Letters to the editor: August 28, 2018

Tibet and China

When did Tibet (Xizang) become an integral part of China?

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The article “A report, a reply and the sad truth” (August 26) argues that “China has occupied Tibet since 1951.” This does not comply with historical facts.

As early as in the 13th century, the Yuan Dynasty of China began to exercise full sovereignty over Xizang (the official name of Tibet). A central commission was established to supervise administrative and Buddhist affairs in Xizang. The central government of the Ming Dynasty (1368-1644) and the Qing Dynasty (1644-1911) further systematized and legalized the central government’s sovereignty over Xizang. During the period of the Republic of China (1912-1949), it was stipulated in the Constitution that Xizang was part of China’s territory.

It is worth mentioning that since the beginning of the Qing Dynasty, all the Dalai Lamas and Panchen Erdenis had their titles granted by the central government of China. The current 14th Dalai Lama was enthroned in 1940, during a ceremony presided over by the Minister of the Commission for Mongolian and Xizang Affairs of the central government.

The founding of the People’s Republic of China in 1949 was only a change of the state political power and the social system in China, which does not change the fact that Xizang is an integral part of China. In 1951, the local authorities of Xizang sent a plenipotentiary delegation to Beijing, and reached an agreement of peaceful liberation of Xizang. Later, the 14th Dalai Lama publicly expressed his support to the central government. He held the position of the deputy chairman of the Standing Committee of the First and the Second National People’s Congress of China.

The democratic reform was carried out in 1959, thereafter the Zang people have lived a life of greater openness, prosperity and cultural advancement.

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WANG YONGJUN
Spokesman, Embassy of China in Israel

Thirst for solutions

Regarding “5-year drought brings bodies of water to historically low levels” (August 27), the government is discussing building two additional desalinization facilities. Instead, we should be implementing the oft-proposed pipeline from the Mediterranean to the Kinneret with a desalinization plant en route. This would solve the problem of the Kinneret and the Dead Sea as well as provide water to Jordan and the Palestinians.

The pipelines would not be more complicated or expensive than those needed to bring water from additional plants build on the shoreline The Europeans would pay for it for political reasons and it would promote the peace process. The Chinese could build it. Since technical proposals were drawn up years ago, the plans could be implemented in a reasonable period of time.

ZVI FINK
Modi’in

Not a binary reality

In an analysis piece published August 23 (“Analysis: What price will Israel have to pay for the US Embassy Move?”), the writer implies there are only two possible “future realities” for Israel – either a “unitary, undemocratic state” or a hazardous “Palestinian state” a quick bike ride from Ben-Gurion airport.

Insisting that there are only two “future realities” for Israel is like saying there are only two places to live in North America: either a houseboat on the Atlantic Ocean or a rowboat on the Pacific. In fact, of course, there are myriad other options.

So, too, there are dozens of plans other than the hazardous two-state and unitary one-state “solutions.” Our organization, Mattot Arim, has compiled an entire information booklet presenting numerous such alternatives. Many were put forth by eminent Israelis and all are realistic and thought-provoking. The booklet is available online, in the original Hebrew and in English translation.

SUSIE DYM
Rehovot


On target

In the article “IDF buys rockets that can strike ‘anywhere in Mideast’” (August 28) about 10-meter accuracy rockets, the writer does not mention in her article that the US Marines have for years extensively deployed the M777 lightweight Howitzer 150mm field gun, which has a range of 30 km. with a proven accuracy of plus/minus 10 meters.

This weapon is currently being supplied to the Government of India

NAME WITHHELD
Jerusalem

Double standard?

In “Embrace Avnery’s legacy” (August 27), a no doubt well-meaning letter writer compares today’s West Bank Arabs with the Americans in 1776 and with the Israelis in 1948 and asks why there is “a double standard that singles out Palestine with a higher bar” when it comes to declaring independence.

While some facile comparisons can indeed be made between the situations in 1776, 1948 and now, there are also innumerable glaring differences and factors that the writer conveniently neglects to consider or mention.

