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Baker’s Warning to the Israelis

Secretary of State James Baker delivered a strong warning to the pro-Israel lobbying organization, saying that Israel must be realistic and give up territorial claims (Part I, May 23).

I will ask a very simple question of Baker. When has our country ever given up territories won in a war?

But more importantly, the Israelis didn’t start the wars they won; they fought hard to survive only after being attacked and because of superiority in strength--not in numbers of personnel--they won.

I don’t see the U.S. giving up New Mexico or any other part of our county--and I have never noted our country returning land to the Indians that we took with or without fighting for it.

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Let’s be realistic. If the Israelis were to give up the territories they would be committing suicide, pure and simple. They would have their enemy within just a few short miles--ready and anxious to thoroughly defeat Israel. And the U.S. would have to help in the rescue, bringing in our troops; this is something Israel doesn’t want the U.S. to do and our own Americans would refuse to participate on principle.

The sooner the Arabs--with their enormous wealth and so much open land--take care of their own, the Palestinians, the sooner peace can prevail. And none of this has a thing to do with giving up territories legally and ethically won by the Israelis.

HENRY EHRLICH

Los Angeles

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