Readers have their say...
Campaign is anti-Jewish racism
I AM surprised that the general public seem to see only one side of the Palestine/Israel situation, eg G Dempsey’s letter to you in the Friday August 15 issue.
Surely it is obvious that Hamas started it all by attacking Israeli civilians by firing bombs/rockets from schools hospitals etc (not really caring about their own people which include innocent children by doing so) over to Israel (not to mention the tunnels) and in turn Israel is firing back — wouldn’t we as a country also defend ourselves?
The only reason Israel has not had as many casualties as Palestine is a reflection of the poor technology not the lethal intent of Hamas. Perhaps Israel should have just sat back and let themselves be pushed into the sea as the Islamists have ordered Hamas to do? I know that six of one and half a dozen of the other comes to mind and I am certainly horrified by what is happening on both sides, but I cannot envisage a solution as yet.
Hamas, an offshoot of the infamous Muslim Brotherhood, is not interested in a peace settlement, only in the annihilation of Israel and the Jewish people. Its founding charter drawn up in 1988 proclaims that “Israel will exist and will continue to exist until Islam will obliterate it”. Recently an iman in a Palestinian mosque declared “Our doctrine in fighting you the Jews is that we will totally exterminate you, we will not leave a single one of you alive”. So, on what aspect of anti-Semitic genocide is Israel supposed to negotiate with Hamas?
Instead of traducing Israel western politicians and the media should face up to the terrifying global threat of fundamentalist Islam, of which Hamas is a key part. We see that threat all over the world from the turmoil in Libya to the kidnapping of girls in Nigeria, from the stoning of women in Afghanistan to the savage persecution of Christians in Iraq. If Israel’s defences crack, it will be another milestone in the slide from liberal civilisation into a new dark, totalitarian age dominated by bigotry, misogyny and intolerance.
The baleful force of anti-Semitism is central to this aggressive Islamist ideology. That is why among militant Muslims and their western cheerleaders, there is such neurotic obsession with Gaza. It is the ideal vehicle for trying to demonise Israel and de-legitimise the Jewish state’s very existence.
The tragic irony is that Israel is one of the most open, prosperous countries yet now, thanks to the vicious anti-Jewish racism dressed up as concern for the Palestinians, it is treated in fashionable progressive circles as a pariah. In trumpeting their compassion for Palestine, the opposition to Israel progessive activists could hardly be more misguided.
There is nothing compassionate about Hamas’s creed of Islam, which seeks complete Sharia law and the subjugation of the infidel. When western progressives bleat about ending “the cycle of violence” they are in denial about the violent nature of jihadism. Hamas’s 1988 charter explicitly states “initiatives and so-called peaceful solutions are in contradiction of the principles of the Islamic resistance movement”. Israel has to break Hamas’s ability to wage war. Only by defeating terrorists can peace be achieved. Rather than carping from the side-lines western politicians should support that goal. Israel is a bulwark of civilisation against Islamism. Ultimately we will pay a terrible price if we betray this heroic nation. Perhaps it is the beginning of the Tribulation period that the Bible speaks of and that the end of the world as we know it is not so very far off?
Ms Hazel Ashton, Flanderwell, Rotherham
Israel breaks more UN resolutions than anyone
YOUR anonymous correspondent (Advertiser, August 29) is correct that there are two sides to the Gaza story — the problem is the media routinely pushes the Israeli line at the expense of the viewpoint of the Palestinian victims.
We should not be too surprised at bias in the media coverage. The Palestinians do not own or have interests in any Western newspapers or other media outlets, whereas Israel has, among others, Rupert Murdoch’s Sky News and Fox News at its disposal; and — closer to home — James Purnell, the BBC's Director of Strategy (whose brief covers news), a committed Zionist.
At this point, there is no link between Hamas and the deaths of the three teenagers who were kidnapped. It was not in Hamas's interests to do so. It would have been in Israel's to create a pretext for invasion and another regular cull of Palestinians (both Muslim and Christian). The timing of the kidnapping of the three teens is suspect as it came very soon after the Palestinians angered Israel by announcing they would form a consensus Government. Regarding the Palestinian teenager kidnapped and torched by Israelis, well there we do have conclusive evidence and the smart money is on short sentences for his killers.
