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Anti-Semitism in the Arab World and France

March 21, 2004

By blaming Israel for regional destabilization (letter, March 17), Eugene O'Carroll is being insensitive and unrealistic. Brainwashed Palestinian youths blow themselves up, taking hundreds of innocent Israelis with them (many young children, many deliberately maimed for life), yet O'Carroll further torments the victims by calling Israel the oppressor. Palestinian schools have reinstituted the teaching of hateful anti-Jewish lies popularized by the Nazis.

If there were any defense for Palestinian actions, it would be that Israel started it. But the U.N. offered the Palestinians their own state in 1948. Israel accepted this two-state solution; the Arabs declared war and have never stopped fighting, still unwilling to accept Israel. The Palestinians are victimized by their own murderous leaders and the hatefulness of the greater Arab world; but Israel, the only democracy and the only reliable U.S. ally in the Middle East, must defend its citizens. No American should be insensitive to anti-Semitism or the threat to the Jewish state.

Rueben Gordon

North Hollywood

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Re "Memories Are Short, Hatred Is Forever," Commentary, March 15: Omar Bartov speaks of anti-Semitism in Europe. It exists openly in France. I had a home, recently sold in the Loire Valley, in Villiers Sur Loire. It was known I was Jewish. The bakery where I bought my morning bread wouldn't sell me any more, stating, "Juif allez" (Jew, get out), on my last visit. At LeClerc, a large Wal-Mart-type store that is all over France, they refused to serve me, simply pointing and calling out loudly, "Juif, Juif." Jew, Jew. Anti-Semitism is alive and well in France.

Richard Levine

Reseda

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