Thank you, Gold and Simon

I was very happily surprised that you published the op ed “Are you now or have you ever been a terrorist organization?” by Dr. Mark Gold and Haim Simon (December 10). The article questions the Israeli government’s designation of certain Palestinian civil organizations as terrorist organizations.

Hopefully the publication of this op ed marks a turning point, in local community and Jewish newspapers attitudes, where previously Israel could do no wrong, and all questioning or criticism or dissent was viewed and treated as washing your dirty laundry in public or even betrayal. To the contrary, a thorough review and change (when needed) will keep Israel strong and make it stronger. Am Yisroel chai.

Ben Kaplan

How dare you, Gold and Simon?

Simon and Gold are at it again with their perpetual “blame Israel” at every turn. This time they bemoan the fact that the Israeli defense ministry designated six palestinian civil NGOs as terror organizations. Once again, big bad Israel is picking on the poor defenseless palestinian arabs. Since these six NGOs did not actually openly state that they are terrorist fronts, Simon and Gold instead seem to believe their lies and attack Israel for protecting its citizens.

Let’s look at this from a non-far-left-wing point of view.

No less than the Israeli Minister of Defense, Benny Gantz [not the most right-wing personality] declared these groups terror organizations.

This was a joint move by the General Security Service [GSS] and Israel’s National Bureau for Counter Terror Financing [NBCTF] that started early in 2021 and was approved by the appropriate legal authorities in the Israeli government. These six palestinian arab organizations with tepid sounding names belong to the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine, a murderous group that has slaughtered Jewish children, women and the elderly. As per the Israeli government, the six were declared terrorist organizations because they “constitute a network of active undercover organizations working on the international front on behalf of the PFLP. These groups support the PFLP activities and further its goals.”

These six groups, controlled by the PFLP, serve as a central source for financing of the organization’s activity in general and take a significant part in building the organization’s force. They receive substantial funds from international donors who are deceived by their statements.

Those funds allow the PFLP to provide payments to security prisoners’ families and the “shaheeds,” wages for activists, enlistment of more activists, promotion and strengthening of terror activity, and promotion of “Popular Front” activities and ideology in Jerusalem and beyond. It’s a channel to support the “pay to slay” program, which is illegal under the Taylor Force law in the United States, for example.

Simon and Gold would have us believe that there is a vast conspiracy on the part of the entire Israeli government apparatus, with the approval of a coalition government including Arab and far left parties, to suppress these completely innocent Arab social organizations.

It seems far more likely that these groups are not organizing afternoon teas, but rather aiding and abetting the murder of Israeli civilians to further their goal of the destruction of Israel.

Apologist propaganda for facilitators of Arab murderers of Jews young and old has no place in a Jewish newspaper which features ads for Jewish pre-schools and services for the elderly.

Is it naiveté or the fact that ideology trumps reality every time? Once again, I ask “whose side these guys are on?”

With Love of Israel,

Scott David Lippe, M.D.
Fair Lawn

What about the Palestinians?

The author of the article is critical of New Jersey’s divestment effort of Ben and Jerry’s parent company as being in league with those opposing the policies that would maintain a democratic and Jewish state coexisting in peaceful relations with a Palestinian state (“N.J. should be part of the solution, not the problem,” December 17). But this article is silent as to the continued position of the Palestinians and their supporters to eliminate the existence of a Jewish state, sanctioned by the 1947 UN Resolution. Israel accepted this Resolution that also sanctioned a Palestinian state. Prior to Israel’s occupation of the West Bank, an independent Palestinian State did not exist.

Later, Israel completely withdrew from the Gaza Strip to induce the Palestinian leadership to continue efforts to reach a peaceful-two state solution. Shortly afterwards, the Palestinians lost control of Gaza to Hamas. Will the Palestinians and their supporters be expected to accept the original intent of the 1948 UN Resolution?

Marvin Elmowitz

Talking to each other

Sometimes one wishes that articles in the paper would talk to each other.

This is especially the case for two articles in the December 17 issue: Larry Yudelson’s “Gottheimer takes fight against antisemitism to Rutgers” and Martin J. Levine’s “NJ should be part of the solution, not the problem.”

According to Yudelson, Gottheimer is completely focused on one issue under discussion at Rutgers – antisemitism that is manifested by attacks on those who are “Jewish or pro-Israel.” And this is why the Yudelson article should talk to the Levine article. Levine indicates that Gottheimer is missing an elephant (camel?) in the room—a second issue under discussion at Rutgers, Israeli government policies toward the Palestinians.

These policies stoke anger—some of which is logically directed toward the policy makers themselves, but some of which is misdirected towards “those who are Jewish or pro-Israel,” i.e., add fuel to antisemitism. Ironically, the policies are bitterly opposed by many who are “Jewish or pro-Israel”–as well as by Palestinians and their other supporters.

As Levine describes them, they include: “…de facto annexation…the demolition of Palestinian homes and businesses…construction of infrastructure designed to cut Palestinians off from the settlements, and each other, and even from their own places of employment…[aiming] to prevent a two-state solution from taking effect now…[or] at any time in the future.”

Yudelson quotes Gottheimer:  “We cannot shy away from that demand for justice. We must support Jewish students and the Jewish community…” What he is missing is the anger stoking issue of Israeli government policies. Reversing these policies would decrease the anger that adds fuel to antisemitism, that fuels attacks on “Jewish students and the Jewish community.” Gottheimer should be demanding this policy reversal, and in so doing express support for both Jews and Palestinians—and, in so doing, encourage them to support each other.

Art Lerman

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