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Israel's Demolition of Palestinian Homes

February 17, 2003

Re "Israel's Demolition Policy Strikes Hard," Feb. 13: In the war of attrition and terror launched by the Palestinian leadership in September 2000, strikes against Israel take the form of indiscriminate murder of civilians in restaurants and on buses. Israel, by contrast, responds with the selective destruction of bricks and mortar.

This policy should dispel any notion of moral equivalency, or references to "cycles of violence" in the current conflict between Israel and the leaders of the intifada.

Those who find equivalence between random destruction of human life and selective destruction of property are in essence denying Israel any right to respond to terrorism.

We'll never know how many would-be suicide bombers are deterred from carrying out attacks because they are afraid of the hardship it might cause their own families. But if it causes even one potential terrorist to reconsider, the policy, regrettable as it may be, is justifiable.

Ira Mehlman

Marina del Rey

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Thank you for your excellent article covering the cruel, senseless and ineffective Israeli policy of demolishing often-innocent Palestinians' homes. Clearly the minds behind this policy are not interested in anything other than revenge -- certainly not peace.

Judy Neunuebel

Santa Barbara

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