There is no proof of Hamas using civilians as human shields. But there are over
2000 photographs of Israeli soldiers using Palestinian civilians (mainly
children) as human shields, whether fastened to the front of army jeeps or being held, blindfolded, in front of soldiers as they enter buildings.
There is also (Israeli army) video of soldiers deliberately shooting unarmed civilians and then laughing and celebrating. A moral army? No, a vile and wicked one.
Thankfully, some former soldiers are speaking out against the atrocities they have been encouraged to commit (Google ‘Breaking the Silence’). They are supported by many other decent Jews (Israeli and non-Israeli) who speak out about Israel’s crimes and its hate- filled, supremacist agenda. These include Miko Peled whose father was an architect of the Six Day War (look him up on YouTube) and over 300 Holocaust survivors and their descendents.
People should note that if there had been no Israeli blockade of Gaza (illegal under international law by the way — where is the US/EU's condemnation and action?) then there would be no need for so many tunnels. However, as food, medicine and even school books are prevented entry into the Gaza Strip, the tunnels are a necessary means of survival. As were the ones Poland’s Jews built in Warsaw.
It is clearly false to assert that Israel has been ‘given its land back’. As the land belonged to the indigenous (Palestinian) population it could only be given away by them. And they did not give it away. Many thousands were massacred while others were bombed, terrorized and raped out of their homes in the 1940s. Those who managed to remain are today treated as second class Israelis with less spend per head on health and education etc. than is spent on citizens who are Jews.
An overlooked fact is that many, if not most, Israelis are of European descent. The Zionist Arthur Koestler details the mass conversion of 500,000 Khazars in the eighth century in his work ‘The Thirteenth Tribe’ although present day Zionists try to play down or trash this fact (DNA is a bit of a problem for them!). In short, these have no tie, link or claim to the land. To the descendants of the Khazars can be added more recent European converts who automatically get the 'right to return'.
Your correspondent argues from a misguided, dangerous and corrupted Evangelical Christian viewpoint, prevalent across parts of the southern US and which is encouraged by Israel to support its expansionist aims. To contend that a mostly indigenous population should be (let's not beat about the bush) ethnically cleansed, and to seek to excuse Israel’s use of banned weapons against civilians, seems to me far from godly: it seems distinctly devilish.
Zionism’s advocates pass among us as sheep, yet their actions show, beyond doubt, that they are actually ravenous wolves. At the time of writing, Israel has just announced it is to seize yet more Palestinian land, in contravention of international law. It remains the country which has broken more UN Resolutions than any other.
C Gaynor, Herringthorpe Valley Road, Rotherham
Hamas is the evil
I HAVE never done this before but I cannot let Ged Dempsey’s letter go unchallenged
His letter headed “Apartheid in Gaza must be defeated” is full of misinformation and inflamatory language.
The only thing I agree with is “We need peace, humanity and dignity for all people in this region.”
Let’s start here. Israel gave up Gaza in 2005 for peace. Gaza was a thriving place of export of fruit and flowers. The Israelis left everything.
It could have been a good source of income enabling a better way of life. The first thing the new owners did was to smash everything and build up weaponry to use against Israel. The group Fatah was in control then under the leadership of Mammhoud Habbas. Two years later the terrorist organisation Hamas forcefully took over Gaza murdering in its wake.
Since then Israel has had over 3,000 missiles fired at their civilians, often daily! The people have from 15 to 45 seconds to get to shelter. Israel has put up with this for so long. Now again they have retaliated. What can they do against an organisation who openly declare that their goal is to wipe every Jew from the face of the earth? It’s still in their charter. What a good job they did. Going into Gaza they were able to discover the miles of tunnels dug from people’s houses, schools, mosques and other public places. Where were these tunnels going? Right under Israel. What was the intent? For thousands of Hamas terrorists to come up in Israel and commit the mass murder of Israeli civilians.
