoony-Gan, Los Angeles
After more than 30 months of the intifada, it is clear that the parties are not capable on their own of curtailing violence and reaching the goals that the president outlined in his June 24 speech (Cover Story, May 9). [President Bush] should push for the implementation of the "road map" as soon as possible, and he must resist the stalling tactics of opponents of peace, who are trying to bog down the road map with amendments and preconditions.
Jennifer Gandin, Santa Monica
I've read the three articles on the "road map" very carefully. The introduction of Mahmoud Abbas as prime minister of the Palestinian Authority doesn't give much confidence. William Bennett, in his latest presentation at the Universal Amphitheater, stated that Abbas wrote his doctoral thesis on "The Protocols of the Elders of Zion" -- hardly an encouraging sign for us.
Raphael Confortes, Los Angeles
'Leasing' of Peace
I have not read anything about the usually despairing peace issue between Israel and the Palestinians that makes so much sense as Reuven Firestone's article ("'Leasing' of Peace Could Be Best Move," May 9). To judge from popular responses of Palestinians and Muslims shown on Arab TV (as well as Sharon's evasions) the "road map" has not much chance to be implemented, and it will fail just as all the other previous offers did. However, Firestone's idea of leasing peace for every 10 years, rather than a permanent historical one, may just accomplish the hitherto impossible, for the very fact that it is not a final and binding "historical" agreement.
Yona Sabar, Professor of Hebrew and Aramaic UCLA
Just as he did in his article on professional-lay relations, Gary Wexler addresses another issue no one in the organized Jewish community ever talks about or would admit exists. "When Jewish Is Too Jewish" (May 9) will resonate with lots of young (and not so young) people but will never be discussed in an open forum.
I don't know if, in the long run, total immersion in "Jewish" is the best way to build continuity. Are we trying to build shtetls without walls? However, constantly looking at the world through one lens creates a narrowness which cannot best serve the individual and/or the community.
Ilene Olansky, Studio City
America and Israel
I want to commend Amy Klein for her recent editorials about the relationship between American Jews and Israel nowadays ("On the Road," April 25, and "Whose Loss Is It Anyway?" May 2). She is very perceptive. Thanks for showing the "naked king."
For me, a Jewish educator, the obligation is to respond to the reality you are describing and make sure the special connection between the communities is maintained.
Rivka Dori, Director of Hebrew Studies HUC-JIR and USC
We are writing to applaud Amy Klein's editorial urging American Jews to journey to Israel. We went with our young children to Israel for Pesach. While our decision to go was fraught with uncertainty, we were propelled by the hagaddah's injunction, "Next year in Jerusalem." The war with Iraq increased our uncertainty. But that injunction played on, and our need to show more than financial support for Israel intensified.
We flew El Al. Many Israelis were going home for the holiday; unfortunately, very few Americans were onboard. It was not that we were unmindful of the risk involved, we just believed and continue to believe that showing support for Israel outweighs the danger. Moreover, as Jews in the Diaspora, we must reciprocate the comfort and security Israel provides us.
Alice Garfield and Daniel Romano, Los Angeles
Health Care Funds
Your great articles in the May 2 issue calling attention to the crisis in Medi-Cal funding were right on target ("Care Programs Face State Funds Loss" and "Press Fight for Care Funds). Jewish Family Service's Adult Day Health Care Centers' (ADHC) participants are at risk if Medi-Cal payments are cut.
The firsthand reports by [Bill] Boyarsky and [Marc] Ballon of The Journal staff conveyed the problems ahead should the cuts be made. The ADHC participants were thrilled by their interaction with both reporters when they visited the center. They felt not only were they being heard by the Jewish community, but that through their personal stories they might be able to influence decision-makers. Their hope is to make a difference for the thousands of other families throughout California who are also at risk if the proposed Medi-Cal cuts are enacted.
The Journal has become an advocate by reporting this matter. By doing so, impacted families know that their concerns are important not only to them, but to the rest of the community as well.
Just for the record, the entire Valley Storefront is not in jeopardy of being closed -- thank God -- only the Adult Day Health Care Center. That is bad news enough for the hundreds of families, like the Bridges, who depend on Jewish Family Service. Thank you again for telling our story.
Marcia F. Volpert, President Jewish Family Service
Run for the Roses
"Trainer Saddles Up to Run for the Roses" (May 2) was well-written and covered the essence of the man who, almost without question, is the single most successful thoroughbred trainer in America
Nathaniel J. Friedman, Beverly Hills
The article on familial dysautonomia published in the May 2 Jewish Journal ("Foundations Try to Stop a Jewish Killer") was an example of the best journalism can offer: education and awareness which lead to the potential of saving a life. Kudos to the author, Michael Aushenker.
Rabbi Morley T. Feinstein, University Synagogue
In "A Double Mitzvah" (May 9), the bar mitzvah took place at Temple Beth El.