Mike Lyons’ Jan. 7 letter (“Conflict in Israel can’t be blamed entirely on Obama”) falsely claims Israel occupies “Palestinian land” without supplying a shred of proof or analysis. He then asserts that “decades” of oppression, detention camps, land theft, denial of rights “and more” are Israeli state policies that oppress Palestinians. Only reckless indifference to or ignorance of 100 years of Middle East history can support that nonsense.
Lyons’ “oppression” claim is absurd: The Arab citizens of Israel have the same civil rights as the Jews. They vote, are members of the Knesset, are part of the civil and diplomatic service, and have complete religious freedom.
The only “right” the Arab citizens don’t enjoy is the obligation to serve in the Israeli military.
Given space, I could confute all the other false claims as well. However, perhaps it is sufficient to remind Lyons that Israel is the only democracy in the entire Middle East and to note further that every senior Palestinian leader since 1947, along with most Arab leaders, have stated they will not accept a Jewish state under any circumstances.
As for the latest Barack Obama contribution, I’ll go with Charles Krauthammer (Dec. 31): It’s shameful.
Jackson L. Forney, Nipomo