The Israel Defence Force, note the name ‘Defence!’ were defending their people. They fired back to where the missiles had come from. Not only tunnels in public places. But missiles launched from schools, mosques, buildings supposedly run by the UN, you name it! This is well documented and the fact that Israel gave warning of where they would target. The wicked Hamas love death more than life, again well documented. They forbid the ordinary Palestinian to move from targeted areas, using them as human shields.
During all this time Israel have been sending into Gaza food, medical equipment etc. They even had a field hospital set up to treat both sides.
To answer about the building of the wall. There was no choice. Suicide bombers were coming into Jewish towns and blowing up people at restaurants, on buses, at weddings, in nightclubs, anywhere they could. This has stopped after the defence of the wall, actually its mainly fencing, its not all wall.
The ‘murderous rampage’ as the last letter writer put is not from Israel, just go back to the suicide bombings and the tunnels and other murders of innocent Israelis going about their daily life. Israel do not target civilians!
It is also well documented that Hamas have given out instructions to foreign journalists as to what they can say in their reporting. If an Hamas fighter is not in uniform then it has to be reported that a civilian has been killed, thus controlling figures!
Of course the loss of human life is tragic in all circumstances. But do not blame the Israelis. It is Hamas keeping them there. Where are the Hamas leaders? Safe in Qatar in a defended building!
How can Israel possibly be an apartheid state?
They have Arab taxi drivers, teachers, members of parliament. In fact in all areas of society!
All this is truth, I have followed Israel for the last 20 years and visited many times.
Yvonne Hellewell, Greenhill Avenue, Hellaby
Refuse bin payment
ROTHERHAM rate payers should unite and refuse to pay the charge for emptying green bins, as being proposed by RMBC. They have forced green bins on every household, and are now proposing to charge to empty them.
If they need to save money I have a suggestion, cut out the junkets, cut back on unnecesssary street lighting, and take a cut in their obscene salaries.
Investment in skilled jobs is needed
THE British economy is in a Jekyll and Hyde situation.
While the fall in the jobless total of 132,000 is welcome, we have to ask what sort of jobs have those people entered? The situation is compounded by the fact that more and more people are being driven into so-called self-employment in a desperate bid to get off benefits and find work. This together with the massive growth of insecure flexploitation of agencies and zero hour contracts self-employment is not the economic panacea that ministers crow about; it forces workers into a state without rights and with wage insecurity, and we are increasingly encountering people forced into ‘self-employment’ by employers who want to swerve their responsibilities.
At the same time, the wage siege continues. If you strip out bonuses, wage rises are struggling along the bottom at a record low of 0.6 per cent which is hobbling the recovery in the UK economy. If self-employment earnings figures were included it would look even worse as the Rowntree Foundation has shown.
With George Osborne borrowing way beyond what he promised the nation, his mindless austerity policies are costing this nation and its people dear. This is no longer about reducing the deficit; it is about the systematic lowering of the living standards of ordinary people, whilst corporations cheat and rip off the state with tax avoidance scams and tax payers bail them out further by subsidising low pay.
Millions of people feel insecure in their jobs. Hundreds of thousands of our young people are languishing on the dole or press-ganged into workfare.
Inflation is still running at 1.9 per cent — more than three times the rate of earnings. The case is clear that Britain’s workers need a pay rise — and this can be well-afforded by the companies which are sitting on a cash mountain of reserves.
This government’s claims of economic competency are laughable. A government serious about job creation would not be borrowing to keep people in benefits, but would be investing to create work and skilled, decent jobs, through a mass house-building programme, rebalancing the economy away from its increasing dependency on the low-wages service sector, and tackling the chronic housing need in this country.
Ged Dempsey, Denman Road, Wath-upon-Dearne
Snooker hall memories
I WAS sorry to see the article in The Advertiser (May 23) regarding the possible closure of the Central Snooker Club.
I first started playing thereabout 1960/61 until the early eighties when it was run by the two Smith brothers, I think Graham was one of them. It was always known as Burtons, it being over Burtons the Tailors.
Last year one Saturday morning I was walking up High Street when I saw an exhibition in a shop window promoting the snooker at the Crucible in Sheffield, which was starting that day. I had a good look then turned around and crossed over and walked into the entrance of the Central Snooker Club.
