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The Assassination of Yassin: Was Israel's Blow Justified?

March 28, 2004

Some readers of The Times offer the opinion that Sheik Ahmed Yassin could have been apprehended (letters, March 25). That is ludicrous. He would have been defended by possibly hundreds of followers.

How many Israeli soldiers and Palestinian lives would have had to be sacrificed to apprehend him? After apprehending him, how would the world view his incarceration and possible trial? Some other countries would not want him executed. What would the Israelis do with him? Then there is the possibility of Hamas taking hostages or blackmailing the Israelis with multiple bombings for his return.

No, the assassination worked best for Israel. There is no chance of the Palestinians getting this murderer back, no matter what they do, or what threats they make.

Gary S. Silverstein

Van Nuys

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Israel does not want peace. The assassination of Yassin confirms Israel's policy of escalating the conflict. It will not deter Palestinian attacks; on the contrary, in the words of one Hamas member, Prime Minister Ariel Sharon "has planted the seeds for 1,000 Sheik Yassins."

Sharon, who has more Palestinian blood on his hands than any man in history, knows that very well. His crimes against the Palestinian people are calculated to provoke retaliation and thus justify further ethnic cleansing.

Haithem El-Zabri

Marina del Rey

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Two Jews were being stood against a wall by a Nazi execution squad. Allowed a few last words, the first Jew curses his killers, telling them they will lose the war and roast in hell and all their crimes will be avenged and ... then he hears the other Jew whispering in his ear: "Shush! You'll make them mad."

Substitute Arab suicide terrorist groups and you will have grasped the madness of saying that Yassin's execution -- he whose crimes were self-confessed (flaunted) -- will make Hamas angry, or even angrier, at any Jew who dares to live in the U.N.-created land of Israel.

Gene Warech

Los Angeles

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Israel will doubtless ignore any U.N. resolutions that result from its summary assassination of Yassin, paid for with our tax dollars and executed with our missiles and helicopter gunships. America will be attacked again as the "poodle" of the Israelis, only this time it may really hurt. We have no business supporting Israel's religious-based claim to Palestinian land; it's just theft, and we are all going to pay with blood for tacitly supporting the bloodthirsty Sharon.

Chris Williamson

Oxnard

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Congratulations. By condemning Israel's assassination of Yassin (editorial, March 23), The Times has lined up with cowardly, terrorist-appeasing European governments and with a Palestinian public relations machine that makes White House political advisor Karl Rove look like an amateur. Yassin lived for Jews' dying, and though his death won't stop terrorist attacks against the civilized world, neither would his survival.

Steve Meister

Sherman Oaks

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