A ‘thugocracy’

Let’s see if I have this straight. 

Israel and the United States support Mahoud Abbas’ efforts to prop up his authority over the Palestinians, in order to blunt the steady progress of Hamas in becoming the sole representative of the Palestinians. In doing so, Israel and the United States allow guns and money to flow to Abbas’ Fatah movement. 

In the meantime, Abbas is trying to mend fences with Hamas, which utterly humiliated Abbas’ military forces in Gaza despite having received special training and weapons from the United States. 

Israel is currently conducting raids into Gaza, resulting in the deaths of the same Hamas fighters who brutalized the Fatah fighters abandoned there by Abbas and his henchman. Israel is doing this, in part, to stop the increased rocket fire into Israel from Gaza. 

Now Abbas is criticizing Israel’s attacks on Hamas in Gaza because he says it jeopardizes the peace process and undermines his so-called government. 

Is it only me, or does someone else also not understand why Abbas’ thugocracy deserves our support? 

Desmond Tuck | Menlo Park

Existence at stake

When I read the July 27 j. story about the possibility of peace for Israel I thought that even posing the question today is ridiculous.

The Gaza strip is occupied by the terror group Hamas, and they continue to bombard Israel with rockets and injure Israelis. Southern Lebanon is occupied by the terror group Hezbollah, who under U.N. eyes has amassed an arsenal of weapons that can target all corners of Israel.

Israel and our government have thrown support behind the corrupt Fatah regime that ordinary Palestinians do not support. In fact, their hero is Saddam Hussein, as reported in the L.A. Times. Remember Saddam was paying $25,000 to the families of Palestinian suicide bombers, and he paid out quite of bit of money while he was alive.

In Israel, Arab children will now be formally taught that all Arabs consider the day Israel became a state, a catastrophe. If this doesn’t lead to civil war within Israel in the next few generations I’d be very surprised. Israeli Arab leaders are already demanding binational status. Mainstream media is calling Israeli Arabs, Palestinian citizens.

The question is if Israel will continue to exist. We need to do more than hope.

Howard Roth | S. San Francisco

Senior housing needed

Jewish assisted living is needed in the Oakland-Berkeley area. How to achieve this? Quite simply by finding a condo building where elders could move in by paying for their housing from the proceeds of the sale of their houses, as is done by other groups.

A builder could provide such housing by simply adding kitchen facilities, a dining room, a meeting room — all right above a garage, with one caveat: sufficient elevators at each end of the halls.

Oakland is building numerous condos all over the city, and I am convinced it would welcome such an endeavor.

Where are the able forward-looking capable people who would know how to put all this together? Is there someone out there who has the “know-how” and ability to make the above happen?

I am convinced many would be interested in giving up homeownership, and live with less responsibilities as they age. Perhaps we need to find out how many elders would be interested by doing a survey? All of us will age, and may need this, just like all other groups have done already.

Arnoldine Berlin | Oakland

Lying leaders?

When a yeshiva high school airbrushes its wayward son out of a class reunion photo, the issue is far greater than the community’s response to intermarriage. The issue is, do Jewish leaders lie? The undisputed answer is yes; some Jewish leaders change documents to fit what they wish were true, not what is actually true.

Gary Rosenblatt, the editor and publisher of the New York Jewish Week, to whom New Yorkers look for truth, defends the liars (“Snub may have been the correct response,” Aug. 3 j.).

Now I’m forced to wonder, what else is a lie? Is the Torah the word of God, or was it altered by some ancient yeshiva? Was the land promised to Isaac or to Ishmael? Can I trust the photographs I’ve seen of the Holocaust?

And even though I still believe, will the non-Jewish public believe?

It is not the Jews who marry potential Jews who should be shunned. It is the liars.

Steven J. Alexander | Santa Clara