I started to climb the steps but I had forgotten how many there was, by the time I had reached the top I was out of breath. I can remember how I used to run up all those steps years ago.
I was pleasantly surprised when I went through the door, there were pictures on the walls and there was a small bar with a small enclosed seating area to enjoy a drink. When I was a member it was very basic and the only drink I had was a bottle of pop. It looked a nice place to play snooker, no smell of cigarette smoke unlike back then, but as it was so early there was nobody playing on the tables.
I saw a woman behind the bar and went to have a word and it turned out to be Alison who told me she owned the club with her husband Richard who was preparing one of the tables. I told her I had just seen the exhibition across the road and said they had provided most of the exhibits. I mentioned that I used to be a member many years ago and that I played for the club team and was the captain, but I did explain how that came about. It just happened that the regular three three man team decided they didn’t want to play no more so Graham needed a team to finish the season, so I and two other young lads said we would do it. There were only about 10 matches left. I was a few years older than the other two so Graham made me captain and in charge of the money for expenses. I wasn’t all that good I don’t think I ever had a break over 30 but nobody else wanted to do it. We were near the bottom of the league when we started and that’s where we finished. I enjoyed doing it but we didn’t play the following season.
Back then there was also the College Snooker Club on Effingham Street, above the old College Inn. Then some time later another smoker club opened in the Esseldo buildings at the top of the High Street, I also enjoyed that. “Staffy” Brittle who was the top player in Rotherham for many years and was a well-known character and fixture in Burton’s moved to the new club when it opened and was involved with the running of it in some capacity I think.
I also remember there being a snooker hall on Badsley Moor Lane above the shops across from the hospital, I played there a few times about 1959/60 with my mates when we were coming back from the playing fields.
More recently there was the club on the corner of Howard Street and Doncaster Gate in the old Brittain’s store but that has now closed down.
It would be a pity if there was no longer a snooker club in the centre of town. Youngsters have to start somewhere and my starting place was the Miner Welfare on Far Lane at East Dene as a 14-year-old schoolboy.
Ray Hill, Greenfield Road, East Herringthorpe
UKIP will be positive change
I’D like to respond to all the anti-UKIP comments. Rotherham’s been governed for decades by a continuous Labour regime.
Over the years I’ve read and heard on local radio many derogatory comments about our once prosperous town, which today is classed by many as a dump.
To read that some still feel a change of political brand isn’t a positive step forward is disturbing. Do those desiring no political change really want more of the same poor services, massive council tax increases (should Labour win May 2015), trips abroad to encourage yet more incomers, refusing to listen to and act on the public’s behalf etc etc.
Before you cast your next vote I’d suggest asking a local councillor or MP to act on your behalf in bringing an important issue to public attention. You’ll receive a negative response from the main political brands, yet a positive action from UKIP.
So for more of the same till nothing is left or a positive attempt to make a change to Rotherham is in your vote.
Michael Mallin, Thorpe Hesley
Writer is misinformed
I SEE that Martin Ward continues to try and push his misinformation about the public sector and public sector pensions, in the style of Joseph Goebbels. He wants to libel doctors, nurses, teachers, firefighters etc. because of the abuse of a few at the top.
The private sector has far more to answer for if we are considering abuse. First there is the subprime mortgage catastrophe, which originated in the USA but rapidly spread worldwide in 2008-2009 and affected our economy. Despite this, top banking executives are still picking up their eye watering bonuses.
If the private sector is so perfect how does Martin explain Robert Maxwell, Rupert Murdoch and of course, one of the richest pensioners in history, Fred ‘the shred’ Goodwin?
The disastrous tinkering by Gordon Brown with pension tax credits was a legal change which affected both public and private sector pensions.
I have now quarrelled with his criticisms of Rotherham Council and their excesses and abuses. However their rank and file employees are not culpable for these because, as in the private sector, the workers are expected to do as they are told.
Martin should realise that ‘Tory Boy’ is fictional comedy character by Harry Enfield, not a role model!
Chris Broomhead, Boston Grove, Moorgate