Volume 22, Number 53 | The Newspaper of Lower Manhattan | May 14 - 20, 2010
Letters to the Editor
To the Editor
re: Memo to Liu: BPC not for sale,
Mr. Mayor and Mr. Comptroller: This time next year thousands of Battery Park City families will start to receive MASSIVE “maintenance fee” (tax) increases courtesy of the Battery Park City Authority. You will be doing this community an enormous favor by buying the land for a $1. CB1 does not speak for the majority of residents on this issue. Hard working families living in Battery Park City, many of us whom are struggling to make ends meet in this difficult economy, will not think twice about dismantling of the Battery Park City Authority when the City buys the land. Residents need property tax relief. We pay the highest property taxes in the City, mainly because the BPC Authority is neither efficient nor accountable. It’s mission is complete, and it no longer serves a useful purpose for this community. We only ask that your plans to buy the land include sufficient funding for the Battery Park City Parks Conservancy to keep our parks maintained to current standards. In fact, Central Park standards would be just fine by most of us.
To the Editor
RE: Un-divine Intervention
Perhaps Nestor Louis should have gotten his facts straight before making such inflammatory accusations against the parents of St. James School. The children are the innocent victims of a hostile merger, and his irresponsible comments are just further fanning the flames of bitterness that exist between the parents of both schools.
To the Editor
Re: Koch: Angry Man… Why he’s slamming Bam on Mideast
Ed Koch is right to be angry about the Obama Administration’s treatment of Israel, and everyone concerned about Israel’s survival should be equally angry. Unlike Mr. Gold, Mayor Koch is not laboring under the illusion that President Obama is the Messiah who will undo three thousand years of history with a charming grin. Nor does he delude himself that the Arabs want peace with Israel, at least a peace that will leave Israel a viable Jewish state. The difference is that Hamas wants all the Jews dead or gone right now - Fatah is more patient.
Of course a liberal talking point like Mr. Gold’s has to have the obligatory slam of President Bush, who, unlike President Obama, did not attempt to settle the Arab-Israeli dispute. He conveniently overlooks the facts that during Mr. Bush’s terms, Israel pulled out of Southern Lebanon and out of Gaza. And what did Israel get for these territorial concessions? Hezbollah kidnappings of Israeli soldiers leading to the second Lebanon War, and years of unrelenting rocket attacks on Southern Israel from Gaza leading to the self-defensive Operation Cast Lead. Israel ended the “occupation” of Gaza without any intervention from President Bush.
In fact, President Obama has worsened the chances for peace by imposing conditions that even the Palestinians had not demanded - a freeze on all settlements in the West Bank and housing construction in Jerusalem. This served to make the Arabs more intransigent in the belief that Obama could “deliver” Israel. He also uses the loaded term “settlements” for apartment house construction in Jerusalem, the undivided capital of Israel. Vice-President Biden’s hissy-fit was embarrassing, Secretary of State Hillary Clinton’s berating of Prime Minister Netanyahu was unconscionable, and President Obama’s going to dinner while leaving Netanyahu in the White House was petty, immature, and rude.
One wonders why President Obama will undermine a key U.S. ally and friend for building homes for its citizens while he does nothing - absolutely nothing - to stop Iran from getting nuclear weapons. Secretary Clinton talks about “containment” when Iran goes nuclear. It is clear from the spectacle of Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad at the U.N. Nuclear Proliferation Conference here in New York this week, where he put the onus on the U.S. for nuclear proliferation, that he is a lot more clever that Obama and Clinton. The man Mr. Gold calls a “pipsqueak” is the biggest sponsor of terrorism in the world, from Iraq to Afghanistan to Hamas to Hezbollah. If he gets nukes, forget about world security.
The other spectacle in our city this week, the car bomb in Times Square, drives home the lesson that the Arab-Israeli conflict is not the big “vital national interest” Obama claims it is. Published reports say that the terrorist, Faisal Shahzad, was retaliating for U.S. drone attacks in Pakistan – a Bush policy greatly expanded by President Obama. What is in our vital national interest, and what the Obama administration fails to comprehend, is to confront the global jihad being waged by Islamic extremists against the entire West. Obama has even expunged the words “Islamic” and “jihad” and “terrorism” from the policy vocabulary. He is afraid to name the enemy, and that puts us all in grave danger. He said that we are in a war against Al-Qaeda after the Christmas bombing attempt. That’s like saying that World War II was a war against the Wehrmacht, not Nazism. He does not understand that Israel, like New York City, is on the front line of this war against radical Islam.
Mayor Koch understands this, and his anger at the administration is justified. Senator Kirsten Gillibrand understands it as well, and she has called for hearings in the Senate Homeland Security Committee to investigate all companies that do business with Iran. She is showing strong leadership while Obama shows only weakness.
Mr. Gold’s talking point is naive wishful thinking. I’m amazed that he can write with a straight face that “Existence of a Palestinian state would almost certainly cut down the threatening rhetoric from Iran”. Really? How does he know that? Remember, to Iran, the U.S. is the “Great Satan.” Israel is only the “Little Satan.” How can Mr. Gold talk about a two-state solution when the Arabs in Gaza and the West Bank are so mortally divided? How can he think that a President Obama, who listened to the anti-Semitic and anti-Israel vitriol in Reverend Wright’s church for twenty years, has Israel’s best interests at heart? To convince American Jews that he does, the administration is about to commence a “charm offensive.” It would be wise to be very skeptical about overtures from a president who, as evidenced by his appeasement speech in Cairo, does not even know the history of Israel.