To be clear, I share the writer’s abhorrence for double standards. It is for that very reason that the corrupt Arab leaders who are hoping to force the State of Israel back to the indefensible 10-mile wide cease-fire lines of 1948 – in the process making more than a half million civilians homeless by driving them from their communities in their indigenous homeland – should be held to the same high legal and moral standards as the American and Israeli founding fathers were.

With all due respect to the letter writer dispensing advice from his safe home in far-away Cambridge, Massachusetts, there is no double standard at play here. Arguments based on false comparisons and fake history inevitably lead to irredeemably flawed conclusions.

FANNIE SOLOMON
Jerusalem

No monopoly on sanity

Regarding “A middle-of-the-way government can restore sanity to the system” (August 27), the writer exhibits the Left’s estimation of itself as intellectually superior to any other section of the population.

The Left constantly proclaims Israel as a Jewish and democratic state and yet denies both at the same time. The human brain can strangely accept and believe two opposing ideas at the same time. Left-wing secularists view the Bible as a man-made myth, disregarding the fact that the Bible is the only basis for the State of Israel to claim that this is Jewish land. At the same time, they constantly charge that the government is destroying democracy here, although it is democratically elected.

The Jewish people, including those Jews who disregard it, is defined by our religion. If the State is Jewish, then the public face of Israel must demonstrate this by keeping Jewish religious laws in public and that includes non-desecration of the Sabbath. Those who favor building the bridge over the Ayalon on the Sabbath say it is the cheapest way of building it – so they wish to abandon Israel’s Jewishness for money.

The writer then displays contempt for Israelis who voted for the parties on the right – who fear that the Left’s obsession with giving away parts of Eretz Yisrael to gain the approval of the international community, which will last no longer than yesterday’s newspaper before they pressure us for more concessions – by saying, “If Israel had the sort of government that it should have…” She seems to believe that only she and her ilk know what sort of government the Jewish people should have – certainly not the Israeli man and woman on the street, who she considers ignorant and contemptible.

No matter how highly she values her views, the writer has no monopoly on sanity.

CYRIL ATKINS
Beit Shemesh
 
Lithuanian Jewry lives on

Regarding “‘Israel is strong, proud, forever,’ PM says at site of Ponary massacre” (August 26), to the recent remarks in Vilnius, Lithuania by Prime Minister Netanyahu and to the critical response by Ephraim Zuroff, I wish to add the following.

I had searched for my grandmother who disappeared in Palanga, Lithuania after the Nazi invasion of June 1941 for many years. Suddenly I found her by way of the book In Broad Daylight, by Father Patrick Desbois, reviewed by The Jerusalem Post recently.

In that book, the author states that on “October 12, 1941, three hundred Jewish women and children are executed by German customs officials and Lithuania police.” This short single sentence finally put an end to the argument regarding German-Lithuanian collaboration in the Einsatzgruppen.

What interests me further is the emphasis placed on killing women and children with the obvious intention of putting an end to the continuity of Jewish life in Lithuania. Yet it does continue for my grandmother through me here in Israel, where her grandchildren, great grandchildren and great-great grandchildren live. They do her proud. May her immortal soul and those of other victims rest in peace.

PNINA HAYLU
Jerusalem

Police the police

Your August 26 editorial “Investigate the police” says “imagine what could be done to each and every Israeli citizen.” Unfortunately, we don’t have to imagine; we have been victims of police negligence and/or corruption.

Because of a border dispute with a neighbor, an attorney who used to be a major in the police department muscled an indictment against us based on lies and fabrications. Not only did she leverage her connections, but she obtained a copy of the unsigned indictment for her client – the complainant – before we received any such document as indictees.

The police didn’t investigate, didn’t come to the property to check the facts, didn’t ask us anything and didn’t give us the opportunity for a hearing before the indictment. This is what is called in Israel a mischak machur (fixed game).

The investigative files were polluted with false documents and two of the prosecutors hid key information from us – including a letter from the above-mentioned lawyer to the prosecutor’s office to strong-arm them into the indictment, despite knowledge of the true facts. We have escalated the matter, but to no avail so far.

The police indeed need to be investigated – followed by a real cleaning.

NAME AND ADDRESS WITHHELD

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