Monday August 6, 2012

In his op-ed article of Aug. 2 Tom Friedman is absolutely correct in exposing the vote-getting and fundraising objectives of Mitt Romney’s recent short trip to Israel. Friedman would strengthen his critique of the stalled peace talks if his recent historical references were correct.

For example: Friedman states, "Palestinian people living under occupation." The recent occupier of the West Bank was Jordan from 1948 to 1967. Before then, Judea and Sumaria were part of the Ottoman Empire for 400 years and then a U.N. mandate, for a short time, run by Britain until 1948. There never was a Palestine state in this territory. Thus, it cannot be currently "occupied." At best, it can be considered "disputed" territory by the Jews and Arabs living there.

Then, Friedman goes on to imply, "Israel can be doomed to become a kind of apartheid South Africa." Arab citizens vote in Israeli elections. Israeli Arabs are elected to Parlia ment. There are Arab judges in the Israeli court system. There is no basis in fact for Friedman to use the canard "apartheid" about the state of Israel.

A two state solution will emerge by the ending of terror attacks on Israeli civilians and both Jews and Arabs learning to live together as peaceful neighbors in the new state.

MARTIN SILVER

Lenox