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Opinion

Letters to the Editor: The visitors Israel rejected

Reps. Ilhan Omar (D-Minn.) and Rashida Tlaib (D-Mich.)
Reps. Ilhan Omar (D-Minn.) and Rashida Tlaib (D-Mich.) were denied entry into Israel by Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu.
(Carolyn Kaster / Associated Press)

To the editor: President Trump enjoys irritating and riling people. Thus, Trump’s urging Benjamin Netanyahu to deny U.S. Reps. Ilhan Omar (D-Minn.) and Rashida Tlaib (D-Mich.) permission to enter Israel fits his pattern of dividing and alienating people. Trump’s acolytes love his behavior.

I am not exactly sure how denying two U.S. congresswomen permission to visit Israel advances peace between Israelis and Palestinians.

The real problem is, neither do Trump nor Netanyahu. Both men are playing to their extremist, nationalistic religious bases and seem to hope that they can avoid prison by remaining in office.

Arch Miller, Arcadia

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To the editor: I am Jewish and pro-Israel. However, I do believe that I can criticize Israel for certain instances and still be pro-Israel. The decision to ban U.S. representatives from entering Israel because of their beliefs is one of those instances.

As Americans and Jews, we have always been taught two tenets, one to question and one to educate. What better opportunity to do both by Israel to our representatives?

To find out that our president and his staff pressured Israel to not allow them to visit is equally upsetting. They are duly elected officials who deserve all the rights and opportunities that go with their position. We, as a nation, and the world, are trending in the wrong direction to make our one world safe for ourselves and our future generations.

Doug Gould, Agoura Hills

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To the editor: President Trump is, of course, the disgrace in tweeting that Israel should deny access to Reps. Omar and Tlaib, and unsurprisingly, Prime Minister Netanyahu is no less a disgrace for blocking their visas.

As a Jewish American who supports the continued existence of the state of Israel and a just two-state solution to the Palestinian/Israeli conflict, I am proud to have representatives of the caliber of Omar and Tlaib in Congress. I disagree with some of their rhetoric and consider the Israel boycott ill-conceived, but I believe these two, among others in Congress — such as Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-N.Y.) — are positive examples of the rich and vibrant fabric of our society, which our president is attempting to shred.

Gordon Theil, Sherman Oaks

To the editor: I have no understanding of Israel’s law, but I would not voluntarily allow members of the KKK, Nazis or anti-Zionists who wish to eliminate the state of Israel into my home.

The Times reported that Rep. Omar said in Woodland Hills on March 24, “People like myself, and many of the people in this room, could care less about what they have to say, because we know who we are, and we belong,” when a group of Jews were protesting her anti-Semitic remarks. She was saying Jews don’t belong and should be ignored if they protest. She has made numerous well-documented anti-Semitic remarks, and “explained her remarks” with no apology to the American Jews she accused of being disloyal.

Edward Gilbert, M.D., Studio City

To the editor: I am disappointed with Netanyahu’s decision to ban the two U.S. members of Congress from visiting, it seems anti-democratic at first glance. I do not support the decision but it should be noted that Ms. Tlaib and Ms. Omar had the opportunity to visit Israel along with a congressional delegation a week ago. They would have been able to meet officials from both Israel and Palestine and from all the different political parties.

They chose instead to arrange a visit that would be exclusively Palestinian-slanted. Perhaps under these circumstances it is understandable why Netanyahu made the decision he did.

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Paul Sunderland, Los Angeles

To the editor: This piece is so out of touch with mainstream Americans that it should have never reached the print stage. There is nothing undemocratic about keeping two anti-Semitic politicians out of a state they hate. Look into Omar and Tlaib’s history. Start reporting on facts, be fair and balanced. Stop the left agenda and do some real reporting.

Robert Rehs, Sterling Heights, Mich.

To the editor: Money for Israel? From this American Jew? Not another cent.

Linda Hahn, Palm Desert


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