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'Being tough' on Israel an excuse for anti-semitism

David North writes that he thinks it's time to "get tough" with the Israelis (Write Back, June 8) and erroneously states that "Israel has attacked all her neighbours at one time or another."

On the contrary, from the first War of Independence fought in 1948, was it not the surrounding Arab nations who sent their armies against Israel - then nowhere as militarily prepared as they are now - and who rhetorically vowed to "push the Jews into the sea"?

If Israel's neighbours chose to live in peace with their Jewish cousins then, of course, Israel would not need to be so strong militarily as it presently does, at much cost to its citizens I might add.

Mary Kenny, on the other hand, writes in her article "Why, when it comes to Israel, Ireland has no place to talk" (June 8) about the Irish nation's readiness to help the Palestinian Arabs, yet no such sympathies were extended on a similar level to the millions of Jews being systematically slaughtered in death camps all over "enlightened" Europe in the 1940s.

With friends like Ireland to rely upon to prevent the Jewish race from nigh-extinction by annihilation and racial hatred is it any wonder that, as a people, they decided they needed a state of their own in order to survive? Now that most of the Jews are out of Europe and in Israel, the world now hates Israel.

"Getting tough" with Israel is only a euphemism for permission to justify the large-scale anti-Semitism still meted out at the Jewish people's inalienable right to govern their own destiny.

COLIN NEVIN

Bangor, Co Down

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