How much more courageous can one be than the self-proclaimed journalist/blogger Richard Silverstein, a Seattle resident?
In his meandering rant in the JTNews (“The Eleventh Commandment: Thou shalt not occupy,” Feb. 11) Mr. Silverstein acknowledges that if Israel did adopt the Silverstein plan for peace with the Palestinians, it would “involve risks.” But obviously, no risks to the brave Mr. Silverstein or his family, all snug and safe in Seattle, half a world away from the daily rocket and bomb attacks Israelis face in their battle for survival. Attacks by Palestinians against Jews, which began long before the rebirth of Israel.
Mr. Silverstein may have some military background, even faced combat, but if so, he remains strangely quiet on this subject. But to this very matured World War II Air Force combat vet with two overseas assignments, when you are attacked, when other forces say they will destroy you, take them seriously. You hit back hard, often and quickly, or you perish. As Israelis stress: “Never again!”
Ironically, Mr. Silverstein’s slanted, error-filled diatribe against Israel, strangely headlined as fact with “The Eleventh Commandment: Thou shalt not occupy,” seems to have phrasing lifted verbatim from the Hamas attack machine. As a self-anointed journalist, Mr. Silverstein should have at least used quotes. And of course, the headline should have included quotes to tell readers the headline was not an editorial judgment — which, without the quotes, is what it appears to be.
Most damning in Mr. Silverstein’s often-incoherent charges against the sliver of land called Israel, of occupation, lack of democracy, and his complete silence on Arab atrocities: Not a word about Arabs expelling Jews, even as Israel in 1948 pleaded with its Arab residents to remain in Israel. Not a word about Israel defending itself by having to push back the Arab attackers from Israel’s front door. Not a word by Mr. Silverstein of Israel being the only democracy in the Mideast, with open elections, where Arabs also hold office.