Readers React

Israel's response to the Jerusalem synagogue attack

To the editor: I was touched by the words in the article today on Rabbi Kalman Levine, who died in the synagogue attack last week in Jerusalem. Levine exhorted people to increase the force of good in the world as a means of defeating the forces of evil. ("Victim of Jerusalem synagogue attack 'a real man of God,'" Nov. 19)

On the front page of the same issue of The Times, a photo showed the demolished home of a Palestinian man who killed two Israelis in a previous attack. A separate photo inside the paper showed a boy walking through what was left of his home. ("Israeli demolition of Palestinian home follows synagogue attack," Nov. 19)

Israel is right to suggest, as it has in the past, that these demolitions may serve to radicalize those left behind — so why is it now going forward with the demolitions after the latest Palestinian attack?

Why not heed Rabbi Levine's wishes for people not to respond to violence with more violence?

Cecelia Kennelly-Waeschle, Beverly Hills

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To the editor: Are readers supposed to feel empathy for the Palestinian killers' families and other enablers of their despicable butchering of innocent Jews when Israel demolishes their homes? Or is this more of the "disproportionate response" criticism of Israel for trying to stop attacks on its innocent civilians?

What's next, the United Nations condemning Israel's home demolition as a war crime?

Alan Segal, San Diego

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To the editor: Anyone who has doubts about the mind-set of the Arabs living in the vicinity of Israel need only read about their reaction to the brutal slaying of peaceful rabbis in a west Jerusalem synagogue.

As The Times reported, they were gleefully marching in the streets, as if one of their soccer teams had just won the World Cup. It is shamefully reminiscent of the flag-waving demonstrations in some Arab-controlled cities after 9/11.

How can Israel negotiate with leaders of such a reprehensible, hate-filled mob?

Jack Winnick, Culver City

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