The NYT Letters on Reps Tlaib, Omar, Israel, Mine, Two Others
Perhaps someone in Israel will find a way to complete what’s right here, open the door to Ms Omar, to all U.S. officials no matter what the failed president and prime minister may want.
Israel Bars 2 Congresswomen, and a Furor Ensues
Readers react to Israel’s decision to honor a request by President Trump.
Aug. 15, 2019
To the Editor:
Re “Israel Denies Entry to Omar and Tlaib After Trump’s Call to Block Them” (nytimes.com, Aug. 15):
President Trump’s urging Israel to show strength by denying entry to Representatives Rashida Tlaib and Ilhan Omar and Israel’s complying are only a show of weakness. What does Israel have to fear from two critics, no matter how radical their position might be perceived?
It would be a perfect opportunity for them to see what Israel is about and to meet with both Israeli and Palestinian leaders. What is Israel afraid of? These two congresswomen are in a position to open dialogue and build bridges. They should have the possibility of experiencing what is happening on the ground in both Israel and the West Bank.
Barring people from visiting countries because of differences of opinion and criticisms of that country represents actions more appropriate to dictatorships and autocrats.
To the Editor:
All countries, including Israel, have the right to bar entry to hostile foreigners. Representatives Rashida Tlaib and Ilhan Omar are vigorous supporters of B.D.S. (Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions). They are rightfully barred from entering Israel by the 2017 Israeli law preventing entry to hostile foreigners who support B.D.S.History is replete with examples of democracies damaged or subverted by enemies misusing the democratic rights such democracies grant. Israel is not required to walk down this path of national suicide, public relations — Democratic Party preferences or New York Times sensibilities notwithstanding.
Daniel H. Trigoboff
To the Editor:
Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu of Israel is as small and as shortsighted as the current United States president, who prompted the move to bar the two Democratic congresswomen from entering Israel, believing — wrongly — that this will win him the votes of hundreds of thousands of American Jews.
The women are elected United States representatives. Denying them entry to Israel over political views strikes at the soul of Israeli and American democracy,
Representatives Rashida Tlaib and Ilhan Omar must go to Israel.
Mr. Netanyahu and Mr. Trump simply must go.
North Bethesda, Md.
08/16/2019 @ 8:51 am
Rep. Tlaib has now been permitted access. I don’t know about Rep. Omar.
08/16/2019 @ 8:53 am
Uhmhmm. That’s what I meant, above, “complete what’s right”.
08/16/2019 @ 9:59 am
She was permitted access on some weak-ass “humanitarian” grounds. She agreed to Israel’s draconian “restrictions” so that she could visit her grandmother before she died.
What they did NOT do was give her the respect that should be shown a duly elected representative of the United States or that was shown to non-Muslim representatives.
In fact, they showed MUCH more respect to a guy who thinks some true, card carrying “Jew hating” neo-Nazis are “good people”.
08/16/2019 @ 10:02 am
I agree wholly, Amy.Now there’s news that she has chosen not to go.
I would not, either, under the restrictions placed on her visit.
08/16/2019 @ 3:55 pm
The fact that only one of the two Representatives was given access pretty much says it all, aside from the fact that AIPAC protested the decision not to allow them into Israel. Do you know what it takes for AIPAC to take on the Israeli government?
08/16/2019 @ 9:25 am
In my estimation, one of the reasons why Israel has yet to adopt and ratify a constitution is that nothing the government does can be declared “unconstitutional”.
08/16/2019 @ 9:29 am
You would be mistaken here, Ron. Israel followed the UK in that, during British rule, of course, and after. Neither nation now has a written constitution. The unwritten constitutions both in the UK and in Israel, figure in court cases continually.
08/16/2019 @ 11:21 am
I’m certain that my estimation is an oversimplification, to say the least.
However, the history re the failure of Israel to follow through on its commitment to adopt a constitution is murky at best and more than somewhat misleading.
Here’s what may be gleaned: Israeli leaders committed to the adoption of a constitutionto ensure support of the United States for the new state of Israel.
“The Israeli Declaration of Independence stated that a formal constitution will be formulated and adopted no later than 1 October 1948.”
“According to Israel’s proclamation of independence of May 14, 1948, a constituent assembly should have prepared a constitution by October 1, 1948. The delay and the eventual decision on June 13, 1950 to legislate a constitution chapter by chapter, resulted primarily from the inability of different groups in Israeli society to agree on the purpose of the state, on the state’s identity, and on a long-term vision. Another factor was the opposition of David Ben-Gurion himself.”
“For a number of reasons, Israel’s first prime-minister, David Ben-Gurion, did not wish to create a constitution. After only four meetings, the Constituent Assembly adopted on 16 February 1949, the Transition Law, by which means it became the “First Knesset” The Knesset is, therefore, one of three sovereign parliaments in the world that are not bound by a codified constitution; the Parliaments of the United Kingdom and of New Zealand are the others. Because the Constituent Assembly did not prepare a constitution for Israel, the Knesset is the heir of the Assembly for the purpose of fulfilling this function.”
You may correct me if I’m in error, but It seems that Israel has reneged on an international commitment to formally adopt a codified constitution…
The UK and New Zealand had no historical need and hence made no such commitments…
This thumbnail sketch derived and paraphrased from Wikipedia is consistent with what I’ve read on the subject…
Admittedly, I’m no expert on the matter and my knowledge base is limited…I make no argument here other than reciting what appears to be superficially extant…
It is for that reason that I defer to you Kosh and Amy and remain silent re the ongoing arguments and dust-ups…
08/16/2019 @ 11:33 am
If the Israelis had committed to adopt a Written constitution, it would’ve been the sole state there to do that.
And needless to say, the non-state entities there whose central commitments have included the destruction of Israel and for 70 years in some cases, could not care less if/when, Israel places on in writing.
Your dealing in red-herrings, here, Ron.
08/16/2019 @ 11:52 am
If there are “red herrings” here, they’re part of the murky and misleading historical record…
08/16/2019 @ 4:00 pm
You are an attorney, so this issue would be big on your radar. If they had a constitution, they’d just come up with national security exceptions. That would be really easy for a country like Israel because their real national security concerns are constant. There are all sorts of legal fights over government policy anyway.
08/16/2019 @ 4:29 pm
Clarity is all that I seek in this discussion…
08/16/2019 @ 4:27 pm
“If the Israelis had committed to adopt a Written constitution, it would’ve been the sole state there to do that.”
JW, you sound as though there is some doubt about the Israeli commitment to adopt a constitution as a condition for the support of the United States and the United Nations:
Translation of the Declaration by the Israel Ministry of Foreign Affairs.
WE DECLARE that, with effect from the moment of the termination of the Mandate being tonight, the eve of Sabbath, the 6th Iyar, 5708 (15th May, 1948), until the establishment of the elected, regular authorities of the State in accordance with the Constitution which shall be adopted by the Elected Constituent Assembly not later than the 1st October 1948, the People’s Council shall act as a Provisional Council of State, and its executive organ, the People’s Administration, shall be the Provisional Government of the Jewish State, to be called “Israel”.