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Sadly, these same observations and the unavoidable conclusions apply equally well to the US. In fact, the US and Israel are the only two countries that claim to be civilized Western nations and still engage in torture.

bradley foster

Eugene, OR

Apr 11 2009 - 2:08am

Web Letter

One of the first books I read on Israel was Avi Shlaim's The Iron Wall: Israel and the Arab World. Shlaim wrote the truth, even if it was painful! He had some quotes from Moshe Dayan in his book and his views on reprisals. I don't think Dayan hated Arabs, but he was ruthless. "Dayan was closely associated with the policy of reprisals from the beginning." "As early as June 1950 he defended at a meeting of the Mapai Secretariat and members of Knesset the policy of collective punishment against Arab villages suspected of harboring infiltrators and saboteurs. Harassing the village, including women, children, and elderly people, he said, 'is the only method that has proved itself effective, not justified or moral, but effective, when Arabs lay mines on our side' " (p. 102).

These types of activities have been around since the "War of Independence." In his book One Palestine Complete, Tom Segev wrote about the Deir Yassin massacre, which occurred in April of 1948. "In coordination with the Haganah, An Etzel and Lechi force attacked the village, killing dozens of civilians, an including, women and children" (p.507). The policy of retaliation crosses party lines and, while the religious right may now be the most enthusiastic, everybody did it and are still doing it.

I also saw comment in Ha'aretz about Dayan. He apparently told his commanders that they couldn't stop an assault until they had suffered 50 percent casualties. While Gaza was pretty bad, there would have been many more dead, on both sides, if he led that assault.

Pervis James Casey

Riverside, CA

Apr 10 2009 - 12:57pm

Web Letter

Amen to every single word you have said. I am so disheartened and angry that my Judaism has been hijacked by a gang of thugs and terrorists. The T-shirt fiasco demonstrates how brainwashed they are. Their treatment of the Palestinians is sub-human.

stanley hersh

New York, NY

Apr 10 2009 - 12:40pm

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