- The Washington Times - Tuesday, June 10, 2003

No ‘zero-sum game’

Zalman Shoval could not be more hypocritical in his analysis of those individuals who stand for nonviolence in the occupied territories (“Human shields,” Op-Ed, June 4). The Zionist movement was born of a desire to end suffering and a desire to find peace. Peace through strength. This is all that Palestinians seek now. Those in nonviolent resistance to the occupation are only demanding the same. To argue that everyone who stands with Palestinians is standing for terror and anti-Semitism is to expound the same tired old extremist ideology that got us into this mess in the first place. This is not a zero-sum game. Someone can be pro-Palestinian and pro-peace, just as someone can be pro-Israeli and pro-peace. Peace is not an ethnic birthright. As a nonviolent activist, I have to wonder what Mr. Shoval wants. He doesn’t want Palestinians to act violently to stop the occupation, and now he doesn’t want them to act nonviolently to stop the occupation. Perhaps he just wants them to live with occupation.

DAVID NASSAR

Arlington

Michael F. Brown, executive director of Partners for Peace, calls former Ambassador Zalman Shoval’s column “libelous” because of what Mr. Shoval said about the International Solidarity Movement and the death of Rachel Corrie and the injury to Tom Hurndall. Mr. Brown completely ignores the fact that Israel under Prime Minister Ehud Barak was quite willing to give up almost all of Judea and Samaria and the Gaza to Yasser Arafat, but the offer was rejected. Mr. Brown ignores the fact that Mr. Arafat does not want peace. He wants to eliminate the state of Israel and the Jews in it and launched a war of terrorism to that end. Mr. Brown ignores the fact that this is Nazism by another name.

President Bush has said that when it comes to terrorism, you are either with us or against us. If people like Rachel Corrie and Tom Hurndall want to stand in harm’s way to defend terrorist Nazis, then they stand with those terrorists. If harm befalls them, so be it. When it comes to defending its citizens against terrorism and Nazism. Israel has no need to make excuses to the likes of Mr. Brown.

JACK RUTNER

Silver Spring

The left’s bizarre logic

Tony Blankley’s column on the Machiavellian Bush was excellent (“George ‘Machiavelli’ Bush? Nah,” June 4). I see only one flaw in his arguments, and that is what appears to be his fundamental assumption that logic and rational thought have something to do with the “deep” thinking of the left and specifically the Democratic Party.

The Democratic Party is out of power, and most of its leaders will do anything, say anything, be anything to get back into power. In most cases, and sadly, they seek power not to make the United States a better and safer place for its citizens, but for power alone.

Sadly, the voice of the media, except for the rare print publication such as The Washington Times, is at its best tainted with the same bizarre leftist logic and at its worst controlled by such logic. What is inexplicable to me is why both the leftist media and the Democratic Party believe they are all so intellectually superior to the rest of us.

Yet, to play on one of Tina Turner’s songs, “What’s logic got to do with it?”

EDWIN W. IRBY JR.

Tallahassee, Fla.

Republicans and spending

In yesterday’s editorial “The Republican moment,” this conclusion, “Conservatives will have to accept a big increase in the size of the federal government …” will not cause any of our Republican senators or even President Bush to lose any sleep; they will gloss over it with talk of liberty and freedom and sell us out because, in my book, they are RINOs (Republicans in name only). For all Mr. Bush’s talk of tax relief, our federal government gets bigger and bigger. Deficit spending is through the roof. You have to start wondering when this out-of-control spending is going to cause irreparable damage to our economy. Time to buy gold, I think.

ROBERT LEWIS

Hermitage, Pa.

The thing about Hillary

I’m having a real problem about this Hillary thing. Isn’t this the same woman the Democrats just a short while ago said was the smartest woman in America? Yep. Well, if this “smart” woman says she didn’t know about Willy’s woman chasing, she has to be lying to us.

We don’t need another liar like Willy as president. But, if she is so dumb that she didn’t know, she is not qualified to be president. Maybe that doesn’t make any difference to her supporters.

Why doesn’t the press just ignore her? Maybe (one can hope) she’ll go away.

STEVE SWARINGEN

Palatka, Fla.

U.S. superiority

I am astonished to see Thomas Sowell asserting U.S. superiority primarily by citing devastating social challenges faced by India (“Utopia vs. the U.S.,” Commentary, Saturday).

Growing up in India, I learned that a nation’s validation comes from achievement, not through denigration of others. For all its many social and economic challenges, India has kept faith with this ideal and never once has tired of aspiration and effort. That it is still here, and succeeding in the face of impossible odds, is the stuff of magic.

The magic of America, on the other hand, is its constant yearning to stretch the limits of human achievement. The world is in awe of this uniquely American virtue.

If America ever were reduced to breast-beating by pointing to others less fortunate, as Mr. Sowell would have it do, this magic would fade forever.

SHUBH SAUMYA

New York

To serve under God

I read with interest Nat Hentoff’s laundry list of complaints about President Bush’s nomination of Alabama Attorney General Bill Pryor to the 11th Circuit Court of Appeals (“Red meat for Dems,” Op-Ed, Monday). Among his many grievances, Mr. Hentoff lambasted Mr. Pryor over the issue of religion:

“As for the separation of church and state, Mr. Pryor, in a speech four years ago to the Christian Coalition, declared unambiguously that ‘we derive our rights from God and not from government.’ Why, then, do we have a Constitution in which there is no mention of God, except for the date of the end of the 1787 Constitutional Convention?”

His commentary on the Constitution aside, Mr. Hentoff evidently has misplaced his copy of the Declaration of Independence. An important passage explicitly asserts a view in line with that of Mr. Pryor. “[A]ll men,” the Declaration reads, “… are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights … .” Thomas Jefferson’s famous words then proceed to note that “Governments are instituted among men …” not for the purpose of creating rights but rather to “secure these rights,” endowed to man by his Creator from those who would violate and usurp them. In light of these facts, it is absurd to suggest that Mr. Pryor’s comments are in conflict with the core principles of American government.

PHIL MAGNESS

Fairfax, Va.

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