Letters to the Editor: Time airlines stopped nonsense
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Letters to the Editor: Time airlines stopped nonsense

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Austrian Airlines plane
Austrian Airlines plane

Time airlines stopped nonsense

I’m tempted to reflect on the irony of the good news of Prince William’s visit to Israel being almost immediately counterbalanced by the bad news of more bad behaviour in the air by some of our citizens.

Your paper last week had another story of an aircraft delay caused by Charedim passengers refusing to sit next to women on an El Al service from New York to Tel Aviv.

Bad enough, but the very next day, too late for inclusion in last week’s Jewish News, came reports of a similar incident on an Austrian Airlines service from Tel Aviv to Vienna.

This time, the reporting has been more extensive, amid signs of growing public backlash.

The Times of Israel said a plane had “again” been held up, and quoted Yesh Atid party leader Yair Lapid saying on Twitter: “Once again a primitive group of Charedis moved and humiliated women on a flight. If for once they’re removed from the flight without hesitation or recompense, this disgrace will end.”

El Al has now said any passenger who refuses seating “will be immediately removed”. For the sake of all passengers, such action cannot come too soon.

Felicity Geller,  By email

Is labour leader masking a wish for Israel’s demise?

So Mr Corbyn wants a right of return for the Palestinian people? (Jewish News,  28 June 18). If what he is saying pertains to millions of so-called Palestinian Arabs suddenly knocking on the door of 22 Acacia Avenue, Haifa, forget it.

It has been 70 years since the birth of the state of Israel and the Palestinians have to ‘move on’.

Even my old house in Stamford Hill has been knocked down.

However, if Corbyn wants a right of return because it would decimate the Jewish population of Israel, just say so.

Why can’t he say so? I will tell you.

He is masking his true views of the Jewish homeland. It seems to me that to Corbyn, a good Jew is an anti-Zionist, so a bad Jew must be a Zionist.

How such a man can call himself the leader of the party for the people beats me.

Let’s get him out and get a proper leader in, such as Tom Watson who supported Luciana Berger during the anti-Semitic debate in Parliament and is a friend of Israel.

Mike Abramov, By email

Personal agendas

On 18 June, Dr Ghada Karmi spoke at a debate held by ‘Intelligence Squared’ against the motion – The World should recognise Jerusalem as Israel’s capital. The other speakers were Jack Straw, Ehud Olmert and Natasha Hausdorff.

During her speech, Dr Karmi quoted an inaccurate statistic. This was corrected by the chairperson, the BBC’s Emily Maitlis and later, Olmert during his speech. However, Dr Karmi refused to accept the revision.

She then made a statement apropos of the definition of the slogan: ‘From the River to the Sea, Palestine will be free’. Once again, her interpretation of this slogan was contradicted by facts raised by the chairperson – a quotation from Mahmoud Abbas. Once again, she refused to accept the veracity of the evidence presented to her.

Higher education should of course present a broad range of ideas to its students, but surely lecturers must be willing and able to differentiate between propaganda, opinion and fact.

It is worrying that Dr Karmi’s views should be given a platform
of respectability, a safe space to fester in the university’s lecture
hall.

Surely it is not appropriate that academia is utilised as a platform to promote a personal political agenda and to allow this brings the otherwise excellent University of Exeter into disrepute.

Coral Ash, Buckinghamshire

It’s time for more moderate voices

If Labour MPs were serious about anti-Semitism, they would insist Mr Corbyn stands down and would vote in a moderate leader, man or woman, who supports Israel.

People should ignore the Labour Party, boycott it and move on to another that makes them feel at home.

Labour is no home for a decent Jew any more. A good Jew will stand up for his or her religion, be proud and always stand up for Israel or be a friend, now more than ever. It is our blood.

Victor Rones, Bracknell

Correct to quit UNHRC

I disagree with the conclusion of your editorial comment “Better to reform from in than out?” (Jewish News, 21 June) on the United States quitting membership of the United Nations’ Human Rights Council (UNHRC) for being a ‘cesspool of political bias’.

The number seven is profoundly significant in Judaism, and mostly with positive overtones. But not so with the UNHRC that has on its business agenda, and has done for a long time now, Item 7 “Israel and the Occupied Palestinian Territories”. This is up for discussion at every council session.

Yes, only democratic Israel has been singled out for constant condemnation of her activities and supposedly, in the eyes of the member countries, continuing human rights abuses.

The UNHRC is never going to be reformed by its members. You either accept that, or leave the organisation. Sometimes in life, quitting is fitting.

J D Milaric, Borehamwood

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