- The Washington Times - Monday, April 22, 2002

Israel fights back

The suffering caused by the Israeli assault on Jenin cannot be denied, even if some of it was caused by weapons and bombs of the terrorists entrenched there.

It also cannot be denied that Jenin was a major center of operations for Palestinian extremists terrorizing Israel with suicide bombings. As you report in the April 20 story "Attacks turn Jenin into a boneyard," "Israel officials said more than two dozen terrorist attacks have been launched from this camp." The extent of the armed resistance in Jenin, booby traps and all, only testifies to this fact.

The outcry about the Israeli assault is like a child continually beating up his brother and then, when his brother fights back, running to Mom yelling "Billy hit me."


RODNEY BROOKS

Rockville

Tancredo slams door on illegal immigrants

It is encouraging to read about a Republican who is not afraid to criticize President Bush's immigration policies, which are poorly considered and endanger the nation ("Bush's 'open door' slammed," April 19).

Rep. Tom Tancredo of Colorado is a welcome spokesman for the view most Americans hold: The United States' borders should be defended, and U.S. immigration laws should be enforced.

Furthermore, the majority of Americans are not interested in some sort of co-mingled "region" of Mexico and our Southwest. Immigration is transforming the Southwest into a Mexican cultural zone. Large areas of Southern California are no longer recognizable as the United States. For example, Santa Ana is 76 percent Hispanic, and the formerly black community of Watts is 60 percent Latino.

Of course, the same open borders that are Mexicanizing the Southwest also provide easy entry for the United States' murderous enemies. Mr. Tancredo is right to warn that short-term political pandering is endangering national security.


BRENDA WALKER

Berkeley, Calif.

Couric criticisms aside, Israeli raids have saved lives

Here are some facts that Katie Couric should consider before again attacking Israel's efforts to shut down Yasser Arafat's terror machine ("Katie's tutorial," Editorials, April 20).

According to the Jerusalem Post, "Since the beginning of Operation Defensive Shield, 12 senior terrorists have been arrested and two killed." In addition, "Seventeen 'mid-level' terrorists have been arrested and six killed, while dozens of field commanders have been arrested, and hundreds have been killed in gun battles." These arrests, along with the capture of numerous bomb belts and other weapons, will save countless civilian lives.

The arrest of Husam Ataf Ali Badra a few days ago means that the Israel Defense Force has taken out of circulation a terrorist responsible for attacks that caused the deaths of more than 100 Israelis and wounded hundreds more, including the notorious attacks at the Dolphinarium in Tel Aviv, the Sbarro pizzeria in Jerusalem, the Nahariya train station, the Matza restaurant in Haifa, and the Pessah massacre at the Park Hotel in Netanya.


EVAN WAGSHUL

Brooklyn

Cartoon exhibits anti-Catholic bias

Peter Steiner's cartoon in the April 18 edition, which shows a woman asking a Catholic priest whether "there will be a chaperone here while all the cardinals are in Rome," is a vicious slap in the face to the thousands of dedicated and holy Catholic priests who are not sexual abusers of children.

The overwhelming majority of priests have been faithful to the vows they have made, giving up marriage and families to serve God and His people, and working long hours with little or no pay.

The Catholic church is not the only institution that has some leaders who are guilty of these abominations. I've read stories in The Washington Times about clergy of other faiths, teachers, etc., who have sexually abused youth. But these stories don't make the front page. When Catholic clergy are guilty of such crimes, however, there is a media circus.

I stopped subscribing to The Washington Post 10 years ago, one reason being its blatant anti-Catholicism. Anti-Catholicism is the only form of bigotry that is acceptable in American society. I am very disappointed to find it in The Washington Times.


DIANE ISABELLE REINKE

Wheaton

Palestinians hold moral high ground

Eleanor Roosevelt once said, "Justice cannot be for one side alone but must be for both." However, Suzanne Fields completely marginalizes the Palestinian dead in her April 18 Op-Ed piece "No chicken soup for the Muslim hearth."

In her selective myopia, Ms. Fields forgets to note that more than 1,600 Palestinians Christians and Muslims have been killed in the current intifada. She also conveniently did not mention that only about 350 Israelis have lost their lives in this conflict. She pretends to take the moral high ground but implies that the life of an Israeli is worth five times that of a Palestinian.

She also self-righteously takes a platform on suicide bombings and their moral equivalency. However, she forgets to mention that these Palestinian youths are fighting a fully funded army, which shoots Tomahawk missiles from its American-subsidized gunships into refugee camps like Jenin or picks off rock-throwing children with their high-powered sniper rifles.

If you want to take the moral high ground on the issue, mention that Israel continuously violates 64 United Nations resolutions and that its actions have been condemned by Amnesty International and Human Rights Watch.

Mrs. Roosevelt would be ashamed of Ms. Fields' self-righteous and biased commentary.


ARSALAN TARIQ IFTIKHAR

Midwest communications director

Council on American-Islamic Relations

St. Louis

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