Who’s keeping artist from visiting Jaffa?

 “The house [in Jaffa] was a mythical place for Zeina Barakeh — one she grew up hearing about, but never was able to see or visit. She’s a Lebanese citizen and cannot legally enter Israel” (“Finding Jaffa ‘dream house’ cements artists’ close bond,” March 7).

The implication of the phrase “cannot legally enter Israel” is that Israel bars her entry. That was surprising to me. Is that true? I looked at the website for the U.S. Government Passports and International Travel, which seems to say that Lebanon will bar entry of a traveler who has visited Israel; not that Israel bars entry of a Lebanese citizen. Same for “Yahoo Answers.”

Considering that this is a J. story, I think the facts should be investigated. If Israel does not bar her entry, but she won’t go for fear she’ll be refused entry to her country of birth, Lebanon, that should be made clear. If Israel does bar her entry simply because she is a citizen of Lebanon, that should be stated clearly. I think this should be cleared up in the next available printed edition of J. Thank you.

Peter J. Logan   |   San Francisco


Unconfortable feeling about German citizenship

In regards to your article “German Again,” (April 4) it should be noted that German citizenship is based on the principle of jus sanguinis. This means one becomes a citizen if a parent is a German citizen, regardless of place of birth. Though I was born in Germany, as my parents were in a displaced persons camp, I am not eligible for citizenship. It’s interesting to read about Jews who are proud of their German roots. Really? As a child of Holocaust survivors, I will never understand that.

Joanna Tucker   |   Oakland


Release of killers is odd link for peace

The Palestinians’ demand that Israel must release more prisoners for peace talks to continue shows how disingenuous the Palestinians are about peace (“Most Palestinians OK extending talks if extra prisoners get freed,” March 28).

The Palestinian prisoners that Israel has already freed include the killers of Isaac Rotenberg, a 67-year-old Holocaust survivor, with an ax; 84-year-old Avraham Kinstler, also with an ax; and David Dadi and Chaim Weitzman, whose killers stabbed the Israelis to death and then cut off their ears as souvenirs.

Others expected to be released soon include the Palestinian who burned a pregnant Israeli woman, Ofra Moses, and her son Tal, age 5, to death; the Palestinians who murdered Rachel Weiss, an Israeli teacher, along with her children, Netanel, Rafael and Efraim — ages 3, 2, and 9 months — and an Israeli soldier, David Delarosa, who was killed while trying to rescue them; and two planners of the bus bombing that killed American schoolgirl Alisa Flatow.

Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas has proclaimed these killers heroes and has rewarded those already released with grants of $50,000 or more and generous pensions. This does not suggest seriousness about peace.

Stephen A. Silver   |   San Francisco