August 7, 2008
Zell it, Sam; Cool it, Orit; 40 million Frenchmen
Sell It, Sam
Nice editorial on the demise of the L.A. Times as we have known it and loved to hate it all these years ("Sell It, Sam," Aug. 1).
Didn't anyone realize when Sam Zell bought the Tribune Co. that real estate value was at the top of his list?
And as to the problems of loss of ad sale revenue and loss of subscribers, all print publications are suffering. One only need to look at the bottom of the Letters page in your paper to realize that every newspaper has competition from themselves in the form of their own Web site.
Many love to read the news on the Web. I don't understand that peering at a screen can replace relaxing with the Times or Wall Street Journal or Daily News and The Jewish Journal in my lap.
Not sent via e-mail
Oh, if only I was rich instead of ... I would give you the money to buy the L.A. Times to manage. But then I might lose you, our weekly treasure, in The Jewish Journal. Oh, sometimes doing something for the greater good is painful.
Orit Arfa writes that she Googles all her prospective dates ("Go ahead, gogle me" Aug. 1).
She may end up as a single woman all her life unless she learns that love isn't a treasure found on Google. It is found in a certain electricity between two people who meet in person and in time find that they can't live without one another.
The only electricity she'll find in googling her prospective dates is the electricity that turns on her computer, not the electricity that turns her on. I'm single and live in Los Angeles, so Orit may want to Google me, but I don't think it would be worth her while to fly from Israel to Los Angeles to date me.
Leon M. Salter
Rabbi David Ellenson bases his view that the Olmert government made the right choice in releasing terrorists in exchange for kidnapped (dead) Israeli soldiers on the argument that Israeli soldiers who know that they will be redeemed are more likely to fight fearlessly and less likely to retreat to avoid capture ("Prisoner Swap: Morale Issue Spurs Hard Choice," Aug. 1).
However, even if this were true, releasing terrorists in exchange for kidnapped Israelis is a terrible mistake for at least two reasons.
First, releasing terrorists in exchange for kidnapped Israelis provides a rock-solid incentive for more such kidnappings. Indeed, the practice of making such releases since the late 1980s has increased kidnappings. Worse, Israel's willingness to release terrorists in exchange for bodies acts as a virtual death warrant for any future Israelis kidnapped.
Second, and even more important, freed terrorists return to terrorism and claim more Israeli lives. A 2006 detailed report issued by the Almagor Terror Victims Association (ATVA) shows that between the years 1993-1999, Israel released 6,912 terrorists within the context of "confidence-building measures" and prisoner deals. Of that number, 854 (12 percent) were arrested subsequently for lethal terrorist acts that claimed the lives of 123 Israelis.
Also, Col. Meir Indor, director of ATVA, disclosed in April 2007 that 177 Israelis killed in terror attacks in the previous five years were killed by Palestinians who had been previously released from Israeli jails (Jerusalem Post, April 10, 2008).
Morton A. Klein
Zionist Organization of America
I was extremely disappointed that Israel would swap its dead soldiers for live Arab prisoners. I understand the thinking that the Israel Defense Forces need to uphold soldiers' morale, but where is the incentive for the Arabs to keep Israeli prisoners alive?
I feel that they should have agreed to swap dead soldiers for dead prisoners. Otherwise, there is no advantage or incentive for the Arabs to keep Israeli captives alive.
Thanks for David Suissa's obituary on Rabbi Levi Meier (z'l), chaplain of Cedars-Sinai Medical Center ("Rabbi Levi Meier, Whose Pulpit Was Hospital Rooms, Dies at 62," July 18).
He is very precious to so many in the community. I hope that at some point you can do a special feature on him.
Broken (Political) Heart
In Fairfax High School, I had a brilliant and wise instructor of advanced placement European History who used to say: "Do not put all your faith in one man. For surely he will disappoint you."
And he also said: "40 million Frenchmen can be wrong" ("On Having Your (Political) Heart Broken," Aug. 1).
In "Southland Olympians Hope to Join Roster of Winners," (Aug. 1), Sasha Cohen came in second at Torino in 2006, not Salt Lake City in 2002. We regret the error.