August 20, 2007
From Our Readers


Re: Mideast Apologetics:
How to Lie (Perhaps Accidentally) with Statistics and Maps
of August 13, 2007

James Adler made one common fallacious assumption on which he bases all of his comments, namely that Israel stole the land it currently inhabits.

The Ottoman Empire lost the war and the mandate over Palestine was given to the victors-(Great Britain)-which is what happens in every war

The United Nations partitioned Palestine giving one part to the Arabs and one part to the Jews. Israel accepted the plan; the Arabs rejected it. (1947)

When Israel declared its independence in 1948 Arab nations attacked Israel as a result of which Israel gained more territory. The wars that followed instigated or began by the Arabs cost the Arabs more territory. Authors such as Shlomo Ben- Ami have questioned whether Israel was as victimized as the above suggests but the truth remains that Israel has offered much in the way of concessions over the years giving back land and offering to give back more e.g. the Sinai, Gaza, Barak's offer of 91% of the West Bank, etc.

Israel has "stolen" nothing; rather it has had to fight for its right to live in peace with security.

Read Bill Clinton's My Life and see how much Israel has tried to make peace with the Arabs.

Mr. Adler, if your assumptions are not accurate the rest of your comments based on them are, to say the least, questionable.

Sim Prystowsk

Re: Comments of August 13, 2007

Dear Ms. Marianne Dunlop,

You prove yourself a devoted disciple of John Turner, and there you have the advantage.  I do not know John Turner.  I have never met the gentleman.  I "know" him only from his written words.  I never heard of him until I started reading the Harvard Square Commentary, and that because of Ernest Cassara who I knew from my Tufts University days.  Mr. Turner is, very likely, the man you portray him to be.

However, I am not the man you portray me to be, nor do I know him.  I am a man who cares deeply and passionately about the world in which I live and the persons who inhabit it.  I bring both reason and deep emotion to the task of how best to improve the lot of both people and planet. 

As I view the major difference between John Turner and myself, it is that I may, and often do, shed tears for persons and events for whom and for which I care deeply, although I may have no direct personal face-to-face relationship or direct personal involvement.  John Turner does not.  I believe that to be unfortunate.  He does not.  We shall agree to disagree, I with considerable passion, he with the calm and dispassionate voice of reason.

These last words are in response to your first words. Grief is an important part of the celebration of a life that was and no longer is.  I do not now, nor have I ever, had the expectation that my grief, nor that of any other human being, will raise the dead.  Insofar as I know, the dead are dead.

Richard Norsworthy


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