Readers React: The U.S. gives Israel billions in aid. Of course we should care about the Palestinians

Palestinian men pray in front of the Dome of the Rock mosque in the Old City of Jerusalem on May 24.
(Ahmad Gharabli / AFP-Getty Images)

To the editor: James Kirchick’s solution to the Palestinian-Israeli conflict is to ignore the Palestinians.

Kirchick mentions China, North Korea, Syria, Egypt and Iran as perpetuating much graver humanitarian crises than what the Palestinians are enduring. What Kirchick ignores is that those countries are authoritarian dictatorships over which the United States has little or no influence.

Israel, meanwhile, proclaims itself a democracy and, given the decades of unstinting financial, legal and moral support, one would expect that the U.S. has some mitigating influence on Israeli behavior.

If we choose to ignore the Palestinians, then we are left to hope that the Israelis and Palestinians will find a way to live in peace in one state, or Kirchick will be forced to concede that Israel is an apartheid state.


Arch Miller, Arcadia


To the editor: If the ultimate Palestinian goal was statehood, there could have been one alongside Israel in 1948, and several times since.

Even Jordan, which has a Palestinian majority and comprises almost four-fifths of the original Mandate for Palestine, could have been a Palestinian state.


The primary obsession of the cause has always been to destroy Israel. Thus Palestinian leaders rejected every peace process, such as President Clinton’s 2001 plan, lest they have to recognize a permanent Israel of any size.

Imagine how different the region could be if Arab leaders had looked forward, as did Israel after it survived the 1948 war. Israel uplifted all the Jewish refugees from Arab countries. It built a modern economy under siege.

More than 70 years on, Palestinian and other Arab leaders still cannot accept that Israel survived all their military and political warfare. Their unwavering intransigence and corruption are the real cause of the Palestinian plight.

Doron Lubinsky, Atlanta


To the editor: Kirchick employs a classic variant of the tu quoque logical fallacy, also known as “whataboutism,” in which he attempts to convince the reader that we shouldn’t invest that much concern over the Israeli treatment of the Palestinians. He then offers us a litany of other morally objectionable concerns that we should be focused on instead.

We might not like what is happening in parts of China, Congo, North Korea or other places, but we aren’t giving the perpetrators millions of dollars in aid a day and giving them diplomatic cover and tacit approval as well.

Paul McDermott, Los Angeles


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